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Cycling in Sardinia

Cycle Sardinia’s unspoilt southwestern coast



At a glance

* 7 nights in comfortable 3-star hotels and agriturismos
* 6 days cycling with full vehicle support
* 90% tarmac, 10% easy gravel roads
* Group normally 5 to 16, plus leaders. Min age 16 years
* Mix of easy riding and climbs from the coast

Cycle Sardinia’s unspoilt southwestern coast

Often referred to as the ‘land of silence’, Sardinia is a place of
outstanding natural beauty, with its crystal-clear sea, limestone ridges and
deep gorges. During the week we ride across the wild and pristine
southwestern part of the region, passing abandoned mines, ancient ruins and
gleaming white beaches. The route starts with a circular ride through the
fascinating Sinis wetlands, home to colonies of pink flamingos, then moves on
to the spectacular Costa Verde (Green Coast) named for its abundance and
variety of Mediterranean vegetation. After cycling past the ancient mines of
Ingurtosu and Planusartu, we reach the beautiful beach of Portixeddu where
the impressive Pan di Zucchero white cliff towers out of the emerald waters.
We then board a local ferry to the fishing village of Carloforte and explore
the delightful isle of Sant’Antioco before crossing to the mainland, where we
conclude a week of wonderful cycling pedalling across the rolling hills of
the stunning Costa del Sud, with its white beaches, coastal pools and
imposing high cliffs. Having built a good appetite, you will have plenty of
opportunities to sample Sardinia’s unique, mouth-watering cuisine: the
perfect mix for a great week of cycling!

https://www.exodus.co.uk/sites/exod/files/node/itinerary/images/mwk.jpg?t=1DkHs8

Type: Land Only

Flight prices available from NeenanCycling. Contact us for details

What’s included

* All breakfasts and 3 dinners*
*
* All accommodation (see below)
* All transport and listed activities
* Tour leader throughout
* Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
* Local bike hire

Food:
All breakfasts and 3 dinners included.

Italy’s cuisine is hearty, satisfying and full of flavour. Inspired by the
kitchens of the nonna, Italy’s food is authentic and surprising – pizza
and pasta are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the diverse array
of unforgettable food you’ll find on this trip. The Traditional Sardinian
cuisine is full of local and delicious recipes. Popular specialities include:
roast suckling pig, excellent seafood dishes and local Sardinian wines, such
as Vermentino, Nuragus, Cannonau and Monica. Mirto is Sardinia’s after
dinner liqueur, which is made from the leaves of the myrtle plant. As a
visitor it can be hard to escape the tourist traps that is why our local
leaders will be at hand with some good restaurant recommendations.

Start destination: Cabras

End destination: Cagliari

Cycling profile

Day 1

Start Cabras, in the Sinis peninsua, approx. 110km from Cagliari airport.

Day 2

We start the week with a circular ride across the fascinating Sinis wetlands,
whose lagoons are home to colonies of pink flamingos and a wealth of other
birdlife, which nest here for part of the year. We cycle to the coast at Mari
Ermi and the spectacular white quartz beach of Is Arutas. A short ride down
the peninsula to San Giovanni Sinis takes us to the Punic and Roman city of
Tharros, one of the island’s most important archaeological sites from this
era, overlooking the emerald sea (optional guided visit).

Day 3

Today we ride through the natural beauty spots of the Costa Verde (Green
Coast), named after the green, wild vegetation that covers much of its
mountainous surroundings and the colour of its water. To avoid the
uninteresting suburbs of Oristano, we transfer by road to Arborea and cycle
across reclaimed farmland to the picturesque fishing village of Marceddi and
to the long beach of Piscinas, bordered by huge sand dunes – some over 50m
high! From Piscinas we head inland and end our day’s cycling with a steady
climb to our cosy agriturismo set in the hills overlooking the Monte Linas
range.

Day 4

This is another tough day, but we are rewarded with superb scenery! After a
fantastic descent to the Mannu River, we reach the start of the miles of
remote golden beaches around Portixeddu. We cycle past the abandoned mines of
Pranu Sartu and the stunning inlet of Cala Domestica before reaching the 130m
high sea-stack of Pan di Zucchero and the former mining village of Nebida
where we will have dinner.

Day 5

Today’s route starts with a beautiful descent to Fontanamare followed by an
undulating coastal ride to Portoscuso. Here, we board the local ferry to the
fishing village of Carloforte, the only existing one on Isola di San Pietro.
(San Pietro island) There is time to explore this delightful islet with its
sandy coves, dramatic rocky headlands and tiny hamlets, before rejoining the
ferry to the equally unspoilt island of Sant’ Antioco.

Day 6

This morning we cycle through the lush meadows of the island of
Sant’Antioco before crossing back to the mainland and visit the Pisan
sanctuary at Tratalias, dating back to the Romanesque period. From here we
ride across the quiet country lanes of Sulcis until we reach the village of
Sant’Anna Arresi. Nearby are the pinewoods, lagoons and beaches of Porto
Pino.

