Bike Sardinia | Italy

This cycling tour will take you to the south-west corner of the region, an area that is bursting with variety from expanses of vineyards, olive groves, rugged cliffs, beaches and secluded coves.  Travelling along country lanes and coastal roads you will have plenty of options to stop off and visit farms, traditional bakeries, wineries and olive oil mills with a perfect mix of landscapes, beautiful colours,  crystal clear seas. There is no better way to discover Sardinia than by bike.

Overview

7 nights from $2,794pp* | Flights are additional

Where you’ll visit:

  • Italy

Click on the interactive trip map below to explore the route.

Highlights:

  • Exploring the UNESCO heritage site of Barumini Nuraghe
  • Sample local specialities at Carloforte, on St Pietro island
  • Cycling along the Nebida coastline and enjoying the stunning views of Pan di Zucchero
  • Experience the friendliness and hospitality of the Sardinian people
  • Enjoy the white beaches along the south-west coastal road

What's Included?

Includes:

  • Return airport transfers
  • 7 nights accommodation | Includes: breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners
  • 6 days biking
  • Vehicle support and transfer

Excludes: Airfares, insurance bike and helmet hire

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrival into Cagliari Airport – Transfer to Gergei  
Following your arrival into Cagliari airport, you’ll make the 45 minute transfer to your accommodation in the village of Gergei. The rest of the day will be spent organising bikes and going through the route with your guides to make sure all is well for the week ahead, as well as getting to know the rest of the group.

Day 2 – Gergei to Sardara 
Leaving your accommodation, you will start the day exploring the plains of the Marmilla, a hilly region which extends from the outskirts of Cagliari towards Oristano. Since Roman times, this fertile part of the island has been the centre of cereal cultivation as well as olives and grapes. Today, bread making in this region still follows ancient recipes, with exceptional results! Here we will visit the archeological site of Barumini and nearby museum. This Nuragic site is the most important on the island. Built in the Bronze Age, around the 15th century BC, this fortress and its surrounding village demonstrate an incredible architectural feat: massive basalt blocks of rock, built up into three storey towers, internal staircases, outlook posts,courtyards and even an ancient sauna!

Cycling north west you will then curve around the Giara, a high volcanic plateau, populated by hundreds of wild horses. Riding on you will cycle over rolling hills of vineyards and olive groves, leading us to the village of Collinas.

Leaving the hills behind,and venturing down to the Campidano Plain, the biggest of the island, making the first stop in the town of Sardara. The closeness to a hot spring area and the quality of its fresh water has made Sardara, and specifically its well, a sacred area since ancient times – it’s believed that Nuragic people venerated the water as having healing properties. Your hotel is set near the Roman remains of the old thermal baths. Time to enjoy the spa facilities before dinner!

Day 3 – Sardara to Arbus
Setting off from Sardara and its rural church of St Maria delle Acque, you’ll leave this thermal water oasis behind and cycle on, across the plain, passing Pabillonis. This is an agricultural area and the fields around may be growing artichokes, wheat or saffron, offering a tapestry of colours and perfumes.

Heading westward, Gonnosfanadiga is nestled below the rocky eastern spurs of the Iglesiente region and is known for its olives and olive oil. If the timing is right, a stop at a local cafè and patisserie will allow time to sample some of the local traditional cakes made from almond paste and saffron. Leaving the plain it’s time to get into a smaller gear as you head back into the hills, just below Mt Linas, before reaching the accommodation for the night, a delightful agriturismo offering some superb homemade pasta, home-cured meats, cheeses and of course olive oil and wine included. What better way to finish off a good day on the bike?

Day 4 – Arbus to Nebida
Leaving the agriturismo you will cycle on towards the coast. A superb 9 kms of gentle downhill riding with beautiful mountain views is the perfect start to the day. Cycling along the long sandy beach of Portixeddu, you may even have time to stop for a brief swim before continuing.

The little hamlet of Buggerru, once a thriving mining coastal town, is now trying to survive on few resources: fishing and the odd traveller who ventures this way. In Buggerru there will be an opportunity to visit one of the coastal mines, Galleria Henry, which has been opened up to the public as part of an Industrial Archaeological itinerary of this fascinating mining area. Cycling on, the road takes you along the remote coastal route towards the towering limestone pinnacles and cliffs of Masua. This is a free climber’s heaven, with excellent routes starting from sea level towering up to the sky. Then you will pedal onwards to breathtaking Nebida!

Day 5 – Nebida to St Pietro Island and St Antioco Island 
From Nebida continue riding south down the coast, leaving the rugged limestone behind and heading towards the lower lands and the islands of St Pietro and St Antioco. You will have the chance to give your legs a rest as you catch a ferry across to the island of St Pietro.

