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Our flexible booking conditions include a 14-day refund guarantee and free trip changes.
Terms and Conditions apply.

TRIP OVERVIEW

7 days
SwimTrek Classic
7km/day
Challenging

Trip Dates

2023
27 May - 02 Jun
Full
24 Jun - 30 Jun
Full
02 Sep - 08 Sep
Full
16 Sep - 22 Sep
Full
2024

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Tour Highlights

  • Challenge yourself with longer daily swim distances along Sardinia's stunning coast

  • Be inspired by island-hopping swims between the three northern islands of Budelli, Santa Maria and Razzoli

  • Complete a beautiful and challenging swim from the main island of Isola Maddalena to the smaller island of Isola Spargi

  • Enjoy the abundant flora and fauna as we criss-cross our way through the Maddalena Archipelago

Join us on the extended long swims version of our ever-popular swimming holiday in Sardinia as we explore the beautiful waters and stunning coastlines of the islands which make up the Maddalena archipelago. Our longer swims give you a wonderful opportunity to discover even more of one of Italy’s most picturesque locations.

This trip features an average daily swim distance of 7km and includes a combination of coastal swims, crossings and circumnavigations. The archipelago’s seven islands feature crystal clear waters, pink sand beaches, dramatic blue cliffs rising from deep sea beds and a series of coves and rocks which offer intense colours and beautiful vistas around every corner.

In the southern part of the archipelago, the two largest islands of La Maddalena and Caprera are a perfect base for some dramatic coastal swims, while the more remote and uninhabited islands of Spargi, Budelli, Razzoli and Santa Maria are great venues for some challenging island-hopping swims and a short circumnavigation. The main town of La Maddalena, a short distance from our base for the week, is a picturesque traditional Sardinian town, and an ideal venue to spend some time relaxing after our daily exertions.

If you would like to explore this part of the world, but are looking for slightly shorter swimming distances, please check out our Emerald Coast - Sardinia trip.


Who is this for?

This trip is for those who enjoy a combination of coastal swims and island-hopping and want to extend their daily swim distances a little further than on our other trips.

Swimmers should also have a basic understanding of open water swimming and be capable of completing the average swim distance of around 4km prior to the start of the trip. The average daily swim distance is around 7km (split over a minimum of two swims).

We have given this trip a ‘Challenging’ grading. These trips are for experienced open water swimmers who want to push themselves.


What's included?

  • Fully guided swimming holiday in Sardinia, Italy
  • Swim guides and full safety escort on all swims
  • Six nights' accommodation
  • Six breakfasts
  • Six lunches

What's not included?

  • Travel to and from the start of the tour
  • Evening meals



Related Trips

Daily Itineraries

Please note that the below daily itineraries are an example of the swims that may take place during the course of your trip, however, actual swim locations and distances will vary according to local weather and sea conditions. Your SwimTrek guides and local boat pilot will determine the most suitable swim locations each day and will communicate the plan with all guests as soon as possible.

Trip Schedule

Start Point: Hotel Miralonga , La Maddalena

Start Time: 19:30 on Day 1

Finish Point: Hotel Miralonga , La Maddalena

Finish Time: 11:00 on Day 7

Day 1

After your arrival you will have a chance to relax before meeting in the evening at the hotel for a welcome drink and pre-trip safety briefing in which the week’s plan will be discussed in detail.

Day 2

After a short boat ride, we stop in the crystal clear waters of Cala Francese for an acclimatisation swim, a perfect spot for our first swim of the trip. After lunch and a chance to relax, we set off on an enchanting coastal swim from the tranquil bay of Cala Francese to Bassa Trinita.

Day 3

After breakfast we set off towards Isola Santo Stefano where we start our first swim of the day which takes us from la Fiumata on the west coast all the way to the south coast of the island finishing at Punta San Giorgio, right in front of the wall of the Italian Navy Base of Santo Stefano. The swim includes the circumnavigation of the small Isola Roma with its glorious statue dedicated to all seafarers. At the end of the swim, we head for lunch in the beautiful Cala di Vela Marina. In the afternoon, we take a short walk, which allows you to take in the panoramic views from the island, before completing our second swim south along the coastline of Sardinia from Porto Rafael to Spiaggia La Sciumara. This is a very exclusive area of the Emerald Coast which become famous during the 1960’s through Spanish architect Rafael Neville, and is now a very popular location with celebrities from all over the world.

