Sardinia (Cagliari) - Southern Regions

"Sardinia (Cagliari) - Southern Regions" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Tuesday 10th January 2012

Sardinia (Cagliari) Map

The name Sardinia according to ancient legend derives from Sardus, the mythic son of Hercules who landed on the island being a leader of the group of Libyan peoples.

Its surface is 24 090 (9299 sq.miles) (8.4%), population 1 662 000 inhabitants (3%), density 69 inhab./

The island was inhabited already before the period of 2500-2000 b.C. when its ancient inhabitants occupied the shelters and caves of Gallura, Ozieri, the zones of Cabras (close to Oristano), Cagliaritano and other localities. The first arrangement of the territory was conducted by the Phoenicians who built navy and commercial points along the coasts. The were followed by Carthagians who were the first to use the plain and the hill zones for cultivation of corn and excavation of mineral resources. In the III century b.C. the Romans came. They built numerous roads, urban centers, improved agriculture. During the Middle ages and especially with the Spanish domination Sardinia entered a period of long regress and spread of feudal system all over the island territory which negatively influenced the living conditions. The fact that could prove it is a demographic situation when in 1483 the population of the island reached only 150 000 inhabitants.

After the island in 1720 as a consequence of the London Treaty of 1718 passed to the house of Savoy and was nominated a Kingdom of Sardinia under their government, the period of interrupted for centuries development continued: reform of land property, foundation of the new city centers (Carloforte) and stimulation of all kinds of activities on the whole of island territory. The new Italian state, to which Sardinia was annexed since 1860, provided regulation of the water courses, intensified excavation works especially on the territory of Sulcis with its carbon fields where the city of Carbonia was founded, construction of the new ways of communications. After the WWII Sardinia obtained the autonomy with the special status; apart from it the agricultural reform and reclaim of soil took place.

Unlike in the other regions of the southern Italy the modernization of economy was organized with the participation of private capital, thus the results were always much more effective even if the distance from the main land and poverty of the soil served as big obstacles for economic progress.



Man and Territory Economy and Resources

Archeology and Art


The island was inhabited already in the Palaeolithic period. In IX - VIII centuries b.C. the Phoenicians and Carthagians came. Foundation of different cities: Olbia, Thorres and Nora. Traces of houses-castles.

Roman Epoch
(from III century b.C.)

Difficult conquest by Romans. Construction of bridges, roads, villages and cities. Roman rests in Porto Torres (a bridge) and Cagliari (amphitheatre).

Middle Ages
(V - XV centuries)

Invasion of Vandals. In VII century domination of Byzantinians. Useless temptation of Arabs to conquer the island which was proclaimed an independent state. Spanish domination and development of feudalism. General decline: abandon of the coasts and migration to the inland. Numerous abbeys; the church of SS.Trinita' di Saccargia.

(XV - XVI centuries)

The Spanish government. . .

Modern Ages (XVII-XVIII)

In 1720 the island is under the house of Savoy and Sardinia's history before the 1860 is closely connected with the history of Piedmont. Improvement in the regional administration. ..

XIX - XX centuries

Since 1948 Sardinia became an autonomous region with the special status. The end of XIX century - few interventions in island economy. The first half of the XX century - impulse to modifications in agriculture and usage of the mineral resources. The second half of the XX century: the reform eliminating large landed estates, touristic boom. Urbanistic arrangement of Sassari, Cagliari and Alghero.

Sardinia (Cagliari) Map:

Sardinia (Cagliari) Map
Fig: Sardinia (Cagliari) Map


Sardinia is the second by dimensions island in the Mediterranean Sea and Italy; all surrounded by the seas (see on the map).


The climate in the coast and lower inland zones is mild with little quantity of rains and due to it problem of drought. The higher inland has a continental climate. usually in the winter time the cold  wind from the north-west blows on the island territory.


January: 8.6 C

July: 23.2 C


plain: 18%

hill: 68%



This is one of the few Italian regions which conserved its original look better with the exception of the touristic zones of Fallura and on the Costa Smeralda, and in the zone of Cagliari. The most of the territory is occupied by the hills and mountains among which are Limbara, Ala', Albo, Spramonte, Gennargentu (the highest top of the island 1834m), Ogliastra, Iglesiente, Sulcis. The seaside coasts are quite high and rocky. The territory of island includes also numerous islands located close to it. The rivers: Tirso, Coghinas, Flumendosa, Flumini Mannu are used for production of electric energy and irrigation.


The island is well connected with the continent by the air and sea communications. The main ports: Olbia, Porto Torres, Cagliari and Sant'Antioco. The airports are located in Cagliari, Alghero and Olbia. The highlands do not exist yet, but the state, provincial and communal network of roads is well developed. The only big road connects north and south Porto Torres and Gagliari.


Total: 7 500 000

Italians: 81%

Foreigners: 19%


agriculture: 12%

industry: 23%


commerce: 65%

Agriculture and breeding.

Among the main activities on the island is a sheep-breeding (1/3 of the national sheep production). It gives resources for wool, meet and milk, cheese (pecorino sardo) productions. The areas where sheep-breeding is mostly practiced is mountain and hill zones of Barbagia, Bitti and Budduso'. Could also be noticed the intensification of cattle and pig breeding. Thus Sardinia is the only region in Italy that is more successful in breeding than in other agricultural productions. Among the latter are: cereals, vegetables, fruits, wine grape, olive, cork and sea salt.


The industry in Sardinia is growing. The most important is petrol-chemical industry in Prto Torres and around Cagliari. The other are: chemical, cement, paper, cheese, aluminium productions and mineral extraction. It is the only region in Italy that produces more energy than consumes. The artisan activities are: carpet production, woolen goods, ceramics, iron wrought.
The other spheres of activity are commerce and tourism. but the last doesn't gave as much profits to the Sardinians as it could because nearly all of the touristic industry is managed by northern Italian companies or foreigners.



44 000 000 kWh


450 000 kWh



128 000 000 kWh


7 600 000 kWh


(per 1000)

Italy: 9.9

Sardinia: 10.8


(per 1000)

Italy: 9.3

Sardinia: 7.5


Italy: 0.6

Sardinia: 3.3


Sardinia is not densely inhabited due to its limited resources and continuous emigration. The population is concentrated mostly in the inland than on the coasts. Because of long isolation Sardinians speak their own language and have very strong spirit of autonomy. Here also live some minor nations: in Alghero since the XVI century it is spoken the Cathalanian language; and in Carloforte they speak in Ligurian.


Having a very strong sense of autonomy and traditions Sardinians do not accept harsh interventions and changes brought from outside, those changes that do not respect their culture rich with positive values like hospitality, sense of family and loyalty. On part of Sardinians live in major cities, and the other is spread all over the territory in little settlements. In the regional classification of welfare Sardinia occupies the 14th place. The quality of medical assistance is equal to average Italian rate and higher than in the southern Italy, as well as expenses for sport and recreation, diffusion of information and education. The level of criminality is one of the lowest in Italy.

Inhabitants per car

Italy: 2.0

Sardinia: 2.1

Monthly income

per inhabitant

977 000 It.Liras

(488 US Dollars)

Provinces and communes.

The region is divided into four provinces: Cagliari, Nuoro, Oristano and Sassari with 377 communes.
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