5 places to photograph the best of Sardinia

For anyone that loves taking pictures, a trip to Sardinia is photography utopia. This Italian island in the Mediterranean has a landscape encompassing mountains, massifs, beaches, caves, and historic sites. Surrounded by the blues of the Mediterranean Sea, the photo opportunities here are endless.

Get your camera read and give your lenses a swift clean. These 5 places in Sardinia will leave your friends and family green with photography envy.

Best places to take photos in Sardinia

 

—01

Sardinia photography – La Maddalena Archipelago

Why photograph one island when you can have over 60 islands and islets to choose from? La Maddalena Archipelago is an archipelago off the north-eastern corner of Sardinia. There are 7 islands in total here, which include Caprera, Santo Stefano and Santa Maria. Its namesake, La Maddelana, is the largest of the group.

Granite mountains married with the turquoise-blue of the sea form a primary backdrop. Isolated beaches and gentle rolling hills make for striking pictures.

The adjacent island of Caprera is the largest island in the archipelago and is also a nature reserve. It was also home to the Italian general that helped unify Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi, who lived here for 26 years. In fact, his home, Casa Bianca (white house) and Compendio Garibaldino (Garabaldi museum) are 2 of the most visited sites.

 

Caprera Cala Napoletana La Maddalenna - Best places for photography in Sardinia

 

Explore more of Caprera in Sardinia

While in Caprera, make time to detour to Cala Coticcio. This stunning cove and beach in a fully protected of Maddalena National Park is one the island’s best attractions. You need to be prepared if planning to visit Cala Coticcio, as it isn’t the easiest place to access. The easiest way to reach the beach is by boat. They’ll take you directly to the shores of the rich blue sea meaning you can sit back and enjoy the views.

Alternatively, you can walk to the beach and cove sticking to the trail. However, take caution, as this trail isn’t paved, and it also takes you through rocky terrain. This makes it somewhat arduous and a tiring route. If you’re up to the challenge, be sure to wear running or even hiking shoes and plenty of water.

Your efforts are greatly rewarded, however, once you see the dazzling scene ahead of you, and the many photo opportunities. While in the area, you may also want to visit other coves such as Cala Portese and Cala Napoletana.

You can access Caprera from La Maddalena via a small bridge in the Passo della Moneta.

—02

Gorropu gorge – Sardinia photography

Travel to one of Europe’s deepest canyons on the east side of the island. Gorropu gorge is between the towns of Barbagia and Ogliastra and is an ideal spot to test your photography techniques. Limestone walls tower up to 400m in height. You can reach Sardinia’s spectacular gorge by foot or mountain bike. Hiking trails enable you to fully explore the gorge, but it’s advisable to book with a hiking company. Needless to say, don’t take on this trek without having the right equipment and clothing.

 

Gorroppu Gorge Sardinia - places to photograph in Sardinia

 

Boulders line the ravine from the Rio Flumineddu riverbed. After 500m in, you reach the narrowest point of the gorge (4m wide). Good hiking shoes are also recommended as limestone rocks can be slippery.

The gorge also provides ample opportunity to photograph Sardinia’s nature and wildlife at its best. Yew trees — some of which are over 1,000 years old — and juniper trees adorn the landscape. Its wildlife inhabitants include the golden eagle and the mouflon (wild sheep).

Visiting Gorropu gorge is better in the morning. The earlier you go, you not only beat the crowds, but you also beat the heat — especially during summer.

“Granite mountains married with the turquoise blue of the sea form a primary backdrop.”

Photographing Sardinia is better with a local tour guide! I couldn’t have seen as much of the island without the knowledge of a local. They can tell you the best time to visit, and the best spots to photograph.

—03

Photographing Sardinia – Su Nuraxi in Barumini

Around Gorropu gorge, and other locations in Sardinia are nuraghe villages. Nuraghe are ancient prehistoric structures dating between 1900 and 730 BC. One of the most important and well-preserved among approximately 7,000 nuraghe spread over the island is Su Nuraxi in Barumini.