Day 4

A short boat journey this morning takes you west for our first crossing of the week; La Maddalena to Spargi (from Cala Francese to Cala Ferrigno). It’s a great swim as we finish at the tranquil beach of Cala Ferrigno with its amazing pristine waters. Spargi is known for its majestic rock formations and ancient shipwrecks on the seafloor, so there’s plenty to look out for underwater. After lunch, the second swim is along the west coastline of Spargi, starting in front of the neighbouring island of Spargiotto and finishing at the beach of Cala Corsara, south of Spargi.

Day 5

We start the day with the crossing from Spargi to Budelli (from Cala Pietranera to Spiaggia dell’Obelisco). It’s a fantastic swim with dolphins often spotted in this area. The afternoon’s swim and walk is within the remote archipelago of Santa Maria, Budelli and Razzoli islands. The swim starts from Cala Aiacciolu on the west side of Santa Maria and finishes in Cala Lunga on the west side of Razzoli. The water here could be described as more closely resembling a swimming pool as the sea is enclosed on most sides by the three islands.

Day 6

It’s time to travel east to Isola Caprera, the home of the General and politician Giuseppe Garibaldi. From here, we enjoy a beautiful coastal swim from Porto Palma, just past the sailing school of Caprera, to the very south end of the island that ends with the rocky headland Punta Rossa. Following lunch, we take a short walk to Batterie di Punta Rossa where you can explore the barracks and gun emplacements of this ancient fort. The afternoon is given over to a crossing and a full circumnavigation swim of Isola Porco.

Day 7

We take a leisurely morning swim in the local bay before breakfast to conclude our journey around the Maddalena archipelago.

Location Summary

La Maddalena

The main island of the archipelago, La Maddalena is renowned for its beaches and rocky terrain. It has a number of ancient fortifications, perfect for exploring on hikes around the island. The main town, also called La Maddalena, has a lovely mix of cobbled streets and a vibrant sea front.

Caprera

Located less than a kilometre away from the larger island of La Maddalena, Caprera has its own unique charm. It is famous for being the home of the Italian patriot and fighter, Giuseppe Garibaldi who was one of the fathers of Italian Independence. Great beaches adorn its eastern side.

Spargi

Spargi is home to some of the most picturesque coastline in the archipelago. It is an island worth a visit, with beautiful views of the dramatic Maddalena coast.

Budelli

Renowned for its Spiaggia Rosa (‘Pink Beach’)on the south-eastern part of the island, this natural phenomenon owes its colour to microscopic fragments of corals and shells.

Razzoli & Santa Maria

These two islands are the northernmost point of Sardinia and from here you can clearly see Corsica across the Straits of Bonifacio. It’s only 100 metres between Razzoli and Santa Maria and you can see the sandy seabed all the way across. These remote islands join up with Budelli on our three-island swim in a central lagoon of crystal clear sea.

Trip Grading

We have given this trip a ‘Challenging’ grading. These trips are for experienced open water swimmers who want to push themselves.

Swimming Distances

Swim Distance
Cala Francese – Bassa Trinita 5½km
Spargi - Budelli 3½km
La Fiumata – Punta Santo Stefano 5½km
Santa Maria Cala Aiacciolu – Cala lunga di Razzoli 4km
Porto Rafael – La Sciumara 1½km
Caprera Porto Palma – Punta Rossa 6km
Maddalena - Spargi 3½km
Circumnavigation of Isola Porco 1½km
Spargiotto – Cala Corsara 4km

Swimming Conditions

Swimming in the sea is a fantastic experience, however you should be aware that certain marine life such as sea lice, jellyfish, sea urchins and coral could be present during the swims. In all cases we will work on reducing your contact with these creatures, however if you suffer from anaphylaxis, please consult the office prior to booking.

Walking Distances

Walk Distance
Isola Santo Stefano 1km
Cala Lunga - Faro Razzoli 2km
Batteries di Punta Rossa 1km

Walking Conditions

Most walks take place on recognised paths and tracks, however there may be cases where we walk along trails or other unsealed surfaces where vegetation can often be overgrown. Long trousers and appropriate walking shoes/sandals are recommended for these walks.

