+44 (0)191 265 1110   info@skedaddle.com
Italy

Sardinia - Island Flavours

Self-Guided Leisure Cycling Holiday

Grade

1
2
3
4
5

Duration

8 days

Prices from

£895 P.P.
Italy

Sardinia - Island Flavours

Self-Guided Leisure Cycling Holiday

Grade

1
2
3
4
5

Duration

8 days

Prices from

£895 P.P.
BOOK NOW
Sardinia’s south-west corner is brimming with unrivalled views and fantastic flavours, and there's no better way to discover this beautiful region than by bike! This cycling holiday in Italy will take you past expanses of vineyards and olive groves, through oak wooded valleys with unique archaeological remains, and along high rugged cliffs dotted with Spanish watchtowers. You'll discover gorgeous beaches and coves, with awe-inspiring views of emerald seas.
 
Detailed road books and maps will take you along a route that combines undulating country lanes and coastal roads, allowing you plenty of time to explore, whilst your luggage is transferred from place to place. Long sunny days allow for a gently-paced cycling holiday, giving you plenty of time to fully immerse yourself in this enchanting island.
 
Sardinia is passionate about its production of organic foods and the island is bursting with intense flavours; cheeses, wines, countless varieties of bread, cured meats, saffron, juicy fruits and much more. Your cycling holiday will take you on a journey of flavours, giving you plenty of opportunity to stop and visit wineries, farms, traditional bakeries, fisheries and olive oil mills. Throw in the delicious aroma of fresh Mediterranean herbs that will accompany your cycling, and you'll have a true journey of the sense.
 
If you would prefer to join a group of cyclists on one of our scheduled dates, we also offer a fully guided version of this trip, or if you have a day or two to spare why not extend your trip with some trekking or sea kayaking. Our local team can join you for a day’s guiding or we can provide the information and equipment to allow you to enjoy the routes self-guided, just give us a call for further info.
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Holiday Highlights

  • Checking out the UNESCO heritage site of Barumini Nuraghe
  • Enjoying the long descent to Fluminimaggiore and Masua
  • Riding along the Nebida coastline and marvelling at the view of Pan di Zucchero
  • Sampling local specialities at Carloforte, on St Pietro island
  • Experiencing the friendliness and hospitality of the Sardinian people
  • Discovering the white beaches along the south-west coastal road

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A thoroughly enjoyable holiday which exceeded all our expectations. Faultless organisation and support ensuring a really relaxing experience.

Martyn, Vale of Glamorgan

Itinerary

Day 1
Arrival into Cagliari Airport - Transfer to Villanovaforru
  • Meals: Dinner

Following your arrival into Cagliari, we’ll transfer you to your accommodation in the village of Villanovaforru (approx 1 hour). The rest of the day can be spent organising bikes and going through your route notes ahead of your week of cycling to come, before enjoying a delicious meal prepared by your host.

Day 2
Loop Ride – Marmilla and Barumini
34 Miles / 60 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, dinner
  • Ascent: 850m

Leaving your accommodation, you’ll start the day with a gentle descent to the lower 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 for growing cereal, as well as olives and grapes. Today, bread making in this region still follows ancient recipes, with outstanding results! Cycling inland, you’ll head towards the Giara, a high volcanic plateau, populated by hundreds of wild horses. Nestled below it are the villages of Tuili and Barumini.

Allow plenty of time to stop and visit the impressive Nuragic complex of Barumini. Built in the Bronze Age, around the 15th century BC, this complex fortress and its surrounding village demonstrate an architectural feat; massive basalt blocks of rock, built up into three storey towers, internal staircases, outlook posts, courtyards and even an ancient sauna! Riding on you can make a short stop to admire the rose window of the charming granite Church of St Maria, before cycling past the remains of the 12th century Castello di Marmilla, perched on a hill beside the hamlet of Las Plassas. From here you’ll head back towards Villanovaforru, cycling through rustic towns.

Day 3
Villanovaforru to Arbus
31 Miles / 55 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, dinner
  • Ascent: 730m

Leaving the hills behind, you will venture down to the Campidano Plain, the biggest of the island, making your first stop in the town of Sardara. Its proximity to a hot spring and the quality of its fresh water, has made Sardara and its famed well a sacred area since ancient times. Believed by the Nuragic people to have healing properties, it’s well worth a visit!

Cycling on across the plain, you will pass the hot spring area just below the Castle of Monreale. From here, Pabillonis is your next stop, famous for the production of saffron. Make sure you stop at one of the bakeries to try some delicious Sardinian cakes filled with saffron-scented paste. Heading westward, Gonnosfanadiga is nestled below the rocky eastern spurs of the Iglesiente region and is known for its olives and olive oil. Leaving the plain it’s time to get into a smaller gear as you head back into the hills, just below Mt Linas, making your way to your accommodation, a delightful agriturismo offering legendary home made pasta, home-cured meats, cheeses and of course olive oil, with wine included. What better way to round off a fantastic day in the saddle?

