History and archaeology, traditions and craftsmanship, gorgeous seas and the mountain wilderness of the Supramonte, covered in a mantle of fragrant woods, will guide you into a magic legendary world. Dorgali boasts 225 square kilometres of wilderness, one of Sardinia’s largest and most beautiful areas. Along the characteristic streets of the historical centre you will stroll past houses made of volcanic rock and boutiques featuring delicate filigree jewellery and ceramics that, along with rugs, exemplify the artisanal vocation of this town. The churches of San Lussurio, of the Madonna d’Itria and Santa Caterina bear witness to the religion so heartfelt by its people. You will take a journey back in time at the archaeological museum, where relics from the Nuragic Age (especially those from the Nuragic village-sanctuary of Serra Òrrios) and from the Punic and Roman eras are on display. Not far from town are trails that lead hikers to the valle di Lanaittu, and through the legendary Tiscali Village, the defensive fortress built to hold off the advancing Romans.
Outside of town, just after a short tunnel, is a veritable gateway between the mountains and the sea, your eyes will gaze over the spectacular view of the Gulf of Orosei. A windy dirt path will take you down to Cala Gonone, famous for its coves and inlets, the destination of nature lovers, adventurers and romantic boating excursions. It sits on a steep hill that runs down to the water’s edge, where beaches of golden sand like Cala Cartoe, Ziu Martine e Cala Osalla offer quiet relaxation. By boat, or a strenuous hike, you can reach Cala Luna, which borders on Baunei, one of the Mediterranean’s most enchanting beaches. Graced with a beach of almost powdery sand and surrounded by blooming oleander trees it was the setting for the Lina Wertmüller cult film Swept Away. Further inland is the Codula di Luna, a deep gorge of steep walls and ancient juniper trees that have always acted as guardians of the beauty of this place. A guided excursion from Cala Gonone will take you to see the famous natural Grotte del Bue Marino, a series of grottoes that are home to ‘forests’ of stalagmites and stalactites, an underground saline lake and once the dwelling of the Monk seal. During the Cala Gonone Jazz event, the grotto becomes the venue of a truly unique, and spectacular, concert. And speaking of marine biology, don’t miss a chance to visit the aquarium in the town of Cala Gonone.