Epic Sardinia 23

The most coveted six-stage tour on roads we will never tire of!

TOUR CODE: E-23

Starts on: Sep 23, 2023
Ends on:Sep 30, 2023

8 days

Starts in: Arbatax
Ends in: Chia
Activity level: challenge
Total elevation:12,241 M
Total distance:641.5 KM
  • Cagliari
  • Cagliari
Fly in/out

€ 1749

Guided group tour


Start: Sep 23, 2023

Small group minimum 6 riders | Private groups, any size on requested dates

what's included

Accommodation

5 nights at 3-star | 2 nights at 4-star

Meals

All dinners; all breakfasts.

Support level
SardiniaCycling cycling guides; mechanical assistance during the stages; epic's commemorative t-shirt; mobile workshop; spares bike, bars, gels and electrolytes available on purchase; group transfers from/to Cagliari airport. Luggage transport. 10% discount on bike rentals.
Not included
Flight tickets; extras in hotel, etc; drinks during the dinner; city tax (if any); travel insurance; individual arrival and departure transfer; bike rental.
On request

Individual arrival transfer from Cagliari airport to hotel in Arbatax € 240 p.p.; individual departure transfer from Chia to Cagliari airport € 70 p.p.; supplement for single accommodation € 240 p.p.; bike rental.

€ 1749

Self guided tour - not available


start: April to October

what's included

Accommodation

5 nights at 3-star | 2 nights at 4-star

Meals
Four dinners; all breakfasts.
Support level
Detailed briefing. Access to SardiniaCycling App with all the information regarding your tour, the itinerary, points of interest as well as all the documentation for your trip. Telephone assistance during your stay. 10% discount on bike rentals.
Not included
Flight tickets; extras in hotel, etc; drinks during the dinner; city tax (if any); travel insurance; arrival and departure transfer; bike rental; luggage transport.
On request

Arrival transfer from Cagliari airport to Arbatax € 240 p.p.; departure transfer from Chia to Cagliari airport € 70 p.p.; supplement for single accommodation € 240 p.p.; bike rental; luggage transport (€ 750 + 10 per pax).

€ -

Supported tour - not available


start: April to October

Small group minimum 6 riders | Private groups, any size on requested dates

what's included

Accommodation

5 nights at 3-star | 2 nights at 4-star

Meals

All dinners; all breakfasts.

Support level
Detailed briefing. Access to SardiniaCycling App with all the information regarding your tour, the itinerary, points of interest as well as all the documentation for your trip. Van assistance; mobile workshop; spare bike, bars, gels and electrolytes available on purchase. Group transfer from/to Cagliari airport. Luggage transport. 10% discount on bike rentals.
Not included
Flight tickets; extras in hotel, etc; drinks during the dinner; city tax (if any); travel insurance; individual arrival and departure transfer; bike rental.
On request

Individua arrival transfer from Cagliari airport to Arbatax € 240 p.p.; individual departure transfer from Chia to Cagliari airport € 70 p.p.; supplement for single accommodation € 240 p.p.; bike rental;

Get inspired

The most coveted six-stage tour on roads we will never tire of!

Giovanni Lamieri, tour designer at SardiniaCycling

What happens when a passionate cyclist and lover of his paradise island, whose best routes he knows and loves to ride, plans the 6-stage route he would never tire of riding? And what happens when the Sardinia Cycling team adds to all this the best local accommodations and Pro Tour level service?

Simple: you get the Epic Sardinia 2023!

Epic Sardinia consists of six stages with elevation profiles and routes for the most demanding cyclists. Make no mistake. It is designed to maximally meet cycling enthusiasts' expectations of what top-level cycling is all about. Epic Sardinia was not designed without regard to commercial needs. The goal is to put together only the most beautiful, wildest and most special roads-the ones we love the most.

And because it is designed to praise and reward dedicated cyclists, Epic Sardinia is, since 10 years, also a commercial success. Epic Sardinia takes place in incredible natural scenery, with long stretches, challenging climbs, short punchy climbs, flat roads and false flats, and long twisty descents.

The 2023 edition starts in Arbatax and ends in the beautiful beach of Chia. At the end of the trip, the beautiful Sardinian mountains of Gennargentu will be skirted, the wild Barbagia will be crossed, and the beautiful southwestern coast will be covered.

Epic Sardinia is a fully assisted stage tour: our support vehicles escort all of the stages, with drinks, bars and gels and, of course, water. Mechanical assistance and spare wheels are guaranteed from the very first to the last kilometer of each stage. The only difference from a Pro-Tour race is that Epic Sardinia is not a race: ride at the pace that best suits you, our team will be always nearby! We take pride in ensuring the entire group safely reaches the destination together each day. There are coffee and food stops planned and there's always the possibility of jumping in the van to shorten a ride, if needed.

