Let’s discover a mysterious Sardinia, among millenary caves, abandoned castles and the remains of ancient civilizations.
Supernatural forces, ghosts and unlikely stories are the secrets of the most fascinating places on the island.
Can we really speak about a mysterious Sardinia? Yes!
We know that the island is one of the most appreciated Italian tourist destinations. And – let’s face it- its success depends largely on the wonderful beaches and the crystal clear sea.
However, Sardinia has much to offer. There are places, both along the coast and inland, that hide stories that mix truth and legend. Some of these stories may enchant you. Others could make you shiver. Other ones leave doubts that perhaps will not find an answer.
And it’s not all about archaeological sites!
There is much more to explore. There are plenty of mysterious places that show the most authentic soul of the land and its people.
So, let’s discover some of them!
Mysterious Sardinia: top 5 best places to visit
1 The Aias nuraghe
We cannot help starting our tour of Mysterious Sardinia from the nuraghi.
The nuraghi are Bronze Age stone towers that served as stronghold and dwelling. They can be found all over the island, but one is particularly special. It is the Aias nuraghe, near Abbasanta.
Around the summer solstice, for about a week, at noon, the sunlight enters through the opening on the roof and illuminates the interior of the nuraghe. The thing is that this light seems to have supernatural characteristics. In fact, people say that if you take a photo, it would look like a negative. However, this phenomenon occurs only during the summer solstice period. In the rest of the year, the photo would be absolutely normal.
A legend says that a man was photographed inside the nuraghe and the photo showed not only his skeleton but even the presence of a cancer. Therefore, the Aias nuraghe seems to function as an X-ray chamber, thanks to the alleged radiation of which the ancients were evidently aware.
Could it be true?
2 The Castle of Medusa
The ruins of the Castle of Medusa are located almost in the precise center of Sardinia, in an atypical position. In fact, fortresses were generally built on heights, but this castle is in a basin surrounded by impervious hills and gorges that make it almost inaccessible. In short, more than a castle to dominate the world, it seems like a refuge for hiding.
And, indeed, little is known about its history.
Probably the first building dates back to the 4th-5th century AD, but it went under changes several times. What is certain is that in 1860 it was described as the home of ghosts and demons.
Legends say that the African Phorco, who proclaimed himself king of Sardinia, built it. When he died, he left it to his daughter Medusa. When she also died, she left it to the devil.
People also say that it hides an incredible treasure, but it is protected by the magheddas flies which, however, are locked in a chest. A mystery in the mystery…
3 The old house of Zuanna Surda
Another mysterious – and disturbing – place is suggested by the Sardinian journalist and blogger Angela Corrias.
Near the city of Ghilarza there is a village with an old abandoned house, which in the past was inhabited by Zuanna Surda, that is , Joanne the Deaf.
Every night – and sometimes even during the day – the loud noise of marching soldiers came from the woman’s house. As she was deaf, she used to just notice her furnishings shaking with vibrations, while her children and neighbors distinctly heard the noise. One day, her daughter saw the ghosts of these soldiers and from her description people understood that they were German. At that point, the elders remembered that the village had hosted a German camp during the Second World War.
Despite numerous attempts by the parish priest to put an end to the spell, the ghost soldiers continued to march. The house was thus abandoned and still remains empty because no one wants to live there.
Would you try to spend a night there?
4 The Grotto of Neptune
More than mysterious Sardinia, in this case we should talk about surreal Sardinia.
Near Alghero is the Grotta di Nettuno and, like all karst caves, it can only leave you speechless.
Hidden among cliffs overlooking the sea, reachable only by an endless staircase, the cave really looks like the entrance to a world inaccessible to mere mortals.
Underground there are 2.5 km of dark tunnels and narrow passages. And then majestic halls covered with stalactites and rock formations that resemble Christmas trees and church organs. Not to mention the presence of one of the largest salt lakes in Europe!
The mystery of Neptune’s Grotto is not that of human history or folklore. On the contrary, it is that of nature, of geological eras, of the slow passing of time of which we are not aware but that always amaze us.
5 The tiny Kingdom of Tavolara
We finish our tour with a place that is more curious than mysterious.
In fact, did you know that the island of Tavolara was the smallest kingdom in the world?
Long story short, at the end of the 1700s a man, Giuseppe Bertoleoni, settled on the inhabited island with his family. Then, in 1815 Bertoleoni saved Gioacchino Murat, King of Naples, from a storm and the King nicknamed him the “Lord of Tavolara”. A few years later, the King of Sardinia, Carlo Alberto of Savoy, went on the island and Bertoleoni presented himself as “King of Tavolara“. King Carlo Alberto had such a good stay on the Tavolara that promised Bertoleoni to officially appoint him sovereign of the island. And he kept his promise, as evidenced by the documents at the Prefecture of Sassari.
Thus was born the kingdom of Tavolara.
Still today, in Buckingham Palace, in the hall of the coats of arms, there is also that of the small Sardinian one.
Another curious story concerns the shape of the island.
The Tavolara is in fact a small mountain which profile resembles that of a ship. But not just any ship: the one that the Phaeacians gave to Ulysses and that Poseidon petrified as a punishment.
Do you want to visit these mysterious places in Sardinia? Book a stay at Palazzo Doglio, Cagliari.