There are no similar opinions in the town's name origins, but according to the most accepted theory, it derives from the Greek word "bainos" (a term that indicates the presence of a furnace for melting metals or limestone, a facility not widespread in the area at the time). Municipality in the province of Ogliastra, located in the central-eastern Sardinia, not far from Cala Luna, the territories include, in addition to the main centre, located on a high ground and made unique by a quaint old town, the small village of Santa Maria Navarrese, which overlooks the Gulf of Arbatax. The vast area of Baunei is particular for the presence of steep walls of rock, once crossed by streams, forming canyons, cliffs and chasms. The environment offers the possibility to hike along numerous paths in direct contact with the surrounding nature, particularly wild here, and at the same time, the chance to enjoy the unique beaches, where the depths of the sea reflect stunning colors.
The finds in the cave at Cala Luna attest the presence of a settlement since the Neolithic period. The first document, that reports the existence of the town, dates back to the beginning of the XIV century, a period in which Baunei was part of the territories that belonged to the Parish of Ogliastra. The municipal area was enlarged with the inclusion in it of the villages of Osono and Eltili, while in the early XVII century the lands became part of the Marquisate of the Centelles and of the Osorio. In 1806, Baunei became part of the province of Tortoli, then it was assigned to the province of Nuoro, until in 2005 it was finally included in the province of Ogliastra.
- the Parish Church of San Nicola di Bari, located in the main historic center, which was built in the XVII century and later restored. It is surmounted by a dome and features a beautiful façade and portal;
- the Church of Santa Maria, in the hamlet of the same name, dates back to the XI century and is the first Marian shrine of Sardinia. It was built by the Princess of Navarre to thank the Virgin for saving her from a shipwreck. It features a gabled façade of great simplicity, three naves, covered with wooden beams and is flanked by a Bell Tower. Inside is preserved a Shrine of the XI century, which returned to the light after recent renovations;
- the Church of San Pietro in Golgo, which features a very simple façade topped by a belfry;
- the Watchtower of the Saracens in the village of Santa Maria Navarrese, built by the Spanish in the XVIII century to defend the coast from pirates. It has a conical shape;
- the Historical Museum of Ethnography.
- the Nuragic settlements.