Temperatures

Month Water Temperature* Air Temperature*
May 15-21˚C / 62-68˚F 21-25˚C / 68-77˚F
June 20-24˚C / 68-75˚F 24-26˚C / 75-79˚F
July 23-26˚C / 73-79˚F 28-30˚C / 82-86˚F
September 22-25˚C / 72-77˚F 25-27˚C / 77-81˚F

*Please note that these temperatures are indicative and should be used as a guide only.

Weather Caveat

For safety reasons, we rely on decent weather conditions when carrying out our swims. As a consequence, open water swimming holidays require a certain degree of on-trip flexibility which can result in changes to the planned itinerary. These changes often add a touch of uniqueness to your trip and will be communicated to you by your SwimTrek guides as quickly as possible.

Trip Information

Group Size and Boat Support

This trip has a maximum group size of 15. The group will be split into a maximum of three groups, based on speed, with each group being accompanied by their own safety vessel/escort. 

Boat support on this trip includes one main boat and two support boats to be piloted by your SwimTrek guides and a local boat pilot. Please note that this boat support is subject to change without notice and cannot be guaranteed

Equipment Checklist

In addition to your daily non-swimming clothes, we also recommend that you bring the following items:

Item Item
Swimming Costume (x 2) Towel
Swimming Goggles (x 2)* Sweater / Fleece
Sun Hat and Sunglasses Waterproof Jacket
Waterproof Sun Cream Walking Shoes / Sandals
Small Daypack Aqua Shoes / Sandals
Rash Vest Personal drinks bottle x 2

*Try to bring one clear lens and one tinted lens for different light conditions.

For more information, please visit our Packing List page on the website.

SwimTrek will supply swim hats, water, and electrolyte drinks. The guides will no longer distribute shared drinks bottles but will fill your personal drink bottles. Please ensure these are clearly marked to help our coaches identify yours. If you would like to use a wetsuit, rash vest, snorkel, or fins during your swims, please ensure that you bring these with you.

Getting There

As SwimTrekkers come from all over the world, and join our swimming holidays in numerous destinations, we don't currently offer flights as part of our SwimTrek packages. We do however want to do as much as we can to ensure that our guests get the best deals when travelling to one of our trips so check out our SwimTrek flight tips page on the website.

Whichever route you choose to take, we recommend confirming your flights and other travel arrangements as early as possible in order to avoid price rises and availability issues.

The easiest way to get to the start of your trip is to fly into the international airport in Olbia. It lies 50km south of Palau, the gateway port to La Maddalena. Another option is Alghero Airport which is situated just over 100 kilometres south-west of Palau.

Transport from Olbia Airport to Palau

There are a number of public transport options and more information can be found on the airport website: www.geasar.it/en/how-to-get-here/by-bus

DIRECT – there is a direct bus that runs from the airport to Palau once a day and takes about 1 hour.

The timetable for this bus can be found here: trasportopubblico.gruppoturmotravel.com.

Please note you may have to keep checking the page nearer the time for up to date timetables.

VIA Olbia - there are several bus options if you travel via Olbia centre. You can catch Linea 10 or Linea 2 from the airport to Olbia. More information can be found here: www.geasar.it/en/how-to-get-here/from-to-olbia. The 601 runs regularly from Olbia centre to Palau Port

Locally, transport companies also use Moovit - moovitapp.com/cagliari_e_sardegna-1262/poi/en - to display services.

TAXI – you can also find Taxi information on the airport website: geasar.it/en/how-to-get-here/taxi.

Ferries from Palau to La Maddalena

Regular ferries depart from Palau to La Maddalena throughout the day and evening and depart roughly every 30 minutes during peak season. Tickets need to be purchased at the ferry office on the harbour front before sailing. Prices are approximately €5 each way and it takes approximately 20 minutes to reach La Maddalena Harbour. Once published, up-to-date timetables can be found at: www.delcomar.it.

Olbia Airport to La Maddalena

Sardegna Tours operate a shared transfer from Olbia Airport to La Maddalena island, which takes approximately two hours from €130 one way (for up to 3 passengers). For more information or to book, contact Sardegna Tours: info@sardegnatours.it.

