Last stage of our tour (sigh!).
First, a glance to the mysterious Messapian civilization, with its cities
surrounded by gigantic walls and then an interesting visit to the nice
Maglie museum. Other standing stones on our way, and at the end a couple
of striking dolmens near Taranto. They were fenced and we had to find
a gap to enter: the area should have been "improved", but it
was simply closed to the public.
The weather was splendid,
so we went around and visited a deluge of interesting megalithic monuments
(5 dolmens and 20 standing stones).
But also some Byzantine and medieval churches with their ancient frescoes,
included the cathedral of Otranto and its 600 square-meter outstanding
mosaic. And we tasted some delicious local food... Follow us and you'll
South of Lecce there is the
highest concentration of Italian megalithic sites. In the past there may
have been several hundreds, but many of them have been destroyed. Thanks
to the invaluable help of Toti Calò, our Apulian megalithic expert,
we managed to visit a great deal of the surviving sites. The Apulian dolmens
are shorter compared to the French and British ones, while the standing
stones are thinner and squared.
Deep in the heart of Apulia,
we have visited an interesting (and very hard to find) alignment of standing
stones. Then, a change of time: the breathtaking Castel del Monte is wating
since 1250 AD that someone could solve its many enigmas. The following
day, we started from the beautiful Bitonto cathedral, visited more standing
stones on our way south and ended with a splendid dolmen.
Before visiting the very
first megalithic monuments of Apulia, we have spent some time discovering
romanesque cathedrals, local archaeological museums and ancient battlefields.
Then, we started the dreadful search for the dolmens and standing stones:
no road signs, no maps and even local people often don't know much about
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