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Itinerary C3 CAGLIARI BASED

Startin from: Cagliari  BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
COD: C3
DAYS:6 plus

More Itinerary for Cagliari
  Itinerary Days
» HISTORY, SOME COAST, & A LITTLE VERNACCIA 2 plus
» 5 PROVINCES IN 3 DAYS 3
» BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY (SUMMER VERSION) 5 Plus
» BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND 6 plus

 



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Itinerary: C3 - Cagliari Based - BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND - Days: 6 plus

Gola di Gorropu (Dorgali)

This Itinerary includes some of the high points of Itinerary C2, but goes on to include the scenically stunning area of Dorgali and Cala Gonone with its countless opportunities for outdoor activities, and a bus trip taking in the magnificent views on the Dorgali to Baunei road followed finally by a re-entry to Cagliari by ferry to appreciate the same panorama of the capital which so enthused D.H Lawrence back in the 1920's.

Travel is by a combination of Train, Bus and Ferry and follows a circuit route to cover as much of the South and Centre of the Island as possible.

Whilst we have called this a 6 day Itinerary, the first and last days are really only half days each. However, we have allowed only one full day in the Dorgali area. You may instead decide to extend the itinerary by staying longer in this area overflowing with things to see and do.
 
Total transport cost for the Itinerary was around Euro 55 per person (Jun 2005), a third of which is the ferry price.

The only travel days which would be possible on Sundays are Day 1 and Day 3. In addition, this Itinerary utilises the Ferry connecting Arbatax with Cagliari which only runs on certain days of the week so extra care is required when planning to follow this Itinerary to ensure arrival at the Ferry on the correct day. See the descriptions for Days 5 and 6 of this Itinerary and also the Summer Itinerary C4 for alternatives to the Ferry leg.
 
The following provides a day by day description of the itinerary idea, including also tables indicating the various stages of travel for each day. These tables do not contain the actual departure and arrival times of each leg of the journey which must be accessed directly from the web sites of the individual transport providers. Links are provided to the front pages of the relevant sites, and some notes are provided here which explain how we accessed the relevant timetable information from the sites which do not have English translations.

You can make a print of this itinerary description and fill in the relevant arrival and departure times for each leg in the spaces provided.

Before deciding to follow any one of the Itineraries or suggestions in this site we strongly recommend that you read also the sections contained herein on
Suggestions and Hints, News, and General Disclaimer.

Day 1- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
The stages of the journey for this day are shown in the table below. To obtain the actual departure and arrival times for each stage, use the links and the information included in accessing timetables.
 
 
Depart Cagliari Train FS            
Arrive Oristano            

Oristano

Select an early afternoon departure for the trip to Oristano to allow you to make fullest use of the morning in Cagliari and still arrive in Oristano in plenty of time to check into accommodation before the city comes to life for the evening. Make sure you arrive in Oristano with a map, however, as it can be a little confusing when you first arrive. Later in the evening, be sure to take in some of the seafood fare typical of this area of Sardinia, and of course taste also the vernaccia.

Day 2- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
The stages of the journey for this day are shown in the table below. To obtain the actual departure and arrival times for each stage, use the links and the information included in accessing timetables.
 
Depart Oristano Train FS            
Arrive Macomer            
Depart Macomer Bus FdS (223/2330)            
Arrive Bosa            
Depart Bosa Bus ARST            
Arrive S'Archittu            
Depart S'Archittu Bus ARST            
Arrive Oristano            
 
 
Day 2 is actually a circuit day starting and finishing at Oristano, thus overcoming the difficulties associated with a lack of left luggage facilities on route. The Itinerary as presented includes a stop on the coast on route back to Oristano allowing either a walk and/or a swim at the scenic little beaches near S'Archittu. If the weather, however, is cold or windy then it may be better to remain a little longer in Bosa, finding a table in one of the many cosy restaurants near the centre of town, and enjoy a relaxed lunch. You can then return by a later bus
direct to Oristano.
 

