Things to do
Even though people have been living in the area since prehistoric times, the medieval town of Alghero was founded at the beginning of the 12th century. Its founders were Genoese, but over the centuries the town was ruled by various European royal houses. This has brought a unique cultural flavour to Alghero, most notably evident in the fact that more than a fifth of the population still speaks Algherese Catalan, a dialect unique to Alghero, as their first language.
-A guided walking tour is a great way to discover the medieval architecture with its gorgeous old churches, towers and old city walls. You can also simply leave your holiday apartment in Alghero Old Town to stroll around in the maze of narrow little alleys letting fate be your guide. Be sure to take a walk along the seafront-facing walls and boardwalks too and don’t forget your camera.
-Museums are a great way to find out more about the area’s fascinating history, and there are several in Alghero. They include the Museo Archeologico della Città and the Museum Casa Manno for historical artefacts and the Museo Diocesano d'Arte Sacra for religious art. The Museo del Corallo is all about the endangered red coral that Alghero is famous for.
-Food and shopping are essential features of a great holiday, so you’re in for a treat in Alghero. Put on some comfortable shoes for navigating the cobbled streets of the Old Town: The most difficult part is deciding which of the many shops, boutiques, restaurants and bars to visit first. You can also visit one of the daily markets or the big weekly one held on a Wednesday for fresh produce and local specialities like Mirto liqueur. If you’re planning on renting an Alghero Old Town holiday villa or other accommodation in March or April and you have adventurous taste buds, be sure to check out the Sea Urchin Festival.
-Neptune’s Grotto, about 10 miles west of town at Cappo Caccia is a must-visit on a day when the sea is calm. This breath-taking cave with its underwater lake and entrance at sea level is like something out of a pirate’s tale. You can get there by boat, on foot, by bicycle or, if you want to feel very Italian, by renting a scooter.
-Outdoors activities are plentiful in the area around Alghero. There are great beaches, hiking and cycling trails, horse-riding, bird-watching, rock climbing and water sports. The area around Neptune’s Grotto is regarded as one of Europe’s best scuba-diving sites, especially for cave diving.
Weather in Alghero Old Town
Alghero Old Town has a pleasant Mediterranean climate. Summers are dry and hot, with temperatures often reaching into the thirties. Winters are cool and wet and between September and April there are strong north-westerly winds. This is of course perfect for sailing and kite-surfing.
Getting to Alghero Old Town
The easiest way to get to Alghero is to fly into Alghero-Fertilia Airport and then take a taxi into town. You can also reach Alghero by train or bus from other destinations in Sardinia. There is a good public transport system in the area and it’s worth noting that while some Alghero Old Town holiday accommodation options have parking facilities, the narrow streets aren’t car friendly.