Ancient Sardinia Tour
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Are you ready for another episode of our Ancient Sardinia Tour? Well, from Dorgali, in the north-east of the island, we drove down along the coast, then went again westwards passing through an incredible scenery and finally coming down towards Cagliari, Sardinia's main city.
The weather has changed and after two weeks of bright sunshine we are now struggling with strong wind and grey clouds. Well, it is autumn after all, isn't it?
Sardinian roads are great (much better than the Corsican ones we experienced last year), but you can meet similar obstacles here. Usually we don't meet anyone at the ancient sites, but sometimes there is an impredictable exception...

Osono giant's tombBack to our beloved prehistoric monuments. In the last few days we visited several giants' tombs: Osono, the well preserved Sa Domu 'e S'Orku and the twin Seleni I and Seleni II. As you can see in the photo, in front of the latter are two stones with three holes each: they were used to house small baethyles, often clear symbols of virility like the one we saw in the Dorgali archaeo museum (X rated image!). Anyway, other baethyles are not so ermbarassing, but sometimes extremely peculiar like the one in S. Pietro in Golgo, with a face carved on it.

Is Paras nuragheIn these days we also visited some of the biggest and most interesting nuraghi of Sardinia: the Unesco World heritage site Su Nuraxi at Barumini, surrounded by a large settlement, the Arrubiu one, still very high (his walls reach 14.40 m of the original height of 27-30 m) and Is Paras. Along our itinerary we also visited two beautiful sacred sites: Domu 'e Orxia, a huge temple dated to the II millennium BC (its name means 'the house of Orxia', a witch who was very revengeful for the killing of her children) and Santa Vittoria di Serri, a complex Nuragic sanctuary formed by several buildings (a great meeting point formed by various huts and rooms, a holy well, a rectangular temple, a kind of Court of Justice...).

Pranu Muteddu tomb IVBut the 'new entry' of our Ancient Sardinia Tour are the standing stones. In these days we have visited some astonishing sites. From the two standing stones in front of the S'Ortali 'e Su Monte giants' tomb to the pillars of Perdalonga (three stones from 2.6 to 3.3 m in height perfectly aligned north-south and a fourth 4 m tall one some metres away). From the ones aligned near the stone circle of Is Cirquittus to the enigmatric row of Corte Noa. But speaking of alignments, the most striking one is the one at Pranu Muteddu, north of Cagliari, where 18 standing stones were erected on a line in a sacred area near other pairs and single standing stones, domus de janas and tombs.

Tamadili menhir-statueAll these standing stones were carefully worked in order to look roughly antropomorphic, but we could also appreciate a fascinating Sardinian evolution of them: the so called "menhir-statues", ogival monoliths with carved noses and eyebrows, decorated later also with breasts (the female ones) or weapons (the male ones). There is a very interesting little museum about them in the village of Laconi. There, you can admire about forty of these monoliths, found in the area around the village and you can make a multimedia travel in Prehistory through the museum's computers. A must for every megalithic fan. Also because the menhir-statues are very beautiful in their simplicity, basic and incredibly modern at the same time.
Particularly mysterious for us is the so called 'capovolto' (upside down man), a kind of trident-shaped figure cut on many of these monoliths. But if you want to know more about these extraordinary monuments, have a look at the interview we made to Giorgio Murru, the archaeologist responsible for the museum of Laconi.

Now it is time to go to bed. We are south of Cagliari, not far from the sea and the island of Sant'Antioco. We are resting in a village called Giba, in a nice and inexpensive inn where we had a splendid and gigantic dinner (they served us 12 different starters!). It is called "Rosella" and we warmly suggest it to everyone passing here: as they say on their cards, it is a true "Gastronomic clinic with accomodation".

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