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How to Spend 1 Week in Sardinia

How to Spend 1 Week in Sardinia

Though a favorite holiday retreat for Italians, the island of Sardinia is less well-known to international tourists. With a week to spend, you can explore the sandy beaches and colorful grottoes along its coastline, sample its distinct cuisine, and learn about its prehistoric past. Here’s how to experience the best of Sardinia in seven days. 

Days 1–3: The Northern Coast

Most visitors to Sardinia arrive by taking a plane or ferry to the port city of Olbia on the northeastern coast, a convenient jumping-off point for exploring the spectacular beaches and luxury resorts along the Emerald Coast (Costa Smeralda). Catch your breath with a tuk-tuk tour around Olbia before heading north to spend a few days exploring the coastline and islets. Stop for a dolphin-watching cruise in Golfo Arancini, then continue up to Porto Rotondo and Porto Cervo, the Costa Smeralda’s two main resort areas. Explore the coastline by land with a minivan tour, or opt for a yacht or sailboat tour to the Maddalena Archipelago and Caprera Island nature reserve. Be sure to stop in Santa Teresa di Gallura to visit the Lu Brandali Nuragic ruins dating from the Bronze Age and in the picturesque hilltop village of Castelsardo, home of the Museum of Mediterranean Weaving. 

Dedicate your final day to discovering Asinara National Park, a tiny, offshore islet with historic ruins, hiking trails, untouched countryside, and idyllic beaches. Join a full-day sail that stops for swimming and snorkeling and includes time for hiking, as well as an onboard Sardinian lunch. 

Days 4–5: Alghero and the Western Coast

Move on to the pretty and popular resort town of Alghero, a medieval port city historically linked to Spain, which has shaped both its architecture and cuisine. Join a walking tour of the picturesque historic center to admire the Gothic Cathedral of Santa Maria and browse the boutiques and coral shops that line Via Roma. Foodies can take a deep dive into the local cuisine with a food and wine walking tour of Alghero, or join a farmhouse cooking class in the countryside to learn to make regional Catalan-influenced dishes. Alternatively, opt for a traditional home-cooked dinner with a local fisherman and his family to sample authentic recipes and learn about the island’s culture and history.

The next day, take to the seas by boat or kayak to explore the beauty of Alghero’s Coral Coast from the water. Most boat tours stop in the otherworldly Neptune’s Grotto (Grotta di Nettuno) at Capo Caccia, known for its bright blue waters and dramatic boulder and stalactite formations, and at a number of tiny coves for swimming and snorkeling. 

Days 6–7: Cagliari and the Southern Coast

With its medieval old town, nearby archaeological sites, excellent cuisine, and vast choice of outdoor adventures, Cagliari is a good choice for your final two days on Sardinia. Join a guided walking, Segway, Fiat 500, or tuk-tuk tour of the hilltop old town, then head to the sea-level wetlands along the coastline to admire the flamingos and other waterfowl at the Molentargius nature reserve. Dedicate the afternoon to the city’s unique cuisine with a home-dining experience or a Sardinian cooking class led by a local chef.  

Spend your last day enjoying Cagliari’s outdoor activities: Explore Devil’s Saddle by kayak or hiking trail, sail across the Gulf of Cagliari, or relaxing on the area’s beaches. History buffs can instead opt for an archaeological tour to the Phoenician ruins at Nora or to the neolithic site Su Nuraxi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Alternatively, head inland to visit the mountain villages of Mamoiada and Orgosolo or Carloforte on San Pietro island.

End your week on Sardinia with a winery tour to sample island reds and whites paired with artisan sheep cheese and cured meat or by connecting with a local family in their home with an evening of cooking and dining together.

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19 Tours and Activities | All Sardinia Tours

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Sardinian Countryside Home Cooking Class & Meal at a Farmhouse

Sardinian Countryside Home Cooking Class & Meal at a Farmhouse

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Feel right at home and indulge in the flavors of Sardinia with this cooking lesson and lunch in the countryside near Alghero. Help prepare a traditional meal under the guidance of a local chef, who welcomes you into his farmhouse to share the secrets of Sardinian home cooking. Sit down among new friends to enjoy the multicourse menu, complete with a hand-picked selection of regional wine and liqueurs.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$82.50
From
$82.50
Taking safety measures

SU NURAXI BARUMINI Unesco World Heritage Site

SU NURAXI BARUMINI Unesco World Heritage Site

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One of Sardinia’s top attractions, the UNESCO–listed site of Su Nuraxi dates back to the Bronze age. On this tour, travel 3,500 years back in time to the Nuragic period and visit this archaeological complex with your guide. Explore the court house, housing complex, and meeting hut, and see how life played out during the pre-Roman period. Enjoy round-trip travel from your Cagliari hotel, and upgrade to visit surrounding sites of interest such as the Giara plateau, the Giants' Tomb, and the medieval palace.
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  • 3 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$95.66
From
$95.66