This settlement features the 16th century BCE nuraghe, 4 corner towers and a village with 50 huts. These unique structures are made from basalt and volcanic stone dating back to the Bronze Age. It’s still not entirely clear what nuraghes were used for. Archaeologists have suggested they were religious temples or military fortresses.

The complex at Barumini is the finest example of prehistoric architecture, and was given UNESCO World Heritage status in 1997. Saying that, it’s a must for photographers visiting Sardinia.

 

Best places to photograph Sardinia - Su Nuraxi

 

How to visit Su Nuraxi

The settlement is near Giara, which is situated in central-southern Sardinia. There’s an entrance fee to enter the site, after which you have the option of taking a tour. It’s not obligatory, but if you do want to join, it departs every 30 minutes and lasts around 50 minutes.

Su Nuraxi in Barumini is the most visited nuraghe in Sardinia for the reasons listed above. Arrive early to avoid disappointment and the long queues. The sun in Sardinia is very strong during summer, so don’t forget your sun hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.

—04

Birdwatching in Bosa – where to take photographs in Sardinia

In the north-west of Sardinia lies the pretty village town of Bosa. Highlights here include the medieval Castle of Serravalle and its delicious Malvasia wine. Bosa is also known for its outdoor and nature activities such as bird-watching and hiking.

Get your zoom lenses at the ready to capture the incredible wildlife in Sardinia. Bosa is home to the nature reserve of Badde Aggiosu, Marrargiu and Monte Mannu. And it’s here, where among other animals, you can spot griffon vultures. Depending on the time of year, you may also be able to spot peregrine falcons, golden eagles and wild cats. Though it’s a notable place for taking pictures, you must respect the boundaries.

 

Sardinia photography - photograph birds in Bosa

 

They ask photographers not to get too close to the nests, as griffon vultures are extremely sensitive to disturbance. It’s also much better to visit during summer as the birds circle above the colony most times of the day. In winter, they’re less active and so more difficult to spot.

Capo Marrargiu marine biopark

After you captured the different species of birds in Bosa, you may want to turn your attention to its sea-life. Among the caves and creeks at Capo Marrargiu marine biopark, keep your eyes peeled for the elusive monk seal.

—05

Sardinia photography – La Pelosa Beach (Spiaggia La Pelosa)

There are many beautiful beaches in Sardinia to visit, and it’s impossible to choose just one. However, for the purpose of taking photographs, La Pelosa Beach in north-west Sardinia is a very photogenic choice.

Over 300m in length, this beach near Stintino in the province of Sassari is a favorite among many Italians. Translucent waters, fine white sand, and views of Isola Piana and Isola Asinara in the distance only reinforce its popularity.

 

Where to take photos in Sardinia - La Pelosa beach

 

A notable feature of La Pelosa Beach is the ancient 16th century watchtower, Torre della Pelosa. It was once part of Sardinia’s defense system, and has now become a recognizable landmark. Keen divers will also appreciate that there are 2 diving centres in the La Pelosa area.

What makes La Pelosa so attractive to visitors is that it’s suitable for everyone. The waters are shallow in parts, making it ideal for families with young children.

Would you like to try out your photography skills in Sardinia? Let me know in the comments below!

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66 Comments

  1. Mariella Molestina

    Amazing pictures, you really outdid yourself with them capturing everything that Sardinia has to offer! Definitely La Pelosa Beach and bird watching in Bosa are no doubly my favorite activities that you did, not saying that the others aren’t amazing, they are! I just prefer watching animals in their natural habitat and enjoying time on the beach relaxing.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thanks Mariella! The photos still don’t do any justice to how beautiful it is, thanks for commenting 😀

  2. Arnav Mathur

    Beautifully captured pictures highlighting the place perfectly. La Maddalena Archipelago seems to be the perfect Instagram worth destination, however the La Pelosa Beach also looks like an amazing spot.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you 🙂 All these places are pretty amazing, I hope you get to see it for yourself one day!

