sardinia

Undiscovered Sardinia Cycling Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Self-Guided Holidays
Destinations:
Italy
Programmes:
Cycling
Trip Code:
C07SA
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Leisurely / Moderate

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

8 Days Flight Inclusive
8 Days Land only
Ages: 12+

Trip Overview

Sardinia's south-west corner is brimming with immaculate beaches, untouched hidden coves and far reaching coastal views, and there's no better way to discover this beautiful region than by bike. This 7 night holiday takes you from the former mining village of Nebida along undulating country lanes and panoramic coastal roads, to the colourful town of Pula, a short distance from the Sardinian capital of Cagliari. Enroute you pass expanses of vineyards and olive groves and pedal along high rugged cliffs dotted with Spanish and Pisan watchtowers. You'll discover the stunning islands of St Pietro and St Antioco, with their bustling harbours selling the freshest of fish, and admire picture perfect white sand beaches lapped by those famous emerald waters.

Sardinia's position in the Mediterranean made it an enviable trading outpost and the island is an archaeologist's delight, boasting a historical treasure trove ranging from the unique yet mysterious Bronze Age nuraghi, to the Punic remains at St Antioco and the Roman settlement at Nora, where the ruins of its ancient temple panoramically gaze out to sea.


At a Glance

  • 7 nights hotel-to-hotel accommodation in a mix of simple B&Bs, agriturismi and comfortable 3 star and 4 star hotels
  • 5 days self-guided cycling
  • 99% tarmac, 1% easy gravel roads
  • Mix of easy riding with a few climbs
  • E-bikes available on request

Trip Highlights

  • The unspoilt landscapes of Sardinia's south-western coast
  • Unrivalled coastal vistas, the Pan di Zucchero sea stacks, glittering emerald seas, pure white sand beaches
  • Colourful fishing villages, abundant vineyards, verdant olive groves, panoramic watch towers
  • Island hop to the beautiful isles of St Pietro and St Antioco
  • Discover the fascinating archaeological sites of Nora and St Antioco

Is This Trip for You?

Cycling Conditions
Classification: Self-Guided
Average daily distance: 36km (22.5 miles).
No. of days cycling: 5
Terrain and route: The suggested cycling mainly follows quiet cycling routes and tarmac roads. The Routes are gently undulating with the occasional steeper ascent or descent.

Vehicle Support: This is a self-guided trip for those who prefer to cycle independently, but with our assistance to take out the stress of the logistics and planning. We arrange your accommodations, provide you with a map and route notes so that you can cycle at your own pace, while your bags are transported from one hotel to the next. Your bikes will be delivered to the start hotel, all set up relevant to your height and ready to go. Our local agent will be on call throughout the trip should you need.

It is important that you are happy reading maps and following route notes, we make these as accurate as possible and they are regularly checked. Where possible we stick to cycle tracks and quiet roads to make the journeys as pleasant as possible, however, on occasion we have to use busier routes into larger towns and cities.

As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. There maybe others on the same departure date as you, but you will not be organised together. The route notes contain a 24-hour emergency assistance telephone number should you need it and in emergencies, the local agent is normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Families
Self-guided cycling holidays are a perfect option for families as they offer the freedom for you to take your holiday at your own pace. You can stop as and when you want and need, at the cafes and restaurants that suit your family and the sites that interest you. We have suggested that 12yrs is the minimum age for this trip, but as it is self-guided and you will be leading your own family we will ultimately leave this decision up to you. The daily distances are all published in the trip notes along with a description of each day's cycling so you have a good idea of what to expect. However, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact one of our experts. The principle idea is that these holidays can be as flexible as you like, with logistical support but no group or leader to dictate the daily activities. Please consider the weather when choosing to book, temperatures can be high in the middle of summer.

Group

As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. There may be others on the same departure date as you, but you will not be organised together. The route notes contain a 24-hour emergency assistance telephone number should you need it and in emergencies, the local agent is normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Adult min age:
12
Min group size:
1

Itinerary

C07SA map

Land Only

Start City:
Nebida
End City:
Pula

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Arrive in Nebida

    Transfer from Cagliari airport to your accommodation in the former mining village of Nebida. Walk out to the belvedere for amazing views of the towering white Pan di Zucchero sea stacks.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 2

    Nebida to St Antioco

    Leave the rugged limestone cliffs of Nebida behind and head south along the stunning coastal road, with superb views of the Pan di Zucchero. At Portoscuso, hop on a ferry to the island of St Pietro and the gorgeous town of Carloforte with its pastel coloured houses, cobbled streets and plethora of fish restaurants. Overnight in Calasetta on the island of St Antioco.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 40 km / 25 miles
  • Day 3

