BIKE IN THE REAL WILD. THE OGLIASTRA CROSS IS A MOUNTAIN BIKING TOUR THAT TAKES PLACE IN THE EAST
OF SARDINIA.

THE OGLIASTRA CROSS

north Sardinia circle tour
  • Starting location

    Bari Sardo, Italy
  • Final Destination

    Cala Gonone, Italy
  • Tour code

    OGC-21

Support levels

Self-guided tour

  • Accommodation

    2 nights at 4-star hotel | 1 night at Agriturismo | 3 nights at 3-star hotel

  • MEALS

    Three dinners; all breakfasts.

  • SUPPORT LEVEL

    Detailed briefing and a Road-Book containing tour details; GPS with preloaded stage routes; 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 Barisardo € 180 p.p.; departure transfer from Cala Gonone to Cagliari airport € 220 p.p.; supplement for single accommodation € 250 p.p.; bike rental; luggage transfer (€ 630 + 10 per pax - min 2 persons).

     

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The wild and the beautiful! Ogliastra Cross is a mountain biking tour that takes place in the east of Sardinia. It's a biking adventure that will stick in the mind of mountain bikers.
Nothing like this is available on any other island in the Mediterranean, and certainly not in Europe or in the central Alps.
It starts from the Gulf of Arbatax through the mountainous regions of central Sardinia, touches the granite massif of Gennargentu and arid plateaus of Supramonte, before descending through canyons carved out of the limestone rocks, down to the sea in the central east coast, with its beautiful caves, white sandy beaches and turquoise sea.
This lets us discover not only rugged and inaccessible nature and beautiful changes in scenery, but also absolute serenity. Here we can find Mediterranean forests with scrub oak and chestnut, as well as bizarre rock formations and plateaus in harsh environments, where horses graze freely, donkeys, pigs, goats, wild sheep, and birds of prey circling overhead, show that there's lot of life here. Humans are seldom seen here. The daily life of the shepherds is full of hardship.

In fact there aren't major settlements in this area. It was here, more than 4000 years ago, that the sophisticated Nuraghic civilization developed, with its impressive stone fortifications that have survived as watchtowers over the years. From the first to the last stage of the tour, we can explore the beauty of the landscape on good cart tacks, but also along a few single tracks that require a bit of control of the bike. The tour takes the form of a ring in the central-eastern Sardinia, through the mountainous regions of the Ogliastra region, Gennargentu National Park and ends at the inaccessible coves on the coast between Baunei and Dorgali, but, at the same time, accommodation is always very comfortable and in most cases is in towns or little villages.

We rate the tour as very easy, with an average daily elevation gain at about 1000m. We have designed the tour to be fit to e-mountain bikes (which are available in our fleet), with marked recharge opportunities on the longest stages. The hotels offer a simple but tasty Sardinian cuisine, as well as the high-quality wines of this island.

Our Route

Day 1: Arrival day

Arrival at airport (Cagliari, Olbia or Alghero). Transfer to Barisardo. Dinner and overnight in Barisardo.


DAY 2: RIDE TORRE DI BARì TO JERZU

40.4km | 1,191m | 467m | 3,15h

Here we go! We leave the picturesque beach of Barisardo and its Aragonese tower behind us: the adventure begins. We ride as much as possible along the sea before pointing westwards toward the mountains of the Ogliastra region. This first stage includes two climbs. The first, quite easy and short, comes after a long flattish stretch of countryside roads among the seaside villages of Bari Sardo and Cardedu. The second climb starts in the bottom of the Cannonau-wine valley surrounding the Pardu river. It's challenging, but with stunning views of either the sea and the mountains of Ogliastra. In its middle, we meet the little town of Jerzu. It's a famous wine town and its name is synonymous with Cannonau red wine fur us Sardinians. A lunch stop here is a great idea, and an occasion to taste a glass of wine in the place where they make it. The hotel is not far. Dinner and overnight at hotel nearby Jerzu.


DAY 3: RIDE JERZU TO LANUSEI

43.2km | 1,120m | 1,270m | 4h

A truly scenic jewel is the regional park and the forests laying between Jerzu, Osini and Ulassai. A mixture of oak woods and Mediterranean bush and among these, the omnipresent Dolomitic stone. This is a haven for Sardinian wildlife. The beginning of the stage features a super fun single trail taking us to the near village of Ulassai, known for the amazing grotto, that you'll meet along the way, and that we believe is worth a visit. A natural monument is followed by another one: the famous Scala San Giorgio, a deep canyon carved in the limestone that will introduce us to a series of easy up and downs through holm oaks and pine forests, till we reach the beautiful park of Bosco Selene, near destination. We'll stay overnight in Lanusei, the main town on the Ogliastra mountains.

Gennargentu National Park

Gennargentu National Park

DAY 4: RIDE LANUSEI TO VILLANOVA STRISAILI

47.1km | 794m | 1,129m | 4h

There's nothing better than riding right on top of a mountain if you want to have a clear view of what surrounds you, and that's what we do in the beginning of the stage. A ride always around 1000m altitude that cuts the mountain top into its east and west side. But the show is not over: in the second part of the stage we climb up Mt Idolo, from the top of which - more than 1200m altitude and highest point of the trip - we can admire the sea on our east, and the Gennargentu mountains on the west. We slowly loose altitude while approaching the Flumendosa Lake going to the family-run agriturismo where we can get a delicious home made dinner.


DAY 5: RIDE VILLANOVA STRISAILI TO BAUNEI

47.1km | 794m | 1,129m | 4h

From lake to lake. We leave the agriturismo on the Alto Flumendosa edge and ride across the Mediterranean macchia on a super long descent that takes us on the edge of another lake: the Santa Lucia lake, in the outskirts of Tortolì, one of the most important towns in the Ogliastra region. We take left and across the cultivated field we reach the only climb of the day: from Triei to our destination the small mountain town of Baunei, for sure the most important trekking and hiking destination of Sardinia. There are a few bars and small restaurants, some of them with a stunning view on the valley and the Arbatax gulf. The stage is not short, but it's reasonably quick: we have time to enjoy lunch at a local restaurant in the picturesque old town.
Overnight in Baunei at a 3-star hotel.

Gennargentu National Park

DAY 6: RIDE BAUNEI TO CALA SISINE

39.3km | 870m | 1,357m | 3,45h

Another day when we cycle through at least three completely different landscapes: from conifers and oak trees of the Baunei plateau, we ride across the dry and rocky Supramonte, then back to sea, on an amazing cove along the Gennargentu National Park coast.

Left the hotel in Baunei we climb up the hairpins that take us to the Supramonte Plateau. Once there, we have a chance to do a detour to Punta Salinas and enjoy an unique view on the coastline, before riding again on the main trail taking us to the Sisine cove. It's an easy descent, on a stage that will leave us plenty of time to enjoy lunch at the small restaurant in the cove, a swim in the crystal clear waters, and eventually get the ferry to Cala Gonone, where we will stay overnight in a 4-star hotel.


DAY 7: FAREWELL AND DEPARTURE DAY

Transfer to Cagliari airport and end of services.

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Via Vittorio Emanuele, 43
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