How To Get From Cagliari To Olbia

If you are looking for information on how to get from Cagliari to Olbia you are in the right place. Let me start by saying that Olbia has its very own airport – Olbia Costa Smeralda International Airport, which connects it to the rest of Italy and that also has direct flights to a number of European destinations. The airport serves the north and north-east of Sardinia.

However, if for any reason you find yourself flying to Cagliari Elmas airport or planning a trip around Sardinia and need to make your way to Olbia, you will surely want to know about the best Cagliari Olbia connections.

In this post, I will explain how to get from Cagliari to Olbia.

cagliari to olbia

How To Travel From Cagliari To Olbia

You have several ways of getting from Cagliari to Olbia. Let me outline them all below.

Cagliari Olbia By Car

If you’re in Cagliari city center, leave the city and take E25/SS131 until you reach Olbia. It takes about three hours with regular traffic.

If you’re landing in Cagliari Elmas and need to travel from there directly to Olbia, you will need to rent a car from one of the many rental car shops. From the airport, take SS391 and then follow SS131 all the way to Olbia.

Check the prices of car rental in Sardinia here.

Cagliari Olbia By Bus

Direct bus from Cagliari Central Bus Station

Direct buses to Olbia depart from Cagliari Central Bus Station located in Piazza Matteotti.

Once you’re at the station, go out and look for a bus stop called “Cagliari Piazza Matteotti – Esterno”. The company running the Cagliari-Olbia bus is called “Turmo Travel” and they will get you to Olbia in about 4 hours and 20 minutes. You can buy the tickets in the nearby kiosks or directly on the bus, they are €18.

Alternatively, you get your bus tickets online and for the same price here.

Turmo Travel direct buses only run once a day. Buses depart at 2:30 pm. On Sundays, there is an extra service at 5:35 pm.

You can get to Cagliari Central Train Station from Cagliari Elmas Airport by train in under 10 minutes. There are departures every 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the time of day.

There is no direct bus from the airport to Olbia unless you’re part of a private tour group. You will find the bus terminal outside the baggage claim area: just follow the “to the bus” signs.

Combination of buses from Cagliari Elmas Airport

If you’re okay having to change a few times, you can opt for ARST buses departing from Cagliari Elmas Airport: a two-bus change route leaves the airport at 3:53 pm. There are other buses during the day, but this itinerary is the only one that will guarantee all the connections without having to wait too much between them.

It’s a bit complicated, so be sure to follow these steps

  1. Exit the Arrivals terminal at the airport and go to the “Aeroporto Elmas Arrivi” bus stop. Take line 9342 towards Nuoro Stazione ARST;
  2. Get down at Nuoro Stazione ARST (around 6:08 pm);
  3. Wait for about 20 minutes for the next bus, at the same bus stop;
  4. Take Linea 514 towards Olbia Corso Vittorio Veneto 3C-Capolinea;
  5. Get off at Olbia Corso Vittorio Veneto 3C-Capolinea. It’s the last stop. This last part of the trip will take about 4 hours.

The overall trip takes about 7 hours and costs €19,10. You will need to buy two separate tickets: one for the bus from Cagliari Elmas Airport to Nuoro and one for the bus from Nuoro to Olbia. There is no need to type in or ask for the exact bus stops when buying the tickets: it works differently than train tickets, so just use the general city names. You can buy the bus tickets at the kiosks, vending machines at the airport and stations, and in some tabacchi and coffee shops.

squares in Cagliari

Cagliari Olbia By Train

From Cagliari City Center

Getting from Cagliari to Olbia by train is very easy if you are staying in town.

Direct trains from Cagliari city center to Olbia depart several times per day – 6:30 am; 8:35 am; 12:22 pm; and 4:30 pm. The journey lasts about 3.5 hour. Tickets cost €18 and you can get them directly at the station – at the ticket counter or at one of the vending machines you’ll find inside the train station.

Alternatively, you can book your train tickets online for the same price here.

Don’t forget to validate your ticket before getting on board – validation machines are usually located along the platform.

If you can’t make one of the direct trains, you’ll have several options requiring one change. You have two main options:

  • 2:30 pm Regional Train (RE) 4846 towards Porto Torres M.MA. The train gets to Ozieri-Chilivani at 5:09 pm and from there you’ll have to take the 5:14 RE 5289/RE 5288 train to Olbia. The trip takes a total of 3 hours and 52 minutes.
  • 6:30 pm RE 4850 towards Sassari. The train gets to Macomer at 8:22 pm. Get off there and and hop on RE 4790 train towards Olbia, which leaves at 8:36 pm. The overall trip takes about 3 hours and 55 minutes.

Tickets cost €18 even for train journeys that require a change.

Olbia

From Cagliari Airport

There are three direct trains from Cagliari – Elmas Airport to Olbia. They leave at 8:42 am; 12:29 pm; and 4:36 pm and take about 3.30 to 4 hours.

Alternatively, there also are several trains departing from the airport and requiring a change. Here are the best / fastest options:

  • 2:37 pm Regional Train (RE) 4846 towards Porto Torres M.MA. You will have to get off at Ozieri-Chilivani and change to RE 5289/RE 5288 towards Olbia. You have a 5 minutes window for the connection: the train arrives in Ozieri-Chilivani at 5:09 pm and the train to Olbia departs at 5:14 pm – but don’t worry, the station is tiny and you won’t have troubles finding the platform. The trip takes a total of 3 hours and 45 minutes.
  • 6:36 pm RE 4850 towards Sassari. You will have to get off at Macomer at 8:22 pm and hop on RE 4790 towards Olbia, which leaves at 8:36 pm. You will get to Olbia at 10:25 pm. The overall trip takes about 4 hours.

You can buy the train tickets for €18 at the machines inside the train station. They work in five different languages.

Alternatively, you can book your train tickets online for the same price here.

Remember to validate your ticket before getting on board – validation machines are usually located along the platform.

The train station is quite easy to reach: once you are out of the baggage claim area, turn left and go straight. Pass every shop and keep following the signs “to the trains”. You will find it in about five minutes!

Final Considerations

Unless you are driving, the easiest way to get from Cagliari Airport to Olbia is by far the direct train. If on the other way you are in Cagliari town center, depending what time you need to travel, you can opt for the direct train or for the direct bus – they are both easy and comfortable options.

Further Readings

Make sure to read my other posts:

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