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Where Are The Pink Sand Beaches In Sardinia?

Where Are The Pink Sand Beaches In Sardinia

Sardinia is a magical slice of Mediterranean paradise with an enchanting blend of rich history, vibrant culture, and natural beauty.

This gem of an island boasts a timeless charm with azure waters and pristine beaches lined with soft, powdery sands.

The stretch of coastline has over 200 beaches, including the famous Costa Smeralda and the more secluded coves of the Golfo di Orosei.

While most of Sardinia’s beaches are known for their white, powdery sands, one stands out.

Spiaggia Rosa, located within the captivating National Park of La Maddalena’s Archipelago on the island of Budelli, may be Sardinia’s most famous beach, thanks to its unique color.

The sand here is pink, distinct from any other beaches in the region.

Today, the beach is cut off from tourists, but we want to take you on a journey through this beach’s history.

In today’s post, we will discuss where the pink sand beach is in Sardinia, why it is so special, and why it is forbidden to step foot on the beach.

Spiaggia Rosa – Sardinia’s Pink Beach Location

There is no doubt that every coastline in Sardinia offers something special, but on the northeast of the island, you will find something particularly spectacular; a beach regarded as one of the most beautiful in the world – Spiaggia Rosa.

The beach is nestled on the island of Budelli, one of the many gems of the La Maddalena Archipelago. The small island has a total land area of only 1.6km2 and is situated in the north of Sardinia. On the horizon, the Strait of Bonifacio can be seen, which acts as a natural boundary between Sardinia and Corsica.

The beach is approximately 1.5 km in length and is separated into three zones:

  • Spiaggia di Rada di Mezzo
  • Del Cavaliere
  • Del Piatto.

It is important to clarify that access to Spiaggia Rosa beach is prohibited with $500 fines for anyone who trespasses. Nevertheless, the beach can be admired from a distance, while the only way to get near is by sea.

Boats that travel here are met by buoys around 70m from the shore. These are in place to ensure a low speed, preventing any damage to the marine life below and on the shoreline.

This is one of the few points where it is possible to take in the beauty of the beach and island, as the shore is roped off and monitored by La Maddalena National Park guides.

Why Can’t You Step Foot on Spiaggia Rosa?

Although this Spiaggia Rosa remains a top attraction for tourists, many are shocked to find they can’t actually step foot on the hallowed pink sands.

The beach has actually been closed to the public for nearly 30 years, in response to many years of mass tourism damaging the sand and surrounding marine life.

The main culprits were people who stole sand as souvenirs, or those who put on regular beach parties, leaving behind litter which disrupted the local ecosystem.

Today, the beach is protected and completely sealed off from the public. Swimming, passing through, or dropping anchor in the nearby waters is prohibited.

The good news is that its natural beauty can be seen, albeit from a distance, and snorkeling is allowed further out, where a variety of incredible sea life can be experienced.

The Best Time To Visit Sardinia’s Pink Beach

Holding a treasure chest of wonder and biodiversity, the areas around Spiaggia Rosa are must-visit destinations.

The best time of year to witness the pink sands tends to be between April and June. This is when the water is still crystal clear, and hordes of tourists haven’t yet invaded. Temperatures are also pleasant this time of year, mild but warm enough for a swim in the turquoise waters.

Getting there earlier in the day is also recommended, as it is one of Sardinia’s most popular tourist hotspots, particularly during the peak summer season.

It’s best to make the most of your day out to Spiaggia Rosa by visiting other picturesque places like Cala Coticcio, one of Sardinia’s most famous coves. The cove is also known as Sardinia’s Tahiti due to its tropical resemblance.

Other spots to visit in this area include:

  • Cala Granara and Cala Corsara, the two islands of Santo Stefano and Santa Maria
  • Razzoli, popular for its boat tours and unspoiled nature
  • Spargi, the third-largest island in the archipelago and totally uninhabited

Tours are available by boat or dinghy, and you can see some of Sardinia’s most exquisite scenery.

Local guides also give detailed tours and tell stories about the region, allowing you to get closer to the area’s wonders and vibrant culture.

Mauro Morandi – Spiaggia Rosa’s Savior

Years of tourism and neglect left their mark on Sardinia’s pink beach. By the 1990s, it had lost the majority of its natural pink color due to a gradual bleaching process.

Deemed an ecological crisis, the beach’s closure brought an end to nearly 30 years of damage from visitors.

In 1989, a savior emerged in the form of Mauro Morandi, also known as Mauro da Budelli. Coming across the island after his boat broke down, Mauro soon became the new unofficial guardian of the beach, deciding to make it his new home.

Setting up his home, a simple hut, behind the beach, Mauro started his journey to safeguard the precious sand. Although the island was auctioned in 2016 and is now being owned by the National Park, Mauro remained the site’s guardian until recently.

Having spent over 30 years on the island, Mauro has now relocated to La Maddalena island. Today, new guards have been enlisted by the National Park, taking over Mauro’s esteemed role and continuing the beach’s protection. But, without Mauro’s dedication and hard work, Sardinia may not even have a pink beach today.

Final Thoughts

Spiaggia Rosa is one of the world’s most beautiful natural wonders.

Its pink sand continues to attract flocks of tourists to this very day, even though access is prohibited.

But, even from a distance, the beauty of Sardinia’s pink beach is truly awe-inspiring.

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