Day 7

Today is the longest day in terms of distance. We pedal across the beautiful
southern countryside over the jagged coastal plains of the Costa del Sud, a
wild and unspoilt region of gleaming white beaches, coastal pools and
imposing high cliffs punctuated by 16th Century Spanish watchtowers. We cycle
as far as Cape Teulada, Sardinia’s southernmost tip, where dramatic cliffs
rise up to 230m above the crystal clear sea. We stop in Pula, famous for its
proximity to the ancient Phoenician site of Nora, founded in the 9th Century
BC and now partly submerged under the sea (optional guided visit). From the
end of the ride we take a private transfer to Cagliari, where we celebrate
the end of a great cycling week; dinner and overnight in Cagliari.

Day 8

End Cagliari.
**

Prices & Dates

Date: 2019-04-062019-04-13

Trip code: MWK190406

Availability: Available

Trip status: Fully guaranteed

Price: €1625

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Date: 2019-04-132019-04-20

Trip code: MWK190413

Availability: Available

Price: €1625

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Date: 2019-04-272019-05-04

Trip code: MWK190427

Availability: Available

Price: €1625

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Date: 2019-05-042019-05-11

Trip code: MWK190504

Availability: Available

Price: €1625

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Date: 2019-05-112019-05-18

Trip code: MWK190511

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-05-182019-05-25

Trip code: MWK190518

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-06-012019-06-08

Trip code: MWK190601

Availability: Available

Price: €1845

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Date: 2019-06-082019-06-15

Trip code: MWK190608

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-06-152019-06-22

Trip code: MWK190615

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-09-142019-09-21

Trip code: MWK190914

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-09-212019-09-28

Trip code: MWK190921

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-09-282019-10-05

Trip code: MWK190928

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-10-052019-10-12

Trip code: MWK191005

Availability: Available

Price: €1645

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Date: 2019-10-122019-10-19

Trip code: MWK191012

Availability: Available

Price: €1625

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Customer Feedback

Cycling in Sardinia

Summary:
A very enjoyable week of cycling in Sardinia’s south west coastal area with a
lovely group. Some long climbs which were rewarded with equally long
descents. The weather was sunny for the first couple of days, thereafter
overcast and occasionally rainy, but this did not dampen the spirits of the
group. The leaders – Michele and Simone were excellent, ensuring all the
group had an enjoyable time. The hotels and agriturismos we stayed in along
the route were all very good with excellent home cooked food.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
it has to be the long climbs on days three and four and the equally long
thrilling descents!

Cyclists consume a lot of calories and there was no shortage of delicious
food from breakfast, snack stops, lunch and dinner. Not to mention the
re-hydrating with local beer and wine at the end of a long day cycling!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Michele and Simone were excellent. They supported all of us on the daily
rides making sure everybody had an enjoyable time and took it in turns to
cycle and drive the support van. They provided snacks during the rides and
ensured we arrived at lunch stops on time for pre-booked lunch. Nothing was a
problem for them – from fixing the occasional puncture to ordering food for
us.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
If you have your own pedals/cycling shoes and saddle then I strongly
recommend you take them. I did not take mine and cycled in trainers, I
managed ok, but it would have been a lot easier, especially on the hills if I
had my own pedals and cycling shoes.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
You need to have a reasonable level of fitness tailored to cycling and have
some off-road experience as there is a small amount of non-technical off-road
cycling.

Read full review

A lovely Island

Summary:
I went with four friends which made for good companionship and plenty of
laughs, We made sure that we mixed with the group and made some good friends,
and hopefully enhanced their enjoyment. We were lucky with the weather which
threatened to have some storms but we seemed to have sunshine most of the
time. I loved the morning coffee stops and the daily beach stops for a swim.
Some of the rides were quite challenging and surprised the first timer in our
group. The resulting downhill sections were fabulous. Most hotels had
swimming pools which were very welcome at the end of the day.

Rating: 4

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The long downhill rides after the steep climbs.
The nice beaches and hotels with swimming pools.
Having a beer with the group at the end of the ride.
The final night as a group in Cagliari.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Both the leaders. Simone and Giovani were excellent. Giovani was very
knowledgeable about the island and its history, which he was keen to tell us
about. He was quite strict but we soon warmed to him and brought out his
softer side by using some banter.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
The hills on day 2 and three are very challenging. I have done grade 3 climbs
on previous Exodus trips and these were long and challenging. Knowing that
the hills would be a challenge and no longer a spring chicken, I had an e
bike. I have embraced e mountain biking at home on the South Downs and it is
fabulous. Although the e bike I had wasn’t an ideal design, it certainly
helped and enhanced my enjoyment. My advice would be to have one if you have
any doubt. Why suffer? the e bikers were able to chat on the hills and enjoy
the scenery, whereas the normal bikers couldn’t talk.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
If you like coffee stops, nice beaches and swimming pools, this is the trip
for you. Beware of the hills!

