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Orgosolo: the city of murals


Motorbike tour route info

  • Level : challenging
  • Km: 250 ca
  • Track: on road

The first stretch...

Our journey begins from the long straight stretch of sea that takes us towards Bari Sardo. The route gives us the opportunity to ride along one of the main roads of Ogliastra, the SS 389. The road on the plain is short and as soon as you leave the town you realize that the road is going uphill, but the hilly panorama that opens up after the first few bends leaves you in no doubt.

We cross Loceri and head towards Lanusei along a road that is almost deserted, with little traffic, but whose surface is practically intact. Once in Lanusei, turn towards Arzana and take a very steep road that dominates the plain below. From the mountain, the geography of the area becomes clearer. You can clearly see the port of Arbatax, Tortolì and other villages in the valley, such as Santa Maria, whose islands look like small rocks against the expanse of the sea. All this can be seen as the road climbs between the steep hills that make Ogliastra one of the most characteristic areas of the island.

The route passes through Villanova Strisaili and takes us onto the old 389. At the junction for Talana, after the village of Bau Mela, we find the road closed to traffic with a no entry sign, but we decide to continue. Some of the bikers in the group knew the road and assured us that it was perfectly safe. The alternative is the new 389, which goes under the Correbo Pass.

A brave choice

We decide to take the old route and drive around the prohibition sign without a second thought. On the way, we realized that we had made the right choice. The road is in good condition and although there are a few potholes, the risk of hitting one is well worth it for the views that tell of a Sardinia far removed from the postcards of enchanting white beaches. Once you reach the top of the pass, you can enjoy the view of the road you have just travelled.

Un tratto della vecchia strada statale 389

For every ascent there is a descent, and on the other side of the mountain we come to the Tombs of the Giants of Madau, a monumental nuragic necropolis. The site is stunning and just a short walk from the main road, it is easily accessible and can be reached by motorbike if you are prepared to ride on a dirt track.

After a short rest, we get back in the saddle and head towards Fonni, crossing the Gavossai dam and taking the road to Mamoiada, where there is the Museum of Mediterranean Masks. Among these, the Mamuthones and Issohadores, the local masks, are of great importance.

The city of murals

On entering Orgosolo, the town seems anonymous, not very different from the suburbs of any small provincial town, but once inside we begin to see the first murals. Apart from their beauty and the vivid colours of some of the drawings, what is striking is their size and the variety of themes, some of which take up an entire wall. Many speak of tragedy, rebellion and love. Others deal with social issues such as women's emancipation, emigration and war, and the difficult relationship between political power and society. All of this is part of the mural tradition of this village.

Initially, the murals were created by the libertarian anarchist artists of the Dionisio group in support of the Pratobello revolt. Later, a local schoolteacher, with the help of some of his students, continued to paint the murals, with the participation of many artists in the following years.

After exploring the village and making a few fleeting friends, we decide to try the local cuisine, after all it is lunchtime.

There is no shortage of places to eat in Orgosolo; the centre is full of small restaurants dedicated to the local cuisine, where you can taste traditional dishes. In addition to the local salami, sausages, ham, bacon and delicious olives, you can also order patata a perras and pecora in cappotto.

The real surprise

The return journey is the best part of the trip. Safe on the road, we can enjoy the ride, savouring landscapes that seem to belong to a distant continent, forgetting for a few moments that we are on an island in the middle of the Mediterranean.

The itineraries have been drawn up thanks to the collaboration of the Chena Cabu Motorcycle Club, which tested the routes and drew up the maps.


Listen to the stars

The route to the Sardinia Radio Telescope Info Track A nocturnal spectacle At night, on the beach, far from the intrusiveness of artificial light, a few steps from the hotel


Ghost places

Itinerary Destination Gairo Vecchio The itinerary starts from the Baja Azzurra, we leave behind the Marina di Bari Sardo.After a short stretch on the old