John Topley’s Weblog


A traditional Alghero church
A picture of a traditional Alghero church

I've just returned from a week's holiday in the beautiful town of Alghero in Sardinia. Alghero is in the north west of the island and dates back to the twelfth century. It consists of a walled old town and there is a marina and a labyrinth of cobbled old streets and squares, with a few churches dotted about. There is also a sprawl of modern apartment blocks developing to the east.

An old fort.
A picture of an old fort

We stayed in the splendid four star Carlos V hotel, about ten minutes walk away from the old town and well served by the punctual local buses. The temperature was just right for me, which means high seventies/low eighties Fahrenheit. I even managed to acquire a nice suntan!

Moored at Cala Dragunara.
A picture of two boats moored at Cala Dragunara

There are lots of good places to eat in Alghero, varying from the rather upmarket to the more affordable choices offered by the pizzerias. Our favourite was a place we found in the old town, with a fantastic view over the defensive wall and out to sea. The week was a reminder of how nice it is being able to sit outside in reasonable weather and have a beer followed by good food.

The highlight of the holiday was on the Wednesday, when we sailed around some of the coastline on the good ship Punta Giglio. Our—enthusiastic and slightly unpredictable—local skipper and his chef provided a hearty meal of bread, cheese, spaghetti, seafood, fruit and local wine, all rounded off with a glass of the local speciality, the name of which escapes me. We ended up dining with two Italian gentlemen but unfortunately we'd forgotten to take the phrase book with us that day, so the conversation was a bit limited. We did manage to establish that they were from Milan and I was given a lesson in spaghetti twirling! They also said something about Manchester United, which seems to be a conversational fallback the world over.

The local lighthouse.
A picture of a lighthouse on a cliff

In the afternoon we moored off the small bay of Cala Dragunara and spent a wonderful few hours sunbathing and getting our feet wet in the Mediterranean Sea. We were back on dry land by five thirty and the whole excursion was excellent value for money.

There were rather too many British roaming Alghero for my liking, which unfortunately meant that the English language never seemed far away. The town itself is unspoilt, for although there is the inevitable McDonalds there, the culture is Italian with a Catalan influence.

I had a wonderful relaxing holiday and ideally would have liked a few days longer there (why are ten day breaks so hard to find now?) because a week never seems enough, but unfortunately it was not to be and we had to come home. If you get the chance to go to Alghero, then don't think twice about going—you won't regret it.


There are 4 comments on this post. Comments are closed.

  • avatar Jedidja Bourgeois
    01 October 2003 at 01:47

    Wow ... the sky seems permanently blue :) I'm really looking forward to being able to visit so many places like this in and around Europe after moving to Ireland. Will keep this one in mind!

  • avatar John C
    01 October 2003 at 11:43

    Looks fantastic! I was just about to comment on the blue skies too - don't see too many of them back in old blighty.

  • avatar John Topley
    01 October 2003 at 12:15

    Fortunately the only day that was a bit overcast was Sunday the 28th and we flew home that morning anyway. Where have you moved from Jedidja?

  • avatar Mick Kirby
    07 October 2003 at 21:16

    It sounds wonderful. As you say a week is not enough, ten days you can relax, two weeks is great, but a three week holiday seems to change you forever. That's one of the main reasons I'm training to become a teacher. Imagine escaping for 4/5 weeks with your partner and exploring whole areas of the Mediterranean. You'd never be able to go back to work.

I even managed to acquire a nice suntan!


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