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Review

Summary:
Very well organised and enjoyable trip taking in some amazing scenery both
coastal and inland.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
I loved the variety of the cycling, especially the off road bits. Learning
about how Sardinia’s past was related to the monuments we passed and the food
and culture.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Lovely, friendly, patient, friendly and jovial hosts who always tried to
please everyone, all the time. Great fruit breaks!

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Some hills were quite long and steep. If you want to enjoy more, consider
getting an electric bike! However, the van was available all the time
allowing you to hop on and off throughout the day giving a great flexibility.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
Watch out for the mosquitoes! Take repellent with you.

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Brilliant – but really glad we had e-bikes

Summary:
Great way to see the beautiful Sardinian West coast, including salt pans,
flamingos, the dramatic coastline & turquoise seas.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The Costa del Sud was truly spectacular; the annual San Salvatore festival
in Cabras; the giant sand dunes of the Costa Verde and the islands of San
Pietro & Sant’Antioco. All of it really!

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Both Alessandro & Simone were superb: multi-tasking, great local knowledge,
dealing with logistics, accommodation, restaurants, fixing bikes, making us a
superb lunch. And they were brilliant when one of our group had a bad fall.
They are both passionate about their country & it showed.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
My knees are knackered (little/no cartilage) and although I cycle at home, my
knees would never have coped with this trip without an e-bike. There are some
very challenging hills. Even the keen cyclists in our group felt that it
would be better described as Moderate/Hard. With an e-bike it was still a
challenge but a very satisfying one. Also it was incredibly hot – if the trip
was offered mid-late September/early October, I think it could be even more
enjoyable.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
Our only criticism was that the days were often long, starting at 9am &
arriving at our next hotel at around 5ish. Personally I think the days should
have ended at 4pm so you had a bit more time to either explore or have a swim
before dinner. It’s a pretty full on itinerary!

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Well organised

Summary:
The tour was well organised and Michaela, assisted by Ado, dealt with
everything very well. The bikes are very good but be prepared for some stiff
climbs on the first two days and the Mistral at any time. Don’t forget your
Camelbak or your sunblock.

Rating: 4

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Getting to the top of any hill then flying down the other side.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Excellent, he managed everything superbly.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Do some preparation.

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
A printout of each day’s travel, as with the trip in Sri Lanka, would be
good.

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Absolutely wonderful trip

Summary:
This was an amazing cycling trip which included stunning scenery, roman
ruins, beaches, disused mines, coastal plains, ferry trips to two islands,
country roads (some dirt tracks) and even a crossing of a shallow river!!
Our guides Michele and Allesandro really made this trip wonderful and hastle
free.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Our final day cycling over the coastal plains of the Costa del Sud, even
though challenging at times, the amazing views over the pristine beaches,
cliffs and 16th century watchtowers made it all worthwhile.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Our group leader Michele was exceptional. From the moment we arrived at the
airport to our farewell in Cagliari, he was always there to answer our
questions, translate and offer recommendations. Even for something as
trivial as buying shampoo, he escorted us to the door of the supermarket.
Some meals were included with the package but for all others he made
recommendations and accompanied us to fabulous restaurants. We also had the
flexibility to do our own thing, if we so wished, but we were a very close
group and we really enjoyed the company of Michele and Allesandro, our
driver. They were great guides, both of them had a great sense of humour but
were also exceptionally knowlegeable and professional.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
The first few days were unseasonally dull with a little rain. Make sure to
pack a warm layer and a water proof jacket.

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Spectacular and Perfectly Led Trip Round Sardinia

Summary:
We have just finished the May cycling trip around the South east coast of
Sardinia.
Although we were unlucky with some poor weather on the first few days; the
quality and enthusiasm of our leader Michelle and his assistant Alesandro
more than kept our spirits up. They really were superb and we couldn’t have
hope for a more knowledgable and able team to show us around and help us up
some of the steeper climbs.
There were however some low points; we did find that for the price of the
trip the standard of the accommodation could have been better and also we
would have expected some more dinners included.
But all in all we had a wonderful trip around this spectacular part of the
island; and had a really lovely group to share it with.

Rating: 4

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The sun finally shining for the whole of the last day; with some stunning
scenery to go with it!! The perfect way to finish.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The group leader Michelle was amazing.
Very knowledgable; able and enthusiastic.
He made us feel very safe all along the trip and was an absolute pleasure to
have around. Full marks!!

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Ask for a tour with Michelle!!

Question:
Is there anything else you would like to add?

Answer:
No

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Stunning Sardinia

Summary:
Wonderful trip, beautiful route – off road & quiet on road, hills & coast,
ferries to islands, ruins, great food & accommodation – the lot!

