NauticEd has been to Sardinia and loved every minute of our yacht charter. Chartering the Costa Smeralda and Maddalena Archipelago offered some of the bluest water we’ve ever seen. Rocky formations, delicious cuisine, fantastic summer winds, charming villages, local nightlife, and proximity to Corsica made our charter (and that of the other 7 boats on our flotilla) an amazing experience.
Yacht Charter & Sailing Vacations
Sardinia • Where to go • When to go • What you should know • How to book
The land of longevity
With its striking beauty, cultural treasures, and exceptional sailing conditions, Sardinia promises an unforgettable sailing vacation, making it an appealing choice for those seeking an idyllic yacht charter escape in the Mediterranean. This Italian island offers a plethora of compelling reasons to choose it as a sailing destination: pristine coastline, captivating islands, stunning natural landscapes, rich cultural heritage, enjoyable village marinas, and excellent sailing conditions.
What is a sailing vacation, yacht charter, etc..? Learn more here ›
Sardinia Bareboat charter requirements:
✔ Sailing Resume
Learn more at Yacht Charter Resources ›
Knowledge – Skills – Experience:
✔ Intermediate Plus
We list sailing in the Sardinia area as Intermediate Plus because of the potential for high winds from the Mistral (North Westerly) and the Scirocco (South Easterly). Both winds can become quite high and 30 knots can be common. You should be confident and competent enough to be able to handle such winds for not only sailing but docking in a tight marina. Additionally, at all marinas, you will be doing Mediterranean mooring maneuvers – you should thus be competent at this form of docking.
Like all Mediterranean sailing yacht charter destinations, the ideal time to charter in Sardinia is between May and October. The shoulder months of June and September are less crowded and less hot than the prime months of July and August. During the summer months (June to September), the prevailing winds are the Mistral and the Scirocco. Winds and sailing conditions can be strong in the Strait of Bonifacio and care must be exercised for the crossing.
Sardinia experiences a Mediterranean climate from June to September, with warm to hot temperatures and minimal rainfall. July and August are the hottest months, perfect for beach activities, while September offers milder temperatures with warm seas and fewer crowds.
Winds shift weekly between the strong North West Mistral from the French mountains to the South Easterly Scirocco from Northern Africa. The 20 miles straight between Sardinia and Corsica tend to funnel the winds making them potentially strong.
Sardinia offers a wide variety of sailing regions:
Costa Smeralda: Located in the northeast of Sardinia, the emerald coast is one of the most glamorous sailing destinations featuring luxury resorts, upscale marinas, and charming towns.
The Maddalena Archipelago is just north of the Costa Smeralda and is a group of islands known for their natural beauty and clear waters with plenty of anchorages waiting to be explored.
The Gulf of Orosei, on the eastern coast of Sardinia is known for its dramatic limestone cliffs, hidden coves, and stunning sea caves.
Southern Sardinia/Cagliari. The southern coast of Sardinia offers a mix of sandy beaches and vibrant coastal towns with cultural attractions.
Western/Northwestern/Alghero. The western coast of Sardinia features historic towns such as Alghero with its Catalan influence as well as the vibrant city of Oristano.
Regardless of the region of Sardinia you are chartering from, there are tons of activities to do, sites to see, towns to explore, and beaches for relaxation.
- Visit the glamorous resort town of Porto Cervo known for its luxury yachts, upscale boutiques, and vibrant nightlife.
- Sail to the stunning Spiaggia del Principe (Prince’s Beach), a beautiful sandy bay surrounded by granite cliffs.
- Visit Caprera Island, known for its rugged landscapes and connection to Italian hero Giuseppe Garibaldi.
- Cross the Strait of Bonifacio to visit the picturesque town of Bonifacio or the glamorous Porto Vecchio in Corsica, France.
- Wander through the medieval cobbled streets of Alghero’s Old Town, characterized by Catalan architecture and ancient walls.
- Take a scenic boat trip or hike to Neptune’s Grotto, an impressive sea cave with stunning stalactites and stalagmites.
- Sail to Capo Caccia, a majestic limestone promontory, and admire its dramatic cliffs and panoramic views over the sea.
- Stroll through the narrow streets of Cagliari’s historic Old Town Be sure to visit Bastione di Saint Remy, a terrace overlooking Cagliari, and enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the city’s skyline and harbor.
- Embark on a guided tour of Grotte Is Zuddas, a stunning cave system adorned with stalactites and stalagmites near Cagliari.
