- Rob Andrews, Sardinia expert
In the mountainous heart of Sardinia’s northernmost region of Gallura, L’Agnata lies at the end of a pot-holed country road, seven miles from the town of Tempio Pausania and 35 miles from Olbia airport. It’s at the base of Monte Limbara, Gallura’s highest peak, so ideal for country walks, while five-star beaches are within easy reach – around an hour’s drive to the island’s north and east coasts. The former Doria stronghold of Castelsardo (40 miles), crowned by its formidable castle (now holding a museum of the famous local basketwork), makes a great day-trip destination.
Style & character
This “country chic” hotel is at one with its rural setting, eschewing Costa Smeralda-style glamour in favour of homespun traditional trappings, with sottovoce infusions of luxury. Sardinian art on the walls and a smattering of antiques enliven the ambience. Surrounded by forest, the spacious grounds offer refreshing vistas of lawns, lavender and wisteria.
Service & facilities
The young team tending this tranquil haven work hard to create a pampered, soothing environment, elegant without being formal. The friendly smiles are authentic. Apart from a delightful boulder- and tree-encircled pool, there isn’t much in the way of facilities – it’s not that sort of place. Most are content simply to hang around the grounds, lounging on a hammock in the manicured gardens with a book or glass of wine to hand. Mobile phone and Wi-Fi coverage are scant.
- Room service
The 10 minimally but tastefully decorated guest rooms are divided between the main house and a separate annex by the pool. They’re not huge, but they’re clean and comfortable, and all have patios or balconies (those in the annex overlook the pool).
Your passport to a better trip
Food & drink
Food at L’Agnata is a highlight. Accompanied by a first-class wine list, dinner is a fixed, four-course affair of traditional gallurese dishes, with a heavy emphasis on meat and often showcasing the roast suckling pig for which the region is renowned. Other regulars on the menu are zuppa gallurese (a thick, cheesy “soup”, more like a stew), culurgiones (Sardinian ravioli) and seadas (cheese-filled pastries topped with honey).
Breakfast consists of mountains of fresh fruit, local cakes, cheeses and hams.
Value for money
Double rooms start from £120 for a standard room in low season; rising to £202 in high. Half board is another £28 per person. Breakfast is included. Free Wi-Fi.
Access for guests with disabilities?
There’s one ground-floor guest room with facilities for guests with disabilities, all other rooms are upstairs and there's no lift.
Unless they’re nature-lovers, older kids may be stymied by the hotel’s remoteness, though the pool lined with granite boulders should appeal to all (annex rooms have best access for the pool). The extensive, well-maintained grounds – which include a lake – provide endless scope for letting off steam. A quadruple room is available, and there are rooms with connecting doors.