Olbia, called the ‘happy city’ by the Greeks, overlooks the gulf which contains the beautiful islands of Tavolara and Molara. Olbia is known throughout the world thanks to its airport which is the gateway to the very fashionable Costa Smeralda. The town is an international crossroads for numerous visitors and boasts healthy industrial and business sectors, as well as some of the most important tourist resorts in Sardinia, such as Porto Rotondo and Portisco.
There are numerous fascinating archaeological sites in the area: the Riu Mulinu Nuraghe, on the Su Casteddu hill which dominates the Gulf of Olbia, the giants’ tombs of Su Monte de S’Aba and the sacred well, Sa Tesa. The town was conquered by the Romans and still preserves the Roman baths and aqueduct, the only one still remaining intact in Sardinia, and a typical Roman farm known as S’Imbalconadu.
However, Olbia also boasts a number of monumental churches, such as the Basilica of San Simplicio, the town’s patron saint. Celebrations in his honour take place on 15th May with a solemn procession, music, poetry competitions and the traditional Mussel Festival.
The archaeological Museum is well worth a visit. It is situated on the islet of Peddone and has a rich exhibition which recounts the historical events of the ancient town.