Spargi island, a jewel to discover

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Every island in the La Maddalena archipelago has stories to tell that go far beyond its beautiful beaches.

Let’s take Spargi, for example, with its pristine landscape, fragrant and wild nature that reigns and enraptures the senses.

In this “virtual” journey, Emerald Cruises will tell you all about the island of Spargi and will take you, if you wish, to discover its wonders with an unforgettable boat trip.

The island of Spargi: the beauty of a pearl

the beauty of Spargi in La Maddalena Archipelago
The sea of Spargi

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to Spargi to savor its exotic atmosphere, but only a few know the fascinating historical curiosities that characterize this ancient island.

Behind its crystal-clear waters and white beaches, fragments of Italy’s history are hidden, tales of fugitive bandits, military garrisons, and ancient forts. It is a past that has lived in symbiosis with the sea and the local nature in a perfect combination.

Thanks to its proximity to the main island, Spargi has always been the favorite of the inhabitants of La Maddalena, who still visit it with enthusiasm today. The people of La Maddalena are proud of Spargi, and the National Park protects it carefully, preserving its history and its precious ethno-anthropological heritage.

Are you ready for a cultural immersion in Spargi?

Here’s everything you need to know.

The profile of Spargi: a wild and unspoiled nature

all the beauty of Spargi island
Daily boat tour in the La Maddalena Archipelago

Cala Corsara is one of the most visited beaches in Spargi; it enchants the eyes with its beauty as if it were a jewel. With its elevated slopes, golden sand, and light gray granite that in some parts becomes as white as the moon, this beach conquers the hearts of visitors.

Already during boat excursions, curious rocks can be noticed, such as the one that resembles the profile of a Bulldog (hence the name of that rock). But if you look closely, you can also spot the formation called “Lo Stivale” (The Boot), which resembles the Italian peninsula, and the evocative head of the witch. Observing them evokes a deep emotion.

But the beauty of Cala Corsara doesn’t stop there. Not everyone knows that in the central part of the beach, there is a tafone, a karst cave, which preserves millennia of history and narrates the adventures of men who followed the paths of obsidian in Sardinia and beyond.

But there’s more: few are aware that the sea in front of the beach has swallowed two Roman ships, along with their precious cargo. The name itself, Cala Corsara, evokes a period when daring adventurers of the sea, the Turks, braved routes to plunder treasures.

Later, the profile of Spargi was enriched with fortifications that tell the story of the late 19th century.

This is just a taste of what the island has to offer.

The tafone of Cala Corsara

The first “house” that was built on Spargi was a karst cave, inhabited since the Neolithic period. In the past, a wall with a double row of stones closed the opening of this cave, but today the entrance is covered with sand accumulated over time, making the access almost invisible.

However, we can imagine the ancient inhabitants of this primitive dwelling busy working on their precious artifact of “black gold,” obsidian, and meeting their daily needs. Inside, archaeologists have discovered fragments of pots and bowls, suggesting that the dwelling was well-equipped. It is interesting to note that in more recent times, the cave was used as a storage for weapons and cartridges during the Second World War.

Essentially, this cave has had multiple uses over time and represents a fascinating example of how a single place can bear witness to the evolution and human interaction across different historical epochs.

The most beautiful beaches of Spargi

Spargi. Credit: SardegnaTurismo.
Spargi island

Spargi, with its numerous breathtaking beaches, offers a selection of authentic natural wonders.

Here are some of the most fascinating beaches of Spargi:

  • Cala Corsara: This beach, nestled in a bay, is renowned for its crystal-clear waters and white sand. The surrounding landscape, characterized by imposing rocks, adds a touch of grandeur to the place.
  • Cala Soraja: Located on the northwest coast of the island, Cala Soraja is a true hidden paradise. Its white sand, turquoise waters, and granite rocks create an enchanting setting.
  • Cala Connari: Also known as Cala dell’Amore, this cove offers two beaches separated by a rocky promontory. Its transparent waters and the surrounding landscape make it a perfect place to relax and enjoy the unspoiled nature.
  • Cala d’Alga: This wild and remote bay is characterized by a long beach of fine sand, surrounded by rugged rocks. The tranquil atmosphere and crystal-clear water make it ideal for a day of relaxation.
  • Cala Granara: Located on the northeast coast of Spargi, Cala Granara is a small bay that fascinates visitors with its turquoise waters and white sand. The surrounding panorama, with tall cliffs and Mediterranean vegetation, adds a touch of natural beauty.

