Just a few weeks ago I had the chance to visit Cagliari. The harbor and the blue sea will take your breath away immediately. Boats, yachts, and cruise ships sway on the waves of a perfect sea.
In front of the harbor and train station is via Roma, one of the main streets of the town. It is lined with arcades where you’ll find numerous bars, restaurants, and shops. Next to via Roma, there is the Marina district, one of the oldest areas in Cagliari, which used to be inhabited by fishermen.
Nowadays, it is one of the historical areas where you’ll find typical Sardinian shops alongside the most popular souvenir and ethnic ones. Everywhere you turn in Cagliari is a surprise and you never know what will emerge around the next bend!
In the Marina district, you can see the ruins of the destroyed church of St. Lucy, or the complex of St. Eulalia, a Spanish martyr. The complex is composed of a multistratified site: the church, which dates back to the 14th century with evident subsequent interventions; the ecclesiastical museum which preserves liturgical and devotional objects and the perfectly preserved archaeological site.
Via Principe Amedeo is uphill but turning left you will be amazed by the magnificence of the façade of the Collegiata di Sant’Anna. Made of limestone, its pink and golden nuances glow in the sunset. Its dome is visible from the highest point of the whole city.
Going up further, you reach the area of Castello, where the facing doors of St. Cristina and St. Pancrazio welcome the visitor to the Archaeological Museum, inside the so-calledCitadel of Museums. This is a university campus and the seat of the Department of Archaeological and Historical-Artistic Sciences. Not far from here, it is also possible to reach the Roman amphitheater.
If you love shopping, then head towards via Manno, where there are numerous shops.
Cagliari and its surroundings are also wonderful for their natural beauty. Not too far from the town, you can see dozens of pink flamingos at the Molentargius Nature Park. Another must-see destination is Poetto Beach (Quartu Sant’Elena) with its fine, white sand framed by an intensely blue sea.
Finally, don’t miss the opportunity to take a short trip out of Cagliari, heading towards Nora. The Roman site, found along the shore, is fabulous!
Before leaving Cagliari, make sure to try some Sardinian specialties, including guttiau bread, frattau bread and the most classic- carasau bread.
Article and photos by: C. Cumbo