Sardinia Coast to Coast

This 8-day, 7-night walking tour in Sardinia starts in Cagliari, the Jerusalem of Sardinia, heads east to a delightful coastal hamlet and joins the breath-taking Selvaggio Blu (Wild Blue) trail – the most challenging in the Mediterranean. Selvaggio Blu will give you a heady dose of nature, of scents and colours that will stay in your system for a long time.

Walking tours in Sardinia - coast-to-coast group photo

Our walking tours in Sardinia will follow the Selvaggio Blu walking path where no ropes are needed. Days 3, 4 and 5 will be challenging: 1 night in a Mountain Refuge, 1 night in a tent on the beach with outdoor showers, and activity level 5.

In addition to ‘standard’ walking equipment, you will need to bring: a light backpack, trekking poles, water bottle, sun hat, sunglasses, sun cream, windproof jacket (Sardinia can be very windy!), cagoule, sleeping-bag and a small towel. Wake-up time is around 7:30 am.

Walking Tours in Sardinia - map

Walking Tours in Sardinia
Summary

  • Accommodation: five nights in 4-star hotels, one night in a tent, one night in a mountain refuge
  • Activity levels: 2, 4 and 5 (see FAQ for definitions)

Itinerary

Arrival in Cagliari (pm)

Benvenuti in Sardegna! Our staff will meet you at Cagliari Elmas Airport and bring you to your hotel, where we’ll be waiting with an aperitif. We’ll then have a trip presentation and get-together before heading into town for dinner.

 

Dinner: Restaurant in Cagliari

Night: Palazzo Dessy in central Cagliari, in the old fishing harbour

Discovering Cagliari and heading east to Santa Maria Navarrese

An elephant on the tower? You’ll have the answer to this by the end of the tour. During a four-hour guided walk around Cagliari, and a visit to the fabulous archaeological museum, you’ll learn about the town’s structure and the mark left by successive civilizations – Roman, Pisan, Aragonese and Piedmontese.

High up in the town in an ancient citadel, Castello, watch flamingos take off from two large ponds. After a tour of Cagliari by Ape, the classic Italian three-wheeler, we will wander through San Benedetto, Europe’s largest covered market, to see and sample the fish, meat, cheese, wine, bread and cakes on offer. After a light lunch in the market, we set off from Cagliari in a private minibus driving through inland Sardinia to the east coast and Santa Maria Navarrese.

Activity level: 2

Midday meal: light lunch in Cagliari

Transfer: private minibus from Cagliari to Santa Maria Navarrese (2.5 hrs)

Dinner: Santa Maria Hotel

Night: Santa Maria Hotel

The Selvaggio Blu trail – Santa Maria Navarrese to Rifugio Golgo

Santa Maria Navarrese is a fishing village on the east coast in Ogliastra province and is where the trail begins. A guide from Cooperative Goloritzè will lead your group for the three days.

Pietra Longa - walking tour in sardinia

Your coast-to-coast walking tour in Sardinia starts here! Setting off at sunrise, you follow the gorgeous, gentle coastline up to Pietra Longa for a breath-taking view of the faraglioni rock formations and then up to the Us Pigus and Bacu Tenosili gullies. As you ascend, with the tang of the sea all around you, juniper sheepfolds will come into view. During the day, when you reach the Golgo heights, your reward is the incomparable scenery below.

Mobile phone reception is patchy, and no water is available along the trail, so remember to fill your water bottles in S. Maria Navarrese. Days 3, 4 and 5 may be changed around or modified according to sea and weather conditions.

Activity level: 5 (1 km uphill, 400 m downhill)

Walk: 18 km

Midday meal: packed lunch

Dinner: Sardinian specialities at Rifugio Golgo (Golgo mountain refuge)

Night: Rifugio Golgo in double or multi-bed rooms

Golgo to Cala Sisine

You leave the Golgo refuge to visit the Chiesa di San Pietro, standing alone on the Golgo plateau amid ancient olive trees. This modest, late 16th century church, with its striking whitewashed façade, is flanked by cumbessias – rough, open stone structures that traditionally hosted local festivities and, before that, pilgrims.

You follow Via del Carbone, the road once used to transport coal, and the riverbed of Torrente Codula Sisine to the stunning Cala Sisine bay. You’ll be impressed by the gorges and on reaching Cala Sisine … you’re suddenly facing the sea. A small camping area provides hot water and a safe place to put up your tents. It looks out onto the fine white sand and water in various shades of blue, from palest aqua to dark turquoise. At the southern end, bizarrely shaped limestone formations soar away from the cliffside.

