Museo Antiquarium Arborense
Queen Eleonora's Statue
Piazza Eleonora d'Arborea became the city's central square through 19th-century urban reforms. Today it is a quiet spot where you can...
Piazza Eleonora d’Arborea & Around
Piazza Eleonora d’Arborea, Oristano’s elegant outdoor drawing room, sits at the southern end of pedestrianised Corso Umberto I. An...
Chiesa di San Francesco
This neoclassical church was designed by the Cagliari architect, Gaetano Cima (1805–78). Its famous 14th-century wooden sculpture, the...
The historic centre is full of bars and cafes but this is one of the most popular. With its piazza seating and relaxing music, it’s a...
Antica Trattoria del Teatro
This refined and intimate centro storico restaurant is a good place to push the boat out and try something different. Something like...
Lonely Planet review
Housed in a smart palazzo, Oristano’s sole museum boasts one of the island’s major archaeological collections. The permanent exhibition, which includes a scale model of 4th-century Tharros, is displayed on the upper floor. There are prehistoric finds from the Sinis Peninsula, including obsidian and flint spearheads and axes, bones and a smattering of jewellery. More interesting is the stash of finds from Carthaginian and Roman Tharros. Ceramics predominate, but also on show are glassware, oil lamps and amphorae, and a range of pots, plates and cups.
In a small side room off the main hall is a small collection of retabli (painted altar pieces) and a model of Oristano in its 13th-century prime. One series of panels, the Retablo del Santo Cristo (1533), by the workshop of Pietro Cavaro, depicts a group of apparently beatific saints. But take a closer look and you’ll see they all sport the instruments of their gory tortures slicing through their heads, necks and hearts.