Cycling Sardinia, Italy 2016

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Cycling Sardinia, Italy 2016

Coastal roads and ancient ruins

Sunday 25 September, 2016 to Wednesday 05 October, 2016

The Italian island of Sardinia is renowned for its rich history, colorful handcrafts, and endless miles of undisturbed beaches. What better place to explore by bike?

This is an easier tour than a typical AllTrails ride. The distances are less and the pace is more leisurely as you will not have as many re-grouping meeting points, allowing you to do the day’s ride with less time constraints.

Departure dates in 2016: 22 May – 1 June and Sep 25 – Oct 5

Cycling Sardinia, Italy
Dates:
22 May to 1 Jun or Sep 25 to 6 Oct
Duration:
11 days
Distance:
518-595km
Ave. Daily:
65-74km
Bike Type:
Road bike / touring bike (included or BYO)
Terrain:
Rolling terrain along the coast with more challenging climbs as we cross the island from west to east
Accom.:
Comfortable 3-4 star lodgings
Meals:
7 dinners with wine, 1 lunch, 10 breakfasts
Price:
USD $4895 twin share

The Italian island of Sardinia is renowned for its rich history, colorful handcrafts, and endless miles of undisturbed beaches.

This tour gives you a chance to discover this Mediterranean jewel that is often overlooked by tourists. Spend 11 days exploring breathtaking coastal roads, pedaling ancient forests, and hiking to ruins that predate Roman civilization by more than 1,000 years – all while enjoying traditional Italian meals and wine. Other highlights are a visit to an excavated Roman town, a fabulous shepherds’ barbecue, and swimming in pristine waters.

Highlights:

  • Quiet country roads
  • Spectacular mountain vistas
  • Great food and wine
  • Great coastal bicycle rides
  • Traditions and ruins dating back to pre-Roman times
Please contact us to let us know that you are interested in this tour and we will contact our local tour operator to check availability, answer your questions, or to book you in.

Meal and accom inclusions noted as B, L, D, A (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Accom)

