Since I went recently to Sardinia Island in Italy I have my experience there ready to be shared, I really enjoyed this island and I want to share my experience with all of you.
First of all, Italy is a expensive country, but still nothing crazy as northern Europe and still affordable with a student budget and some extra savings. Also I want to make clear that I went there on the last week of October, when prices may be lower in accomodation.
The best thing of this island, is that is an awesome place for going after the summer holidays, if you want to prevent the massification but at the same time enjoy the island. During my time there I was able to sunbath, swim (even if water was not too warm was ok) and I was on T-shirt all time except on night, so I highly recomend to scape here after the first stressful months of post summer work.
For coming here, you should definitely consider Ryanair, since it has two airports in the island, one in Cagliari (the most confortable since is very close to the city and about 1,5 € in public transport) and Alghero. This last city is in the north of the island, and going to Cagliari will take you about 3h and 20€ by bus (avaliable in airport too). Personally I recommend to spend some days in the north of the island renting a car and being able to reach many sightseeing places, the most fair priced rental company is Sardinya, since the are the cheapest and don't ask for deposit.
Once you arrive to Cagliari you will realize that it has a lot of industry around it, but don't worry. The beaches and landmarks are awesome. Depending your priorities you should decide where to book your accomodation, in Poetto beach or in the city centre, personally I prefer the centre since everything is more handy and you have the beach easily reachable by BQ or PF bus (or 40 minutes by walk).
If you are in the beach you will see a hill on your right, in which end has the remain of a watchtower and a chair shaped rock, la Sella del Diabolo or the Devil Saddle. This is a excursion you can actually make from the beach and wont take you more than 2 h way and back, and I totally recomend it since the path is well marked (just follow the green dots in the ground). From there you will have brilliant views of the beach and Cagliari. But if you want to make the most of this trip, consider the day you decide to do this, to go to another small beach in the west, Calamosca (wich is warmer since is not windy) and start your excursion from there and finish it in Poetto after climbing the hill.
But now let's get to the city itself. Your starting place should be in the Marina district, which is just in front of the port and goes uphill through a lot of cozy narrow streets, in this district you can enjoy a meditarreanean feeling as well as delicious local food. In this district you should not miss the two churches which are on it, and of course you need to see the front houses of the 11 September avenue from the other lane (the closest to harbor). In the Sant'Antonio Abate church, remember to visit the crypt and the old baptism bath, which are something that you won't see in many other countries churches. Once you got enought Italian feeling keep going uphill untill you reach Via Giusseppe Manno and keep going up to the St Remy Bastion.
A important topic in this city are prices, they are quite good compared to north Italy ones, even in Cagliari which is a region capital, so you can always order Capuccino without fear, since it will never be more than 2€, even in a fancy place in front row of the sea. Similar thing happens with Ice creams, you should not pay more than 3€ for a big two flavour one, except if you are in the most obvious turistical place. About other food, expect to spend 7-11 € for a good meal, including pizza and wine, and due to the high quality of the food, I absolutely recomend it. As is tradition of the island, they have a wide offer of seafood, avaliable almost everywere, so give it a try too. If you came for party, don't worry either, most international alcohol brands have same price or even cheaper than other countries, but be aware of the prices once inside the discos, since they can be a big rip off. In Sardinia they have a local beer, Ichnusa, quite good and you can find it for good price almost everywhere, so enjoy the local beer for some time.
A good accomodation spot is Hostel Marina, which has amazing prices and is located exactly in the city centre (and is totally new and modern)
From there you will enjoy awesome views and is a good place to get an idea of the city, but don't think is over. Keep going uphill to the Cagliari cathedral dome you will see until you find yourself in the Piazza Palazzo square where the entrance to this very beautiful cathedral is. Keep going up until you reach the castle and the museum, once there, go left and don't miss altitude, since you will need to walk for 5 minutes towards the Anfitheatre. After that keep going down and then go to right until you reach the big square under the bastion walls, where also the Via Giusseppe Manno street starts.
If you want more, go uphill again, but this time follow the walls, do not take Via Giusseppe Manno again but Scalette di Santa Chiara and you will see the Elefant tower as well as the Cagliari University street.
But the best of the island are its populations, Sardinians are specially welcoming and friendly, so you will get tons of smiles which always improve your trip.
I hope you like this guide and now you consider Cagliari for your future plans. If you liked it share it to your friends!
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