    St Antioco loop ride

    Follow quiet country roads along St Antioco's rugged coastline with peregrine falcons soaring overhead. Arrive at the bustling fishing town of St Antioco. With a rich archeological heritage, there's much to explore here including the Punic Necropolis and Phoenicean-Punic Tophet. Cycle back to your hotel via the sleepy hamlet of Cussorgia.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 36 km / 22.5 miles
  • Day 4

    St Antioco to Teulada

    Return to the mainland via the causeway across the Bay of Palmas, then pedal past salt pans and lagoons of pink flamingos to the gently rolling, vineyard clad hills of St Anna Arresi and Teulada. Enjoy the best of Sardinian hospitality at a traditional agriturismo, where your evening meal is included.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Dinner
    Distance covered: 52 km / 32.5 miles
  • Day 5

    Teulada to Chia

    Admire unrivalled coastal views as you cycle along the spectacular Costa del Sud, with its hidden sandy coves, panoramic watch towers, stunning white sand beaches and rugged cliffs that plunge into pure emerald blue waters. End the day in Chia with time to relax on the town's immaculate, long sandy beach.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 35 km / 22 miles
  • Day 6

    Chia to Pula

    Head north past the gorgeous beach at Santa Margherita di Pula to the ancient Phoenicean site of Nora. Visit the remains of the Roman amphitheatre, temple and baths, one of Sardinia's best archeological sites, before continuing to colourful Pula with its winding alleyways and lively piazze.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 30 km / 19 miles
  • Day 7

    Free day in Pula

    Relax on the beach, enjoy a leisurely fish lunch in one of Pula's excellent restaurants or take a bus (40 mins) to the Sardinian capital of Cagliari to discover its many historical sites and museums.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Leave Pula

    Depart Pula.

Accommodation

Hotels

Sardinia

Your accommodation reflects the best of Sardinian hospitality, ranging from a family run agriturismo nestled amongst the vineyards to a 4* hotel just a stone's throw from Chia's long sandy beach.

All prices are based on 2 persons sharing, so if there is an odd number of people travelling in your party or you are travelling alone, there will be a compulsory supplement for a single room for the tour duration.
For a solo traveller there is an additional charge to cover transfer costs.

Additional Accommodation

Extra accommodation can be booked in Cagliari before the trip, or in Pula and Cagliari at the end of the trip.

We can arrange single rooms throughout the trip (subject to availability). Please check with your sales consultant for availability and prices.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

The food on Sardinia is as unique as it is, with simple dishes packed with intense flavours. Rich sheep cheeses served with the traditional, crisp shepherd's flat bread, saffron infused ravioli and to finish, cheese and lemon seadas drizzled in honey can be found everywhere, as well as, of course, freshly caught seafood, all washed down with the excellent local Carignano and Vermentino wines. Fregola – a kind of giant couscous often served tomatoes and seafood – is also  popular. Of course, you also get the more traditional Italian dishes including pizza, and grilled or roasted meats – like suckling pig – which make tasty secondi. To compliment the end of your meal, try a glass of Mirto - Sardinia’s after dinner liqueur, which is made from the leaves of the myrtle plant.

Transportation

Your luggage will be transported between the hotels by our local agent. They are often able to dispatch a taxi should you need it, but may wish to charge you for this service. You will be pedaling under your own steam but the emergency number for the local agent is in the route notes if you need assistance.

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

Sardinia enjoys a Mediterranean climate, usually warm in spring and autumn and hot, dry summers. April, May, September and October usually have an average daytime temperatures around 20-25ºC. Rain is unlikely but possible throughout the year.

Weather Charts

Sardinia

Joining Instructions

The tour itself begins at our start hotel in Nebida in the afternoon of Day 1 of the itinerary. Arrival transfers are included for all travellers between Cagliari airport and the hotel in Nebida (min 2 pax; approx. 55 mins). The transfer from the hotel in Pula back to Cagliari airport (approx 35 mins) is also included for flight inclusive travellers. Please ask your sales consultant for information on flights and transfer timings.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start:
Nebida
Location end:
Pula

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Waterproof jacket

Warm jumper/fleece for the evenings

Suncream

Water bottle (1 litre) you will be able to refill each day at the accommodation.

- comfortable shoes and clothes for the time off the bike if you want to explore the towns

Helmet

Padded cycling shorts

Sun cream and lip salve

Sunglasses/eye protection

Optional Equipment

Swimming costume, mosquitos repellent, beach towel.