And as a little extra, a photographer follows the group taking shots of the cyclists and of the memorable views that’ll prove you completed the tour.  Is there a group especially for women? No, but women generally represent about half of the riders. We believe that comradery contributes to the magic of cycling! And that's why the Epic is so – Epic.

Resources

Our Route

Day 1: Welcome to Sardinia

Arrival at Cagliari airport and transfer to Arbatax. Accommodation at three-star hotel and welcome dinner.
Accommodation:
3-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 2: From Arbatax to Galtellì

This year the start of Epic Sardinia is in Arbatax, one of the most beautiful seaside resorts on the east coast of the island. This area is very special because it is the gateway to the Gennargentu National Park. And the road through it, the SS125, is of rare beauty: 50 km in the wilderness. After a flat section, you climb up the SS125 toward the town of Baunei. The first climb is substantial for about 9 km. This is followed by a stretch of ups and downs that takes us gently to the Silana Pass, at 1200 meters above sea level. A cappuccino stop with a view and down to Cala Gonone on an exhilarating and incredibly scenic descent. We descend to Cala Gonone and face the second climb of the day. The steep and spectacular old road that used to connect the small town to the civilized world: a terrace overlooking the Gulf of Orosei, carved out of the whitest limestone and dotted with junipers. From there, more easy ups and downs and a flat stretch will take us to the ancient village of Galtellì. A little gem and a very well-preserved historic center will welcome us to the medieval heritage of this ancient land. We would not characterize this stage as hard. Only the second climb has a few short steep segments. But keep calm, Epic Sardinia is just beginning! Overnight at the hotel in Galtellì, with an excellent traditional dinner.
Distance: 105.1km
Elevation gain: 1,801m
Riding terrain: mountain
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
3-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 3: From Galtellì to Bitti

From one charming historic town to another. And the road that connects these two special places is also... special. Very often Sardinian geography is characterized by very simple names given to towns or mountains. Mountains are often named after their color. Monte Albo is one of these and it means white mountain. As you ride this stage you will discover that such a simple name is often the best way to describe a place. There is no better way to name this limestone mountain so white that it appears to be covered in snow. A long stretch skirts this breathtaking mountain, leaving visitors speechless. The main climb begins after the town of Lula, an iconic town in the Baronia subregion. From there, we climb for about 15 km at a very easy grade (2.1 avg, max 15%). After a long descent we encounter the main climb of the day: 15 km at less than 5 percent gradient that takes us into the heart of the Tepilora Regional Park. Pure and wild nature in true Sardinian style. From there, another long descent takes us to Bitti.
Distance: 99.5km
Elevation gain: 2,219m
Riding terrain: mountain
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
4-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 4: From Bitti to Belvì

From the northernmost part of Barbagia to the southernmost: Belvì. In a stage that crosses this territory that has preserved with great pride its traditions and language. The Barbagia of Bitti and the entire first part of the stage, ridden from north to south, develop in a typical Sardinian hilly environment: short to medium climbs and open spaces with cork forests and pastures. As one proceeds northward, the environment changes - as is often the case on our island - leaving room for more typically mountainous vegetation. Green and very lush. Unexpectedly lush for visitors. To enjoy the shade of the chestnut trees in the forests of southern Barbagia, we have to face longer climbs. In particular, we have two long stretches. One to get to the town of Fonni, the second to reach the highest pass of the day: Tascusì, above the village of Desulo. From there we descend to Tonara, the capital of the famous soft Sardinian nougat made with honey and almonds, finally to Belvì, our destination. A challenging stage rewarded by a cena Barbaricina, a typical dinner, in the pretty village of Belvì.
Distance: 125.1km
Elevation gain: 2,508m
Riding terrain: mountain
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
3-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 5: From Belvì to Torre dei Corsari

We used to tell our guests that one of the most beautiful things about Sardinia is its drastic change of environment and landscape: so great that it feels like we have changed countries in the space of 50 kilometers. Today we will have this experience. We get up in the morning, get ready for the journey and start cycling through the mountains of Gennargentu. Soon we start descending through cork forests and open pastures typical of Sardinia, descend to the sea on the west coast, cross a flat region between rice fields and wheat fields, even pass through a fishing village on a salt lagoon, and end the stage right on the sea at Torre dei Corsari. Five Sardinia's in one stage: unbelievable! There are no specific climbs to describe: they're all rather short and we rate this stage as relaxing and very panoramic. A good way to recover before the last two Epic days.
Distance: 92.9km
Elevation gain: 2,139m
Riding terrain: hilly
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
3-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 6: Torre dei Corsari to Iglesias