Enjoy the sea breeze as you stroll on the bay’s white sands. Take a breather and lap up the view!

Activity level: 5 (100 m uphill, 480 m downhill)

Walk: 16km

Midday meal: packed lunch

Dinner: at the night camp

Night: tents (two-person) and camping mattresses provided by the organisation, showers available at the campsite

From Cala Sisine to Cala Luna
with transfer to S. Maria Navarrese by boat or jeep

From the campsite, you head for the left slope of Cala Sisine bay to climb back up to the cliff’s edge, glimpsing the sea through juniper bushes. Then Bacu Lopiro – an astonishing natural hole 20 metres in diameter  ̶  you have to take a picture! At Cala Luna (Moon Bay), there’s a beachside café, where you can relax with a drink before returning to S. Maria Navarrese by boat. The 45-minute boat trip is superb: you’ll look back at the whole coast, including the bays you walked across during your Ogliastra experience. If sea conditions do not allow transfer by boat, return by jeep or alternative means will be organised.

Activity level: 5 (600 m uphill, 600 m downhill)

Walk: 16 km

Midday meal: packed lunch

Dinner: Hotel Santa Maria

Night: Hotel Santa Maria

Santa Maria Navarrese to Cabras through the town of Ulassai

This is a transfer day (2.5 hrs) from the east coast passing through central Sardinia to the west coast. Our first stop is the Stazione dell’Arte, a converted railway station at Ulassai dedicated to the work of native artist Maria Lai, known for installations such as Sewing up the world and Capturing the wind. Maria’s works were exhibited at the 2017 Venice Biennale.

Then our walking tour in Sardinia continues westwards across central Sardinia up to Cabras in the Gulf of Oristano. The gulf is enclosed to the north by Cape San Marco, on the Sinis Peninsula, and to the south by Cape Frasca and is dotted with massive ponds, including the Stagno di Cabras and Stagno di Mistras. The Stagno di Cabras has a surface area of 2,200 hectares and has been privately owned since 1982. Today the ponds comprise some of the most important wetlands in Europe and have been declared a European Community Interest Zone. The wetlands have another quality: the special intensity of the light.

Walking Tour Ulassai - Panoramic view

Walking Tour Ulassai - Art Installation

Walking Tour Ulassai - Panoramic viewof town

Activity level: 1

Walk: 5 km

Midday meal: along the road

Culture: Stazione dell’Arte

Dinner: Da Pinuccia

Night: Aquae Sinis boutique hotel

The Phoenix Path to Sinis Peninsula and Tharros

Learning about and tasting bottarga

Sinnis Peninsula - Sardinia

We are now on the west coast and start walking again. A local guide will lead us along the Phoenix Path that follows the coast overlooking the Gulf of Oristano to your left and the Cabras Ponds on your right, traversing fish farms and ending at the Sinis Peninsula at Cape San Marco.

On the way back, we will stop at the Tower of San Giovanni. From the 50-metre vantage point you will see, to your right, the ‘live sea’, exposed to the wind, and to your left the ‘dead sea’, protected from the wind – and Tharros, a city founded by the Phoenicians in around 800 AD, on what was then a Roman site. From the tower, the guide will tell you about Tharros. Further inland, the sand dunes give way to Cabras Ponds, a swampy ecosystem among the largest and most flourishing in Europe, and home to the greater flamingo.

We return to Cabras by minibus to visit Cabras Pond at the Pontis Consortium and learn the secret to catching grey mullet and producing bottarga. Bottarga is smoked grey or red roe from mullet, tuna and even swordfish. Sardinia is where bottarga has always been produced, and Cabras is the mecca of mullet bottarga. Even though it’s becoming known in North America, the product is still by far an unknown delight. A tasting concludes the day.

 

Boats of the Cabras Ponds - Sardinia

Activity level: 4, almost flat

Walk: 15 km

Midday meal:  pranzo al sacco

Dinner: Mar’e e Pontis Fishery

Night: Acquae Sinis boutique hotel

Sheep-milking competition and visit to the Giants

We start our last day with a visit to the farm of Marcolino, who is a shepherd in Su Prano, a few kilometres from Cabras. Marcolino, a real cultural ambassador for this rural area, will school you in the art of sheep milking. You’ll then take part in a milking competition; the best-performing milkers will receive a medal crafted by a local artist. After all that milking, Marcolino will demonstrate how to make cheese and ricotta. And what better way to end your farm visit than with a cheese and wine tasting? The wine is a vernaccia di Oristano, a staple in the life and customs of this area, and the whole of Sardinia.

