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Overview and history

Sardinia's Costa Smeralda, with its emerald waters and breathtaking scenery, is a dream destination for catamaran cruisers. Discover the hidden treasures of this breathtaking region as you sail along the coast, where every port of call holds unforgettable moments.

The Costa Smeralda has a fascinating history dating back to ancient times. The region was once inhabited by the nuraghes, an ancient prehistoric civilization that left behind spectacular architectural remains still visible today. Over the centuries, Sardinia has been influenced by many different cultures, including the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans and Arabs, all of whom left their mark on the island. The Costa Smeralda as we know it today owes its existence to a visionary tourism development project in the 1960s, initiated by Prince Karim Aga Khan IV. This tycoon and philanthropist, attracted by the region's natural beauty, decided to invest in the creation of an exclusive seaside resort designed to attract jetsetters and celebrities from all over the world. Thanks to his massive financial commitment, the Costa Smeralda quickly became a sought-after luxury destination, synonymous with glamour and elegance.

Porto Cervo is the beating heart of the Costa Smeralda, an exclusive marina nestled in a picturesque bay lined with luxury boutiques, gourmet restaurants and world-renowned hotels. Stroll along the lively quays and admire the luxury yachts that grace the harbor, or explore the narrow streets of the village, where traditional Sardinian architecture blends harmoniously with Mediterranean chic.

Just a stone's throw from Porto Cervo is the charming village of Porto Rafael, a haven of peace untouched by mass tourism. With its whitewashed houses, flower-filled gardens and secluded coves, Porto Rafael invites you to relax and contemplate. Enjoy a refreshing swim in the crystal-clear waters of the Mediterranean or stroll along the coastal paths, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding islands.

La Maddalena is the main town of the eponymous archipelago, located on the island of the same name. This picturesque town captivates visitors with its cobbled streets, colorful buildings and lively Mediterranean atmosphere. Stroll through the historic center, visit the naval museum and sample delicious local specialties in family-run trattorias. The architecture and authentic atmosphere of La Maddalena make it an essential stop on your catamaran cruise.

Within the Maddalene archipelago lies the island of Budelli, famous for its pink beach. This unique beach owes its distinctive color to the pink coral sand that makes it up, the result of centuries of shell and coral erosion. A stopover on this emblematic beach is a must on any cruise in the region, offering visitors an incomparable sensory experience.

Sailing along the Costa Smeralda aboard a catamaran is an experience in itself, offering great freedom to discover the hidden treasures of this enchanting region. Let the waves sweep you along the rugged coastline, pause in secluded coves and chic, charming villages, and let yourself be enchanted by the undeniable charm of Sardinia.

How to get there

Reach Ajaccio easily

By plane

-From Paris: Air Corsica / Easyjet / Air France

-From other major French cities: Air Corsica / Easyjet / Transavia / Volotea / Air France

-From Belgium: Air Corsica / Air France

-From Switzerland: Easyjet (Geneva)

-From Luxembourg: Luxair

By ferry

-From Toulon: Corsica Ferries

-From Marseille: La Méridionale / Corsica Linea

Things to know before you go

CATLANTE cruises depart from Port Ornano from mid-May to early October on Saturdays and Sundays.

For EU citizens: valid identity card or passport,

Boarding takes place at the Ornano port between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. Disembarkation takes place in the morning on D+8 until 9 a.m. 
The catamarans are moored at the Quai des Torpilleurs, opposite 11 cours Jean Nicoli.

It's not advisable to take a large rigid suitcase, which won't be easy to stow in the cabin. Instead, use cabin-size luggage or travel bags/soft suitcases. Luggage storage is available at the Skipper bar, 11 cours Jean Nicoli. You can leave your luggage there for €5 a day.

Cab to and from the airport: Manu Transport / [email protected] Parking DIAMANT Q-PARK, 2 Avenue Eugène Macchini, offers weekly passes at €70. Pick up your ticket at the pay station, park your car and go to the attendant's booth before leaving the parking lot to ask for the weekly pass. It is not possible or necessary to reserve a space.

Ajaccio's central market, mercatu d'Aiacciu, next to the Cours Napoléon, Place Campinchi, Saturdays and Sundays from 7am to 1pm.

The local currency is the euro. The prefecture of southern Corsica is Ajaccio, the prefecture of northern Corsica is Bastia. The climate of Corsica and Sardinia is Mediterranean, hot and dry in summer. At the beginning and end of the season, bring slightly warmer clothes for evenings and nights. The two main languages in Corsica are Corsican and French. The official language in Sardinia is Italian.

costa smeralda sardaigne
sardaigne port de maddalena cta

Cruise in Sardinia

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