Picture beautiful blue waters and sandy white beaches smack bam in the middle of the Med and Sardinia comes to mind. The second-largest island after Sicily and an autonomous region of Italy, Sardinia is a mix of rugged coastline and cosmopolitan centers. Perhaps the most iconic of Sardinia's attractions are its stone fortresses or nuraghi, thousands of which dot the island. The island's turbulent history dating back as far as 1000 BC means it is a boon for history buffs who can spend their stay checking out the island's medieval towns and ancient ruins. Cagliari is one of the island's liveliest cities, and it just so happens to be your port of call. This city offers the best of everything: colorful festivals, architectural wonders, historic monuments, tranquil lagoons, and one of the longest beaches in the Mediterranean. The island's capital is Cagliari and is home to such tourist attractions as the Castello, offering spectacular views over the Gulf of Cagliari, and the Roman Amphitheatre that was build in 2AD.