The southwest coast of the island is one of our favorite riding areas. The reason is simple: the geology has made these coasts less suitable for large tourist resorts: there are many more miles of cliffs and far fewer beaches. The few, fantastic, beaches are not easy places to swim in summer because they are often hit by waves. Finally, most of the southwest coast was a former mining area, and the large mining sites have kept tourist investment away. What remains now that mining has been over for many decades? Simple: hundreds of miles of breathtaking ups and downs along the coast, in a wilderness environment far removed from mass tourism and automobile traffic: just the kind of playground for our Epic riders. On this stage we have a long but fairly easy climb to Montevecchio - the capital of the former mining industry - then a nice up and down to Arbus. A long and exhilarating descent to Portixeddu - a very small tourist resort - and finally one of the most beautiful coastal roads in the world. We consider this a rather challenging stage, because there is a little bit of everything: a long climb at the beginning, a technical descent, a series of ups and downs with some rather spicy climbs, even a bit of flat. But you won't forget the beauty of the views from the southwest. The stage ends in one of Sardinia's oldest towns, Iglesias. First off the radar of tourists, it is now getting the acclaim it deserves after an amazing recovery of its historic center and medieval heritage.
Distance: 98.9km
Elevation gain: 1,987m
Riding terrain: hilly
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
4-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 7: From Iglesias to Chia

We have talked about different subregions of Sardinia. The last stage is all within a single, rather large subregion that has - again - very different types of environment. The name of this region is Sulcis. Its capital is Iglesias, the city we leave on this stage and which was the epicenter of the Sardinian mining industry. Sulcis had the largest concentration of mining sites on the island for centuries, and the entire economy was based on mining. With the demise of this industry, the Sulcis economy collapsed and only in recent decades have the old activities been replaced - slowly - by tourism. Expect another wild, beautiful and sparsely populated region, and another ideal area for us cyclists. The stage is divided into three distinct sections: it starts flat for about 20 km, then a long, easy climb (6k at 3%) and descent introduce us to the last road jewel of Epic Sardinia: the stretch of coastline from the marina at Teulada to the seaside resort of Chia. Another unforgettable coastal road that our guests would like to continue riding forever. Unfortunately, good things have an end, but our end is always a happy one: we end our trip in a nice hotel on one of the most beautiful beaches in Sardinia, in Chia. And we celebrate the end of another great Epic and the birth of fantastic new friendships!
Distance: 100.6km
Elevation gain: 1,233m
Riding terrain: hilly
Riding time: 5h
Accommodation:
3-star hotel
Meals:
Breakfast, dinner

Day 8: Goodbye Sardinia

Group transfer to Cagliari airport and end of services.





Map

Travel arrangements

We suggest the following arrival an departure locations and the earlier flights will help us arranging transfers or other services like bike rental formalities, bike fitting and all services that are provided individually.
  • landing airport: Cagliari
  • departure airport: Cagliari
  • Transfer time from Airport to hotels is about 55 minutes on landing and 2h on departure.

Packing and Weather

Sardinia is a region known for mild Mediterranean weather. It generally features warm, dry weather which makes these rides particularly enjoyable. The spring and fall can see the highs range from the 18s to 25s (Celsius), while the lows are generally between 14 and 18. Summer highs are generally between 28 and 25. We always recommend bringing along riding layers and even a bit of rain (might happen in Spring and Fall) gear so you can keep riding comfortably throughout the day.

Transfers

Sardinia Cycling arranges group transfers from and to the closest airport for the trip: Cagliari. Individual transfers can be also planned and the cost might depend from the departure or arrival location, from the transfer time and it can also be influenced by the presence of bulky luggage, like a bike case. Other transport option is public transport. About this last opportunity, we suggest you using Google Maps and select 'public transport' from and to your selected destination. In any case, we're ready to help you selecting the quicker, smoother and most cost effective solution.

Go Custom

Sometimes your trip on Sardinia simply isn’t long enough! Extend your stay for the best vacation possible. If you wish to spend a few days in our lovely island either before or after your trip, and need assistance making those plans, we're available help. Self guided and supported trips can be extended too and that can happen in any intermediate location along the itinerary: we can help selecting the best one!

Terrain

One thing riders learn soon is that Sardinia is hilly. The terrain is varied, with gradual and short, or very long and progressive climbs throughout the week. Epic Sardinia is best suited for our 'Challenge' riders. The routes have been designed to avoid busy roadways, that are very rare in a large a scantly populated island. However, very little urban riding and short sections of busy roads are unavoidable in Sardinia.

HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?

See our FAQs page for answers to common questions.

More Trips

Number of days: 9

The North Sardinia Circle Tour

The North Circle: a road biking tour that includes all the highlights of north Sardinia in one loop.
Number of days: 9

Ultimate Sardinia

You won't miss a single top road on this challenging cycle tour!

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