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The East Area of Sardegna

5 June 2017 by giancarlo

The East Area of Sardegna: the eastern coast boasts several seaside resorts concentrated around Arbatax and Villasimius. Except for some stretches, the road runs far from the sea and many beaches must be reached on foot or following dirt roads. Even the most important towns, Orosei, Muravera, or Dorgali are not located on the coast, but slightly inland.

Overlooking the Gulf of Orosei, the wild Ogliastra territory extends to the slopes of the Gennargentu. The territory of Ogliastra is one of the most beautiful and natural areas of Sardinia, where flora and fauna are the masters, in a dream setting.

To the south, the Sarrabus region holds great surprises: until a few years ago, it remained isolated due to the lack of communication.

Gulf of Orosei

The Gulf of Orosei is one of the wildest coasts of Sardinia, with its 40 kilometers of coastline overlooking the sea. You can reach it with long walks among the rocks carved by the wind, or by sea.

The region that bathes in these waters is called Ogliastra, perhaps the part of Sardinia more difficult to reach due to the rugged terrain or poor connections.

After the sandy bottoms of the Caletta di Siniscola and the quiet Marina di Orosei, the coast has limestone masses that are difficult to access from the ground.

The only inhabited center is that of Cala Gonone, with a small port that is always very crowded.

The whole area is rich in settlements dating back to the Nuraghic civilization and a visit to the Ispinigoli Caves is a must, in whose bowels there is a huge natural column formed by the union of a stalactite with a stalagmite: the height of well 38 meters ago of this concretion, the highest column in Europe. The cave, which is also called Grotta del Bue Marino because it has always hosted the monk seal, is located two kilometers from the port and has the entrance at sea level. The long tunnel that creeps into the limestone rock can be visited, and inside there is a small lake, small beaches and an underground stream.

The most famous beach of the entire Gulf of Orosei is Cala Luna, whose name derives from its moon-shaped shape, a rare jewel of nature consisting of a beach, enclosed by a pond and a thick bush of oleanders, which being one of the most visited tourist destinations, it has kept its natural beauty intact. It is located six kilometers south of the port of Cala Gonone, from which there are mini-cruises that include stops and dives in the most characteristic points of the Gulf of Orosei.

Going forward we find Cala Sisine, very suggestive at sunset, and the next Cala Mariuolu, whose small beaches are made up of smaller and smaller pebbles as you approach the shore. A legend tells that the name “mariuolu” was given to this area due to the presence of a very cleft seal that, secretly to the fishermen of Cala Gonone, managed to devour in a few seconds all the catch of a day.

The Gulf of Orosei closes with the Capo di Monte Santu, which opens the Gulf of Arbatax.

Gulf of Arbatax

Santa Maria Novarrese is located at the southern end of the Gulf of Orosei. Surrounded by maritime pines, it is dominated by an ancient tower where pirate arrivals were spied. The beach of Lotzorai runs along the pond of Tortolì, a beautiful nature reserve where we can meet herons and pink flamingos, recommended to lovers of nature and animals and suitable for bird watching for the presence of various migratory birds. Coccorocci is instead a long expanse of white, gray and orange egg-shaped pebbles.

Sailing at night, the lights of Baunei are distinct; built halfway up the coast, the village mainly lives on cattle breeding, although recently, as happened for Dorgali, a seaside tourist center has been created with Santa Maria Navarrese. Very interesting is the excursion on the plateau of Baunei where, in addition to the ancient church of San Pietro, it is possible to admire the chasm of the Golgo: S ‘Isterru, as it is called, sinks into the earth for about 280 meters and is among the most long in Europe.

Cala Goloritzè, dominated by a natural stone obelisk worked by the power of nature, is famous for the particular nuances that can be seen until 15:00 in the afternoon, before the sun begins to hide behind the rocks. Named “Italian National Monument” in 1995, it is certainly the most photographed beach in Ogliastra. This stretch of coast can only be reached by sea or on foot from the inside of the Gulf of Orosei and Gennargentu National Park.

The gulf of Arbatax closes with the Capo Bellavista that comes immediately after the port of Arbatax, on whose docks are painted large “murals” that depict subjects related to the sea. Arbatax is also the arrival point of the little train that runs over the mountain towards Lanusei