A short holiday in Sardinia with the aim of making my daughters fall in love with this beautiful land. And, of course, the Costa Smeralda has knocked them out ..... But I also had the pleasure to make some good windsurfing sessions in Porto Pollo, and Murta Maria.
Windsurfing, travel: Costa Smeralda, Porto Pollo and Murta Maria (Sardinia) - 24-29/06/2020
This time I didn't go to Sardinia, due to the good forecast. I didn't even check if it would have been windy. The goal was to stay with my daughters for a few days, in a scenario, which is unique in the world. However, I chose Porto Pollo, Mecca of windsurfing, near Palau, in the Bonifacio Channel, a High Wind Area, with high frequency of wind days ....
And in fact we were able to admire beautiful beaches, where we took memorable baths, alternating the bathing days with very fun windsurfing ones.
Already getting off the ferry in Golfo Aranci, on the 24 morning, a pleasant breakfast at a local bar immediately make us enter into the mood.
The first day is spent exploring the beautiful Liscia Ruja beach and Capriccioli beach, which turns out to be a nature show. Crowding is still acceptable, even because of the midweek day; anyway, I want to go back in spring / autumn, to admire them without bathers.
Windsurfing is not my only reason of life, and this time, having some windless days, allows me to discover many places in this northern part of Sardinia, which I had never seen before, despite having come to this area many times.
The first day ends, pleasantly, at dinner at the Maestrale Restaurant, at Porto Pollo, with friends Andrea and Loredana.
The next day, not being expected much wind, we decide to go to explore the island of La Maddalena and Caprera (they are connected by a bridge). We swim in Spalmatore bay, in Monti della Rena (beautiful) beach, in La Maddalena, and in Garibaldi bay, in Caprera, a rather wild island, where I recommend going for a nice trek in spring or autumn, when it is less hot. In La Maddalena, moreover, if you have a good training, you can take a nice bike ride (perhaps, you can rent an E-Bike in Palau, or in the island main village, once you've just got off the ferry).
Porto Pollo, Friday 26 June
The following day, Friday, good forecasts for Scirocco / Levante. Meanwhile, my friend Alessandro, with his wife and daughters, has also arrived in Sardinia. The initial idea for this day was to go to Murta Maria, and try the spot, after a relaxing morning on the Porto Pollo beach. But Porto Pollo surprises us, and gives a beautiful day with tense and constant wind from the East.
I had never tried Porto Pollo with East wind, and I must say that I liked it very much. I go out in front of the Sporting Club Sardinia rental center. The wind proves to be quite constant, and the water level is regularly and slightly choppy (10-20 cm), also perfect for Freestyle.
In the morning, as soon as the wind reaches about 15 knots, I go out with the Tabou 3S 106 LTD 2015, with 27 cm MFC K-One fin, and with the Goya Banzai X-PRO 5.7 2019, which I rig by fixing the boom end, first to the upper clew hole, then to the lower one, to make it less powerful. The sail is powerful, and gives its best with constant wind (read review). Even in these wind conditions, Porto Pollo proves to be a fantastic spot, both for the natural environment and for the human atmosphere (both Pro and beginners present on the spot), and for the ideal conditions for windsurfing. It is undoubtedly a spot that allows everyone to progress, whether you want to work on a complicated freestyle maneuver, or you want to do slalom or simple funboard, whether you are a beginner and you want to learn the basics of windsurfing.
In the late morning, there is no way to keep the 5.7 anymore, and in order not to get further tired, I switch to the Ezzy Elite 5.3 2019, which is almost perfect for the rest of the afternoon, and that gives me always great satisfactions (read review of the sail). Once again, it proves to be a powerful, soft and light sail in your hands when maneuvering. I will be told, then, that they rode with 4.7-5.0 sails at Murta Maria.
In the evening, we have a magnificent sunset bath at the Spiaggia delle Piscine, near Sardinia Point, an enchanted place 5 km from Porto Pollo, and which I had never explored yet (thanks to my friend Adriano).
Murta Maria, 27 june
The following day, Saturday 27 June, Scirocco is still predicted. I decide to try Murta Maria (well known freestyle and slalom spot, just south of Olbia - review as soon as possible). We have discarded La Cinta in San Teodoro, as the bathing season has already started, and on the weekend the beach is crowded with swimmers.