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
All of it

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Absolutely great – loved his island & was very knowledgeable. Efficient,
generous, informed, smiley, excellent English – all you’d want. Plus Michele
& Alessandro were such FUN!

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A good balance

Summary:
Our recent cycling trip in Sardegna exceeded our expectations- our tour
leaders were central to the enjoyment and value of the journey. Michele and
Alessandro were in high spirits and their enthusiasm and friendliness
enhanced the overall experience.
Although the weather began in “unseasonal” conditions with cool
temperatures and some light rain, the spirits of the group remained high and
safety was always paramount.
The accommodation was really good and the food was excellent with nourishing
breakfasts supplying plenty (excess) fuel for some reasonably challenging
days in the saddle.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
The long day on which we encountered some significant hills, stretches of
dirt road and river crossings along with ancient and disused mine sites
culminating in a long climb to our serene agritourismo accommodation, was
really memorable.
We were lucky to have a fantastic group of people with varied backgrounds and
cycling experience. The group displayed good humour, patience and
collegiality and this was what made the trip more memorable.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
Michele was an excellent tour leader. It is clearly not a job that suits
everyone but his positive attitude and enthusiasm for his work was
infectious. He managed group dynamics with patience, humour and energy whilst
working hard to iron out the inevitable problems which occurred throughout
the trip.
He remained encouraging for all ability levels and was key in creating a good
group atmosphere.
He should be congratulated because it is the attitude and experience of the
personnel which ensures the success of this type of operation.
Michele also had a good working relationship with his assistant Alessandro
and together they formed a great team.

Question:
Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

Answer:
Obviously there is a choice to be made when tossing up between a guided
versus a self- guided trip however from our experience it is the knowledge of
the guides which provides the real opportunity to learn more about local
customs, history, geography etc which makes all the difference.
It would be easy enough to navigate ourselves but without the insights of our
leaders we would have had a less meaningful experience.
I would highly recommend this trip and our guides to all who are considering
it.

Read full review

A word of caution

Summary:
A very interesting and varied route, even in the, atypical, very poor weather
that was encountered.

Rating: 5

Question:
What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

Answer:
Each of the days contained something interesting. The ride on the second day
through the Dune di Piscinas and the disused mine workings near the Miniera
di Ingurtosu was both interesting and very scenic.

Question:
What did you think of your group leader?

Answer:
The group leader Simone was very good. During a very wet week he remained
extremely helpful and cheerful throughout, even lending his own waterproof
clothing to a traveller who had brought none of there own. One of the group
who had opted out of a particular days cycling because of the weather, and,
not wanting to cause inconvenience since his bike had been packed away, was
reluctant to rejoin after the weather had improved was positively encouraged
to do so by Simone with assurances that it was no trouble. The support
vehicle driver Ado was also excellent. Ado is the most proactive support
driver we have encountered on our Exodus holiday, always cheerful and ready
to help in any way he can. His fruit and lunch stop arrangements were
amazing. Together, Simone and Ado make a great team.

Read full review


Activity Levels


Activity Levels range from Leisurely to Tough, the grading takes into account the daily cycling distances and terrain, as well as any technical riding skill required. We also consider the number of cycling days as there can be a cumulative affect from tiredness on a longer trip and the type of accommodation used, as this can also influence your day to day recovery.

If you are in any doubt, please give us a call on +353-1-607 9900 or email us.


Activity level 1 - Leisurely Activity level 1: Leisurely

If you can ride a bike and enjoy gentle exercise, these are an ideal introduction to a cycling holiday. No routes are entirely flat, so expect some short climbs and descents. Maximum daily height gain is approximately 250 metres and daily distances rarely exceed 50kms (32 miles), any longer days are often optional.


Activity level 3 - Moderate Activity level 3: Moderate

Most people who enjoy a weekend riding at home will enjoy a Moderate trip. You need to be in good health and reasonably fit. Ideal for occasional cyclists, or as a more relaxed trip for fitter riders. Moderate off-road trips require no previous experience. Distances rarely exceed 70kms (43 miles) per day.


Activity level 5 - Challenging Activity level 5: Challenging

For any ride at this level, fitness is important. Challenging trips require confidence in your ability and physical condition. They are equivalent to an extended period of cycling at home. Previous mountain biking experience is essential for Challenging off road trips as they will involve some technical riding.


Activity level 7 - Tough Activity level 7: Tough

Previous experience of the cycling style or surface is a must as these routes have long cycling days and tougher terrain on both road and off road trips. You need complete confidence in your fitness and technical ability to cope with difficult or steep terrain, rough surfaces and longer distances. Ideal for those seeking a challenge!


Split grades

In order to provide more accuracy, where a trip falls between two grades we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example 2: Leisurely/Moderate.


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