Three of the 22 most beautiful beaches in Europe are in Sardinia. It is European travellers themselves who say so, according to a survey carried out by European Best Destinations, an organisation that, every year, studies the trends, tastes and requirements of European tourists seeking unforgettable locations. The ‘queen’ is Baunei, boasting two of the gems in the ranking. In fourth place outright, there is a symbol of the Island, where sea, mountains and woods embrace each other in harmony - it's Cala Goloritzé, a picture painted by nature, turquoise waters gushing from underwater karst springs, a carpet of white pebbles and an arch of cliffs - a destination for climbers – encircling the bay. You can get to it by sea, from Arbatax, Cala Gonone or Santa Maria Navarrese, or you can follow a trekking trail in the Supramonte area. So much wild beauty is not easy to conquer!
Cala dei Gabbiani is also in the top 20 and is considered the ‘little sister’ of the more famous Cala Mariolu. Travellers appreciate its intimate nature and the atmosphere of a ‘secret retreat’. Once again, you can only get to it by sea or on foot, with about four hours of trekking along the Golgo plateau, then you will be able to swim in transparent, shimmering waters with infinite shades of blue. The beach is a mixture of white sand and multicoloured, white, pink and cream-coloured pebbles. An inlet contains the third beach in the ranking, this time in the southern seas: it is Cala Cipolla, the westernmost stretch of the enchanting coastline of Chia, the coastal district of Domus de Maria. It is bordered by pink granite cliffs on the sides and sandy dunes and a fragrant forest of pine and juniper trees behind it. The colours of the water range from turquoise to emerald green and the waters are shallow for tens of metres.
Picturesque views, sculpted and shaped by water and wind and embellished with a thousand colours. It’s hard not to immortalise them using cameras and smartphones and it’s impossible not to share the best shots on Instagram. The Thinking Traveller portal listed the ten European beaches with the greatest number of hashtags: three of them are Sardinian. In third place, there is La Pelosa, a corner of the tropics, but in Stintino, in the extreme north-west of the Island. Instagram users are filled with emotion by the infinite colours of the sea - from turquoise to light blue, emerald green and dark blue, the almost impalpable sand and the dunes covered with junipers. The other two beaches take us back to the Gulf of Orosei, a treasure chest of nature: in sixth place outright there is Cala Luna, a strip of golden sand set between the cliffs, in front of the sea. You will ‘capture’ it from inside the caves that open up in the north, taking it with you in the photos and in your heart. In thirteenth place, here comes Cala Goloritzé again: this stunning beach has been featured in almost 50 thousand Instagram posts.
Just type best beaches in Europe 2023, using the search engines, and you’ll notice a name that appears everywhere: Sardinia. Travel and Destinations puts the Island in second place, calling it a destination “similar to the Tropics but closer to home than you might expect”. The most popular of the single beaches is always the same one: Cala Goloritzé. The same characteristics highlighted by European Best Destinations place it among the 20 most spectacular European beaches to explore according to Lonely Planet, in the top 25 according to theworldpursuit.com and in third place among the most beautiful European beaches chosen by worlds50beaches.com. A little further down, in seventh place, is Cala Capriccioli, jewel of the Costa Smeralda. It’s impossible not to get excited before the pink granites reflected in the crystal-clear water, surrounded by a semi-circle of Mediterranean greenery. Also in the ranking are Cala Mariolu, a pearl set in a cliff overlooking the blue sea, Cala Coticcio, the ‘Tahiti’ of the island of Caprera, and Cala Luna.