Murta, on the other hand, is a beach always organized for windsurfing. The local windsurfing center, in fact, has already set up the entrance and exit buoys corridor in the water. With Alessandro and his family we meet on the spot. Then, also Andrea, Adriano and Filippo will arrive at Murta.
The beach, and the scenery at Murta Maria are very beautiful, even for those who do not practice windsurfing. Low and clear light green water in the first 100 meters, which then becomes deeper, changing to emerald and dark green .... The wind begins to blow already in the late morning. I immediately rig the Goya Guru X Pro 4.7 2020, and for the occasion, I prepare the Fanatic Skate TE 93 2014. I must say that in these spots, with flat water, the freestyle board is really funny. It glides quickly, has a homogeneous volumes distribution, which makes it stable and easy, and it's just a pleasure to stay on it.
The day was pleasant, although Murta did not work perfectly. The wind, especially in the first 200 meters, was rather irregular and disturbed, with direction changes and even significant speed variations. Offshore, instead, the wind was strong (4.7 too big) and well spreaded, with a slightly irregularly chopped water level.
However, we also had fun in Murta (even if the session, at least for me, was a bit tiring because of this condition). On the spot, there are also many Pros, or top freestylers: Raimondo Gasperini, Jacopo Testa, Valentin, and others whose name I don't know. End of the afternoon, again at Spiaggia delle Piscine, and then at Vedetta (a Panoramic Point), with Adriano and Elena, from which you can enjoy an exciting view over the Bonifacio Channel and the Maddalena archipelago.
Dinner almost at 22.00. Here, as happens to me in South Africa, the risk is that the days never end .... But probably, it is the risk you run when you are in so damned involving places.
On Sunday 28th, we took another bathing break day and rest (more or less ....). We went to Prince beach (or Poltu Di Li Cogghj beach), and then to Piccolo Pevero. An hour at home for a shower and to cool off a bit; and then, we went to visit Capo Testa, and the so called Moon Valley (a surreal and suggestive place, inhabited by a hippie community), to conclude finally the evening for dinner with Alessandro and family, at Lampara Restaurant in Santa Teresa.
Porto Pollo, Monday, 29 june
The last day, Porto Pollo gave us a wonderful day, one of those that make you cry for having to leave, and make you immediately plan a possible return ..... For days, the forecasts have predicted an excellent West wind, and so it is.
The bay of Porto Pollo, in mid-morning, appeares to our eyes with wonderful colors, and with a green and blue sea, slightly choppy: love at first sight. In the early morning, several beginners are already in the water with their instructors. Many children and teenagers. Porto Pollo is a perfect and safe spot to learn, even in strong winds. Back in 2012, here, I learned how to get planing (read report of that time).
I immediately rig the Goya Guru 4.7, and prepare the Fanatic Skate 93. Given the heat, I wear a Lycra and go out in bath suit, always right in front of the Sporting Club Sardinia. The first rides are immediately stunning. All is incredibly perfect. I start working not only on fast tacking, and jibes, to further improve my level, but I also start trying the 360, the Hely Tack and the Vulcan. The sessions should always be like this, with good wind and quality water level.
I also make a rescue of a girl in the middle of the bay, helping her to leave again and making sure she can return to the beach. Also Alessandro (Tabou Rocket 125, and Ezzy Panther 4.7), and the daughters Maddalena and Margherita have a lot of fun. I think they will often return here for a few days ....
After a lunch break, with a sandwich at the beach, I have another afternoon session. First, I try in the windward bay (crossing, with the equipment on my shoulder, the isthmus of sand that separates the two beaches). However, I do not like the windward bay: wind near the shore too irregular, water level quite messy even for the windsurfers traffic. I go back to the Sporting, and I have another wonderful couple of hours, to try and try everything I wanted over a fabulous sea. Here, Mattia Fabrizi, Raimondo and Giulio Gasperini also enjoy the day.
Monday was really hard to get out of the water .... A day too beautiful to finish ..... But a Sardinia Ferries ship is waiting for us at 20.00, in Golfo Aranci harbour.
We leave Porto Pollo at 18.00, to enjoy it until the last minute. Sardinia, once again, has enchanted and seduced us. Thank you. We will probably be here again in late summer or autumn.
Hang Loose. Fabio
The video about our sessions