Full-day Alghero Tour with Wine Tasting and full Lunch

Full-day Alghero Tour with Wine Tasting and full Lunch

star-4
Take in the pleasures of Alghero during a full-day tour with an informative guide. Explore the well-preserved medieval city center, then head to the coast to experience the natural beauty of Capo Caccia. Stop at an archaelogical site, then enjoy tastings of wine and olive oil made by a local producer. Top it off with a lunch of typical Sardinian fare at an organic farm. Includes tastings, lunch, guide, transportation, and hotel pickup and drop-off.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$261.86
From
$261.86
Taking safety measures

Cagliari Segway Tour

Cagliari Segway Tour

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Discover the spectacular sights of Cagliari the alternative way on a 2.5-hour guided Segway tour of the Sardinian capital. After selecting either a morning or afternoon departure time, glide past prominent landmarks like the hilltop citadel of Castello and the grand Cagliari Cathedral. Listen to insightful audio commentary as you explore the quaint cobbled streets and stop regularly for excellent photo opportunities. Revitalize with a refreshing drink on a Castello terrace that affords sweeping vistas of Cagliari’s picturesque sprawl.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$70.55
From
$70.55

Kayak Tour at Devil's Saddle in Cagliari

Kayak Tour at Devil's Saddle in Cagliari

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Get a taste of Cagliari’s wild beauty when you go for a half-day excursion along the Devil’s Saddle: a strip of land that juts into the Gulf of Angels. Known for its crystal-clear water, scenic reefs, and rocky coastline, the area is best explored up close. On this intimate tour, you can kayak, hike, and—on hot days—even snorkel. The flexible itinerary lets you customize the journey to your own preferences.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$119.57
Price varies by group size
From
$119.57
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Cagliari Easy Tour

Cagliari Easy Tour

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Get to know the Sardinian city of Cagliari with this laidback walking tour, led by a local guide. Offering a stress-free experience with a pickup from the cruise port or your hotel, the tour showcases all the must-see sights and history of the island’s capital. You’ll stroll the streets of the Castello neighborhood, discover one of Europe’s largest covered markets, and finish with a tasting of Sardinian treats.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$43.09
From
$43.09

Tuk Tuk tour in Cagliari city, Flamingo spotting and Castle of San Michele

Tuk Tuk tour in Cagliari city, Flamingo spotting and Castle of San Michele

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The capital of Sardinia, Cagliari is renowned for its ancient ruins, lofty castle, seaside views, and many steep hills. On this tuk-tuk tour, zip through the city without tiring your legs, and see many of Cagliari's highlights in the space of several hours. Explore the hilltop Castello district, wend your way through the scenic Stampace and Villanova neighborhoods, see flamingoes in Molentargius Nature Park, and more. Admission to attractions is at your expense.
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  • 2 hours
From
$63.37
Price varies by group size
From
$63.37
Price varies by group size

Sardinia's Costa Smeralda Minivan Tour With Winery Visit

Sardinia's Costa Smeralda Minivan Tour With Winery Visit

Take a small-group tour of Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda, the northeastern coast between Olbia and Palau where blonde sand beaches and luxury villas rule the shoreline. With a driver-guide, you’ll visit the VIP hangout of Porto Cervo, a coastal village, an island winery, and the main archaeological digs at Arzachena. A tasting session at the winery be arranged on the day, though this is at your own expense.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$143.48
From
$143.48

Cagliari: San Pietro Island and Carloforte Tour from Chia

Cagliari: San Pietro Island and Carloforte Tour from Chia

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Escape to one of Sardinia’s loveliest island retreats during this full-day tour of San Pietro Island. Choose from shared or private options; the tour begins in the morning, when you’re picked up directly from your Chia or Domus de Maria accommodation. Journey via air-conditioned minivan to Calasetta, where you’ll board a ferry to the island. Upon arrival, swim in the turquoise sea, tour the vibrant town of Carloforte, see the Columns of Carloforte, and learn about San Pietro Island’s millennia of history.
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  • 7 to 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$214.03
Price varies by group size
From
$214.03
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Archaeological Tour of Nora from Cagliari

Archaeological Tour of Nora from Cagliari

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Visit the archaeological site of Nora, an ancient pre-Roman city on Sardinia, with this tour from Cagliari. See ruins and excavations sites, and learn about the city’s history, which dates back 2,500 years to the Phoenicians. This small-group tour is operated by 9-seater minivan, and offers hotel pickup and drop-off.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$95.66
From
$95.66
Taking safety measures

