Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Spring trip to Sardinia

Last week, on a whim, I jumped on a flight to Sardinia; it's an island I hardly knew anything about beforehand.  It's nothing to do with sardines, either.  No, Sardinia is the second largest island in the Mediterranean and has a wealth of ancient history, good beaches, fine food and beautiful men.  It also doesn't seem to be particularly on the radar of most English tourists, which is a great shame.

After such a Satanic English winter, a week's trip turned out to be just the antidote I needed - after just a two-and-a-half-hour direct flight to Cagliari, I was on a different planet.  I spent four days of the trip, just on this gorgeous beach.

Chia beach has thirty-metre high white dunes, sand so fine and bleached it is like talcum powder, and a dense cloak of juniper trees; the beach is remote, accessible by rutted lanes and has a necklace of even more isolated beaches nearby.  A swim here is breathtaking, as the ocean, even this early in the season, is bath-warm, shallow and stained a dazzling jade-blue.  The locals say dolphins can be seen off-shore, although I didn't see any.

The roasted sea bass I enjoyed at mid-day at the nearby restaurant was irresistible, rich and melt-in-the-mouth; shallots, large zesty lemon halves, pungent locally-gathered herbs and ever-so-juicy plum tomatoes.

After a day spent under startling blue skies and with salt drying on my sunburnt skin, we stopped en route back to the hotel to look at a simple market stall in a village selling lemons.  It is a pleasure to see such produce for sale in such stark contrast to the fruit we normally find withering in the supermarkets in Britain.  Juan, keen to treat me to something authentically Italian, soon put a few lemons in the hotel's only blender and presented me with a delightfully chilled, refreshing glass of just-this-minute-made lemonade.


  1. Darling Fanny,

    This sounds so divine. And, how fabulous it is that Sardinia is off the radar for most English tourists. Perfect. We have often thought that there should be a questionnaire for all travellers leaving Britain and those not passing the test to guarantee perfect behaviour abroad should be kept firmly behind. That is, unless they wish to go to Benidorm, Ibiza or the Costa Too Much in which case they should be given free passage with no return!

    You are so right when you say that the markets abroad are generally so much more beguiling that anything to be found in Blighty. The basket of lemons looks deliciously tempting and, lucky you to have Juan on hand to crush them and convert them into lemonade. Ahhhh this is the stuff of which dreams are made.

    Might Budapest be a next must see destination for you? The 'Paris of the East' awaits you with bated breath!

  2. Chia beach... looks absolutely great. It's now officially on my bucket list.

  3. Sardinia looks breath taking.

    "It also doesn't seem to be particularly on the radar of most English tourists, which is a great shame" Lets hope it stays that way! Benidorm was once a sleepy little fishing village off the beaten track and now look the place, full of tattooed scrobnobs without teeth playing afternoon bingo. Get your dabbers out girls! Do you really want that for Sardinia?

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