TRAVEL TIPS SARDINIA APRIL 2004 We completed a 21 day 1150 mile tour of Sardinia and found it to be a motorcaravanners paradise (in July/August possibly hell). It's a beautiful island with wild flowers particularly good at this time of the year. The island has something to offer most tastes. Besides the beaches and mountains we visited an abandoned silver mine, a bronze age settlement and a marble quarry. It was also very nice to find so many churches open. Many stretches of road and cape areas are very scenic. In particular we found the drive from Bosa to Alghero and Cape D'orso well worth the effort. There are some specific areas signed for parking of motorhomes (unlike back home). We found some areas where motorhomes were allowed to stay for up to 24 hours. In other areas we found signs banning motorhomes entirely It appears the law is often only enforced in the high season. Sardinia is not a cheap option. Expect to pay up to 500 Euro for a return ferry crossing. Cost of living is higher than back home. Camp sites are very expensive but these can be reduced by using camper services and free camping in the low season. There are many places to free/wild camp too many to list. ROADS In the main the roads are very good. Even the fairly minor roads are well surfaced and wide enough for passing. In some villages, small towns and some areas of large towns the condition of the roads leave a lot to be desired. Usually the ring or through roads are OK. Other streets can be very narrow with very tight turns. DIESEL. Filling stations are plentiful but beware in the more remote regions their opening hours could be 0700 - 1300 & 1700 - 2000 Hrs. In the large towns and on the main roads filling stations are usually open 0700 Hrs to 2200 Hrs. In April 2004 diesel cost between 92 & 98 Euro cents a litre. LPG. LPG is available in a very few places. We came across four sites selling it. LPG is usually advertised as "Auto Gas" or GPL. By law the stations must be in non-residential ares and are usually in rural areas or on the town outskirts. There is a guide listing all outlets that sell LPG in Italy. CAMP SITES. On the whole the camp sites seem geared to tenters and static caravans. The sites we checked out had very little room for large motorhomes. Most of them had a tank emptying and water filling points. Most of the tank draining areas were badly positioned for large motorhomes. Expect to pay between 15 - 25 Euro per night in the low season and between 30 - 40 Euro in the high season. Camper Service Areas. Many of these provide in addition to the basic service (tank emptying & water tank filling) Parking, Electricity & Showers/Toilets solely for motorhomes/campers. These are fairly simple areas but this is reflected in the price. The most we paid was 10 Euro this included electricity & showers/toilets. It is possibly more expensive in the high season. The areas are well signed all over the island. On the west coast we came across a couple signed as "Camper Sosta". SUPERMARKETS. Supermarkets are plentiful. Even the small village ones were well stocked. They are well advertised and often well signed. Principal chains "Pick up", ISA, Pellicano & SISA we found particularly good. All the bigger ones took the "Plastic". Minus point you have to pay for the plastic bags (5-6 Euro cents each). Opening hours on average 0800 - 1300 and 1700 - 2000. Mon to Sat. Possibly open 0800 - 1200 Sundays. Auchan Supermarkets can be found at Olbia (on the SS 125 south of Olbia), Cagliari and Sassari. We shopped in the Sassari (well signed of the SS 131 north of the city) one and it's a huge place. Parking is very tight. A seven metre motorhome could have problems parking. I think it would be a good idea with a large van to park in the goods area. WATER. One of the few drawbacks of the island is the shortage of water. A couple of years ago certain parts of the island were reduced to four hours running water a day in the summer. We found a few springs in the mountain areas. There are most likely others but probably not many. There are very few public water supplies. So it's either filling stations or camper service areas. BANKS. Banks with ATM's are plentiful and well signed. Even the smaller villages seem to have them. INTERNET CONNECTIONS We found there were a couple of Internet Points in most towns/cities we visited, most were closed from 1300 hrs to 1700 hrs. The only ones we found open during these hours were the ones situated in bars/cafe. Expect to pay up to 6 Euro per hour. Most places had a minimum time use of ten minutes, all connections were very fast. FERRIES. As we were on our way home from wintering in Turkey we took the ferry from Igoumenitsi (Greece) to Ancona (Italy) then the Tirrenia Line ferry from Civitavecchia (north of Rome) to Olbia (Sardinia), We paid 250 Euro (that included a high season supplement as it was the day before Easter) for an overnight crossing with a two berth cabin. The ship was old and the cabin and other onboard facilities left a lot to be desired. We crossed from Sardinia (St Teresa Gullura) to Corsica (Bonifacio) with the Saremar Line for 67 Euro. Crossing time one hour. Moby Line do the same crossing but are more expensive. I spoke with a Dutchman (car & caravan) and a German (seven metre Hymer) who had both bought a package from Corsica Ferries for the return crossings from Livorno to Bastia and Bonifacio to St Teresa Gullura. Both paid under 500 Euro for two return crossings. Both drove the East Coast Corsican route from Bastia to Bonifacio with no problems at all.