With main charter bases in Cagliari, Alghero, Olbia, Portisco, and Cannigione , choose an international airport close to base: Cagliari Elmas Airport (CAG), Olbia Costa Smeralda Airport (OLB) or Alghero-Fertilia Airport (AHO). Alternatively you can take a ferry to Sardinia from several ports in Italy and other Mediterranean countries. Major Sardinian ferry ports include:
Porto Torres, Olbia, and Cagliari all of which have several connections with several other Italian ports and even some with Spain.
Sardinia Bareboat Charter Sample Itineraries
Where to go on a Sardinia sailing vacation?
Scroll below for sample itineraries or use the map to explore.
Sardinia has plenty of regions for sailing. Pick one region for a one week charter (We recommend the Costa Smeralda and Maddalena Archipelago for your first charter there) or if you have the time, combine multiple regions for a multi-week charter (you won’t even visit the same place twice).
Click the left top box in the map to select the different itineraries. Enjoy!
NauticEd Sardinia Customer Experiences
Brody B. Toronto, Canada: What an incredible 7 days sailing in Sardinia with NauticEd! It was my first-ever sailing trip and from the moment I stepped onto the boat I knew I was in great hands! From feeling safe and secure with our knowledgeable captain and crew, to dining on incredible food and exploring new ports and towns every day, it was a spectacular way to see Sardinia. The astounding sites paired with the awesome group of people onboard made it a once-in-a-lifetime trip. Take me back!
Jeff K. Austin, Texas: We had a fantastic time sailing through the Costa Smeralda. Our chartered catamaran was new and comfortable with great amenities. There was a huge selection of beautiful places to stop whether beaches for swimming or marinas where we would overnight and enjoy the local culture and food. The landscape and water cannot be described but must be experienced.
Porto Cervo should not be missed just for the experience of what a typical yacht stop looks like for the billionaires (Which did not include us 😕) but there were some great shopping and dining there too.
The sailing was great. Lots (and lots) of good wind, helping us regularly achieve about eight knots.
All in all, wonderful trip that I would highly recommend.
Sardinia Sailing Vacation Related Blog Posts
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NauticEd are expert Sardinia yacht charter agents (we’ve been there). We don’t charge you a fee and can more than likely save you money on all your sailing vacations. We search the world’s databases for over 8,000 yachts in 55 destinations. We give expert advice on where and when to go – likely, we’ve been there. Make an inquiry and book your sailing vacations through NauticEd Sailing Vacations.
Sailing Skill Levels
Local Knowledge + Education: as Sailing Vacation Experts, NauticEd’s team has chartered and sailed in almost all these locations – providing you with the “local knowledge” you need when planning a sailing vacation. And, as the leader in sailing education, NauticEd assigns different skill levels based on the knowledge-theory and practical/experience needed for chartering in different sailing locations.
Recommended Knowledge-Theory Courses for chartering: Bareboat Charter Master Bundle (six bareboat and near coastal courses), Catamaran Sailing Confidence (if chartering a Cat), Yacht Charter Crew Course (for your crew).
Skill Levels notably emphasize the overall practical experience and competency that is required to sail in certain areas. Of course, the “devil’s in the details” on specifics, and we recommend you contact us when planning a sailing vacation. We’ll save you money on your vacation – which is great – but being prepared to have safe fun experiences that will last a lifetime is priceless!
• Intermediate = Near Coastal <5nm within sight of land, some navigation hazards (always be aware), and generally mild weather conditions. Good seapersonship (i.e., “seamanship”) skills, knowledge, and experience apply.
• Intermediate +Plus = Near Coastal <15nm, within sight of land in clear atmospheric conditions, moderate navigation hazards, and/or challenging weather. Good seapersonship skills, knowledge, and experience apply.
• Advanced = Near Coastal <20nm, within sight of land in clear atmospheric conditions, many navigation hazards, and/or potentially difficult weather. Expert seapersonship skills, knowledge, and experience apply.
*Atmospheric conditions: from the deck of a sailboat, your “visible horizon” is about 12nm on a clear day (considering typical freeboard + your height). Visibility is decreased by haze, fog, rain, smoke, and similar atmospheric considerations. Navigating by line of sight is obviously greater if your destination has features such as mountains, lighthouses, tall buildings, etc…
*Navigational hazards may include features such as rocks, shoals, rough inlets or anchorages, challenging tides and currents, lee shores, commercial traffic, etc…
*Weather: examples of challenging or difficult weather include thunder/lightning storms, areas prone to high winds, or even seasonal risks such as excessive heat.