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Condé Nast Traveler: Valle dell’Erica among the Top 25 Resorts in Europe

Condé Nast Traveler: Valle dell’Erica Among the Top 25 Resorts in Europe

The 5-star in Santa Teresa Gallura ranks among the jewels of hospitality in Europe, offering a holiday that’s unforgettable. This is according to readers of the prestigious American magazine, Condé Nast Traveler.

It’s the Readers’ Choice Awards 2023 that marks the latest accolade for the Valle dell’Erica Resort, the “Dream” of the Delphina hotels & resorts collection.

Selected among the top 25 Resorts in Europe, the award from Condé Nast Traveler is the result of meticulous selection by the American magazine, which over twelve months identified the hotels and resorts that made its readers’ travels unforgettable. It’s one of the most coveted recognitions in the travel sector, the result of an analysis of numerous criteria including service quality, food, and the atmosphere experienced within the resort.

A quality holiday in contact with nature

Nestled in a 28-hectare mediterranean park and overlooking the International Park of the Strait of Bonifacio, Valle dell’Erica Resort is a true oasis of peace and natural beauty, with a 180-degree view of the La Maddalena and south Corsica Archipelagos. The Resort is not just an exceptional place to stay but also a perfect destination for special moments like honeymoons or weddings, thanks to its enchanting location and exclusive services such as the “Le Thermae” Thalasso Centre & SPA.

An oasis of Well-being for both adults and children

A paradise for couples seeking intimacy and romance as well as for families, thanks to spaces dedicated to fun for the little ones. A wide variety of services designed to ensure a holiday of the highest level, including a wellness center, naturalistic fitness trails, panoramic swimming pools, and the choice of 7 restaurants, among them the gallurese cuisine of Li Ciusoni or Li Zini, for exclusive dinners barefoot on the sand.

A holiday in Europe’s Best Green Resort

A place where nature, comfort, sustainability, and hospitality merge to create a 360-degree wellness experience among vast green spaces, beaches, and secluded coves with fine white sand, prestigious rooms, and suites furnished with local materials.

The Condé Nast Traveller award adds to a long list of accolades obtained by the Valle dell’Erica Resort. The typical mediterranean hospitality, love for Gallura and nature, together with a commitment to environmental sustainability through the We Are Green® protocol, are at the heart of Delphina’s philosophy and have allowed the Valle dell’Erica Resort to be elected the “Best Green Resort in Europe” at the World Travel Awards for five consecutive years.

We are here

Experience the fairy tale of the little Mermaid at Valle dell’Erica

It has smashed box offices worldwide and made children of all ages dream: The Little Mermaid has long left Andersen’s fairy tale world to come alive in the crystal-clear waters of Northern Sardinia.

“The water is the bluest I’ve ever seen, and the rock formations are the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. We discovered Sardinia in our dreams before going there,” declared John Myhre, the set designer of Disney’s new live-action film “The Little Mermaid.”

A landscape of wild beauty that, after enchanting the Hollywood cast and crew of Walt Disney’s live-action film, has left the whole world breathless: Mermaid Rock, Ariel’s beach, the castle. All locations to discover along the coast between Santa Teresa Gallura and Castelsardo, close to the Valle dell’Erica Resort.

Mermaid magic: a touch of “Mermaid magic” at Valle dell’Erica Resort

Beauty programs at the Thalasso & SPA Le Thermae center, leisure activities for the little ones, and even a new adventurous boat excursion: more reasons to enjoy a vacation at the Valle dell’Erica Resort, a 5-star establishment in Santa Teresa Gallura, overlooking the International Park of the Strait of Bonifacio, surrounded by unique nature that has contributed to winning the award for the best green resort in Europe for 4 consecutive years at the World Travel Awards.

“From the beach where Ariel emerges to Eric’s castle to the underwater world where her original family lives, Sardinia’s immense natural treasure is revealed: 3 national parks covering about 30,000 hectares, five protected marine areas, and 128 ‘Natura 2000’ sites, some of which are celebrated by UNESCO,” says Nevina Satta, CEO of the Sardinia Film Commission Foundation, who assisted the production.

boat excursion departing from the resort

To immerse yourself in the world created by the new Disney film and explore the picturesque sandy beaches, the natural rocky cliffs, and the blue and shimmering waters featured in the movie, the resort offers a whole day aboard an inflatable boat, a journey worthy of Captain Eric, departing directly from the Valle dell’Erica Resort. The tour includes visits to many locations where scenes from the film were shot, including Capo Testa, Ariel’s beach at Rena Majore, the Mermaid Rock at Rena di Matteu, and the castle at Monti Russu.

wellness treatments born from the sea at the thalasso & spa center

With its 1600 sqm dedicated to wellness and relaxation, the Le Thermae Center, specialized in thalassotherapy, has packaged wellness programs “The Little Mermaid Signature” and “In the Footsteps of the Little Mermaid.” The first is designed to discover the fantastic world in a warm embrace of seawater with a relaxing water therapy treatment. The journey then continues to rejuvenate the face with a Sardinian Lift treatment and exfoliate the body with a sea salt and mud scrub, followed by relaxing the mind and body with the warm sand and precious essences of Gallura. The second is designed for a gentle awakening in warm seawater with gentle exercise, followed by feeling the scents of Sardinia on the skin with a scrub and revitalizing massage using typical island plants and essences.

the magic of the little mermaid for the little ones

Visiting the Mini Club at the Valle dell’Erica Resort also means being amazed by a mermaid who emerges from the sea right in front of the children’s eyes, waving her tail. And for the sweetest moments, tail-shaped cookies that they can decorate with colored icing. To conclude the day, songs and dances together with Triton and the Little Mermaid. And still, costumes, braided hair, and marine-themed nail polish to make them feel like mermaids for a night.


