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The province of Olbia Tempio is located in the north eastern corner of Sardinia. It borders the Sardinian Sea to the north, the Tyrrhenian Sea to the east, the Province of Nuoro to the south and the province of Sassari to the west. It covers almost 3,400 square kilometers with a population of more than 154,000 inhabitants, and comprises a total of 26 municipalities.

Gallura region

The provincial territory includes the historical region of Gallura (with the exception of the two municipalities of Viddalba and Erula, which remain in the Province of Sassari, and the Costa Smeralda included), the Maddalena Archipelago, the northern part of Monteacuto, a small part of Baronie and the eastern side of Lake Coghinas.

Landscape

The Gallura’s rugged granite Landscape catches immediately your eyes. It’s made of rocks of various shapes, real stone sculptures shaped over the centuries by the winds, which surround and enclose the region.
The reliefs that characterize the territory of Gallura, although not particularly high Mount Limbara, to the south, reaches 1,350 meters above the sea level together with the Coghinas river to the west, have over the centuries constituted a barrier between this region and the territories neighbors, helping to increase the condition of isolation. Until the 1960s this part of Sardinia was still wild, without even a paved road. In fact, Gallura definitely stands out from the rest of the island, with its own characteristics and peculiarities. One of its most evident peculiarities is the language; the most widespread dialect is in fact the Gallurese, an essentially Corsican dialect, close to that spoken in the southern part of Corsica.

People identify this part of Sardinia exclusively with the Costa Smeralda, a tourist destination for VIPs and wealthy people from all over the world.But the province of Olbia Tempio is not just this. The Gallura’s interior preserved the most autentic part of the territory. It’s strongly linked to the past and traditions. It still maintains its agro-pastoral vocation intact. The interior, made of green hills, it’s still sparsely populated and the ancient organization is recognized. The wooded heritage is remarkable, made up of holm oaks, centuries-old oaks, myrtle, juniper, mastic, strawberry tree and other shrubs. The granite reliefs, particularly impressive on the southern slope of Mount Limbara, are a real paradise for the most daring hikers. On these rocks, the kingdom of the mouflon and the golden eagle, many rare plant and animal species live.

Then there is the Gallura of the northern coasts, made up of beautiful wild and windswept beaches, a paradise for windsurfing and kitesurfing lovers.

And there is also the Costa Smeralda, a world apart, strongly dedicated to tourism, which, although it makes a lot of talk about itself, is only a small world, made up of luxury, fashion and marinas crowded with luxurious yachts. Beyond the mundane aspect, the Costa Smeralda is still a spectacular stretch of coast, made up of white beaches and isolated coves, with granite spurs protruding over an emerald green sea.

To the north east, where the coast is particularly indented, with a succession of small fjords, rocks and islets, the Maddalena archipelago extends, a connection point with nearby Corsica.

Culture and archaaeology

Scattered throughout the territory are several archaeological sites dating back to prehistoric times. Along the Arzachena-Luogosanto road, for example, there are the tomb of the giants of Li Lolghi and the necropolis of Li Muri; along via Olbia Arzachena it is possible to see the small nuragic temple of Malchittu and the nuraghe Albucciu. Gallura also offers a rich artistic heritage, as well as rich mineral deposits of copper, iron and lead.

Transports

Olbia Costa Smerlada International Airport is one of the three main airports in Sardinian. Flights from major Italian cities such as Rome, Milan, Bergamo, Verona, Florence and Turin land there, as well as international flights and charter flights from Paris, London and Frankfurt. Also in Olbia is one of the main ports of the island, served by Moby Lines, Snav, Tirrenia, Grandi Navi Veloci and DimaioLines; ships disembark there from Civitavecchia, Genoa, Livorno, Piombino, Naples and Salerno. Another important port is that of Golfi Aranci, served by Corsica Sardinia Ferries, Tirrenia and DimaioLines; ships from Civitavecchia, Livorno, and, only in summer, Fiumicino, Piombino, Bastia and Naples disembark there. Minor ports are that of Santa Teresa di Gallura and the commercial one of Palau. The port of Santa Teresa di Gallura connects Sardinia to Bonifacio, in Corsica. Palau is connected to Naples and Genoa by DimaioLines; it also has regular connections with La Maddalena.

Useful contacts

Department of Tourism
+39 0789 52104

First-Aid Station
+39 0789 552441 Olbia
+39 0789 65460 San Pantaleo

Police Station
+39 0789 641059 Costa Smeralda Airport
+39 0789 28585 Marine Station

Carabinieri
+39 0789 67216 contact center

Municipal Police
+39 0789 52002

Port Authority in Olbia and Golfo Aranci
+39 0789 204179 & +39 0789 204180
+39 0789 204179 Telefax

Taxi
+39 0789 22718 +39 0789 24251 C.so Umberto I
+39 0789 69150 Costa Smeralda Airport
+39 0789 35791 Via Del Molo

ARST Bus City transport
+39 0789 5553004 Information
+39 0789 21197 Ticket office

ASPO Bus City transport
+39 0789 5553800 Information

Meridiana Booking Service
+39 199 111333