Sardinia covers an area of 24,100 square kilometers, making it the third-largest region of Italy after Sicily and Piedmont. Additionally, it holds the distinction of being the second-largest island in the Mediterranean, right after Sicily.
Sardinia belongs to Italy, although many Sardinians would prefer to be entirely independent. The autonomous relationship with the rest of Italy allows the island to make some political decisions independently.
Some Sardinia activists would rather see Sardinia become the 27th Canton of Switzerland.
Sardinia, known as Sardegna in Italian, Sardinien in German, Sardaigne in French, Cerdeña in Spanish, and Sardigna in Sardo (the native Sardinian language)
Looking at the map of Europe, you will find Sardinia in the Mediterranean sea. The same distance away from the mainland of Italy, and the North of Africa.
The smaller island just above Sardinia is Corsica which belongs to France.
Where Is Sardinia In Comparison To The Italian Mainland And Africa?
Sardinia lies 200 km (120 miles) west of the Italian mainland and again roughly 200 km (120 miles) north from the North African coast.
Sardinia is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean after Sicily.
Here are the coordinates of Sardinia: 40.1209° N, 9.0129° (just in case you need them)
How Big Is Sardinia?
Covering an area of 24,090 km² (9,301 mi²), Sardinia houses a population of approximately 1,630,000 inhabitants. With a population density of about 69 people per square kilometer, the island exudes a tranquil atmosphere, offering respite from the bustle of urban life.
Sardinia boasts an impressive 1,849 km of coastline, the longest among all Italian regions, attracting tourists from around the globe who come to experience its stunning beaches.
The amount of space in Sardinia means that traffic is a rare feature of daily life. The landscape appears rugged but untouched.
Neighboring Sicily is only a fraction larger in area than Sardinia but has more than three times as many people.
What Is The Capital Of Sardinia?
Sardinia’s capital and largest city Cagliari is located in the south of Sardinia, a port town facing out towards the north of Africa. Cagliari is known as the city of lights and is home to one out of every seven Sardinians.
Cagliari is known for its hilltop Castle, a walled medieval quarter, that stands high above the city. The city brings many tourists to the island.
Cagliari Elmas Airport is located just outside the city, and it serves half of the incoming air travelers to Sardinia. There are also frequent ferry connections from Cagliari to the Italian mainland.
Sassari and Olbia are the next largest cities in Sardinia. They are both in the north of Sardinia.
Sassari is close to Alghero Fertilia Airport. Olbia has its airport named Olbia Costa Smeralda Airport, as it is also the gateway to the famous Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast) in the north-east of Sardinia.
What Language Is Spoken In Sardinia?
While Italian serves as the primary language in Sardinia, the Sardinian language, also known as Sardo, remains widely spoken by 78% of the population. Dialects vary across regions, indicative of Sardinia’s isolated past before modern transportation connected communities.
In the city of Alghero, Catalan remains prevalent, earning it the distinction of the last bastion of the Catalan language in Italy, with visible Spanish influences evident in the city’s architecture and flags.
Let’s Not Confuse Sardinia With Sicily
Many people confuse Sardinia with Sicily which is located 300 km (180 miles) south-east of Sardinia, the island of Sicily meets the toe of the Italian boot, in the south of the country.
Sardinia is an introvert when compared to its extroverted sibling Sicily. Sardinia is a very humble island, filled with endless beauty, and unanswered mysteries.
Both Sardinia and Sicily are part of Italy, and both are popular holiday destinations for Italians and international travelers searching for beautiful beaches, delicious food and wine, charming towns, archaeological sites, and warm sunshine.
Fortunately, there is almost no Mafia activity in Sardinia, compared to the Sicily, and other regions of Italy. However, they are known to holds investment in Sardinia real estate.
Sardinia remains underrated from what I can tell. Coming to Sardinia is like stepping foot on an island outside of time, with an atmosphere like no other place.
The People Of Sardinia
This mysterious island has kept to itself through the centuries. The Sardinian people have held on tightly to their deep-rooted culture, as empires across the Mediterranean have risen and fallen.
The people of Sardinia are very kind and humble. Family comes first in Sardinia, and the villages and towns of Sardinia are very tightknit, sharing common values and traditions.
The Sardinian calendar is packed with festivals and celebrations throughout the year.
Sardinia is even known as a Blue Zone, meaning that the people of Sardinia, on average, live longer than the rest of us.
It’s believed the long life comes from a combination of lifestyle factors, such as the importance of family, inclusion, and reverence to the elderly, a healthy diet (locally sourced food), and a connection to nature.
D H Lawrence, had this to say about Sardinia: “Sardinia is out of time and history.”
The writer also articulated the contrasts between the Italian mainland and Sardinia. He could feel the ancient traditions and aspects of Sardinia that echo through the landscape, even today.
Now you know where Sardinia is located and some information about this island, feel free to explore my blog to learn more about this beautiful and mysterious island.
Unique Attractions of Sardinia
Sardinia is a treasure trove of unique attractions that enchant visitors from around the world. Here are some highlights you won’t want to miss:
Nuragic Civilization: Explore the mysterious Nuragic civilization, characterized by ancient stone towers (nuraghi) and fascinating archaeological sites dating back thousands of years.
Emerald Coast (Costa Smeralda): Bask in the luxurious ambiance of Costa Smeralda, known for its upscale resorts, glamorous nightlife, and turquoise waters.
Grotta di Nettuno (Neptune’s Grotto): Marvel at the stunning stalactites and stalagmites in the mesmerizing Neptune’s Grotto, a captivating sea cave accessible by boat or stairs.