Bosa

The Day starts with an early morning FS train departure from Oristano for the town of Macomer situated on a ridge overlooking the Northern end of the Campidano plain in the Province of Nuoro (Select a departure which ensures you arrive in time for the ongoing bus departing Macomer around 10am). You will probably find that you have a short time to fill in Macomer, just perfect for a walk around the town (arrive with a map) and breakfast in one of the many Bars before boarding the bus for Bosa. On route out of Macomer several nuragic ruins are visible from the bus, with the final descent into Bosa providing postcard views of this town with its castle above.

The stop in Bosa of a few hours can be pleasantly spent wandering through the medieval section of town including a climb up to the 11th century castle overlooking the town. Even when the castle is closed (approximately Nov until March) it is still worth the climb to walk around Via Nino Gavino which runs around the base of the castle and provides good views up the valley of the river Temo, across the top of the medieval quarter, and down the valley to the ocean and the Spanish watch tower. In and around the medieval quarter are several shops selling artifacts and souvenirs however be aware that many of these shops shut around 12:30 which in any case leaves sufficient time for a leisurely aperitivo at one of the bars in Piazza Costituzione whilst you decide how to spend the rest of your day.

S'Archittu

If you decide to make a stop at S'Archittu along the coast, select a bus departing Bosa very early in the afternoon. Before departing Bosa try to purchase a ticket also for the last leg of the Journey (S'Archittu to Oristano) as it is sometimes difficult to purchase bus tickets in S'Archittu. The bus for S'Archittu (board the bus for Oristano) makes its way up onto the flanks of Monti Ferru, passing through the strongly traditional towns of Cuglieri and Scano di Monti Ferru before descending again to arrive at the coast at Santa Caterina, shortly after which you arrive at S'Archittu. In the off season the bus may only stop here if necessary, so make sure you let the driver know that you want to get off.

If the weather is good, you can arrange to have plenty of time in the afternoon to descend for a swim in one of the several pretty bays, or to stretch your legs along the coastline, but make sure that you get back to the bus stop to catch the ongoing bus you have chosen (board the bus for Oristano) in plenty of time as sometimes the buses may pass a little early out of season.

If you choose to stay longer in Bosa, then board your chosen bus direct for Oristano in Piazza Zanetti.

Day 3- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
The stages of the journey for this day are shown in the table below. To obtain the actual departure and arrival times for each stage, use the links and the information included in accessing timetables.

Depart Oristano Train FS            
Arrive Macomer            
Depart Macomer Bus FdS ex PANI (341)            
Arrive Nuoro            
Depart Nuoro Bus ARST            
Arrive Dorgali            
Arrive Cala Gonone            

Cala Gonone

Select a train departure from Oristano at around 8am and you should be able to arrive in Nuoro a little after midday leaving ample time to get from the FdS (ex PANI) bus stop to the ARST Bus station (with also a stop for a bite in one of the bars on route) to make the early afternoon departure for Dorgali (Cala Gonone). This Bus will then get you to the coast in good time for an afternoon swim if the weather is good.
 
This travel day might also be possible by departing on a very early FdS (ex PANI) bus from Oristano (343) direct to Nuoro enabling you to make a mid morning departure from Nuoro to get to Cala Gonone before lunch. This may not work on Sundays however.


Day 4- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
 

Remain in Dorgali / Cala Gonone area.

Day 4 is spent taking in a little of what this wonderful area jam packed with potential wilderness activities and indescribable beaches has to offer.

Cordula Fuili (Cala Gonone)

Cala di Luna (Cala Gonone)



Day 5- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
The stages of the journey for this day are shown in the table below. To obtain the actual departure and arrival times for each stage, use the links and the information included in accessing timetables.
 
Depart CalaGonone Bus ARST            
Arrive Dorgali            
Depart Dorgali Bus ARST            
Arrive Arbatax            
 
 
Note that if you are intending to take the Ferry connection from Arbatax to Cagliari on Day 6 then remember that the Ferry does not depart every day. Check carefully the Ferry timetable to ensure that you complete this day 5 on the correct Day of the week such that Day 6 coincides with a ferry departure.
 

