Cagliari tour guide
The city and its port

Cagliari is a special city, cosmopolitan and open to the world, with a unique climate. Those who visit it, even for a short time, often return to put down roots. It is the main port of Sardinia, as well as the regional capital with about 150,000 inhabitants. It is the symbol of an entire region. The city lies on the southern coast of the island, in the most central part of the Gulf of Angels.

 

 

The old town

The historic centre of Cagliari, waterfront of the port, is characterized by the presence of four districts, Marina, Castello, Stampace and Villanova having represented in the past and still represent the vital lulcrum of this city.

The Bastion of Saint Remy

The Bastion of Saint Remy is a characteristic area of the Castello District. Walking through the old town, along the alleys and narrow streets that wind between the tightly-packed houses, you will come to a large terrace that overlooks the city of Cagliari. As soon as you reach this space you will surely be immediately impressed by its size, the white monuments, the great arch constructed in limestone, the steps, the floor, the columns and the balustrades.

The Shrine of Our Lady of Bonaria

The most important Marian shrine in Sardinia for the Catholic Church, it consists of a small church (the real "sanctuary"  dating back to the fourteenth century) standsing beside a larger temple, elevated to the title of Minor Papal Basilica by Pope Pius XI in 1926. The sanctuary of the Virgin of Bonaria is officiated by Mercedarian fathers, inhabitliving in the adjacent monastery, and it is the parish seat of the district of Bonaria. Its construction dates back to the conquest of Sardinia by the King of Aragon, driving away the hated Pisans. Alfonso IV camped at the foot of the hill of Bonaria, from where began the conquest.

Roman Amphitheatre

The Amphitheatre, probably dating back to the late second century AD, is part of a natural valley on the western slopes of the hill of Buon Cammino. The builders adapted the characteristics of the soil to the configuration of the building, carving the steps in the rocky bank and using the resulting material to make the arena floor.

Elephant Tower

The great Pisan tower, the so-called Elephant Tower, was designed by the architect Giovanni Capula in the early fourteenth century and completed in 1307. Around 1328 it was closed on the north side to be used as warehouses and homes for officials' houses. In the 17th and 18th centuries new buildings were leant against the tower hiding part of its grandeur. In the second half of the nineteenth century it was used as a prison. The restoration carried out in 1906, with the recovery of the side walled in the Aragonese period, allowed to restore it to its original condition. Almost identical to the tower of St. Pancras, it has preserved its function as the entrance to the Castello district.

The Poetto Beach

The Poetto beach overlooks the Gulf of Angels, on the south-central coast of Sardinia. Although the white sand dunes and colourful huts are reminders of the past, the beach keeps considerable charm, enhanced by the presence of the promontory of the Sella del Diavolo (“Devil's Saddle”), overlooking the port of Marina Piccola. These elements, in addition to its proximity to the city and the entertainment offered by the typical small bars, make the Poetto the favorite destination of the Cagliaritanians in the summer season and on any sunny day during the rest of the year.

The Botanical Garden

The site, which centuries later become the botanical garden, already existed at Roman times and was part of the network of water catchment of ancient Cagliari, in 1943, during the Second World War, it was used as a bomb shelter with galleries and cisterns used as protection for the Cagliaritanians.
Currently it contains about 2000 species of plants, mostly originating from the Mediterranean, but with a good presence of succulent and tropical plants.

The Natural Park of Molentargius

The Molentargius – Saline Natural Park  is located between Cagliari and Quartu S. Elena and consists of a network of ponds, two freshwater (Bellarosa Minore and Perdalonga) and one saltwater (Bellarosa Maggiore or Molentargius). Some of these ponds were used in ancient times for the production of salt. In the early 20th century modern facilities and some Art Nouveau buildings  increased the value of the area which was called "City of Salt." 

Conti Vecchi Salt Flats

Located at the gates of Cagliari, until the beginning of the twentieth century the Pond of Santa was a swamp infested with malaria. Then Engineer Luigi Conti Vecchi came up with an ambitious and innovative project that would change the destiny of the entire area: he reclaimed the pond by implanting a modern saline.