San Teodoro has become a very popular tourist destination in the last few years. It’s in Gallura, in Northeast Sardinia.
The History of San Teodoro
The history of San Teodoro began a long time ago. The first traces of human settlements in the area date back to the Bronze Age, when the Nuragic population was at its peak on the island.
The Roman presence has been proven by some archeological remains, which then gave way to the Vandals and then the Byzantine empire. Its name likely derives from the church dedicated to San Teodoro di Amasea, built during the Byzantine rule.
The first written documents found in the area are from the 13th century, when San Teodoro was part of the judicature of Gallura. At the time, the territory was characterised by an agricultural economy, particularly the farming of cereals, the handling of livestock and the production of cheeses.
This period ended with the introduction of feudalism, which was followed by the Aragonian conquest of Sardinia. The town then went under the fief that included Posada, Siniscola, Torpè, Lodè and Budoni.
Later on, in the 18th century, San Teodoro was under the rule of the Savoia family – this happened after the Spanish War of Succession (1701-1715).
During the Savoia’s reign, the city faced economic decline. It began recovering during the 19th century when the granite caves nearby finally opened, which brought a slow and steady improvement of the town’s quality of life. During the first half of the 20th century San Teodoro, as well as most of Sardinia, saw a mass emigration towards the United States and other regions of Italy. This was due to economic hardship and lack of work opportunity on the island.
During the Second World War, San Teodoro was bombed by the allies which caused a lot of damage, leaving the community to slowly rebuild in the years to come. The 60s and 70s are when the town established itself as a tourist location growing in popularity.
The Beaches Of San Teodoro
With over 37 km of coast, San Teodoro can boast some of the most beautiful beaches on the entire Emerald Coast. Many of them are easily reachable by car or from the city centre, and they are characterised by white beaches with clear and crystalline waters that overlook spectacular landscapes.
These beaches’ selling point is their shallow seabed that gently slope down into the sea. This means they are particularly appropriate for families with young children, who want to spend a day relaxing in safety.
The most famous beach closest to San Teodoro is La Cinta, about 5 km long and divided into two sections by a charming stretch of land. This is a mostly free beach, where tourists can also find many services offered by the bathing establishments, including renting equipment for water sports.
Further south from the town you will find L’Isuledda, a real slice of paradise that is sure to enchant with its white sand and its turquoise waters. On the opposite side you will find the beach of Lu Impostu, found in the bay of the same name. The same can be said for Cala Brandinchi, often considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the area and given the nickname “Little Tahiti”.
And finally, impossible not to mention other destinations like Cala Suaraccia, also known as Capo Coda Cavallo, and the beach of Cala Girgolu. They are appreciated for the lush nature that surrounds them, which contributes to giving the area a charming and relaxing feel.
Sights To See In San Teodoro
Aside from the gorgeous beaches and the charming views of nature, San Teodoro is worth visiting for the locations and monuments from its history. As previously mentioned, the town developed in the 17th century around the parish dedicated to San Teodoro di Amasea.
The building was knocked down in the 1950s, only to be rebuilt in 1957 and completed in 1970. The historical centre and Piazza Gallura right in front of the church are considered the heart of the community, and they come to life during spring and summer with shops and seasonal activities.
Further out of town you can’t miss a visit to the San Pietro Nuraghe, between Posada and San Teodoro, that showcases the ancient civilizations that lived on the island a long time ago.
Sights To See Near San Teodoro
San Teodoro is connected to other places nearby that are absolutely worth a visit. Among these, Posada is a fascinating mediaeval burg whose historical city centre is dominated by Castello della Fava. This was built by the judges of Gallura in the 13th century, and it had the goal to protect the territory from enemy attacks.
From San Teodoro you can reach Galtellì, another mediaeval burg renowned for its rich historical and cultural heritage. This is where an ancient Roman settlement was founded, which became Castello di Pontes in the 12th century.
Following the coast towards the South you will reach Orosei, a picturesque town with cobbled streets, ancient palaces and important historical sites like Chiesa di Santa Maria and the Museo Civico – with many ancient remains from the area. If you find yourself in Orosei the beaches are worth a visit, especially Cala Luna and Cala Goloritzé which are among some of the most beautiful in the region.