Day 4
Arbus to Nebida
31 Miles / 50 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, dinner
  • Ascent: 800m

Leaving the agriturismo today you’ll cycle towards the coast. The day starts with an incredible 15 km/9 mile descent, with spectacular mountain views surrounding you. Cycling along the beautiful sandy beach of Portixeddu, you’ll have time to stop for a swim before continuing your cycle south.

The lesser-visited hamlet of Buggerru, once a thriving mining coastal town, now survives mainly on fishing and so with fresh fish being brought into the small port daily, it’s the perfect place to stop for lunch and enjoy some fresh, local delicacies. In Buggerru you’ll have the chance to visit one of the coastal mines, Galleria Henry, which has been opened to the public as part of an Industrial Archaeological itinerary of this fascinating mining area. If interested, let your Rep know at the beginning of the trip so a visiting time can be arranged.

Jumping back on your bike, the road will take you along the remote coastal route towards the towering limestone cliffs of Masua, a free climber’s heaven.

Your accommodation and dinner will be in Nebida, an unforgettable village perched on the cliffside offering mesmerising views of the Mediterranean sea.

Day 5
Nebida to St Pietro Island and St Antioco Island
31 Miles / 50 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Ascent: 480m

From Nebida you’ll continue south down the coast, leaving the rugged limestone behind and heading towards the lower lands and the islands of St Pietro and St Antioco. Giving your legs a rest, you’ll catch a ferry first to the island of St Pietro, where you’ll discover a new landscape and culture from those you’ve experienced so far.

The town of Carloforte on the island was founded by the coral fishers of Genoa, who moved to the island from Tunisia where they had lived since the middle of the 16th century. This influence is felt in the architecture on the island as well as the cuisine. With its pastel coloured houses set along narrow cobbled lanes, this makes it an interesting place to pootle around, maybe stopping for a fine meal at one of the town’s delicious fish restaurants. Don’t miss the island’s famous fresh tuna! Since ancient times, fishermen have awaited the arrival of schools of tuna that stream by along the same route, not far from the islands.

Another short ferry journey will take you across to the island of St Antioco, where a short ride will take you to your accommodation.

Day 6
St Antioco to Teulada
40 Miles / 65 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Ascent: 510m

It is worth spending a few hours to wander and visit 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 Thophet, as well as the Catacombs below the Church of St Antioco.

Leaving the island by the causeway across the bay of Palmas, you’ll carry on cycling towards the Sulcis mountains, riding through the fertile gentle hills around Trattalias and Santadi. As you cycle past vineyard after vineyard, it will become obvious that you are entering the wine region of Santadi. Here you’ll have the chance to try out some of the local wines at the Cantine di Santadi winery.

5 kms/3 miles south of Santadi, the carsic caves of Is Zuddas are one of the island’s many spectacular natural sculpture museums. From here the road winds its way 13 kms/8 miles to Teulada, passing some remote farming hamlets and at points affording some great views across the south coast.

Day 7
Teulada to Pula
34 Miles / 55 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Ascent: 500m

Your final day’s riding will take you along a roller coaster road towards Pula, your final destination for this trip. The Costa del Sud is a wonderful 20 km/12 mile 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 impressive promontories and with emerald blue waters it’s like something out of a picture book.

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 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 your trip officially comes to an end. The excellent gelateria in the main town square, serving home made ice-cream, is a must-visit for a well deserved treat and reward after your long journey of flavours.

Spend your evening wandering around this charming town, before trying out one of the many brilliant restaurants.

Day 8
Departure From Pula - Transfer to Cagliari Airport
  • Meals: Breakfast

Today you’ll say arrivederci to Sardinia. You’ll be met at your hotel and transferred to the airport for your flight home (approx 45 minutes).

If you have a day or two to spare why not extend your trip with some trekking or sea kayaking to explore the picturesque coastline and sandy shores which stretch along the coast from Pula. Our local team can join you for a day’s guiding or we can provide the information and equipment to allow you to enjoy the routes self-guided, just give us a call for further info.

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The Cycling

Terrain

The tour alternates between countryside and stunning coastal views. You’ll be riding primarily on well paved roads, except for a few short sections of dirt road that lead you to your accommodation. You’ll be riding in a region which combines rolling hills and long flat stretches, passing olive groves and vineyards. Towards the coast the riding becomes a more undulating roller coaster, with a few challenging sections rewarded with stunning coastal views. Coastal roads will overlook long stretches of sandy beaches and remote coves. The climbs are never too steep or long and the roads generally have little traffic. We recommend a hybrid bike for this tour, but the route is suitable for a road bike if preferred.

