Serdiana is a charming village, located in the deep south of the Campidano plains, in an area known as Parteolla. It is right next to Dolianova, and just 20 kilometers (around 12.4 miles) from Cagliari, so a perfect place to visit on day trips.
Here you will find beautiful natural and archeological sites. From the magnificent Stani Saliu, where you could try the experience of birdwatching, to the charming Santa Maria di Sibiola Church. The center itself is worth visiting, because of the many traditional campidanese houses “a corte”, with a nice internal garden.
Serdiana is also famous for the production of wine. Its wines are renowned all around the world, from the Vermentino to the Cannonau. It always amazes me how a place that counts no more than 2600 inhabitants has a whopping 6 wineries, each of them excellent!
Since my mom is from Serdiana, and part of her family is still there, I visit he time (in fact, we lived there for a few years when I was a child). So I thought I’d write everything you should know about it, to help you plan your visit and make the most of it.
Make sure to also read my post A Useful Guide To Dolianova.
The History Of Serdiana
Little is known as to the origins of the name Serdiana. Some scholars suggest it comes from the Phoenician “sared” which means red and may be a reference to the clay-ruch area. Others suggest it comes from Sergius, the name of a rich noble Roman who ruled over it – it is thought that it’s from his agricultural settlements that the village, called Serdiana, was created.
Several archeological remains found in its area tells us that the area where Serdiana is located was already inhabited in the neolithic age. There even were some nuragic settlements, though we can only see a few nuraghe bases in the area.
Later on the area was inhabited by the Phoenicians and later by the Romans. There are very few Phoenician remains – some every day use objects and a stelae representing the Phoenician god Tanit. The Romans also left some objects, and few tombs.
It is possible that the village of Serdiana was found during this last period – hence its name, as seen above.
After the Roman occupation, the area saw the arrival and the dominations of the Byzantines, and later of the Spanish. During the Judicate period, Serdiana was part of the Judicate of Cagliari. This had made economic arrangements with the Maritime Republic of Pisa, which brought great wealth for the inhabitants of the village.
A Pisan register of the beginning of the 14th century mentions Serdiana, then known as Villa Sidriani, as a small village that regularly paid a tax to the Pisa reign. In 1323 Serdiana became part of the reign of Aragon: the Aragonese installed a feudal system in the area they reigned over, and Serdiana passed under the direct control of Clemente Salavert.
In the years following, Serdiana was almost completely unpopulated following the plague that hit Sardinia, the wars and a terrible famine.
In 1440, Sardiani – as it was then known – counted 26 families, which became 114 according to the census of 1678, when it was known as Baronia de Serdiani. The last feudal lord was marquis Donna Giovanna Carcassona Brunengo.
The feudal system was finally abandoned in 1839, a few decades before Italy finally became one country.
What To See And Do In Serdiana
Su Stani Saliu
Su Stani Saliu in Sardinian means “the salted pond”. It is indeed a pond, or better a marsh, located in the countryside of Serdiana and which was created thanks to the richness of the soil, which has plenty of minerals. Its waters are salted, and for this reason it is home of a specific ecosystem.
Su Stani Saliu is home to pink flamingoes, which offer a breathtaking sight, especially against the stark dark color of the pond. It’s an overall lovely area for a relaxing walk away from traffic and noise, and definitely one where you won’t encounter other tourists.
Santa Maria di Sibiola Church
Santa Maria di Sibiola Church is one of the better preserved Romaneque-Pisan churches in all Sardinia. It is located in the countryside near Serdiana, in the area where until the 16th century stood the village of Sibiola. I love this church as it is the one where my parents, my aunts, my sister and all my cousins got married. But if you visit, you will see it is absolutely gorgeous.
This rural church was probably built around the 11th century, and it originally belonged to the Benedictine monks. Its current name appeared for the first time in 14th century documents.
The church has two aisles of different dimensions, and the interior design is typical of the Romanesque style. For instance, there is only one altar under a crucifix. Behind it, there was used to be a fresco of a scene of the Last Judgement. Now, the remaining parts are located in the national art gallery in Cagliari.
Unless open for special celebrations and occasions (ie during the Cantine Aperte or Santa Maria di Sibiola festival), you will only be able to see the outside of the church, but it is still worth it.
Don’t forget to read my post The Prettiest Churches In Sardinia.
Located in the center of Serdiana, it is also known as Casa Carcassona. This house dates back to the 18th century. It was the house of a noble family; it has two floors and a tower in both sides. A chapel dedicated to Sant’Antonio da Padova is located in the eastern part of the mansion, which is surrounded by a large courtyard, from which it is possible to access from the main gate.
The name – Casa Carcassona – is strictly connected to its history. In the 18th century the marques Carcassona acquired the property of the mansion. Years later, his granddaughter married count Edmondo Roberti. For this reason, the place is known both as Casa Carcassona and Castello Roberti.
Keep in mind the castle remains private property, so it can’t be visited unless on special occasions.
San Salvatore Church
Built between the 15th and the 16th century in Neoclassic and Baroque style, and with further additions that date back to different periods this is the main church in Serdiana. The facade, which was built at the end of the 19th century, is in a traditional classic style with four pilasters and wayside shrines. The bell tower was built even later, but so as to be in the same style as the rest of the church.
