Tuesday, July 31, 2007

June 2007 - Stintino, Sardinia - The World's Largest "Swimming Pool"

We had heard that there was a great beach in the small village of Stintino near the northwestern tip of Sardinia so we headed west along the coast to check it out. The beach faces north towards the tip, known as Capo del Falcone, and the island of Asinara just off the coast.

On our way, we stopped at il Santuario di Monte d'Accoddi - one of the most ancient archaeological sites in all of Sardinia, dating from the Copper Age (2450-1850 BC), even older than all of the nuraghic (conical stone) ruins scattered throughout the island.The sanctuary, in the shape of a truncated, stepped pyramid with a trapezoidal base and supported by walls of stone blocks, is the only example of a megalithic altar in the entire western Mediterranean. Around the altar, there's supposed to be foundations for houses, some sacrificial stone slabs, fallen menhirs, and rock-cut tombs, but it was getting hot and we were anxious to get to the beach (and frankly not that interested). So we hopped back in the car, headed back to the coast, and continued northwest.
We drove straight through the town of Stintino, which was originally a small fishing village and now is a holiday town, to its famous beach, which didn't disappoint. It looked so amazing from the road, we couldn't park and get down there fast enough. Just look at that water!
We found this little sandy spot completely surround by amazing black rocks that kept us perfectly dry yet inches away from the gentle surf lapping in and around us. In the distance on the left is the old Spanish tower that "defends" Capo del Falcone and on the right is the island of Asinara.
This was the calmest water . . .
and by far the largest "swimming pool" that we have seen so far, in Sardinia or anywhere else!
The beach was unbelievably wide and the sand bar was remarkably long. You could walk our almost half way to Asinara island and still only be waist deep.
We hung out here for most of the afternoon and headed back to Castelsardo just before dinnertime. If there wasn't so much to see on Sardinia's north coast, we'd definitely come back for another lazy beach day at this unique beach.

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