  3. Tatum Skipper

    Bird watching is something I have never done before but would love to explore more of. After that, I would totally head over to the beach for a cotton candy sunset!! Great pictures to say the least.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! And I hope you get to visit one day and do some bird watching while you’re there 😀

  4. jitaditya

    Even if one doesn’t become a pro, one will feel like one in a place like this. This is the good thing about the naturally beautiful places like Sardinia. Photos generally turn out to be good with minimal effort, especially when the weather is right.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      I totally agree. Weather is a big help, and the landscape is stunning too!

  5. James

    I’d love to photograph the UNESCO of the Nuraghe di Barumini. The La Maddalena Archipelago and it’s 60 Islands would create lots of Instagrammable images too I’d imagine. I’m terrible at bird photography, usually when I get focused the birds fly off. I do like colourful photography so the Su Gorroppu gorge would make good pictures too.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      From reading your other posts, I’m pretty sure your bird photos would be better than mine! If you ever visit, I’d love to see your shots 😀

  6. Mimi's Migration

    Everyone always forgets about this wonderful island of Italy. It is so great that you were able to go. Obviously there are a lot of things to see and do there. Nice!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      It’s so beautiful and actually very different from the rest of Italy! I’m very lucky I managed to go.

  7. Jamie

    As a photographer, this location would be ideal! The landscape, the beaches, the wildlife – wow! I’ll need to add Sardinia to my bucket list!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      I really hope you do! It’s such a beautiful place and worth adding to your bucket list!

  8. Parnashree Devi

    I am a person who gives a lot of importance to visual media when it comes to a blog post. Seeing great photography makes my day, especially when I see fantastic photos like these. I loved the La Pelosa Beach photograph a lot as it has a strong color play in the canvas. Beautiful post with some great photography.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      That’s so encouraging to hear, and thank you for your kind comments! I’ll continue trying to capture the beauty of a place!

  9. My Travelogue by Bhushavali

    First of all, I went to GMaps to check where is this place. A little island surrounded by sea, even without listing out, is always picturesque! But wait, there is an archipelago, just beside the island??? Whoa!!!
    Nuraghe di Barumini is totally my kinda place! i’d love to visit here!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      All I can say it. Go! Sardinia has so much to offer and is pretty as it looks in the photos

  10. Yukti

    First of all, I must say you have taken stunning pictures of Sardinia. I would test my skills at SuGorrupu Gorge. Photographing at Le Pelosa Beach and Bird watching at Bosa would be also fun. I have take more memory cards for my camera to this place.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! It’s a beautiful place and very easy to photograph 🙂

  11. Justine

    I love your style of writing. It is so vivid the way you describe things. And I didn’t know vultures are very sensitive to disturbance! We do learn something new everyday! I would looooove to go to La Pelosa Beach. It looks soooo beautiful and peaceful! I’m sure I can make my mermaid dreams come true there.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Aww thank you Justine, that’s so sweet of you to write. La Pelosa Beach is stunning and you really will be impressed with what you see there! Hopefully one day you’ll get to visit soon x

  12. Shreya Saha

    Wow you really did an excellent job listing the must-click places. I loved La Pelosa – it would be so great to click some real good pictures there. Narughe di Buramini is highly interesting, I just wish the crowd gets less when I go hahahaha!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! If you go during September/October, you won’t have a problem with the people. August is typically summer season and gets busy very quickly!

  13. Patti

    Sardinia looks beautiful and I love that you feature the best places for photography. Hope to visit soon!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      It’s a beautiful place, and you should really make time to visit!

  14. Jack

    Great post, love your pictures and the short descriptions, you are very talented. I’m glad I found your blog!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thanks, glad you enjoyed it!

  15. amit

    Your photography skills are way above mine, I have to be honest up until now most of my traveling pictures have been taken just from my phone, although for my trip to Marrakesh I’m going to be taking out my brothers big boy camera and practice my photography skills in the Sahara desert. However, I would love to visit Sardinia sometime, I will definitely keep these spots in mind and maybe my pictures might be somewhat respectable in compared to yours 😀

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Lol thanks Amit! I try with the photography, but a lot of it is really about the post-production. You’ll have an awesome time with the ‘proper’ camera, especially in the desert!

