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Hotels in Cagliari

An area of human activity for around five millennia, Cagliari is the capital of Sardinia, an Italian island renowned for its pristine sandy beaches, ancient and medieval landmarks, and turquoise seas.

History

For more than 500 years, the city was the capital of the Kingdom of Sardinia, which also included much of what is now northwest Italy. However, Cagliari was already a strategic settlement by the Roman period, when the large Roman amphitheatre was built which could hold up to 10,000 people.

In the early 18th century, following the Treaty of Utrecht and the Spanish War of Succession, Cagliari was ruled by the House of Savoy but became a target for Napoleon, who attempted to capture the city to expand his influence in the Mediterranean. However, the Sardinians defeated him, although the House of Savoy showed no gratitude, which convinced Sardinians to expel the Savoys from the island, at least for a short time. In the late 19th century, when the island became part of unified Italy, Cagliari benefited from many attractive Art Nouveau buildings, and expanded from a community of 37,135 inhabits in 1871 to 70,132 by 1911.

What to see

Probably the most formidable site in the city is Cagliari Cathedral, which is noted for its decorative Pisan-Romanesque architecture and is more than 700 years old. The building is also known for its rare medieval artwork, and was restored in the early 20th century to its original architectural style.

The cathedral is part of the oldest district of the city, the castello, which also contains many other distinctive landmarks such as the San Pancrazio Towers and the Archbishop's Palace. Here, you can also walk to the Bastione di San Remy roof and enjoy a refreshing drink as you admire one of the finest panoramic views of the city..

If you're visiting in the warmer months and want to enjoy some well-earned beach time, don't forget to visit the spectacular Poetto Beach. This six-kilometre sandy bay is one of Sardinia's most famous sights, and overlooks crystal clear water that is ideal for swimming.

Restaurants and hotels

For authentic, fresh Italian cuisine, you can't go wrong at Ristorante Martinelli's, La pizzetta d'oro or Major Preep. For delicious Gelato, don't forget to visit Stefino - Gelateria Artigiana, or enjoy some of the finest pizzas in Italy at the Pizzeria 7 Nani. For tasty Indian cuisine, head to the Tandoori Cagliari, or dine at Stella Marina di Montecristo for some delightful seafood.

One of the best-value Cagliari hotels is the Hotel Italia, which offers stylish, contemporary accommodation in the heart of the city. If you're after an exquisite, opulent venue, choose the Miramare Boutique Hotel with its elaborate interior, or consider the elegant but affordable Holiday Inn Cagliari.

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