Self guided hire bikes

We typically use Giant Roam hybrids (or equivalent). Hire bikes will be provided with a pannier rack and 1 bag, a puncture repair kit with inner tube, a bike lock and a bike pump.

Bike sizes will have been given to the local operator in advance from the heights you have given us on booking. However, when you receive your bike there will be the opportunity to test and adjust.

Please note helmets are not provided and we recommend that you take your own on this trip.

E-Bikes

Electric bikes offer all the thrills and healthy exercise of a regular bike, but with one crucial difference - power! A tiny electric motor (capped at 25mph) assists your pedalling, allowing you to make molehills out of mountains. Cycle further, see more, have more fun. They are just perfect if you want to try a trip with companions of differing fitness level - or a trip at a slightly harder grade - and want to know there’s a bit of motor power available if you need it. You can upgrade to an E-bike on a number of our European trips.

Bike Repairs

As you are riding unaccompanied, it is wise to know at least how to repair an inner tube before setting off on your bike! The bikes are serviced before being rented out so there should be no problems but there are emergency numbers provided in the Route Notes for more complex problems.

Bringing Your Own Bike

If you prefer the familiarity of your own bike, you may, of course, bring it along. Please advise us at the time of booking and you will receive a discount on the price of the holiday, as specified above.  You will be responsible for any extra baggage charges, please speak to our Sales team for individual airline fees.

N.B This does not apply to trips within the UK, for which local bike hire is not included.

You will also be responsible for assembling and disassembling your bike as well as bringing along spare parts and any tools specific to it. It is also your responsibility to ensure your bike is roadworthy and suitable for the type of cycling to be undertaken. If in doubt, the model of local bike hire available should act as a guide and details of terrain, ascent and descent are available both in the itinerary and the ‘Is this trip for you’ sections. Our cycling team only carry the relevant spares for the hire fleet. Any clients bringing their own bike should ensure they have adequate cover for loss, damage or theft under their travel, home contents or a specialist insurance policy. If Exodus is confident that we have taken all reasonable care to ensure the safety of your bike, in the rare event of loss, damage or theft you will need to claim under your own insurance policy.

Extra Bike Bits

You may like to bring your own pedals and saddle (excluding the seat post) or gel saddle cover to fit to the hire bikes. We encourage this, if it is your preference. However, please note that you are responsible for your own equipment, and removing your saddle/pedals at the end of the trip. We cannot guarantee the return of any bike parts left behind.

Exodus Policy on Cycling Helmets

Wearing a helmet is mandatory for anyone taking part in any guided Exodus cycling holiday. Group members must bring their own helmets, as they are not available for hire, even if they are hiring a bike from Exodus.

For self-guided cycling holidays wearing a helmet is highly recommended. Customers who choose to ignore our advice do so entirely at their own risk and on the understanding that it may affect the validity of their travel insurance. It should also be noted that in some countries we travel to wearing a helmet is already a legal requirement.

Cycling of all kinds has its dangers and accidents can happen from time to time. Please ensure that you are properly prepared for the riding you are going to undertake.

Recommended Cycling Clothing

Padded cycling shorts (with loose 'over-shorts' where recommended), breathable clothing, and a lightweight waterproof/windproof top. Shoes with relatively stiff soles are better for biking, but are not essential unless you are cycling long distances. Most people want to carry certain items with them during the day while cycling, for this we recommend a large bum-bag or small close-fitting daysack.

C07SA Beach near Chia

Practical Information

Passport

Italy

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information offered below is to help you with that process. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Italy

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

Italy

There are no specific health risks.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Italy's Timezone:
Europe/Rome CEST (GMT +02:00)

Electricity

Italy's Electricity:

European plug ‐ 2 round pins.

European plug - 2 round pins.

Money

Italy's Currency

The national currency of Italy is the Euro (EUR), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (May 2022) of approximately 1.2 to the GBP,  0.96 to the USD, 0.74 to the CAD, 0.66 to the AUD and 0.60 to the NZD.

Exchange rates are correct at the time of publication.

 

ATM Availability

ATMs are widely available, but we recommend taking some Euros cash with you in case you can't get to a bank at the start of the trip.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

You will need money for lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks as well as any sites you wish to visit. Lunches can be inexpensive if you buy produce from local markets or shops and make up a picnic. However, if you stop at a café you can easily spend €15. We would recommend budgeting for €5-15 for lunches and allow an additional €10 a day for any extras. Dinners can cost between €15-40 depending on the type of restaurant you visit and would not include drinks.

C07SA Costa-del-sudm-sardinia

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.