Cagliari is the capital of Sardinia in Italy, a cosmopolitan city that has been a main tourist destination in Italy for decades. The city is a heady mix of the old and new, where the medieval meets the modernistic and it still manages to all blend in perfectly together. The over two thousand years of Cagliari history has left its marks on the city, with plenty of ancient churches, archeological findings, culture and tradition. Cagliari can be a unique experience since it is one of those few places in the world that is blessed with natural beauty, culture, an astounding history and a lively pace all in one package.
Getting to Cagliari
Cagliari has quite a large international airport that has flights coming in from many destinations in Italy and Europe. Flights are the best way to reach Cagliari. The city is also quite well connected by train to the rest of the locations in Sardinia; trains are quite punctual and comfortable here. There are also frequent bus services that reach Cagliari from various cities in Sardinia. Bus stops and stations are located at different places in the city, easily connected by taxis and local bus services.
Moving Around Cagliari
Although Cagliari is a large city, moving around it relatively stress free and quite uncomplicated. There are around 30 bus lines that cover most of the city; the buses are quite reliable and inexpensive. Four new metro lines are in the process of being installed soon. Cagliari can also be visited by taxi, taxis are easily available in most parts of the city and although they are a little costlier than the buses they are worth it since they are quite comfortable. Moving around the town on foot or renting a bicycle is also quite a good idea and inexpensive too.
Attractions in Cagliari
The main attractions in Cagliari are the beaches. The Poetto beach is lively and beautiful, in summers the beach would be quite crowded. The beach is lined with restaurants, cafes and bars and the beach has become an integral part of the locals so it is also a good place for people watching. The marina and the yacht club are located on the southern end of the beach.
Marina in Cagliari is well worth a visit. The waterfront is one the most beautiful and lively places in the city, the tiny streets here are lined with shops of various artists, eateries and good cafes. There are also plenty of beautiful churches and handsome buildings in this area.
Only two white towers today remain at the II Castello, one of which is the Torre Dell'Elefante. At the base of the tower is a beautifully sculpted elephant based on which the tower is named. During the rules of the Spaniards many people were beheaded here at this tower.
Cattedrale di Santa Maria
The Cathedral of Santa Maria had been originally built in the 13th century and has been renovated and refurbished several times since then. In the 17th century the cathedral had been renovated in the Baroque style and then in the 20th century the cathedral had again been refurbished.
Chiesa di San Michele
The building is a large Baroque façade Chiesa which is quite unusual since at the entrance there is first an atrium which leads to stairs which one needs to climb to reach the actual church. In the atrium there is a large pulpit named after the Emeror Charles V.
Chiesa di Sant'Anna
The Chiesa di Sant'Anna is a large building built in the Baroque style. During the World War II the church had been heavily damaged and had then been refurbished with extreme care. However, the large columns supporting the building give it a hint of neoclassical.
The Roman amphitheater in Cagliari was built in the 2nd century BC. The amphitheater had been carved out of a hillside rock and had suffered much damage in the later centuries. However, the theater, or what is left of it, has been quite well saved and it is now a beautiful place and an example of how the life here during the Roman times must have once been.
Stay and Accommodation
Cagliari is quite a large city so it comes as no surprise that there are plenty of good hotels and accommodation facilities here in the city. Along the beach there are plenty of good resorts and world class hotels that have been attracting quite a lot of tourists since years. Some of the best and the most well known places to stay while in Cagliari are Forte Village and the Le Meridian hotel. Apart from these there are plenty of other fantastic hotels in the city like Hotel Villa del Parco, Crucurris Resort and Stella Maris Sardinia. There are also quite a lot of good Bed & Breakfasts in the city.
Eating Out in Cagliari
Cagliari has a lot many options in terms of restaurants and cafes. Most of the good restaurants are all in the old historic center. There are a lot of good places where you can enjoy fantastic pizzas, light and fresh salads and local dishes. If you enjoy sea food you would never go wrong no matter which restaurant you pick since all of them serve delicious fresh sea food. There are also quite a lot of places that serve great gelatos and ice creams.
Shopping in Cagliari
Cagliari is heavenly when it comes to shopping since there are plenty of locations that have beautiful shopping streets and colorful markets. Most of the best shops are concentrated in a few areas around the city like Via Roma, Via Manno, Via Garibaldi, Via Alghero, Via Paoli, Via Dante and Largo Carlo Felice. With so many places lined with beautiful shops selling everything under the sun you would probably never want to leave Cagliari. Most of these picturesque shopping streets are punctuated here and there with eateries and cafes which makes shopping here a very pleasant experience.