Alghero -- NA -- Day One -- - - D A
Day 1: Highlights: Seaside Alghero, Catalan & Gothic architecture There are plenty of ways to get to Alghero including international air connections or by boat from Genoa to Porto Torres. Alghero was a Catalan outpost and has a dialect that is still a mix of Catalan and Italian. Our seaside hotel is a 15 minute walk from the historic town center. We’ll fit bicycles this afternoon and recommend an easy test ride before our special welcome dinner tonight.
Alghero to Tresnuraghes -- 59km -- Day Two -- B - D A
Day 2: Highlights: Scenic coastal riding, the town of Bosa We’ll follow the coast south toward Bosa this morning. Take your time and enjoy the roller coaster ride this morning as the reality of this mountainous island sinks in – you’re actually cycling suspended between the sea and mountains! Bosa is our first stop and we recommend you take time to explore this fascinating town before enjoying lunch here. A final climb through small coastal vineyards brings us to a plateau dotted with tiny traditional villages. Since Roman times, the Sardinians have never really lived by the sea as pirates and bad weather were more common at sea level.
Tresnuraghes to Cabras -- 60km -- Day Three -- B L D A
Day 3: Highlights: Two-night stay, traditional basket makers, olive oil visit We remain inland today, visiting the towns of Flussío (famous for its home-made baskets) and Tinnura (famous for its murals) on our way to Cuglieri. After a visit to an olive oil press, which still makes olive oil from trees planted by Spanish noble families in the 16th Century, we’ll fly downhill to a beautiful beach for a refreshing swim and lunch. A flat ride brings us to our hotel this afternoon.
Cabras loop ride or optional rest day -- 44km -- Day Four -- B - - A
Day 4: Highlights: Optional ride to the Roman ruins of Tharros, explore hidden beaches and bays Today is a day off the bikes for those who prefer to relax. Or we’ll offer an optional ride to the Phoenician and Roman ruins of Tharros on the coast, where you can enjoy a relaxing swim at the beach. Those with an urge for exploration can spend the entire day cycling to all the little bays and beaches along this wild coast. Your return ride will bring you by salt marshes inhabited by fish and pink flamingoes. Try some famous ‘bottarga’ (fish roe) made in this area, either on pasta or on pizza!
Cabras to Tonara -- 85km -- Day Five -- B - - A
Day 5: Highlights: Mountain climbs, cork tree forests, ‘torrone’ (nougat) and bellmaker visits We head deep into Sardinia’s interior today. Our route follows the Tirso River to Fordongianus, an important ancient Roman city, and then heads up to Samugheo, known for its knotted white woolen rugs. After lunch and/or a gelato stop in Samugheo, continue climbing to Atzara and Sorgono, where the summit (900+ meters) awaits. Our destination is the small mountain town of Tonara, famous throughout Italy for its honey and egg-white ‘torrone’ (nougat) and its artisanal bellmakers that help herders keep track of sheep, goats and cattle.
Tonara to Su Gologone -- 85km -- Day Six -- B - D A
Day 6: Highlights: Coastal mountains of Sardinia, resort hotel with pool, traditional masks of Mamoiada We start the day with a well-earned downhill before climbing to the friendly town of Gavoi and our lunch stop in Mamoiada. We’ll regroup for a brief visit to the traditional mask museum to learn about the haunting masks that dominate traditional festivals before continuing on through the center of Sardinia’s historic ‘bandit’ region, Orgosolo in the Gennargentu (silver) mountains. Our destination is the serene mountain resort hotel of Su Gologone, nestled under the imposing white limestone mountain Supramonte.
Hike to Nuragic Village -- NA -- Day Seven -- B - D A
Day 7: Highlights: Visit to prehistoric Nuragic village, shepherds’ barbecue Leave your cycling shoes behind today as we enjoy a hike to some of the ruins and rock dwellings of the ancient Nuragic civilization that once inhabited this area. After our hike, we’ll share a barbecue in the mountains with local shepherds. An early return to our hotel allows for serious rest and relaxation at the swimming pool before dinner together.
Su Gologone to Santa Maria -- 75km -- Day Eight -- B - - A
Day 8: Highlights: Spectacular limestone mountains, rugs and olive oil of Dorgali Hold on to your helmets! We go from 100 meters to 1,000 meters and then back down to sea level as we cycle through some of the most spectacular limestone mountains in the Mediterranean basin. You’ll want to stop in Dorgali to see the rugs, traditional gold filigree jewelry, and Sardinian ceramic designs before a long but gentle scenic climb brings us to the top of the pass. From there it’s downhill to the beach in Santa Maria Navarrese and our home for the night.
Santa Maria to Costa Rei -- 113km -- Day Nine -- B - D A
Day 9: Highlights: Wild countryside Today’s ride is long, but with gently rolling terrain through the villages of Bari Sardo, Tertenìa, Villaputzu and Muravera. The scenery is bucolic with views of the mountain range that separates the valley we are riding through from the sea. We’ll enjoy glimpses of the Tyrrhenian Sea toward the end of the ride, one of the two seas that flank mainland Italy (the other is the Adriatic Sea between Croatia and Italy).
Costa Rei to southern coast of Sardinia -- 74km -- Day Ten -- B - D A
Day 10: Highlights: Coastal riding, Villasimius, Cagliari We cycle to the south coast of Sardinia near one of the most famous beaches in Cagliari. We recommend stopping in Villasimius for a midmorning cappuccino and cornetto, a great ice cream, or just to have a walk on the famous beach. We’ll pedal into Cagliari to our hotel for our final evening and dinner together.
Tour ends in Cagliari -- NA -- Day Eleven -- B - - -
Day 11: Highlights: Cagliari After breakfast, we’ll say goodbye. If time allows stay a few extra days in this Mediterranean paradise.
Please contact us to let us know that you are interested in this tour and we will contact our local tour operator to check availability, answer your questions, or to book you in.

Inclusions:

  • Quality 27-30 speed bicycle
  • 10 nights accommodation
  • 7 dinners with wine
  • 1 lunch
  • 10 breakfasts
  • Superb tour leaders, bilingual and bicultural experts
  • All tips and gratuities at tour hotels and group meals
  • Full van support to carry luggage – and tired cyclists, too! 

Price:

  • USD $4895 twin share
  • add USD $650 for single supplement