Winter in Sardinia

The cliffs near the rocky shore in Sardinia

Surrounded by the warm Mediterranean Sea, Sardinia has a relatively mild winter. The island of the southern tip of Italy sees more sunshine and higher average temperatures than many other European regions. The air temperature is quite uniform and averages around 10 °C. The water usually keeps its temperature between 12 °C and 14 °C. The winter season has the largest level of rainfall if to compare with the other parts of the year – about 53 mm per month. At the same time, the number of days with precipitation doesn’t differ dramatically from the spring or autumn rainiest months – that’s around 8 days a month in general. Although the mountainous areas of the island do see some snowfall, the winter climate in Sardinia, especially in the coastal areas, is often a big improvement for tourists from some other countries.

The dominant wind is the north-west Mistral blowing with regularity and power in winter. That’s why the winter season guarantees a great experience for sailors and surfers, though it may be not as comfortable from the point of temperatures as spring or autumn. The wind picture is supplemented with the northern Tramontane that can alternate with the south-west Libeccio.

One of the advantages of traveling to Sardinia in winter is that the beautiful island with friendly locals is fairly devoid of tourists at this time of year. Therefore, you can avoid the hustle and bustle of the summer season – as well as avoiding the heat and humidity – by visiting in the winter. Not that you would want to sit seaside in an outdoor café sipping wine in your shirtsleeves; but if you are hoping to explore the island and experience the local history, traditions, and island heritage, you can still have a great time. The island is known for its year-around festivals and celebrations, so no matter what month you visit, you can find something for everyone.

Sardinia in winter is referred to as the secret season by many repeat travelers. With most days being sunny and comparatively warm, along with always excellent food and wine, and unbeatable off-season hotel prices, the Sardinian winter is perfect for exploring the magical island. New Year’s Eve on the island is extra-special, especially in Alghero, where the Cap d’Any festivities are possibly the most famous and sparkling in Sardinia. Carnival traditionally starts on January the 17th, which is also the Festival of Sant’ Antonio Abbot. Carnival, one of the most lively and popular island celebrations, lasts until Ash Wednesday. Since winter is the off-season for tourists, you can explore the many historic towns and prehistoric stone structures in a quiet, undisturbed fashion.