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Leisure Cycling Grade

1
2
3
4
5
Grade 3 : Moderate

Distances generally between 20-45 miles / 32-72 kms per day

For the leisure cyclist with a good level of physical fitness

May include some steeper, cheeky climbs and possibly sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc)

Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!

For more information about our grading system click here.

Is this suitable for you?

Although you may not cycle everyday, you do keep yourself relatively fit and maybe enjoy an afternoon out on your bike at the weekend. Your preference is perhaps for flatter terrain but you don’t mind tackling some hills, and the occasional steep climb if you can take it at your own pace. For those happy to tackle some ups and downs, and possibly some sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc) we’d recommend our grade 3 trips. We’d generally expect those on a Grade 3 holiday to have a decent level of physical fitness and be comfortable with some longer days in the saddle.

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From the booking process through to the transfer to airport on the return journey, everything was excellent. Usual high standards of support, hotels, bikes, route and information. The only negative comment…the holiday had to come to an end!

Susan, Scotland

Dates & Prices

Daily departures available between March and October (excluding July and August).

Season 1: For trips starting between (and inclusive of) 01/03 and 02/04, 15/04 and 21/04, 03/05 and 17/06 and 01/09 and 31/10: £1095 per person.

Season 2: For trips starting between (and inclusive of) 03/04 and 14/04, 22/04 and 02/05: £1195 per person.

Alternatively for a great value holiday choose one of our scheduled departures below.

Contact us on +44 (0) 191 265 1110 or email info@skedaddle.com to check availability for your specific date.

Start Date
End Date
Duration
Price p.p.
Start Date
23/05/2021
Return Date
30/05/2021
Duration
8 days
Price
£895.00
Start Date
29/05/2021
Return Date
05/06/2021
Duration
8 days
Price
£895.00
Start Date
04/09/2021
Return Date
11/09/2021
Duration
8 days
Price
£895.00
Start Date
09/10/2021
Return Date
16/10/2021
Duration
8 days
Price
£895.00
Choose your date
Start Date
End Date
Duration
Price p.p.
Start Date
Return Date
--/--/----
Duration
8 days
Price
£1,095.00

Whats Included Tick

A) Accommodation (shared twin / double en suite rooms) in small hotels / agriturismi

B) Meals as per the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)

C) Local representative (with welcome meeting)

D) Detailed route notes and maps

E) Luggage transfers

F) Pre-loaded GPS unit (1 per group)

G) Airport transfer on scheduled arrival day from Cagliari airport (CAG)

H) Airport transfer on scheduled departure day to Cagliari airport (CAG)

What's not Included Cross

A) Bike hire (available if required)

B) Flights and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)

C) Single room (available if required)

D) Travel insurance

E) Meals not stated in the itinerary

F) Personal clothing and equipment

G) Personal expenditure (souvenirs, bar bills, hotel facilities etc)

H) Entrance fees to museums and other attractions en-route

I) City tax to be paid at each accommodation in cash (amount varies)

J) Airport transfers on days other than the scheduled arrival / departure days

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The Essentials

Travel Options

Airport transfers are included in the cost of your holiday.

For this tour we ask that you fly into and back from Cagliari airport (CAG). Please arrive between 09.00 and 16.00 and depart between 10.45 and 19.00.

For those flying from the UK there are direct flights from London Stansted with Ryanair.

If you are joining one of our scheduled departures (see Departures and Prices) you’ll need to arrive into Cagliari airport before 11.30. At the end of the tour, we will transfer you to Cagliari airport, with an estimated arrival time of 13.00.

Please check with Skedaddle before making any travel arrangements. Please note – If you make travel arrangements that fall outside of the above time windows there may be an additional charge for your transfers.

Accommodation

We use a range of small 3* hotels and where possible we opt for agriturismi (small rural guesthouses). (Please select the hotel upgrade supplement when booking if you’d like to upgrade one of the hotels to a 4*!)

Our carefully selected hosts will ensure you are greeted with a warm welcome at the end of a day’s ride. At the very beginning and end of the season tourism tends to be quiet and, although that means some of the facilities aren’t at full capacity, you will have the routes largely to yourself and can experience the island away from any crowds.

Bike Hire

If you don’t own a suitable bike or would prefer to avoid bringing your own we have bikes available to hire. These bikes are typically Giant Roam hybrids (or equivalent). If a small frame is needed we will provide Liv Roams. Occasionally mountain bikes will be provided with semi slick tyres adapted for road use.

We can provide a helmet locally on request, please let us know if you’d like to hire when you make your booking.

Hire bikes will be provided with a pannier rack and 1 pannier bag, an odometer, a map holder, a water bottle holder, a puncture repair kit (with a spare inner tube), a bike lock and bike pump.

We have electric bikes available to hire on request. It may take us a day or so to confirm availability so please let us know as soon as possible if you’d like to take this option.

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