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Top destinations for bringing the brood on board

Top destinations for bringing the brood on board

3 of 5 3/5

Maddalena Islands


The Maddalena are an explosion of granite islands on Sardinia’s northern tip. Like the Bahamas, only five per cent of the 60-plus islands are inhabited and, like the BVIs, each one is a sand-splashed scatter of fragrant herbs and sculpted granite. Best of all, the Caribbean-esque charm means that each sandy speck is a short sail from the last. The archipelago is great for parents and children, says Stephanie Archer from Ocean Independence. “In Maddalena, families can interact with local culture,” the charter broker says. “On the main island of Maddalena, ice cream bar Gelatissimo sources ingredients from its own Sardinian farm.” Older kids can parade during the evening passeggiata or order mocktails and a wood-fired pizza.

More adventurous families can make the most of the excellent kitesurfing conditions just off Maddalena. Or alternatively, explore the adjoining island of Caprera, where the sole inhabitants, a community of part-time shepherds, stroll endless kilometres of marked hiking trails. Caprera is also home to Archer’s favourite anchorage, Cala Coticcio, an Elysian scene of topaz seas that lives up to its moniker of the Italian Tahiti.

For the wildest anchorages hit the far-out island of Razzoli. At Cala Lunga small children can be tendered in to play in the sandy-bottomed shallows, while older guests can swim ashore and follow mule tracks to an abandoned lighthouse. “The bay offers a beautiful backdrop, and it’s also a top snorkelling spot for amberjacks and slipper lobsters,” says Archer. Budelli Island, a short swim south, resides within the Maddalena Archipelago National Park. “The protected zone is uninhabited aside from a real-life Robinson Crusoe, Signor Mauro, who is the friendly guardian of the island. Younger kids will be fascinated.”

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

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