The 100 Towers Walk in Sardinia, an intense experience in search of breathtaking views and spirituality
100 towers, 8 paths, 60 natural sites, 70 stages, along 1284 kilometres: these are the coordinates in figures of the Cammino delle 100 Torri, or 100 Towers Walk, a circumnavigation of Sardinia to be covered on foot and, if you wish, also by bicycle, horse
1. Holidays in Sardinia amid spirituality and personal challenges
For some, the Cammino is a naturalistic route to discover the island's most scenic landscapes, an alternative way to spend a holiday in Sardinia; for others, it is an authentic religious or, more generally, spiritual journey. Tackling the intense days of walking that separate the 70 stages of the Cammino can also be an opportunity to undertake an inner journey, to discover one's physical and mental limits.
2. A spiritual journey, to be undertaken all together or in small sections
The 100 Towers Walk is a circular route divided into 8 routes of varying degrees of difficulty. It runs along 400 kilometres of beach, 600 of footpath and 230 of surfaced road. You can walk it in its entirety, if you have enough time - it is an extreme adventure, requiring 45 to 60 days of walking - or you can choose to complete only some sections.
3. A circular route on both sides of the Sardinian coast
For convenience, the route is divided into two segments, and here too you can choose: there is the Cammino Orientale (Eastern Path), which runs from Cagliari to Castelsardo, with 597 kilometres of beaches and dirt roads, including the via degli Angeli, from Cagliari to Villasimius, passing through the long Poetto beach; the via Sarcapos, from Villasimius to Arbatax, among towers and churches, amidst enchanting coastal landscapes; the Via Ogliastra, one of the most rugged, from Arbatax to Budoni, between the mountains and the sea, along the paths of the Supramonte; and the Via Gallura, between Budoni and Castelsardo, through the most beautiful Sardinian villages, with breathtaking views of the island of Tavolara and the Maddalena archipelago.
Then there is the Cammino Occidentale (Western Path), which on the other side and in the opposite direction, runs along mule tracks, freshwater lakes and dunes, between Castelsardo and Cagliari.
It starts along the Via Catalana, the pride of the Cammino, from Castelsardo to Bosa, past towers and lighthouses. From Bosa Marina, if you are not yet tired, the Via dei Giganti, one of the less demanding stretches, will take you to Torre dei Corsari, passing through Nuragic, Phoenician and Roman archaeological sites. From here, the Via delle Miniere (Mines Route) starts, leading to Porto Scuso, passing through the first geo-mineral park to be recognised as a UNESCO heritage site. The section that concludes the tour is the via del Martirio, the one with the strongest religious connotation, which passes the sites of the martyrs of Sant'Antioco and Sant'Efisio, the islands of San Pietro (Carloforte) and Sant'Antioco, crossing Calasetta, to Porto Pino and finally to Cagliari.
As along every pilgrimage route, on the 100 Towers Walk you can stay overnight in campsites, religious and private residences, hotels and B&Bs. In July and August it is advisable to make reservations; in winter many facilities understandably close, even though the Cammino can be walked all year round, so it is better to check availability in advance.
4. The walker's passport
In addition to the technical shoes and hiking equipment needed to tackle long itineraries, the association that manages the Cammini in Italy, including the 100 Towers, recommends that walkers carry the Pilgrim's Passport in their backpacks. This is on sale on Amazon and is a guide-document that, in addition to facilitating access to the various accommodation facilities, testifies to the walkers' willingness to respect the philosophy behind the route. A commitment that distinguishes those who undertake it from any other tourist, and guarantees the authenticity of the experience.