The first monument to visit is the City Palace of Cagliari, built in Gothic-aragonese style in pietra forte sandstone, used for the main historical buildings of the city, representing the beginning of the porch of via Roma. The porch is one of the historical heritage of Piedmontese domination over Sardinia, always representing the favourite place for the people of Cagliari to enjoy a walk away from the hot sun of the city, where you may taste an excellent espresso coffee as well as a creamy ice-cream. Continuing along the porch, you will find the nice Church of Saint Francis of Paola, perfect integrated into the architectural context with its Neoclassical façade. After a short visit, you may get into the historical neighbourhood of La Marina.
The marine village of Cagliari, founded in the thirteenth century. as a dwelling for the workers of the nearby harbour, and as a storage for goods, has always represented a meeting point among different cultures and ethnicities. In fact, we are pervaded by the typical scents, colours and sounds of an ancient harbour of the Mediterranean sea, melting far and local cuisines, where the typical craftsmanship shops are near to the ethnic shops, while faces from far lands reveal a neighbourhood which is the real melting pot of the city, crossroads of different histories and cultures able to live and cooperate together. The neighbourhood of La Marina hides many small gastronomic treasures, in the numerous typical restaurants serving at dehors in Summertime, and cultural, like the Church of the Holy Sepulchre or the Roman findings of Saint Eulalia. This neighbourhood is a place where you can get lost among narrow lanes, tasting anything that a culture of thousands years like that of Cagliari has to offer, making a short visit to a church or watching the showcases in shops, letting the instinct and curiosity to guide you.
A stop in Cagliari cannot leave out a little shopping, therefore, going upwards the neighbourhood of La Marina, go towards Piazza Yenne, where you will find one of the ends of Via Manno, one of the most ancient commercial ways of the city. Here we will find numerous shops offering different items, from fashion clothes to jewellery, from accessories to books, where, for sure, you will find the right souvenir for your holiday in Cagliari. Going up into via Manno we arrive in the surroundings of Piazza Costituzione where we will be in front of the magnificent staircase of the Bastion of Saint Remy, made at the end of nineteenth century to link the historical neighbourhood of Castello with the square underneath.
Going up the staircase you may enjoy the panoramic view of the Bastion, stretching all over the city, from the Monti di Sette Fratelli (Mounts of Seven Brothers, through the shore of Poetto, to Nora and Chia). In a neighbourhood so enriched with culture, the true heart of the original city, every corner and building the a story, like the cannonball stoned into Boyl Palace, a memory of an ancient ship attach by the French, or like the Tower of the Elephant, a gate and watchtower to the South of the fortification, and place of public conviction. The same winding and narrow streets of the citadel where built this way in order to avoid the bow attacks. Castello is the meeting point of many different epochs and every monuments represents their stratification, made of dominations and conquers of the different reigns along many centuries. An example for all is the majestic Piazza Palazzo where we find together the Ancient City Palace, today a museum, the Cathedral of Cagliari, enriched with Pisan and Aragonese stratifications, and the Viceroy Palace, the ancient place of Savoy power, each representing the ancient powers governing the city.
The time at our disposal is over, therefore, let us go towards the Tower of the Elephant, in whose surroundings we will find a lift which will bring us directly to Piazza Yenne. So, let us walk towards the bronze statue of Carlo Felice, from where, continuing towards the sea among the numerous shops of this ancient commercial street, we will get back to the City Palace in Piazza Matteotti, where our short 6-hour tour in Cagliari started, and from where you can continue your journey.
This tour is a pill of Cagliari, certainly deserving a longer and accurate visit, of which we will tell in detail at the soonest.