La Maddalena, a world unto itself

Porto Madonna tra Santa Maria e Budelli - Arcipelago della Maddalena

La Maddalena, a world unto itself

An archipelago of small islands fills the Sardinian sea with boundless beauty
all different but with the same charm and enchantment

Magnificent natural settings and scenery of incredible charm, but what really makes the Maddalena Archipelago unique is that each of its islands has its own air, its own atmosphere. There is the delicate one to look at from afar, the most intimate one where you can feel a bit like a hero, the scintillating one to be experienced day and night, the craggy ones where history and the waves have been heavy-handed, and the Caribbean ones, envied by the whole world. Even if some of the islands are very small and uninhabited, they seduce like no other place and these small lands contain all the "charisma and symptomatic mystery" inherited from their mother Sardinia. Just like her, they too have been inhabited since the dawn of time. When history first began, the ‘obsidian way’ passed through here and, until the decline of the Roman Empire, also the granite of Gallura. They were abandoned for a long time. Monks arrived in the Middle Ages, later joined, little by little, by families of Corsican shepherds and fishermen from Ponza, starting a new story of men and women with the sea in their hearts, who made the community that had settled at La Maddalena great, always defending and never violating the islands of the archipelago, which reached us with the mysterious purity of places that have barely been touched.

The Town

Full of herself for sure, with a natural beauty and the beating heart of life on the archipelago, you can arrive here after a day of sailing from one island to another, hiking along the trails, swimming on the seabed and visiting the wreckages or riding your bike, exploring the little bays hidden from view. In the evening, you can recharge your batteries in town, on the seafront, on the beach or in the historic centre. Tomorrow is a new day on the archipelago.
La Maddalena
The archipelago and park are named for the only inhabited town on the largest island, a paradise with endless natural and historical-cultural...

Forbidden dream

Now she is wounded and allows herself to be watched from afar, but like all the most beautiful things, she wants to be loved and shared. Time will heal her wounds and she will go back to being smelled and touched closely. In the end, she will allow a new generation of visitors, educated to respect nature, to bathe in her incredible pink waters. To bring Budelli home, all they need is a photo.
Spiaggia Rosa - Budelli - Arcipelago della Maddalena
In the extreme north of Sardinia, near the Bocche di Bonifacio, among the islands of the national park, there is an inaccessible paradise, a mirage...

House of Garibaldi, house of Italy

So small, yet all-encompassing, without inhabitants but full of life, an island rich in little secluded bays... it may be because Garibaldi chose it as a ‘pleasant retreat’ that we all feel welcome in this safe haven: it is a sensation that still hovers in his memorabilia and you can feel it when you lightly touch his little boats in storage, or walking between the olive trees he once cultivated. Your gaze, like his, will be lost at sea.
In the northeastern part of Sardinia, there is an island that is entirely protected and, therefore, still wild. Its coast is protected by woods and...

It is a port of the Madonna

Never was a name more appropriate... air and water with no boundaries between sky and sea, mixed with the hazy, transparent blue, so beautiful and intense that even without light or much fresh water, it has never stopped being inhabited. Is it so hard to believe? From the beach of Santa Maria, stroll along the paths between the few houses and you’ll find out whether leaving here really “feels a bit like dying”.
Spiaggia di Santa Maria - arcipelago della Maddalena
Santa Maria
The northernmost of these magnificent islands that make up the La Maddalena Archipelago National Park, in the extreme north-east of Sardinia

The outliers, to be respected

Marked by ups and downs, the last outpost of the park towards the mother island, they are a stone’s throw from the emerald green beaches, once a wild mooring place and then a strict nature reserve. They are now opening up again to visitors, who are aware of the privilege of entering extraordinary natural environments, in a delicate balance. These are just two small islands with a paradise of rare marine life inhabiting their depths. Mask and flippers?
Isola di Mortorio e dei Soffi - Arzachena
Isola di Mortorio e di Soffi
Together, they form a delightful little archipelago, known for its natural pools and protected by the bay of Porto Rotondo and Capriccioli, in the...

Life at the lighthouse

An atmosphere like the desert of the Tartars, absolute wilderness, yet it is the island that tells the most about humanity, about the families of the lighthouse keepers who lived in communities on the edge of the world. Stories told by the only ‘foreigner’ - the teacher of the boys who stayed at the lighthouse. Stories of complicated daily life, feelings and moods suspended while waiting for something to happen. In the background, the wind and waves create their usual music.
Cala Lunga - isola Razzoli - arcipelago della Maddalena
Razzoli - La Maddalena
An island in the far north of Sardinia, which is part of the Maddalena archipelago, characterised by granite cliffs, unspoiled nature and...

The fairest of them all?

Probably... and it is undoubtedly the island of the enchanted bays, the one most fragrant with Mediterranean plants and the most welcoming with easy and sheltered landing places. In the early nineteenth century, it was apparently home to a bandit who hid here in order to avoid prison. After proving his innocence, not only did he not want to leave the island, but he settled there permanently with his family, living on fishing and sheep farming. Who could blame him.
In the northeasternmost part of Sardinia, among the islands of the Maddalena Archipelago, there is an uncontaminated paradise of genuine beauty,...

Everyone wants me, nobody takes me

It is the island with an indecipherable air, an immense granite sculpture forgotten on the beach, the fort abandoned by Napoleon after bombing La Maddalena in vain, the wreckages lying on the seabed, the US marine base, that of the nuclear propulsion submarines, now vacated. It was also Garibaldi’s ‘first choice’, later abandoned due to the lack of land for sale. These events say a lot about the island’s strange fate.
Isola Santo Stefano - La Maddalena
Santo Stefano
A ‘Sentinel’ with a glorious past and a harsh, wild appearance, in a strategic position between La Maddalena, Caprera and the extreme northeastern...