In the lower Coghinas valley, Valledoria accompanies the third river of the island to its mouth and faces the heart of the Gulf of Asinara, surrounded by lush landscapes. Valledoria is an agricultural and tourist town with over 4,000 inhabitants, with its main cultivation being artichokes, protagonists of cultural events in April and the basis of the local gastronomic tradition, whilst the processing of gold and coral forge the strong artisan tradition. Valledoria has been an independent municipality since 1961, arising from the merger of the localities of Baia Verde, Codaruina, La Ciaccia, La Muddizza, Maragnani, San Pietro (and Santa Maria Coghinas, which then became independent in 1983), firstly being the hamlets of Castelsardo and Sedini. The centre is Codaruina, whose name refers to the ‘periphery of the ruins’ of the ancient and glorious city of Ampurias. The original agglomeration was formed by the influx of agricultural entrepreneurs from Gallura who occupied the fertile and vast depopulated plains, while the toponym ‘Valle dei Doria’ derives from the noble Ligurian family that dominated the Anglona historical region in the 13th century.
Between the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st century, numerous tourist facilities and services were built to enhance the seven kilometres of soft and golden sands, interrupted only by the outlet of the Coghinas river and some rocks in Maragnani. The San Pietro beach offers a contrast in colours with the sparkling sand and blue sea. The Baia delle Mimosa is then a stretch of white sand framed by dunes covered with greenery. San Pietro and La Ciaccia are destinations for those who enjoy breezes and kite surfing, coming from all around Europe. The whole territory is an exploration of nature: the plain is dotted with abundant gardens, lush pines and eucalyptus woods, gentle elevation and plentiful water. Before entering the sea, the Coghinas river forms a wetland extending over 50 hectares, the lacustrine area of the Valledoria beach, inhabited by herons, anatidae, widgeons, dabbling ducks and, along the banks in the reeds of rushes, tamarisks and willows, by coots, moorhens and water rails. Sea bass and mullet swim in the brackish waters. The area is ideal for horse riding, trekking, snorkelling, kayaking, sport fishing and sailing.
The first settlements in the area were on the hills of Muddizza then in the plains, as the swamp gave way to cultivable land. The fecundity, easy access from the sea and the navigability of part of the river all contributed to the fortunes of Ampurias, to which the Sardinian Church attributed great importance. Indeed, it was amongst the first episcopal hubs of the north, maintaining its authority until 1503 and strengthened by incorporating the diocese of Civita (Olbia). The mouth of the Coghinas river constituted an integrated port system, which the excavations in Zilvara and Santa Maria Maddalena helped bring to light. Documenting its evolution is the archaeological museum of the village, which also exhibits stelae from a Roman necropolis.