Best green resort in Italy and Europe at the World Travel Awards 2021

Awarded for the third time, the 5-star hotel in Santa Teresa Gallura celebrates its victory as Europe’s Leading Green Resort, along with reconfirmation at national level as Italy’s Leading Green Resort.
We have two pieces of good news to share with you, two new achievements that make us proud and which encourage us to do more and more for the environment. Firstly, the Valle dell’Erica Resort is “Europe’s Leading Green Resort”, the best green resort in Europe for the third consecutive year and which has also been re-confirmed nationally as “Italy’s Leading Green Resort”.

Thanks to everyone’s support and hard work, Delphina hotels & resorts, the chain to which the Valle dell’Erica belongs, has been re-elected “Italy’s Leading Hotel Group”, the best hotel group in Italy.

“These awards make us feel really proud and even more so in such an unusual year” said Elena Muntoni, Delphina brand manager. “Sardinia’s unique character is our primary resource and is always at the heart of our projects. Winning this title for three consecutive years is proof that we are on the right track. It is a clear indication of how it is possible to do business while respecting and enhancing the surrounding area”.

A tremendous victory for this 5-star resort immersed in 28 hectares of parkland, amidst Mediterranean shrubs and bushes with 1,400 metres of pristine coastline, private coves and white sandy beaches facing the La Maddalena Archipelagos and Southern Corsica. A green oasis in which to experience a “5-stars in Freedom” holiday, in other words, a holiday with no formalities or labels that focuses on the individual and encourages a healthy lifestyle, enjoying the typical hospitality of Gallura, its unique places, flavours and traditions yet without sacrificing comfort and the excellence of our services.

The sustainable path taken by the Valle dell’Erica Resort is best summed up by the We are green® protocol, a brand created and patented by Delphina to represent its commitment to the environment. Forward-looking choices and sustainable good practices including the use of 100% green energy exclusively from renewable sources, the policies to limit the use of plastic, the exclusive use of electric vehicles for guests to move around the resort and the recharging of electric vehicles available at no extra cost.

Social responsibility and support for local suppliers are also important and are part of the “Genuine Local Food Oriented®” project, a Delphina quality brand aimed at encouraging healthy cuisine based on genuine ingredients that respect the seasonal nature of food production, preferably at 0kms, a preference for items of furniture and decor manufactured by Sardinian companies and the promotion of cultural events and excursions that highlight nature, history and archaeology.


Spargi: a dream island

Queen Soraya fell in love with it, pirates have made it their lair, an ancient wreck lies in its depths. Uninhabited, facing the Resort Valle dell’Erica, Spargi looks like the enchanted island dreamt of by children of all ages.

A natural paradise rich in history and stories that have made it famous over the centuries, offering delightful little sandy coves and rugged wild coasts, underwater worlds to explore and rare animal species that have chosen it as their home. Spargi, with its approximately four square kilometres is the third largest island of the La Maddalena Archipelago, a pearl of rare beauty with its Spargiotto island and its Spargiottello rock.

In short, there is lots to discover on Spargi: to reach it, choose one of the excursions that leave from the resort and spend unforgettable days relaxing among the most beautiful bays on the island, looking out over views that you will find it hard to forget.

Spargi: un’isola da sogno
Spargi: un’isola da sogno

Spargi: beaches and other natural wonders

An inland area rich in typical Mediterranean vegetation which runs along the shoreline and then turns into white sand dunes and natural sculptures to let the imagination run riot such as the Cane Bulldog and the Witch’s Head, granite rocks sculpted over time by the force of the wind.

No photos can do justice to the translucent colours of the sand and the transparency of the water as you land in Cala Soraya, the favourite beach of the Queen of Persia, or in the romantic Cala Conneri, not to mention the beautiful Cala Corsara or Cala Granara, all on the South-east coast of the island.

Spargi is also the home of rare animal species, plants and highly fragrant flowers. Sinuous Phoenician junipers can be found among holm oaks, wild olives and strawberry trees, while the most romantic will be enchanted by colourful sea roses, tree heather and maritime lilies that stand out against the pure white sand dunes.

For ornithologists, certain rare birds nest on a small island close to Spargi known as Spargiotto. These include the Corsican gull, the only bird endemic to the Mediterranean, but also crested cormorants and storm petrels.

