Cruise Port Atlas | Olbia (Sardinia), Italy Day Trips | Attractions

Olbia (Sardinia), Italy Day Trips | Attractions

Nearby Port: Porto Cervo

With limited time in port, planning is the best way to make the most of your time. Should you strike out on your own? Should you hire a local guide? Or should you book a shore excursion offered by the cruise line or an international tour company? Below we have listed the attractions and activities that many other cruisers have enjoyed. This information should help you plan.

The advantage to cruise line tours is that they are timed for your visit and give you flexibility to change your mind after your trip begins. The advantage of using a large international firm is that tours are often less expensive than cruise sponsored tours. The advantage to using a local tour company or guide is that prices can be significantly lower or you may be able to get a customized trip just to see the attractions that interest you most.

Cruise lines that visit Olbia: Azamara Club Cruises, Silversea, Holland America, MSC Cruises

Cruise lines that visit Porto Cervo: SeaDream Yacht Club

Key Attractions: Corso Umberto I, San Simplicio, St. Pauls Church, Castelo di Pedres, Pittulongo, Lido del Sol, Porto Istana, Marinella Beach, Maddalena Island, Caprera Island, Garibaldi House Museum, Tavolara Island, Porto Cervo, Costa Smeralda

Olbia City Attractions

Port to Corso Umberto I - 2 KM, 5 minutes
Port to Archaeological Museum - 2.8 KM, 7 minutes, 17 minute walk
Port to San Simplicio Basilica - 2.7 KM, 7 minutes
Port to Castello di Pedres - 8.1 KM, 14 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Corso Umberto I is the center of the shopping and cafe district of the port and is a natural starting point for tours of the city. Two historic churches are the most important buildings in Olbia. San Simplicio, named for the patron saint of the city, is an 11th century Romanesque structure featuring frescoes. The 18th century St. Paul's Church features wonderful art and a 20th century multicolored dome. Eight kilometers outside town is the hilltop Castello di Pedres, built around 1300 AD. The new waterfront archeological museum features artifacts from as far back as the Neolithic period.


   Museums      Local Cuisine and Markets  

Uneven surfaces and hills    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo from

Batumi Botanical Garden ViewLocal Beaches

Port to Pittulongu Beach (La Playa) - 8.1 KM, 12 minutes
Port to Lido del Sol - 9.8 KM, 15 minutes
Port to Porto Istana - 15 KM, 20 minutes
Port to Marinella Beach - 14 KM, 18 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Pittulongu is known locally as La Playa and is only a 12 minute drive along the north shore of the gulf from downtown. On the southern shore of the gulf is Lido del Sol (15 minutes), a quiet beach that features a lake with pink flamingos. Porto Istana (20 minutes south) is popular with surfers and snorkeling enthusiasts. Twenty minutes to the north, not far from lovely Porto Rotundo, is Marinella Beach with fine white sand, fewer visitors, and non-motorized boats for hire. This is just a quick sampling of the many beaches in the immediate area. A bit farther to the north is the famous Costa Smeralda and its tony beaches.


   Sea and Garden views     

    No Wheelchair Accessibility

Seaside Batumi ResortMaddalena Archipelago

Port to Maddalena Island - 18 Km, 45 minutes (by road and ferry from Palau)
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Just off the Emerald Coast on the northeast corner of Sardinia are the seven islands known as the Maddalena Archipelago. Only one (Maddalena Island) has a permanent population and a small port (right). The others are nature reserves and popular among boaters. The islands are of historic interest as well. Most importantly, the island of Caprera is where one of the fathers of a united Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi retired. His home is now a museum. The islands were bombarded by young Bonaparte in 1793. Benito Mussolini was held prisoner there in 1943. And for 35 years the U.S. had a naval base here that was closed in 2008.


    Not Wheelchair Accessible



Piana CalanchesTavolara Island

Port to Tavolara - 16 KM, 40 minutes (by ferry)
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The island of Tavolara was an independent nation until 1962, but is now only inhabited by a few families, one of which is the former royal family and runs the island’s only restaurant, Da Tonina. Tourism is restricted on the island to protect the environment and some rare species that exist there. Scuba and snorkeling are popular activities. Among the most popular attractions are Ulysses Bow, a natural stone arch, and Neolithic cave paintings accessible only by water. It is also the location of a NATO radiogoniometric station, used to send messages to military submarines.

Hiking and Snorkeling   Sandy Beaches   Rocky cliffs   National Park  

Strenuous Walking    Not Wheelchair Accessible

Photo by Lupanino

Porto CervoPorto Cervo and Costa Smeralda

Port to Porto Cervo - 32 KM, 40 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Developed in the early 1960s by Prince Karim Aga Khan IV, Porto Cervo is now the gateway to the Costa Smeralda with its rocky inlets and blue-green waters. It also attracts a very wealthy crowd with its faux Moorish architecture. Clubs, champagne bars, designer boutiques, and some of the world's most expensive yachts are the most popular attractions. And you might run into Berlusconi, who has a house nearby.

Museums and Galleries   Hidden Coves   Rocky shoreline   Fine cuisine  

Moderate Walking    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo by Superbass

Interests Key:

Art Architecture Beach Children Wild Animals Local Cuisine Flora Gardens-Parks Geology

Diving UNESCO Views Wine Dance Music Shopping History Hiking

Walking & Wheelchair Accessibility:

No Walking Easy Walking Normal Walking Difficult Walking Accessible Limited Not Accessible