The town of Carloforte, on St Pietro, was founded by the coral fishers of Genoa, who moved here from Tunisia where they had lived since the middle of the 16th century. Their influence is felt in the architecture of the island as well as the cuisine. With its pastel coloured houses set along narrow cobbled lanes, Carloforte is a fascinating place to stroll around. The island is well known for its fishing community, in particular tuna fishing. Since ancient times, fishermen have awaited the arrival of schools of tuna that stream by along the same route, not far from the islands. You are free to please yourself for your lunch break, choosing one of the lovely fish restaurants or a delicious panino from one of the many bars. Another short journey on a ferry will then take you across to the island of St Antioco, where a short ride will take us to the town, and our accommodation for the night.

Day 6 – St Antioco Island to Teulada
It’s well worth spending a few hours visiting some of the hidden archaeological sites of St Antioco. The development of the area in fact goes back to the Nuragic times, but only truly thrived when the Phoenicians founded it as “Sulcis” in 259 BC. Worth a visit is the Punic Necropolis and Tophet, as well as the Catacombs below the Church of St Antioco.

Leaving the island by the causeway across the bay of Palmas, its time to carry on cycling towards the Sulcis mountains, riding through the fertile, rolling hills around Trattalias and Santadi. Cycling past vineyard after vineyard, it will become obvious that we are entering the vine region of the Carignano grapes. Here will be a chance to try some of the yummy, local wines at the Cantine di Sa Mesa. From here the undulating road winds its way 13kms to Teulada, passing some remote farming hamlets and at points affording some great views across the south coast.

Day 7 – Teulada to Pula 
Your final day on the bike will see you cycling along a roller coaster road towards Pula. The Costa del Sud is a wonderful 20 km spectacle of twisting, turning road above rugged cliffs that plunge into the deep blue sea. There are many outlook points and small sandy coves to stop and enjoy the sea. Cala Tuerredda is one of the most stunning beaches along this coast, protected by two promontories; the emerald blue colours are breathtaking.

From here the road climbs away from the coast, dropping back toward the long sandy beach of Chia. A short detour to the right will take you to Chia tower, from where we you can enjoy a spectacular view of the long stretch of Chia beach and the islands. The next section follows the main road north, along a quiet coast road, finally reaching the little town of Pula, where the trip officially comes to an end. The excellent gelateria in the main town square, which serves home made ice-cream, is a well deserved treat and reward after this long journey of flavours.

The evening will be free to wander around the town and try out one of the many quality restaurants.

Day 8 – Departure Form Pula
A relatively early start to the day for the 45 minute journey to Cagliari airport. Depending on flight schedules, there will hopefully be some time for a wander around the city; the perfect place for those last minute goodies or to put your feet up in one of the many plazas sipping a last glass of vino rosso.

If you have a day or two to spare why not extend your trip with some trekking or sea kayaking exploring the picturesque coastline and sandy shores which stretch along the coast from Pula? Alternatively if you are looking for some city life and culture, arrange a guided cycle tour of Cagliari.

Gallery

Terms and Conditions

  • Price based on per person twin share, in AUD, land only and selected travel periods and blackout dates apply.
  • Prices are correct at the time of release and are subject to availability and to change without notice.
  • Allows for two changes of the following: departure date and/or tour. Applies to bookings made from March 11th to July 31st, 2020. Change requests must be submitted by phone or email minimum 60 days in advance. Please note: a minimum of 90 days’ notice applies.  Any change in value above the original order will be charged, any value below will be forfeited. Offer does not apply to cancellations please ask when booking for details specific to your tour.
  • Credit/debit card surcharges, singles supplement and cancellation/change fees may apply.
  • Events beyond our control such as currency fluctuations may result in price variations.
  • Priced based on travel dates 10 – 17 May 2020 | 07 – 14 June 2020 | 27 September- 04 October 2020 | 25 April  – 02 May 2021 | 09 May – 16 May 2021 | 06 – 13 June 2021 | 26 September – 03 October 2021
  • Prices exclude (unless specified) airfares, insurance (Note: some insurance companies may deem mountain biking an extreme sport), meals, other activities and all items of a personal nature. Additional levies, government charges, and fees may apply that are beyond our control.
  • Accommodation. Subject to availability. Selected travel dates & blackouts & book by dates apply. Specific room types, bedding configuration, features and amenities may vary.
  • Activities: Where specified are subject to availability and weather dependent. Age, weight and height restrictions may apply.
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