Reception, briefing and start (Wednesday 24 April)
The reception for cyclists and their partners is at "Hotel Setar" in Quartu Sant'Elena, 15 km away from Cagliari harbour. The location was chosen by Tonino Scarpitti, also organiser of the "Giro di Sardegna", which happens simultaneously to 6+6 Isole and can count on a series of 200/300/400 km Randennées.
Introductory operations and briefing will take place at morning time on Wednesday 24 April.
Before the start dinner will be offered to all riders.
For those who wish to spend some time visiting Cagliari and enjoying Costa Rei, it is possible to benefit from the Hotel services at lower price in the days before the start.
First stage: Quartu Sant’Elena – Torre di Bari (Bari Sardo)
124 km, 936 m D+ : low demanding, check point in Bari Sardo
A few kilometres after the start take "SS 125 Orientale Sarda" and leave it only in Dorgali (km 194), entering the hinterland. Cycle 50 beautiful km crossing the Arcu 'e Tidu Pass (430 m) and get the coast in Muravera. Cross the Sarrabus mountain area riding along Riu Campuomu, Riu Cannas and Riu Picocca rivers enjoying canyons and woods. Get to Nuraghe Asoru and then, riding a few kilometres away from the coast admire beautiful natural landscape in the Ogliastra region. Passed Tertenia and reached the crossroads in Jerzu be careful not to be tempted by the Dolomitic limestone of Tacchi dell'Ogliastra on your left or the well-known Cannonau wine. Go straight instead and reach Bari Sardo. Once the fort and tower used to separate the coast into "mari de is omnis", the northern men's coast, and "mari de is feminas", the southern women's coast (the ban no longer exist and cyclists may ride in promiscuity!). Riding at night, these places may be enjoyed also on the way back during daytime; in fact, the sun rises at around 6:30 in the morning, but already at 5 am the control is open at the Hotel LA TORRE.
Second stage: Torre di Bari – Dorgali
79 km (203 km in total), 1274 m D+: high demanding, Rando Point at "Il Querceto" Hotel in Dorgali
High demanding, but fascinating stage. Once passed the Flumendosa Valley and its orange and lemon plantations, reach the Arbatax red rocks emerging from emerald green water. Crossing Tortoli, Santa Maria a Navarrese and Baunei leave the Orosei Gulf and its marvelous bays: Cala Mariolu, where a freshwater spring flows in the middle of the sea, Cala Biriola, Cala Luna, Cala Gonone, along with Bue Marino Caves. Go uphill towards Genna Silana (1017 m a.s.l.) and its incredible view on Supramonte di Urzulei, Gennargentu, Baronia. It is possible to reach Gorropu Canyon, the most extraordinary canyon in Europe dig by Fiumineddu river and hosting the Golden Eagle, through pathways starting from the pass or the base camp. Both ways uphill and downhill lead to Dorgali and are at their best in the early morning. The Rando Point in Dorgali, well-know for its archeological sites and natural beauties, offers refreshment with food and drink at Il Querceto Hotel: where the 6+6 Staff take care of their hosts with professionalism and attention.
Third stage: Dorgali – Nuoro
71 km (274 km in total), 1174 m D+: moderately demanding, check point in Nuoro
The route to Nuoro crosses the Berbagia, where Supramonte and Gennargentu mountains hide small and quiet villages. These highlands characterised by woods, waterfalls and rivers are home of ancient traditions and rituals offering unique tastes like roast beef, cheese, chestnuts and hazelnuts. Together with Dorgali, Oliena and Mamoida these are the most important producers of Cannonau. Passed Cedrino lake, the beautiful road goes up and down several times. Oliena is home of excellent olive oil and carasau, the shepherds' bread. Orgasolo, a museum in itself due to its traditional street painting telling stories of popular fights and social justice, is home of "canto a Tenore", UNESCO heritage, and set of the masterpiece "Banditi ad Orgasolo" by Vittorio De Sica. Mamoida, then, is home of "Mamuthones" and "Issohadores", ancient Carnival masks of great charm.
Nuoro is 15 km aways from the last village. Also called "Athens of Sardinia" is a lively city; well-known artists and writers like Salvatore and Sebastiano Satta, Francesco Clusa e Grazia Deledda made it famous around the world. The check point is under the arcade "E.Loi" (Piazza Italia) right in the city.
Fourth stage: Nuoro – Dorgali
140 km (414 km in total), 1597 m D+: moderately demanding; check point, buffet, shower, bag drop, dormitory and breakfast in Dorgali at Il Querceto Hotel
Quite demanding stage, at least until Mount Albo pass at 820 m a.s.l. The ancient rocky Bitti, famous for the archaic "canto a Tenore" and improvised poetry, is located in a valley surrounded by seven hills. A stop in front of "Fontana de su Cantaru" is a must. Passed Bitti, enter Baronia through Lula, where in 1899 one of the first mine strikes ended in tragedy. Nowadays Lula is famous for its "su Battiledhu" mask, liven up of the bast Carnivals of the island covered in black leather. A must try is "su filindeu", a pasta cooked in sheep soup coming with fresh pecorino cheese.
Mount Albo, watching over Baronia midlands, is the last obstacle before Siniscola, an important coast town having the citrus fruit "sa pompia" as an emblem. Continue in the plain towards Orosei, town with a beautiful centre and seaside. Arriving in Dorgali in the afternoon or later at night it is a good idea to stop and have a sleep after having had the great dinner at Il Querceto. Leaving the next morning, then, is possible to get to Quartu Sant'Elena before 4pm, take a shower and get ready to leave for Palermo. The boat leaves at 7pm.
Fifth stage: Dorgali – Torre di Bari
79 km (493 km in total), 951 m D+: moderately demanding, check point in Torre di Bari
The route is the same as stage 2 but less demanding due to the start in Dorgali, higher than Bari Sardo. Admire the beautiful landscapes along the road "Orientale Sarda". Same check point in Bari Sardo at LA TORRE Hotel.
Sixth stage: Torre di Bari – Quartu Sant’Elena
124 km (617 in total), 941 m D+: low demanding, finish in Quartu Sant'Elena before 4pm on Friday 26 April
Check point, shower, buffet at "Hotel Setar" and transfer to Cagliari harbour, possibly by bike. Luggage service available.