Tavolara island, the worldwide smallest Kingdom


From Porto San Paolo (OT), in the summertime, small boats starting to take plenty of tourists to the island of Tavolara and that allows making the excursion in the Area Marina Protetta di Tavolara – Punta Coda Cavallo, which extends from Capo Ceraso to Olbia up to Punta Isuledda in the municipality of San Teodoro (OT).


Many tourists who visit the island and spend their day in the beach Spalmatore, and sometimes, drawn to the majesty of the island, they decide to make the hike climbing to get to the lookout on top, Punta Cannone.


Tavolara, also known for the Cinema Festival and as a military site, it is not only made of the beach, lush vegetation, nature trails and limestone walls. Also, a fascinating history that makes it the smallest kingdom in the world, with its 6 km long and one wide, the 700 hectares of land and 500 meters highness.


At the end of the 18th century, the Corso-Genovese Giuseppe Bertoleoni he was looking for a land where to live until he gets, in 1806, on the uninhabited Tavolara Island. There he settled with his family and his herd of goats, the renamed “golden-teeth goats”, because of the particular color of the teeth related to the local power supply.


The King Carlo Alberto di Savoia he visited the island in 1836, intrigued by the legend of these animals, and introduced himself as the King of Sardinia and Giuseppe Bertoleoni, in response, he introduced himself as the King of Tavolara. Back to home, Carlo Alberto sent a real parchment that recognized the Kingdom of Tavolara. When the State Property claimed the island, has been Paul, grandson of Joseph, to travel to Turin to talk to the King Carlo Alberto, which guaranteed to grandfather the sovereignty of the island.


A Giuseppe Bertoleoni succeeded by his son Paul, as known as Polo, who proclaimed himself King of Tavolara turning his name to Paul I, married a Sardinian woman, Pasqua Favale, his son Carlo I’s mother. According to him, the island was visited in 1896 by envoys of the United Kingdom Queen,  Victoria, on board the ship Vulcan, which had tacitly acknowledged the existence of the tiny kingdom. In a photograph appears Carlo I, in the center, surrounded by collateral relatives, shooted on the deck of the ship, you can see on the young man’s belt in the foreground, the writing Vulcan.


The Bertoleoni narrate that in a room of Buckingham Palace, in London, have been shown pictures of the royal family at Tavolara Island, in the collection of portraits of the ruling dynasties of the whole earth, with the words: “The Tavolara Royal Family, in the Gulf of Terranova Pausania, the smallest kingdom in the world”. “In fact”, the island became part of the territory of the Kingdom of Italy, at the time of the proclamation of the latter, March the 17th,1861.


Currently, the heir of the dynasty, which owns the island of about 70 hectares, is Tonino Bertoleoni, owner of the restaurant “Il Re di Tavolara”.