If you get a chance to explore the interior, make sure you do: the altar is quite impressive, in late Baroque style. There’s also an 18th century baptismal font.
As I have said before, there are six wineries in Serdiana, each producing excellent wines. The following are my favorite.
Serdiana is home to my favorite winery in Sardinia – Argiolas. This is also the second largest winery on the island in terms of production. They make Turriga, quite possibly the best red wine in Italy! This winery offers several experiences – from wine tasting to walks and picnic in the vineyards.
Wine tasting and other tours are available throughout the year, at the following hours:
Monday – Friday: at 11:00 am and 3:00 pm
Saturday: 10:30 am
In, September there is an extra tour on Wednesday and Thursday at 5:30 pm.
Reservation is necessary because availability is limited.
You should also read my post A Complete Guide To Visiting Argiolas Winery.
This family company works in wine production since 1950. From that year, the winery has been producing some of the best wines in Sardinia, both white and red wines. Since its first creation, the family estate has expanded and Pala now owns 8 estates scattered through Sardinia.
The founders of Audarya are actually members of the Pala family – you can totally see that producing wine runs in the family and they definitely do an excellent job.
What’s special about Audarya then? Their main idea is to unite tradition and innovation, and they definitely succeed with the production of their fantastic wines. Wine tasting experiences are also offered here, and I really recommend you visit. Make sure to try their Nuragus wine. I am not a fan of white normally, but theirs is excellent!
Wine tasting tours are offered from Monday to Friday, at 10:30 am or 3:30 pm, and on Saturdays at 10:30 am. Make sure to book your visit in advance.
Check out my post The Best Wineries In Sardinia.
Santa Maria di Sibiola Festival
Serdiana’s most festive event takes place on 8 September, and the highlight is the parade that takes starts at night in Santa Maria di Sibiola and goes through the main streets of the village, in celebration of Santa Maria of Sibiola, saint protector of Serdiana. At that time, locals parade in their traditional costumes, along with beautifully adorned traditional carts and following the simulacrum of the saint.
As a child, I absolutely loved riding on those carts. Nowadays, I simply observe as my cousins’ kids proudly parade in their costume. Make sure to linger along for the fair that takes place once the parade is over – it’s a chance to try a lot of Sardinian specialties.
Should you ever decide to visit the lovely Serdiana, you could also try to attend the Cantine Aperte festival, at the end of May. Cantine Aperte is is done in all of Sardinia, during different periods.
During the festival wineries open their doors to visitors, to let them taste their wines. The atmosphere is festive, wine is flowing and all the village museums and churches and places of interest are open then. Definitely an experience you wouldn’t want to miss!
Guided day trips from Cagliari to Serdiana
From Cagliari, there are many organized tours that will bring you to Serdiana and its great wine and food. All of these tours can be done in English, and the price range between the €50 and the €300 depending on the size of the group and the activities included.
For instance, there are wine tasting tours exclusively, in which you could be escorted by a sommelier, who would give you detailed explanations on the wines. Another interesting tour would involve the tasting of local cheese and wine, or local oil.
Make sure to check out this wine, cheese and olive oil tasting experience in Serdiana and nearby Dolianova.
How to get to Serdiana
Cagliari is the closest city to Serdiana. If you have a car, from the center of Cagliari, you need to take E25 towards the airport, then SS554 After few kilometers you need to turn left and enter SS387 towards Dolianova. Make sure to keep below the speed limit as there are speed cameras along the way, immediately after you turn left at the traffic light. It will take you approximately 25 minutes to get there.
If you prefer to use public transport, you could reach Serdiana by bus. ARST bus station (the main bus station in Cagliari) is located in Piazza Matteotti, close to the harbor and by La Marina and Stampace historic districts.
Various buses ply the route. Bus 108 will stop in Dolianova Corso Repubblica, from where you’ll have to walk to Serdiana (it’s just 10 minutes). Otherwise, you can take bus 9003 or bus 9118, which both make various stops in Serdiana, the last one at the Old Elementary School.
If you are staying in the area of Poetto in Cagliari, you can take bus 9126 which also makes various stops in Serdiana.
Where to stay
You can easily visit Serdiana on a day trip from Cagliari, but should you want to stay longer you can count on a few accommodation options.
Is Tanas House
This nice house offers free Wi-Fi and free private parking. Its rooms are equipped with air conditioning and TV. All rooms have private bathroom with hairdryer and toiletries. The entire structure is located on ground floor, making the facility accessible to people with disabilities.
For an extra fee you will have access to the outdoor pool, which is for adult guests only (there is no lifeguard on duty). You could also enjoy the beautiful garden. In the morning a fresh Italian breakfast is served.
Casa Serena is an entire apartment, and the perfect place if you prefer self catering and enjoy a little privacy. The apartment accommodates guests in two rooms, it has everything you could need during a vacation. The kitchen is equipped with a microwave and a fridge; and the bathroom is equipped with a shower and free toiletries.
This beautiful house offers the possibility to enjoy fresh air in its large balcony or in the terrace. You can also barbecue in the terrace.