Pagan Festivals of Sardinia

Traditional Culture in the Heart of Sardinia
with Stefano Baldi
Repertory Trip: Next Offered February 11-19, 2015

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $4595  
Length: 9 days
Arrive: Olbia, Italy
Depart: Olbia, Italy
Lodging: 8 nights in hotels
Meals: All meals included
Activity: Walking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level: Moderate hiking, cultural touring
2


A wonderful, intense experience. Stefano’s love for Sardinia, its food, history, and people made the trip.Gordon C.—Menlo Park, CA

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Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.

References

We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Departure Notes

Once you have signed up on the trip, we send a complete packing list, relevant health information, and required travel documents.

Repertory Trip

This is one of our special Repertory Trips offered every two to five years.  It will be several years before this journey is offered again. Now is the time to go!

Take a step back in time for a wild cultural experience! Join veteran WT Trip Leader Stefano Baldi for a fascinating discovery of the captivating pagan festivals of Sardinia, wild spectacles that hold true to their Sardo roots, with 2,000-year-old rituals, allegorical reenactments, colorful parades, masked dancers, lively music, dancing in the streets, and spirited horse races. This is a chance to experience the real Sardinia—the deep “dark heart” of the interior, where few tourists venture, and where the locals proudly keep the oldest traditions. In the company of Stefano, whose irrepressible, exuberant nature is well known and loved by all who travel with him, we can’t help but get caught up in the action! Along with the festivals, we visit artisans in their workshops, learn the culinary secrets of making good pasta, see how the special bread—pane carasau—is made, and enjoy a wine tasting as we visit one of the most renowned wineries of the island.

Itinerary at a Glance

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Days 1-2
Olbia / Sortilla de Tumbarinos

Our introduction to the heart of Sardinia begins with a visit to Romanzesu, an ancient Nuraghic village set amid centuries-old cork trees. After a hike in the lake and forest environs of Gavoi, we attend the Sortilla de Tumbarinos, a lively local event where people attired in black clothes or robes, some with blackened faces or simple masks, roam around the town playing homemade drums accompanied by accordion and flute music.

Days 3-4
Countryside Hikes

Our hikes in the Sardinian countryside bring us to the  beautiful little town of Galtelli, with its well preserved historic center, and to the Grotta di Ispinigoli, a deep cave linked to legends of human sacrifices in Nuraghic times. We also explore the Mamoiada area, with its beautiful landscape and “forgotten” archaeological sites, and learn about Sardinia's ancient past as we visit a Bronze Age tomb and the intriguing Museum of Mediterranean Masks, which displays the traditional masks used in Sardinian festivals.

Days 5-9
Pagan Festivals

We take the next few days to revel in the fun and excitement of Sardinia’s most fascinating pagan festivals, a chance to share a part of its fascinating ancestral history. At the Mamuthones carnival, we witness solemn parades of mysterious masqueraders in costumes of black sheepskins, heavy brass cowbells, and somber black wooden masks. We also take part in the Carrela è Nanti, where horses are ridden wildly through the narrow streets of Santu Lussurgiu in daring acts of bravery and skill, and we are treated to the genuine hospitality extended to istranzos (foreigners); the Sartiglia, a reenactment of a medieval tournament on horseback, complete with reverberant drums and cheering crowds; and the carnival in Ovodda, culminating with a huge bonfire in the main square. Between festivals, we’ll enjoy short hikes along with the delights of Sardinia's traditional cuisine. Depart from Olbia on Day 9.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

What the Trip is Like

This trip is rated a 2, easy to moderate, according to our trip grading system. Our hikes range from two to three hours in length and are mostly on easy terrain, with the occasional rocky trail. Please note that in Europe, the dinner hour is considerably later than what it is in the US. We do our best to secure early reservations for our groups, but most often the evening meal will be at 7:30 pm.

Explanation of Trip Levels

 

Departures & Leaders

This is one of our special Repertory Trips offered only every two to five years. This journey will not be offered again for several years. Now is the Time to Go!

2015
Feb 11-19, 2015

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2015
$4595 (13-15 members)
$4895 (10-12 members)
$5195 (7-9 members)
Single supplement: $350
more on pricing

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of a Wilderness Travel Trip Leader and local guides
  • Accommodation
  • Welcome and farewell dinners and other meals as noted in the Full Trip Brochure
  • Land transportation, transfers to and from airport on Day 1 and Day 9, entrance fees to museums and visitors sites, and sightseeing as noted in the Full Trip Brochure

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

international airfare, transfers for independent arrival or departure, any meals not specified after each itinerary day in the Full Trip Brochure, airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors, expenses such as medical immunizations (if any), travel insurance, or passports and visas, and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $500
120 days prior to departure: 20%
60 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule*

Minimum fee: $250 per person
46-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

*Please note that this differs from our regular catalog departures.

Our Trip Leaders

Here are the Trip Leaders scheduled for this journey (please note that leader assignments are subject to change).

Stefano Baldi

Departure Dates: February 11-19, 2015

Stefano Baldi, of Tuscany, has led hiking trips in Europe for us for nearly 15 years. He has spent most of his life living in the beautiful rural countryside of Tuscany, except for a few years in Florence as a student. His love for nature led him to found an agricultural co-op with friends in the ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

Sebastiano Leone

Departure Dates: February 11-19, 2015

Sebastiano Leone is a native of the charming town of Palazzolo Acreide, Sicily, and a graduate of the University of Catania, with a degree in geology and a specialty in environmental restoration. He has done volunteer work on environmental projects in Italy’s national parks and is also an ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

Client Comments

A wonderful, intense experience. Stefano’s love for Sardinia, its food, history, and people made the trip. Gordon C., Menlo Park, CA
Only because of Stefano's experience and efforts was such a trip possible. Travelers could never duplicate such a trip for themselves. This is what sets Wilderness Travel apart. Jim H., San Luis Obispo, CA