Half Day Sea Kayak Trip

Half Day Sea Kayak Trip

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Visit parts of the Italian coast only accessible via boat on this kayaking journey from Alghero. You'll get views of the wild coastal areas and marine life that few tourists see; paddling along under the leadership and supervision of an expert guide. All instruction and equipment is included, as well as insightful commentary on the natural surroundings.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$84.03
Price varies by group size
From
$84.03
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Cagliari: Amazing Jeep Tour of Sardinia's Hidden Beaches from Chia

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Cagliari: Amazing Jeep Tour of Sardinia's Hidden Beaches from Chia

star-4
Explore some of Sardinia's gorgeous secluded beaches with this half-day tour. Go snorkeling or swimming, or simply lounge on the sand. Upgrade to include lunch at Capo Malfatano beach.
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  • 4 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$91.83
$114.79
$22.96 savings
Price varies by group size
From
$91.83
$114.79
$22.96 savings
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Alghero private walking tour with a local guide

Alghero private walking tour with a local guide

The picturesque medieval city of Alghero is the perfect destination to explore on foot. Spend a day discovering its highlights by going on a private walking tour. After meeting at a central location, you’ll explore Alghero with a guide, so you won’t have to worry about getting lost. Save hours researching top sites to visit, and instead enjoy a local insider’s guide to the must-see places. Highlights include Cattedrale di Santa Maria, Torre Porta a Terra, Torre San Giovanni and much more.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$322.84
per group
From
$322.84
per group

Sardinia's La Maddalena and Caprera islands guided tour for small groups

Sardinia's La Maddalena and Caprera islands guided tour for small groups

star-4.5
Visit two islands in Sardinia’s paradise archipelago of La Maddalena, just north of the Costa Smeralda. With a guide, you’ll cruise from Palau to Isola Maddalena, the largest island in the chain, to visit the main town and travel to the island of Caprera. Some of Sardinia’s finest stretches of sand abound here, so bring your bathing suit and request a beach break to cool down in the sea. Numbers are capped at eight people for an intimate, small-group tour.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$339.33
Price varies by group size
From
$339.33
Price varies by group size

Full Day-Small group: Barbagia Experience: Mamoiada and Orgosolo from Cagliari

Full Day-Small group: Barbagia Experience: Mamoiada and Orgosolo from Cagliari

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Visit two villages in Sardinia’s mountainous Barbagia area on this cultural tour from Cagliari to Mamoiada and Orgosolo, located in the middle of the island. With a guide, learn about Mamoiada’s tradition of making carnival masks at a local museum and workshop, see Orgosolo’s many murals (‘murales’) and enjoy a taste of regional wine made from the island’s cannonau grapes. Lunch is included on this small-group day trip by 9-seater minivan.
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  • 6 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$191.31
From
$191.31
Taking safety measures

Sardinia's Gallura minivan tour for small groups

Sardinia's Gallura minivan tour for small groups

star-5
Experience the nature and ancient history of Sardinia on a small-group tour to Gallura. Skip car rental and enjoy the scenic ride through the Sardinian countryside in provided round-trip transportation from your hotel. A small group of maximum eight people ensures that you get an immersive and dynamic tour experience. Be sure to have your camera on hand for the UNESCO listed Olive Trees Valley and the ancient houses of Gallura.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$139.37
From
$139.37

Dining experience at a local's home in Cagliari with show cooking

Dining experience at a local's home in Cagliari with show cooking

star-2
Get out of the touristy restaurants and into a local’s home on this intimate experience with an Italian “cesarina.” Help prepare traditional dishes as you learn the secrets of Cagliari cooking. Enjoy a four-course meal with wines, dessert, and espresso. Leave with a fully belly plus some schwag: an apron and shopping bag are yours to keep.  
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$101.63
From
$101.63

Cooking and eating with a Sardinian family

Cooking and eating with a Sardinian family

star-5
Immerse yourself in Italian cuisine at the “Campidanese” court house home of a Sardinian family and learn how to prepare some of the island’s traditional dishes during this private dining experience. Watch as the landlady prepares Sardinian ravioli, enjoy a relaxing Aperitif in the garden, and dine as part of the family. Unlike other cooking classes, with this experience you can leave the cookery to the pros.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$127.54
From
$127.54

Sailboat Excursion in Cagliari Gulf departing from Cagliari port

Sailboat Excursion in Cagliari Gulf departing from Cagliari port

star-4.5
Take a sailing trip around Cagliari, the capital city of Sardinia. Board a modern vessel, then set off for St. Elia Cape, Calamosca lighthouse, Cala Fighera beach, and Grotta die Colombi (Cave of Pigeons), which is aptly named for the colony of birds that live there year-round. If weather permits, stop at Poetto Beach for a swim.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$61.57
From
$61.57