  16. Medha

    Each picture is better than the other. I particularly love the one of the sunset at the beach. However, personally, since I love clicking old historical places, I would choose to visit and take a lot of pictures at Nuraghe Su Nuraxi di Barumini. All the places you’ve featured are amazing.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Aw thank you, that’s so kind of you to write. It’s a beautiful place and you’ll see for yourself when you visit!

  17. Travel Optician

    The pictures are amazing! Seems like you’re really talented for taking photos! Bird watching is something I have never done before but I want to try! 🙂

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Great, and thank you! Sardinia’s pretty photogenic, so it wasn’t hard taking great photos 😀

  18. Alexander Popkov

    I love everything about photography and would love to go there for a photoshoot. Nice place!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thanks for commenting, I appreciate it 🙂

  19. Eric Gamble

    whoa, your photos are amazing. I love your shot of Su Gorroppu gorge & the Griffon Vulture. What amazing shots to capture. I would love to see these sites in Sardinia and practice my amateur photography. Did you use a special camera cause I usually dont carry much photography equipment when I travel.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      I actually joined a tour, and so managed to use the SLR from one of the guys there! It did help having some guidance while on the tour, but it’s a stunning place to visit 🙂

  20. Shreya Saha

    Perfect blog, Lisa! Loved how you arranged the list with picture attached to it. Great photographic sites in Sardinia, I would surely keep my camera ready when I visit these places. which would be soon.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Wonderful to read! I hope you visit, as it’s pretty spectacular.

  21. ritika

    wow..all ur picttures are so Instagram worthy..u should sell ur photos to national geography or lonely planet..love them so much. birds look so gorgeous .cant wait for ur next post

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Aw thank you, but I can’t take all the credit. I was on a photography tour, and so had the help of the teacher!

  22. Karla

    All these pictures look amazing. You have a superb photography skills! Do you use any software to post process them?

    Reply
    • Lisa

      I just used Photoshop for these, but I had the help of the teacher on the photography tour!

  23. Becca Talbot

    I’ve yet to visit Sardinia, but it’s definitely one that’s on the list. I love all the pictures you’ve taken here Lisa, and the tips you’ve shared – Su Gorroppu gorge sounds really interesting, and a great place to practice some photography x

    Reply
    • Lisa

      It’s an incredible island, with so much to see and photograph 🙂

  24. Martina

    I am yet to visit Sardinia. My niece lived there for a year and I’ve never made it to visit her. Silly me! Looks like a perfect place to get some awesome shots.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      It’s beautiful! Hope you visit one day.

  25. Ee Sing

    The next time I am in Italy, this will be in one of my list. I absolutely love your shots!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! I hope you enjoy Sardinia 🙂

  26. Nadine

    Wow what a beautiful blog about an amazing country and place Ive always wanted to visit

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Great! I hope you get to visit yourself 🙂

  27. Diane

    WOW! These photos are just stunning. Birdwatching in Bosa looks like a special treat.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      It’s a good place to birdwatch! Thanks for commenting 🙂

  28. Utsav Srinet

    This place sounds so interesting. The buildings look amazing! I can feel its spirit from your captures! I hope to see it very soon!

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! I hope so too!

  29. sumit walia

    hi
    some lovely photographers delight you have listed down there and being a photographer i could drool at all the places especially the vulture colonies

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thanks! I appreciate the feedback 🙂

  30. Rahat Arora

    Heard about Sardinia for the first time, but the pictures captured by you are very beautiful so I have added this place in my list. Great content.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Happy to introduce you to Sardinia! Thanks for dropping by 🙂

  31. dalibro

    Totally going to Sardinia one day. Seeing the beaches is enough to convince me, haha. But it’s also the history that attracts me. And italian espresso.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Yay! I hope you’ll have a lovely time. It’s a dream island for sure!

  32. Claire

    Great tips for keen photographers! I also LOVE those headscarves in the top picture, beautiful patterns and colours.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! I appreciate you dropping by to comment.

  33. Nina Nichols

    Nature is a piece of art and your photography just captured this amazingly! Sardinia is such a beautiful place.

    Reply
    • Lisa

      Thank you! But Sardinia is so pretty, it’s easy to capture good photos!

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