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Situated in the extreme limit of the North-West Island dell'Asinara is its characteristic natural extension, a little more than 17 km, 6 wide, has a total area of about 55 square kilometers and reaches its maximum altitude, heading north, on the tips of excommunication (408 meters) where the lighthouse overlooking the granite cliff, and from which you can admire a spectacular view.

The rocky coast of Asinara Island

Formed by shale with granite base, is very dry.
Asinara was first called Herculis Insula, and then to Sinuaria under whom the present one.

Camaldolensian site of a monastery during the Middle Ages, then, stopping place for pirates Saracen, in 1896, after the evacuation of population, became a penal colony farm.
During the First World War, however, was used as a concentration camp and care for prisoners of war in 1934 as a sanatorium judiciary, and since 1977 as a maximum security prison.

The west side of the island is made up of steep slopes, which often throw themselves on the sheer cliffs, forming steep cliffs and spectacular, while, on the side of the bay, the coast slopes gently with numerous small beaches.
In the central area narrow and elongated, are the beautiful beaches of pink granite Cale Scombro di Fuori, Cala Scombro di Dentro and Cala S. Andrea.
The coastal stretch between Punta Barbaresco and Punta Marcata consisting of granite with characteristic forms that resemble the landscape of Gallura, is the largest island landscape features.

The morphology varied, with hills, gullies, small valleys and ponds behind the dunes, with constant contrasts from one end of the island offer a show is always new and fascinating.
From the geological point of view, Asinara has many interesting features, particularly given the set-Nurra Asinara originally consisting of sedimentary and volcanic rocks of Paleozoic and later, deeply distorted and turned toward the end of this era (between 360 and 300 million years ago) from the Hercynian orogeny. Deformations induced in the rocks during this period of tectonic activity are represented by folds observable at all scales and the schistosity affecting all metamorphic rocks.
The insularity os Asinara island, and then morphological aspects of the coastline, are a fact very recent compared to the history of the rocks that constitute it, because the current configuration of the island is due to the combination of several factors, including fluctuations sea levels linked to the expansion and retreat of ice sheets and the action of erosive agents of surface.

Asinara Island: Donkeys

In the Park of Asinara playing about eighty species of wild vertebrates, including some very rare as, for example, among reptiles: the sea turtle and the viper snake; the toad and the Sardinian Discoglossid among amphibians; the sea gull, the major and minor puffins, the Sardinian partridge, and the magpie with regard to bird life; while among mammals, the mouflon, wild boars, weasels, and the characteristic white donkey.

The flora, consisting mainly of the Mediterranean, is rich and includes nearly 680 species, some of which are exclusive of Sardinia, as Centaurea horrida that over the territory of Nurra (Punta Stintino-Capocaccia), and Asinara island is also on the island of Tavolata where the environmental and climatic conditions have similarities that explain the presence of this unique species and Limonium laetum. The seabed is characterized by cracks and crevices and populated by rich and rare species protected.



Thanks to the long isolation Asinara's beaches are still unspoilt, dotted with the green of the Mediterranean and visited by white donkeys.

A beautiful bay at the Asinara Island

The beach of Cala d'Arena is probably the most beautiful of the island during the winter is divided in two by a small brook behind her, stands a tower dating from the sixteenth century coastal.

The ruins of the monastery of the Camaldolensis friars are surrounded by granite rocks, there is Cala Sant'Andrea while to the north-east, near the only town on the island where they land and boats and ferries, is Cala d'Oliva, an ancient outpost. In the east, toward the bay dell, is located Cala di Sgombro di Dentro here there are beautiful coves sheltered from the wind, like Cala Serena.

On the other side, very exposed to winds, is Cala Sgombro di Fuori. Near a repaired port there is Cala Reale, where you can admire the remains of an ancient Roman ship.



To get to the Asinara we can embark in Stintino or Porto Torres, purchasing tickets on site.
On land you travel through public transport, or you can rent bicycles at the stopovers. The points of berth Fornelli south, Cala Reale and Cala d'Oliva in the north west.

From Fornelli to Cala Sgombro

A striking image of the seabed
of Asinara Island, brightly colored

The detachment of Fornelli, not far from the pier landing, is considered the Italian Alcatraz, which was prepared Museum Carceraio. A small road leads to the detachment of Santa Maria, and from here a path leads to Punta Barbarossa, from which you can climb to the north, where there is a large and beautiful beaches of Cala Sant'Andrea. Returning to the main road is the junction to Castellaccio, ruins of an ancient medieval fortress.

From Fornelli, continuing on the right (west), we arrive at Punta Salippi, the closest point to Sardinia. If you go north, across the main road, we find an isthmus between Cala Scombro di Dentro (east) and Cala Scombro di Fuori (west).
Across the bay on the right there is the turnoff for Tumbarino, where is set up the natural observatory.

From Cala Reale to Punta dello Scorno

The second port of the island is situated at Cala Reale.
The area was inhabited by the Savoy family, who resided in the Royal Palace during short summer stays. West of the hamlet is the detachment of Campu Perdu, in which there is (slightly north), the only archaeological site in the island, which results in some domus de Janas.

Going north from Trabuccoto you arrive at Cala d'Oliva, third and last port of the island. At this point the following direction, church, school, workshop, carpentry, dairy. Not far away stood the bunker, where they kept the most dangerous criminals. The north island is considered a high natural interest arises where the Botanical Center.
This is the starting point for climbs up to Punta Scomunica, the roof of the island.