Genna Silana

We have listed this as being Day 5, but in fact it would be very hard to tear yourself away from the Dorgali area after having had only 1 full day (Day 4) to enjoy its many possibilities. So if you can afford the time then you may decide to stay at least another day or two.

Selecting an early afternoon departure from Cala Gonone will probably result in a fast bus change in Dorgali onto the bus departing for Arbatax a little before 3pm. The departing bus usually awaits the arrival of the bus from Cala Gonone however. Tickets for the full journey can be bought in Cala Gonone, otherwise there is usually a few minutes to buy a ticket for the onward journey in Dorgali.

The bus trip south from Dorgali follows one of the more scenic routes in Sardinia, passing through the wildly rugged Supramonte of Dorgali and Baunei. As the road climbs up towards the Pass of Genna Silana (1017m) there are ever improving views west towards the Supramonte of Oliena and over the Gorroppu Gorge. After the pass there are views over the deep valley of the Codula di Luna (which finishes at the back of the beach of Cala Luna) and finally spectacular views over the bay of Arbatax and Tortoli as the road descends again passing through the town of Baunei.

Arbatax

When the bus arrives at Tortoli you will probably have to make a bus change for the final short ride to the port of Arbatax, arriving in the early evening. The bus driver will indicate which bus to change to (which may well turn out to be a bus especially for you). Getting off at the port in Arbatax is the easiest option for then orienting yourself.

Arbatax is a quiet little port town which is not at all unpleasant to pass the night especially out of season. The Ferry departs early on Day 6 so it is best to try to find accommodation near the Port. See our accommodation section for some possibilities.

Due to this early start, and the fact that very few people board the ferry for Cagliari from Arbatax, there will be no ticket office open early in the morning when you are ready to board. Tickets for the ferry to Cagliari must therefore be bought on the evening of Day 5 when you arrive in Arbatax. You risk not being able to board the ferry if you do not have a ticket pre purchased.


Day 6- BEST COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY ON THE ISLAND
The stages of the journey for this day are shown in the table below. To obtain the actual departure and arrival times for each stage, use the links and the information included in accessing timetables.
 
Depart Arbatax Ferry Tirrenia           
Arrive Cagliari           
 
 
Note that the Ferry connection used for this travel day does not operate everyday of the week. Check the Ferry timetable carefully. Note also that it is better to purchase a Ferry ticket the night before boarding or you risk not being able to board.

Cagliari

The ferry from Arbatax to Cagliari is actually the ferry in arrival from Civitavecchia (on the mainland) which, only on certain days of the week, stops first at Arbatax and then proceeds to Cagliari.
 
Don't be surprised if you get funny looks when you try to board the ferry for Cagliari as they get very few people wanting to do this. In fact the ferry is quite a bit slower and also considerably more expensive than taking the bus, but a bus trip down the east coast to Cagliari is a very slow and tortuous affair whereas the ferry is far more civilised. (You are also probably a little sick of buses by now anyway). Apart from some fresh air, the ferry also provides views back to the Island as it travels down along the East coast, and allows an approach to the port of Cagliari from the ocean which definitely shows the city from one of its best angles.

If you are not able to time your trip to coincide with the ferry timetables, or you decide not to spend the time or money necessary for the ferry, your options include hopping off the Dorgali to Arbatax bus just before Arbatax at the town of Tortoli' and taking the very early morning ARST bus the following morning for Cagliari or, and this might be a better alternative, consider adopting Days 3 and 4 of Mainland Itinerary M3 in place of Days 5 and 6 of this Itinerary and take a trip through the middle of the Barbagia instead. There are several hotel and B and B options in Tortoli'.

Cagliari

The ferry arrives in Arbatax around an hour or so before its official re-departure time to unload passengers and vehicles. It is better to be ready to board a good half hour or so before the official re-departure time as the ferry can start to push back when it has finished disembarking, even if this is slightly before the official time. Remember that they are expecting only to disembark and not embark passengers.

The Ferry brings you right into the centre of Cagliari in the middle of the morning busy period when the city is full of life, making a marked contrast to the predawn silence of Arbatax.

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