Given its central position in the heart of the Mediterranean, it’s surprising more doesn’t get written about Sardinia – both as a holiday destination and a fantastic place to buy a luxury overseas property.
The Mediterranean’s second-biggest island (after Sicily and before Cyprus) may be a semi-autonomous region of Italy but it has a unique character all of its own.
Although Italian is widely spoken and remains the official language, there are numerous indigenous languages such as Sassarese, Corsican Gallurese and Algherese Catalan which create a colourful mix of cultures and traditions.
The landscape is equally diverse. Given its size, Sardinia has its own micro-climate with a wide variety of ecosystems form mountains, woods and uninhabited plains to rocky coastlines and long sandy beaches.
A little-known reason to consider Sardinia is that it shares an unusual claim to fame with the Japanese island of Okinawa. Together, the islands have the join-highest rate of centenarians in the world, with 22 people in every 100,000 living to over 100.
Whatever the medical reasons, the traditional diet and laid-back way of life are all part of what makes it easy to enjoy a long and happy life on the island; with all the creature comforts of modern life combined with a relaxed approach to life you struggle to get on mainland Italy.
In recent years, Sardinia has even become the centre of a revival in luxury wellness retreats. There are now several high-end health and fitness centres on the island, running exclusive getaways focussed on yoga, pilates, HIIT workouts and other popular treatments.
In terms of property locations, there’s a great variety to choose from. Nestled in the south, Cagliari is Sardinia’s main and biggest city. It has 150,00 direct residents in the city itself with another 280,000 scattered throughout the urban surroundings. Between the two areas, it combines ancient historical sites, beautiful sea views, elegant shopping streets, buzzing nightlife and relaxing countryside.
The east of the island is home to some of its most beautiful scenery, with sandy beaches, stunning rock ridges, ponds and mountains. It’s a great place to consider if you like outdoor activities, including hiking, surfing, diving, climbing, horse riding, canoeing and sailing which are all available in abundance.
The towns of Arbatax and Tortoli are the centrepoint of the east and, arguably, are its most traditional and authentic region. The area is characterized by awesome food, winding coastal roads and breath-taking roads connecting the Gennargentu mountain range with the shallow offshore coastline.
On the west of the island is some of its quietest and most secluded terrain. White waves crash against giant cliffs punctuated by secluded bays harbouring turquoise seas.
The town of Oristano is a lovely attraction and largely unspoiled by tourism. It’s packed with treasures and examples of traditional Sardinian life. The ancient town of Tharros and the beautiful Sinis Peninsula are must-see attractions if you’re in this region.
In the north is the ancient city of Olbia, which means ‘happiness’ in ancient Greek. It’s appropriately named as it’s rightly one of the most popular areas for property buyers.
The city is a gateway to some of the islands best beaches, five separate protected marine areas, nearly 80,000 hectares of stunning coastal landscapes and, if you’re interested in diving, breath-taking sea beds.
If you’re an EU citizen, buying property in Sardinia is possible at any time. The good news is, you’ll get the same experience as an Italian. The bad news is, you’ll get the same experience as an Italian.
If you’re familiar with doing business in Italy, you’ll know the bureaucracy can be significant. That’s why we’re there to make the experience fast, efficient and simple for you. Our team of buyer’s advisors can guide you through the administrative issues and the tax regulations specific to the island.
Have you ever been to Sardinia? Leave us a comment and share your stories with us. Never been, but want to see if it can be added to your overseas property search list? Contact the Unique Living team today!