The Ferrata degli Angeli is a spectacular route that allows you to reach the summit of the island of Tavolara on the Tyrrhenian coast of Sardinia. The ferrata goes up from Punta la Mandria and rides all the ridges that span the western side of the island. The view is breathtaking and absolutely worth a visit.
Update August 2018: the Ferrata degli Angeli is dismantled in its original start. The route takes place on a different itinerary. Follow the tracks on the spot.
The starting point of the itinerary is near Punta della Mandria on the island of Tavolara in front of Olbia and Gallura. Take the boat from Porto San Paolo that will quickly take us to the island (for times click here). Once on the island at the Spalmatore beach, follow the obvious path that will take us to Punta la Mandria where the Ferrata degli Angeli will start.
Directions for Google Maps available here.
Once in Punta la Mandria, follow a path to the east that climbs steeply up the walls. Following the path you reach a steep stretch with the help of a rope that allows you to climb back up and reach the slab that indicates the start of the Ferrata degli Angeli (20' from the arrival by boat).
From the slab follow the red arrow that makes us get around an edge where the metal equipment starts. Attached is a stepped oblique ramp which ends with a vertical wall in which there are some holds. At the end of the wall we see a first section on a wooden trunk - a characteristic of this route - which allows us to walk along a first horizontal traverse. The view of the sea and the Sardinian coast starts to be exciting but this should not distract you from the difficulties of the route. You enter a rocky ravine and climb up an exposed edge where a pair of metal equipment help the progression. Climb back up the edge and reach a traverse where again a trunk supports the feet and then continues the ascent in a decidedly characteristic stretch: a ladder made of juniper wood traces a vertical wall back up completely. This section is also secured by a sturdy chain. Once the ladder is finished turn to the left on a horizontal traverse in which it is necessary to pull on the cable, given the few grips present. Climb diagonally in a not difficult section but without foot holds. Climb up a short vertical wall and finish the first section of the ferrata. The cables momentarily end.
Follow the path and climb some rocks with red signs. After a few minutes of progression between the rocks, we come back to the start of the cable for the second section of the ferrata that will develop mainly on the ridge. Immediately we climb a first wall diagonally through a not difficult traverse. This stretch takes us to the ridge where we will initially be on the right side just below the wire. The progression is fun and the view is wonderful. Continue up and down along the rocky ridges of the ridge. You then come to a dihedral of a few meters that you climb easily until you reach a small terrace. From the terrace, turn right and continue diagonally on a flight of steps. The cable ends and proceeds uphill rocks to the summit cross (approx. 2 from the start). It is advisable not to remove the harness as the return path includes aided sections.
At the end of the Ferrata degli Angeli, continue along the ridge in the direction of Punta Cannone, which can be reached in about 30 minutes. Near a saddle between the Sella di Lucca and Punta Cannone you will notice an aided downhill path with a red signpost. Follow this aided path downhill and return to the beach (1h 30 'from the end of the ferrata - about 4h total).
The ferrata is magnificent from a landscape point of view and, although not difficult, it should not be underestimated. Exposure is present throughout and the difference in height required requires good fitness. In difficult stretches there are metal equipment that help. In some sections there are some singular juniper trunks that act as a support. The rope is small in diameter but well stretched. In a more exposed passage the rope is flanked by a sturdy chain.
The island of Tavolara offers some opportunities for climbing on long routes in a suggestive environment. However there are no other climbing routes. If you want another via ferrata you can go from Porto San Paolo to the Ferrata of Badde Pentumas, the Ferrata of the Castle of Medusa, the Via Ferrata Giorrè, the Ferrata Regina or the Ferrara del Cabirol. Moving to the south instead we meet the Ferrata of Gutturu Xeu and Pan di Zucchero in the province of Carbonia Iglesias.
Approach: 0:20 h
Ferrata: 2:00 h
Itinerary: 4:00 h
Via Ferrata gap: 300 m
Route difference: 558 m
Max altitude: 598 m
Length: 6.7 Km