Maddalena Port to Hotel Miralonga

The hotel is situated 1km west of La Maddalena Harbour, a 20 minute walk through town. We recommend catching a taxi from the harbour to the hotel (5-10 minute taxi ride). Prices of taxis can vary, however, as a guide, the short journey should cost approximately €20.

Accommodation

Our accommodation for the duration of the trip is at the comfortable Hotel Miralonga. Located approximately 1km west of La Maddalena Harbour, Hotel Miralonga is just a few minutes walk from the water. The hotel offers spacious rooms, a swimming pool, bar and restaurant with terrace for you to enjoy dinner or a drink at the end of each day.

Our accommodation is based on twin-share rooms with en suite facilities. Standard and sea view rooms are available, as well as a limited number of single supplement rooms, all of which can be reserved during the booking process, subject to availability.

Pre/Post Trip Accommodation and Trip Extension Options

If you would like to extend your stay in Sardinia and need to book additional nights’ accommodation before or after your trip, please contact the hotel directly via: info@miralonga.it.

Food and Drink

All breakfasts and lunches are included in your trip price, however, dinners are at your own expense. Upon arrival, on the first night of the trip, you are welcome to join us for a buffet dinner at Hotel Miralonga for €20 per person. There will be further opportunities throughout the trip, to join us in eating out as a group, at locally recommended cafes and restaurants. Feel free to also explore and experience the local cafes and restaurants of your choice. The average price of two-course dinner plus drinks in La Maddalena is €30-€50.

For more information, please visit our food and drink page on the website.

Travel Advice

For more information on any of the following sections please visit the Travel Advice page of our website.

Money, Extra Expenses and Tipping

You should bring extra money with you to cover such items as dinners, drinks, entertainment, souvenirs, etc. The local currency in Italy is the Euro (€).

Responsible Travel

SwimTrek is conscious of the importance of protecting the world’s natural wonders. We are acutely aware of our responsibility to not only take care of the natural environments which we are lucky enough to explore, but also to educate our guests about the importance of conservation efforts and responsible tourism. It’s for this reason that we have worked so closely with our partners to ensure that our trips are conducted in the most responsible and sustainable way possible, working tirelessly to minimise the impact of our presence on local marine life and the natural habitat.

For more information, please visit our Responsible Travel page on the website.

Passports and Visas

Italy is part of the European Union. Non-residents of Italy require a full passport to enter the country, which should be valid for six months beyond the expected length of stay. Citizens of all EU member states, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not require a visa to enter Italy. Please note that visa regulations are subject to change and we advise that you check your own visa requirements prior to travel.

Travel Insurance

We consider comprehensive travel insurance to be essential, and we strongly recommend that you purchase insurance which includes, but is not limited to, cover for illness, accident, emergency repatriation, ambulance, air ambulance, helicopter rescue services, cancellation, lost luggage and delays. Your travel insurance should also cover you for open water swimming and any other activity listed in your trip itinerary (including races and competitions, where applicable). Please read your policy details carefully and remember to take them with you on your trip for your own reference. For further information, please visit our Travel Insurance page on the website.

Here at SwimTrek we pride ourselves on our focus on safety and the well-being of all our guests. As we operate in some beautiful and remote locations medical facilities are not always easily accessible. SwimTrek Guides, and many staff working for our local partners, are first aid trained. However we ask that you read our Travel Health page to ensure that you are informed about general Travel and Swim Health precautions.

Travel Plugs & Electricity

There is complimentary Wi-Fi at the hotel. For a useful source of information on the different electrical outlets, electrical plugs, and electric sockets, please visit worldstandards.eu.

  • SwimTrek in Sardinia was fantastic and an experience I will never forget.

    Heather W, UK - 2019
  • The 'Emerald Coast, Sardinia ' trip is new for 2018. As soon as we have run our first trip, we will share some customer reviews here.

  • Very well organised and enjoyable trip. Safety was obviously a priority and this was great to see. Challenging swims with a supportive crew made for a great trip! Thank you!

    Sarah G, UK - 2018

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Terms and Conditions apply.

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