La Maddalena is the major island that gives its name to its archipelago, in Northeast Sardinia. There are seven major islands and La Maddalena is the only inhabited one.

The History Of La Maddalena

During the Mediaeval times, La Maddalena became a land of corsair and saracen raids, this was shortly after the fall of the Roman Empire. A few monks and hermits founded small settlements on the island, attracted by the peace and quiet the island had, which encouraged meditation.

Until the 1550s, La Maddalena was filled up with convents and monasteries, until the Turkish Empire destroyed the buildings and forced the few inhabitants to move.

For many years the island remained abandoned, until the London Treatise of 1720, which gave the Kingdom of Sardinia to Piedmont. The island thus became a crossroads for Corsicans, who would use it for their seasonal migration, and for fishermen from Ponza, from the Tuscan and the Ligurian coasts. This combination of people meeting with the population of Gallura, gave birth to a dialect unique to the area.

From that moment onwards, the clear potential of La Maddalena became obvious. Pietro Millelire, ancient patriarch of the homonymous family, landed a Sardinian flag on the highest point of the island to show that Sardinia had claimed it.

Around this time is when the first residential areas were built in Cala Gavetta, and the population grew. In the following years, La Maddalena was an important stage for many historical characters including Admiral Nelson, Napoleon Bonapart and Giuseppe Garibaldi.

The Beaches of La Maddalena

Listing every beach on the island of La Maddalena would be impossible. One of the most famous beaches here is Carlotto, a small bay hidden by large rocky coasts that offer bathers a crystalline sea with shades of turquoise and a shallow bed.

Along this little bay you will find La Madonetta, known with this name due to the small structure that houses the named sculpture and overlooks the sea on the island of Spargi.

Cala Lunga is another highly popular beach, located on the northern side of the island: the water is clear with green and light blue nuances and the sand is thin and white, these are the characteristics that distinguish it from the rest.

A very interesting and popular location is the beach of Bassa Trinita, characterised by Mediterranean scrub among the dunes of thin sand and pink granite rocks. This, combined with the crystalline emerald green sea, plays with the light here wonderfully.