Alghero, Sardinia, Italy cruises

The second-largest island in the Mediterranean, Sardinia is home to dramatic coastline and breath-taking landscapes. Boasting picturesque harbors, stunning beaches, superb vineyards, and groves of olive trees that seem to stretch for miles and miles, Sardinia offers prehistoric ruins and medieval walled towns, which never fail to capture the imagination of visitors.

Offering so much to see and do, Alghero is one of the island’s best-preserved Medieval cities. 

Alghero port guide.

As you approach the port of Alghero, you will be greeted by secluded bays, pine forests, jagged rock faces and luxurious vineyards.

And, when you step foot in Alghero, you will quickly realize that - despite being Italian - it has a distinctly Catalan feel, which is why it is affectionately known as "Little Barcelona”.

Top landmarks and sights in Alghero.

Alghero is situated on the northwest coast of Sardinia. Known for its pretty cobbled streets, historic character, ancient walls and stunning Gothic buildings including the Cattedrale di Santa Maria that stands proudly on Piazza Palazzo, and Chiesa di San Francesco, a 14th-century Gothic-style church, there are plenty of landmarks and sights to discover.

A walk along the beautiful Bastioni will provide plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in the many wonderful sights and sounds of Alghero. These beautifully kept walls (known as Bastioni) were built by the Aragonese in the 16th century and surround the center of Alghero. Running from Porta a Mare, along the way you will be greeted by towers such as Torre di San Giacomo, Torre della Polveriera, Torre di Sant’Elmo, as well as plenty of restaurants that offer the perfect spot to refuel and reflect.

Things to do in Alghero.

Alghero is one of the most charming towns in Sardinia. Home to some of the area’s best-known landmarks, it’s a fantastic destination to explore at your own pace.

From discovering Neptune's Grotto - mesmerizing sea caves that will feed your urge for adventure - through to visiting the vineyards and wine cellars of Sella and Mosca, these narrow cobblestone streets and golden shorelines are bursting with exciting things to see and do. Whether you choose to spend your time wine tasting at Alghero’s famous vineyards, watching the world go by at Riservato Beach Bar, or even take to the sea to embark on a dolphin-watching trip, you will find plenty of activities that are perfect for the whole family.

To explore at a slower pace, take a stroll along the picturesque waterfront with its interesting historic buildings and laid-back atmosphere, offers the chance to soak up lots of old-world charm.

Alghero also has lots of stunning beaches that are perfect for relaxing, swimming and soaking up the sunshine. The most popular beaches include Mugoni Beach, Le Bombarde beach, Punta Negra beach and Cala Dragunara beach. However, Maria Pia is one of the area’s most popular beaches, with its gorgeous white sand, shallow warm waters and special picture-perfect views. This beach is surrounded by a scenic pine forest and there are restaurants and bars on site, as well as lots of sunbeds and umbrellas to rent.

Maria Pia beach, the Summer Dream Beach Club and the Riservato Beach Bar are all only a short walk from the port.

Sardinian culture and history.

Sardinia has a rich and fascinating culture and history that adds to its unique character and charm. It’s safe to say there’s a lot more to Sardinia than its array of inviting beaches.

Populated since the Neolithic times and home to several different cultures and civilizations, including Carthaginians, Phoenicians and Romans, Sardinia has a multi-layered and interesting history. This can still be seen all around the area today, through its fascinating buildings, landmarks, and archaeological sites.

Sardinia is also renowned for its festivals, many of which have been ongoing for centuries. It is at these festivals that you will really gain a true insight into the Sardinian people and their history, with festivals showcasing a range of beautiful jewelry and costumes. The vast majority of festivals in Sardinia have a religious theme, however there are a number of other events, such as the International Jazz festival in August. Make sure you check the island’s calendar of events when you’re planning your trip.

Eating and drinking in Alghero.

No trip to Alghero should be complete without sampling the area’s many delicious cuisines.

And the good news is, you don’t need to walk far from the port to enjoy a mouth-watering array of local dishes, as well an Alghero’s fish market that is renowned for its fresh fruit, vegetable and of course, a delicious array of seafood.

Shopping in Alghero.

Sardinia is home to a number of luxury boutiques, markets, and designer stores, particularly in the Old Town.

Shopping in Alghero certainly won’t disappoint, with its streets lined with great boutiques. The main shopping streets in Alghero are Via Carlo Alberto, Via Gilbert ferret and Via Roma. Carlo Alberto is the main shopping street, Via Gilbert Ferret is lined with elegant boutiques, and Via Roma is the perfect place for fashion and jewelry.

If you’re shopping for souvenirs to remember your trip, make sure you look out for Alghero’s deep red coral found off the nearby Riviera del Corallo coast. Much of the jewelry made locally features this stunning coral. And, on the last Saturday of the month, make sure you attend the Arts, Crafts and Antiques Market on the Piazza Civico.

Transport in Alghero.

There isn’t a lot of traffic on the streets of Sardinia, adding to its idyllic and endearing feel, allowing visitors to truly soak up the scenes.

If you want to travel a little further afield, trains and buses are readily available, allowing you to hop on and off at your leisure. Of course, in keeping with Italy’s culture, motorcycles and bicycles are also a common sight.

Alghero port facilities.

The Port of Alghero manages two quays, Banchina Dogana and Banchina Sanità, both of which are sheltered by the walls of the old town. The port is perfectly equipped to accommodate visiting yachts, cruise liners and other vessels up to 164 feet.

Top tips for visiting Sardinia.

The best time to visit Sardinia is between April and June, when you’ll enjoy lovely weather conditions, blooming flowers and a warm water temperature that’s perfect for swimming. These months tend to be cooler than the highs of July and August, meaning it’s a lot more pleasant to explore the island.

Sardinia's unit of currency is the Euro.