The best diving spots near Spargi

Diving enthusiasts will feel they are in their natural habitat in the dive sites surrounding Spargi:
  • the Washington shoal near Punta Zanotto, characterized by huge granite boulders, tafoni and abysses where groupers, bream and barracudas make their way between red gorgonians or sea fans.
  • the Spargi wreck, a cargo ship from the 2nd century BC found in the shallows of Cala Corsara. When it was discovered, it was carrying a load of enormous value, including Roman amphorae and other precious objects.
  • near the Spargiottello rock there is another interesting diving spot, a sand gully that cuts the rock in two to open walls full of life and colours.

The history of Spargi

Now you know what to look for, we’ll tell you a few curious facts about some of the people who loved and lived on the island.

As well as the Romans, pirates crossed the waters to Spargi. It is certainly no coincidence that Cala Corsara is so called, in fact it seems that its name is due to the den of pirates who frequented the cove and its four “Caribbean” beaches.

At the end of the 19th century, a supposed bandit named Nino Berretta hid out in the midst of the wild and inaccessible natural vegetation of the interior and brought his whole family to stay there when his innocence was proven.

If the queen of Persia, the beautiful Soraya, fell in love with the colours of Cala Soraya, a slightly less credible noble decided to find accommodation on the island. In fact, Giovanni Catogno, known as Rampazzo, settled in the military fort of Cala Corsara. A character straight out of folklore, he proclaimed himself Count of Spargi.

Spargi: un’isola da sogno
Spargi: un’isola da sogno
Spargi: un’isola da sogno
Spargi: un’isola da sogno


5 things to see and do in Santa Teresa Gallura (other than the beaches)

The Northern coast of Sardinia is one of the most beautiful on the island and this historical-naturalistic tour around Santa Teresa Gallura should not be missed.
If the beaches (especially in the Santa Teresa Gallura area) boast numerous awards and blue flags, then the historical and natural resources and the places of interest in Northern Sardinia that will enhance your holidays on the island are no less fascinating.

If you want to spend a day doing something different, or have a change from the beaches and relaxing in the hotel by taking gentle strolls through the wonderful natural setting, here are some ideas on things to do and excursions to enjoy in order to live Sardinia to the full:

  • The Longosardo Spanish Tower
  • Capo Testa and the “Parco di Punta Cuntessa”
  • The Valle della Luna at Santa Teresa
  • Punta Falcone
  • The archaeological site at Lu Brandali
5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna
5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna

The Longosardo Spanish Tower

Walking through the picturesque centre of Santa Teresa you eventually come to the Longosardo Spanish Tower. The largest tower built by the Spaniards in Sardinia dominates the natural harbour on one side and the Rena Bianca beach on the other. Going up the outside steps of the recently restored tower, the top is the perfect place to enjoy a 360° view over the Straits of Bonifacio and take unbeatable panoramic pictures as far as the La Maddalena Archipelago together with your travelling companions!

Capo Testa and the “Parco di Punta Cuntessa”

If instead you want to immerse yourself in nature and go trekking in Northern Sardinia, you are in the right place! 2 kms from the city centre is the SCI (site of community importance ) of Capo Testa, which due to its special characteristics is one of the places in Santa Teresa Gallura not to be missed.

Starting from the “Parco di Punta Cuntessa” you are immersed in the Mediterranean landscape where a well-tended network of paths frequented by turtles and hares and bathed in the scents of lentisk and juniper will lead you to the old military batteries that date back to World War II.

5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna
Capo Testa: gioiello di Santa Teresa Gallura

The Valle della Luna at Santa Teresa

Crossing the isthmus of the Levante and Ponente beaches at Capotesta, the Corsican cliffs are the backdrop to the oldest lighthouse in Santa Teresa Gallura which is a good 23 metres high. You go to the west of the small peninsula through the valley of granite rocks more commonly known as Valle della Luna (Valley of the Moon). This is an enchanting place that can only be reached by following difficult tracks that are perfect for trekking along the coast and which are scented by heather and juniper.

A place of silence and peace, occasionally livened up by visitors following the Hippy philosophy and where the wild Sardinian nature can be seen in all its extraordinary beauty.

Capo Testa: gioiello di Santa Teresa Gallura
5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna

Punta Falcone

If instead you find yourself on the beautiful Marmorata beach, facing the natural backdrop of the La Maddalena Archipelago at the foot of the Punta Falcone promontory, you may want to take a stroll along the hidden paths to the most northern tip of Sardinia. This place has remained intact over time because it is a former military area and is home to several buildings used during World War II. A path through some difficult territory will reward you with a unique and breathtaking view of the Straits of Bonifacio.

The archaeological site at Lu Brandali

There is no shortage of remains of the mysterious Nuraghic civilization! For enthusiasts and the simply curious, the nuraghic site of the Giants tomb of Lu Brandali is near Santa Teresa. This is a very important archaeological site in Gallura that dates back to the Bronze Age and in which numerous artifacts and fragments of pottery have been found.

You walk through scented local vegetation, between past and present, between sea and land. A little corner of Paradise in Northern Sardinia able to reward you with priceless experiences and unique encounters, beyond the beach and the sea.

5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna
5 cose da fare e vedere nel Nord Sardegna