Each of these beaches is a treasure to discover and offers a unique experience for those visiting the island.

Experience an unforgettable day exploring Spargi with Emerald Cruises Freedom!

The “Vadine”: a unique feature of Spargi

The typical watercourses found on the island of Spargi, called “vadine,” carve through the slopes, creating a picturesque natural scenery.

During the rainy season, they offer a magical spectacle that presents winter visitors with a unique image of beaches “interrupted” by miniature rivers. This spectacle concludes with the arrival of the summer season, when the wind and waves create a sand barrier that blocks access to the sea by the vadine, rendering them invisible.

On Cala Connari the vadine descend, forming two marvelous beaches separated by a small rocky spur. This enchanting cove is also known as the “Cala dell’Amore” and can be visited with a boat trip with Freedom, by Emerald Cruises.

Punta Zanotto, Cala Pietranera, Punta Bonifazenca: glimpses of the Spargi coast

How to reach Spargi island and what to visit
Spargi Island tours

Observing Punta Zanotto in Spargi, one notices large cliffs where vegetation is scarce. But then, hidden coves with crystal-clear waters appear, including Cala Grano, which is difficult to access but incredibly beautiful, with rocks sculpted by the mistral wind. At water’s edge, a purple seaweed can be admired, constantly caressed by the rhythmic movement of the waves: everything seems enveloped in a natural poetry.

Continuing eastward, another small hidden beach is found beneath a large rock, and then Cala Pietranera, where a basaltic vein emerges, crossing the island of Spargi from north to south. Closing the profile of the island is Punta Bonifazenca, with its silent grandeur.

Military Batteries in Spargi: Silent Witnesses of a Heroic Past

fortifications on Spargi island
Battery Rubin de Cervin.

In the late 19th century, imposing fortifications were designed to defend the area corresponding to the La Maddalena Archipelago.

Among these, the evocative Zavagli Battery in Cala Corsara stands out, named after the brave Lieutenant Zavagli, who fell in 1890 during a reconnaissance mission on the Somali coast.

Positioned on a majestic rocky promontory alongside other buildings, it was constructed using dark stones from the island’s basaltic vein and granite parts. Of the battery, we cannot forget the large sailors’ barracks, still unaltered and recently restored by the Park Authority.

In Spargi, we also find the striking M199 Battery in Petrajaccio, of extraordinary beauty. Along the slope, a trail leads northeast where the soldiers’ lodgings were located, nestled among imposing boulders and scarcely visible from the sea.

Also worth mentioning is the formidable Rubin de Cervin Battery in Zanotto, which includes several buildings made of reinforced concrete and adorned with granite scales.

Curiosity about Spargi: The Legend of the Bandit

In a collection of Gallurese tales, Spargi is mentioned as the setting of a fierce battle between a bandit who had taken refuge on the island and some men who landed there to capture him.

All of this is narrated in the story titled “Lu contu Anticu,” written by Sebastiano Sanna, a book that recounts events in which, as in many stories, love and hatred challenge each other until the happy ending prevails.

The wicked protagonist of this story was named Agrigento, and he had decided to marry his stepdaughter to his son, despite her being in love with another man. To achieve this, the stepfather orchestrated a plan to accuse the young suitor of an alleged attempted murder, with the intention of having him sentenced to death.

A series of extraordinary adventures follows, in which the young man manages to escape an ambush and flee to Corsica. Meanwhile, the young woman, believing her beloved to be dead, decides to take vows in a convent. Once again, the young man’s life is put at risk by a violent west windstorm, but through prayer, he manages to survive and land on Spargi.

After many vicissitudes, the young man succeeds in killing Agrigento but must continue to hide and live as a bandit. Fortunately, some friends save him, and he sets out in search of his promised bride, finally finding her and thus fulfilling their dream of love.

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