SASSARI provincial capital of medieval origin, with a lively and imaginative Cathedral in Spanish Colonial style with fine Gothic interior (inside, Madonna by 14° century Florentine artist); the Romanesque church of Santa Maria di Betlem with an elegant 13° century fountain in the cloister.
The National Museum houses a rich archaeological collection and a Picture Gallery with works by Sardinian and Tuscan Primitives, a Madonna by Bartolomeo Vivarini, another by the Flemish painter Mabuse and some 1711, century canvases including a St. Anne by Stanzione.
We now set off again for Alghero, making a long detour in the environs to see some magnificent architecture, the Abbey of the Santissima Trinita (16.5 km. - 10 mi. from Sassari) in a lonely setting full of colour and charm, a wonderful example of the Pisan Romanesque style; in the interior, frescoes by a 13th century painter from Latium.
We now continue to climb as far as Ardara and the elegant Lombard Romanesque church of Santa Maria del Regno, comprising nave and two aisles, plain and solemn with an altarpiece by a late Gothic painter. Running through the hills for 13 km. (8 mi.) we reach State Highway SS 131 which we take to Torralba, after which comes the junction with SS 131 bis; close by are two of the most imposing and famous nuraghi, that of S. Antine and that called Oes (Ox), o far particularly striking shape.
We now take SS 131 bis for Alghero; near the town of Thiesi is Borutta with a fine Pisan Romanesque church, San Pietro di Sorres (12th century). Passing through Ittiri, another 16 km. (10 mi.) brings us to ALGHERO.