Cala Mariolu in Sardinia, wild nature and turquoise sea

Sardinia is renowned for its spectacular coastline, crystal clear waters and unique beaches. One of the hidden gems of this wild island is Cala Mariolu, a beach that fascinates visitors with its pristine beauty and turquoise sea. 

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Known for its heavenly beaches and clear waters, Sardinia attracts visitors from all over the world. Not only sea. The island is a hidden treasure trove of ancient archaeological sites, fascinating cities and an extraordinary natural environment. 

Sardinia, a unique island 

The history of Sardinia dates back to ancient times, with evidence of human settlements dating back to the Bronze Age. The nuraghi, mysterious prehistoric stone towers scattered throughout the island, are iconic symbols of its unique history. These 5,000-year-old buildings offer a window into a remote past for all history and archaeology enthusiasts and even the curious. 

In addition to archaeological sites, the island boasts fascinating cities that tell of its rich cultural heritage. Alghero offers a charming atmosphere with its cobbled streets and fortress overlooking the sea, while Cagliari, the capital of the island, enchants visitors with its unique architecture and lively streets. Exploring these cities means immersing yourself in Sardinian culture, tasting local cuisine and discovering ancient traditions. 

However, it is in nature that Sardinia reaches the peak of its beauty. The island is dotted with parks and nature reserves, which offer a myriad of hiking trails and breathtaking views. From the mountains of Gennargentu to the territory of Barbagia, the landscapes are a discovery for every nature lover.

Cala Mariolu in Sardinia 

Located in the eastern part of Sardinia, Cala Mariolu stands out for its wild beauty and the turquoise sea that surrounds it. 

What does Cala Mariolu mean? It means thief. The name is linked to the habit of the local monk seal to “steal” the fish from the nets of the fishermen who arrived from Ponza. Unaware of his presence, therefore, they believed there was a thief (mariuolo). 

The distinctive feature of this cove is the expanse of round pebbles of pink and white color (called “ispuligidenie” from “su pulige de nie”, that is “snow fleas” in Sardinian) which creates an impressive contrast with the pink granite rocks surrounding it and looks like a blanket of snowflakes.  

The rocks carved by the wind and the sea over the centuries have taken striking shapes and create a unique natural setting.  

The coast is dotted with hidden coves and caves, perfect for underwater exploration and snorkeling. Immersed in the crystal clear waters, visitors can admire the varied marine life and the colorful backdrops.

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Cala Mariolu: where it is and how to reach it 

This hidden cove is located north of Cala Goloritze, right in the Gulf of Orosei located in the municipality Baunei (province of Nuoro).  

How do you get to Cala Mariolu? Who wonders how to get to Cala Mariolu by car will be disappointed: being at the base of a rocky coast with sheer walls, the beach is accessible using private boats, participating in organized boat excursions or renting a small dinghy from the ports of Santa Maria Navarrese, Arbatax and Cala Gonone. This aspect helps to preserve its authenticity and intact nature. 

You can also reach the cove by land through a very demanding excursion that starts from the Golgo Plateau and moves along the dense Mediterranean vegetation, giving great satisfaction. Visitors are forced to venture on a trip of almost three hours (suitable for sportsmen and lovers of trekking, who will still have to pay close attention to the heat in the summer months) but, once you arrive in Cala Mariolu, will be amply rewarded by an intimate experience and in direct contact with nature.

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What to see near Cala Mariolu? 

Access by sea allows visitors to explore other coastal attractions along the way, such as the famous caves of Bue Marino, located not far from Cala Mariolu (more precisely in the central part of the Gulf of Orosei) and are characterized by majestic distinct branches that tell the ancient and fascinating history of the island. 

Not far from Cala Mariolu there is the Grotta del Fico, but also Cala Goloritzé, the coves Sisine and Biriola and Cala Luna. 

Where to sleep near Cala Mariolu? 

There are no accommodation facilities or similar solutions in the vicinity of Cala Mariolu, but you can stay in one of the accommodations of the cities near the bay: Santa Maria Navarrese and Cala Gonone. 

These two locations are strategic because, in addition to offering bed & breakfasts, hotels and holiday homes, they offer transfers by sea and organized excursions to reach the cove. 

The Sardinian cuisine 

The visit to Cala Mariolu and surroundings can be the right opportunity to taste the Sardinian specialties and immerse yourself in the authentic flavors of the island.  

Among the iconic specialties are the pane carasau (thin crispy bread and puff pastry), the pecorino sardo (hard cheese made from sheep’s milk), the fregola (semolina in the shape of wheat used in recipes of soups and fish dishes), the culurgiones (fresh half-moon-shaped pasta filled with potatoes and pecorino cheese and mint) and porceddu (whole cooked suckling pig).

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Lovers of desserts and desserts can enjoy the genuineness of Sardinian cuisine through the seadas (fried pasta stuffed with sweet pecorino cheese and garnished with warm honey), amaretti (almond biscuits) and pardulas (pasta cakes with ricotta and saffron filling ). 

Sardinia offers a wide variety of wines, from fresh and aromatic whites to full-bodied and complex reds, to refined desserts. Among the most known denominations of origin are Vermentino di Gallura, Cannonau di Sardegna, Carignano del Sulcis and Moscato di Sardegna.

Copertina: mareogliastra

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