10 things to do in:
10 things to do in Cagliari
Things to do in Cagliari in order to experience the local face of the city
Are you looking for what to do in Cagliari? A visit to the historic districts, taking part in the feast of the Patron, discovering the best sights, the most beautiful beaches, the many culinary traditions and the Sardinian street food. Summing up the main things to do in Cagliari in just 10 points is not an easy task. However we hope that this quick guide will be helpful in suggesting the right point of view in order to discover the most local and authentic side of the city.
Do not miss the chance to walk along the narrow streets of the historical and cultural heart of Cagliari, to drink a coffee seated at the tables of its central squares, to meet new friends and experience the lifestyle of the city.
What's in the guide?
- Tourist Information
- Things to do
- Things to see
- Ebook local food
- Local tips and experiences
Enjoy the sunset from Bastione Santa Croce
Perched on a hill, Cagliari offers many panoramic viewpoints. Santa Croce Rampart is usually considered one of the best places in Cagliari by both locals and visitors. It is located in the old town at a walking distance from the Elephant Tower. Go there at the sunset and enjoy the best view of the upper town.
Visit the Market of San Benedetto
The market of San Benedetto, the largest indoor civil market in Italy and one of the largest in Europe (8000 sqm) could not be left out of our list of things to do in Cagliari. The bottom floor is overflowing with fresh fish while in the other floors you can find fruit and vegetables, chesses, freshest local meats, bread and pasta. The best bet is to hit the market early in the morning, seek some advice from the fishermen and taste a delicious fried squid (calamari).
Enjoy Cagliari nightlife
Even if the coolest nightclubs change continuously, you have to go to the city center to enjoy the nightlife of Cagliari. Meet you friends in the central Piazza Yenne and choose one of the many restaurants and pubs which enliven the square and nearby streets.
DIY aperitif in Monte Urpinu
Buy some bottle of Ichnusa beer, some “guttiau” crispy bread and olives and go to the most famous viewpoint of the city. Choose a bench and enjoy a delicious aperitif with a stunning view of Molentargius Park.
Visit the Villaggio dei Pescatori area during the Fish Festival
The Villaggio dei pescatori (Fisherman's Village in English) is a symbol of one of the sea areas of Cagliari, located on the west side of Santa Gilla lagoon, close to the port of Cagliari. Here, a few steps from the sea is a small church dedicated to Sant'Efisio and every year takes place the Fish Festival where you can taste the most typical recipes of Cagliari: Sa Burrida (skinned dogfish boiled in water and vinegar, and seasoned with garlic, nuts, vinegar and extra-vergin olive oil), Su pruppu a sa schiscionera (a salad of potatoes with octopus), Su pisci a scabbecciu (fish marinated in tomato sauce, vinegar and onions) and generous portions of mixed fried fish.
Take part in Saint Efisio Festival
If you plan to visit Sardinia during the May 1 holiday (International Workers' Day) and you're wondering what to do in Cagliari, all Sardinian people will suggest you the feast of Saint Efisio (this year takes place its 359th edition). It consists of a four-day religious parade: the statue of Sant'Efisio is carried from a church in Stampace area to the church in Nora. About 5,000 people dressed in traditional Sardinian clothing follow the statue along the streets of Cagliari in decorated carts pulled by oxen (called is traccas).
Eating fresh sea urchins
Among the typical flavors of Cagliari and its several sea dishes, the sea urchins are the favorite of many locals and tourists. How to eat your ricci and where? The ricci is a delicious street food, so there’s no need to go to restaurants. The best kiosks (i ricciai) are located along the Poetto beach or in Su Siccu area. Once ordered a dozen of them, you can scoop the ricci out with a small piece of bread or with a teaspoon and accompany this unique taste with a glass of white wine. Take note that it is allowed to fish the urchins only in months with the letter 'r' in their Italian names.
Discover the best beaches of Cagliari
A tour of the best beaches of the city had to be present in our list of things to do in Cagliari. You can discover the most amazing bays by proceeding both towards the south-east and to the south-west coast of the city. Some Cagliari’s beaches are considered the most beautiful of Sardinia such as Villasimius beach and Chia Beach just to cite a few. In order to discover the best beaches of Cagliari, you should find a local friend ;)
Taste the typical “panino” of Cagliari
As you have noticed, the food and wine culture of Cagliari is varied and one of the first things shared with those visiting the city. Among the delicious fish dishes and the grilled pork, a special mention must be dedicated to a delicious sandwich, a symbol of Cagliari street food. It is prepared in the trucks restaurants parked in a dedicated area in Poetto beach.