‘Prehistoric cyber men? Sardinia’s lost warriors rise from the dust. It’s the only group of sculpted life-sized warriors ever found in Europe.’ That’s how The Independent described the giants of Mont’e Pram at the Cabras Archaeological Museum where we will be taken on a guided tour. On display are a collection of six male statues (three boxers, two archers and a warrior) 2 to 2.5 metres in height, and four models of nuraghe, the megalithic edifices unique to Sardinia. The giants are ancient stone sculptures created by the Nuragic civilisation in Sardinia. Fragmented into numerous pieces, they were found by accident in March 1974, in farmland near Mont’e Prama. After a light lunch, we will reach Oristano in the afternoon by mini-van, and then take the train to Cagliari – Elmas Airport (1 hr, 15 mins). This is the end of your walking tour in Sardinia!

 

Tour formats

This 8-day walking tour of Sardinia is available in three formats: a guided tour for groups, a private guided tour, and a self-guided tour. Click on a tab for more information.

Guided Walking Tours are run on planned dates according to the calendar. Please see the Upcoming Group Guided Tours and sign up to our newsletter for updates.

Group size: 6 to 10 people

Price per person: €1,999* inclusive of:

  • tourist taxes
  • accommodation
  • breakfast, lunch and dinner throughout
  • tour leader and local guides
  • museum entry
  • transport in Sardinia, including airport pick-up and luggage transportation

Solo traveller? The price including single supplement is €2,399. But if two solo group members of the same sex agree to share rooms, they can avoid the supplement.

 


Reserve your place on this tour!

Fill out the booking form below and we will get back to you to confirm availability. No payment is required at this point.

Sardinia Coast to Coast - Guided Walking Tour for Groups

 

Please note that you will receive an email with the option to sign up for the Walk Italy Tours newsletter.

This is your private tour to share with your friends, family or colleagues. Tours dates will be organized according to your needs in the months of: April, May, June, September, October and November.

Group size: from 2 to 12 people

Price per person is inclusive of:

  • Tourist taxes
  • Accommodation
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner throughout
  • Local guides
  • Museum entry
  • Transport in Sardinia, including airport pick-up and luggage transportation

Price per person, sharing a double room, is based on the number of people:

  • 2 guests: € 3,200 / person
  • 4 guests: € 2,400 / person
  • 6 guests: € 2,200 / person
  • 8 guests: € 2,100 / person
  • 10 guests: € 1,999 / person
  • 12 guests: € 1,900 /person

 

 


Reserve your place on this tour!

Fill out the booking form below and we will get back to you to confirm availability. No payment is required at this point.

Sardinia Coast to Coast - Private Guided Tour
Please enter your preferred dates for arrival in and departure from Cagliari. For example, 2 - 9 November 2018.

Self-guided tours are for the more adventurous! Following clearly marked paths that have been used for centuries, self-guided tours have been designed to give independent trekkers the chance to master their abilities. All you have to do is get up in the morning, pull on your boots, have breakfast and enjoy the walk. WalkItaly Tours provides 24-hour remote assistance by mobile phone.

Group size: from 2 to 12 people

Price per person is inclusive of:

  • Tour briefing in Cagliari by Walkitalytours staff
  • 24-hour remote assistance
  • Accommodation
  • All breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Detailed itinerary description and maps
  • Local guides only for day 3,4,5
  • Museum entry
  • Transport in Sardinia, including airport pick-up and luggage transportation
  • Ape car Tour in Cagliari
  • Tourist taxes.

Price per person, sharing double room, is based on the number of people:

  • 2 guests: € 1,999 / person
  • 4 guests: € 1,950 / person
  • 6 guests: € 1,900 / person
  • 8 guests: € 1,850 / person
  • 10 guests: € 1,800 / person
  • 12 guests: € 1,750 / person

 

 


Reserve your place on this tour!

Fill out the booking form below and we will get back to you to confirm availability. No payment is required at this point.

Sardinia Coast to Coast - Self-Guided Walking Tour
Please enter your preferred dates for arrival in and departure from Cagliari. For example, 2 - 9 November 2018.