The historical region in question is the Marghine (in general it is part of the Logudoro) which we can insert within the Nuorese context which holds an environmental, archaeological and cultural heritage of great value and value. In our itinerary we have analyzed a large area and for this article we have taken as a reference point from which to start Bolotana , a town of about 2200 inhabitants located in a frightening environmental context, nestled between the Marghine mountains and 2 huge forests full of springs which feed the Tirso river , adjacent to the village. Before making the itinerary I asked myself, what to see in Bolotana and especially in the surrounding areas? Many answers, many fascinating places and many emotions told in this article made available to everyone.
What to see in Bolotana
ESTATE FATHER MANNU
What to see in Bolotana and surroundings? Do you happen to know Benjamin Piercy ? Well, I'm going to tell you an absolutely interesting story. Welsh engineer, known for having built the railway network in Sardinia and for creating some towns and villages on the island. Among these Chilivani (it was probably named in honor of the Indian lover, Tal Kilivan). Piercy settled on the island in 1870 to start directing the works of the railway network and then bought various land in the Bonorva and Bolotana areas. Construction of the Villa Piercy (I'll tell you about it with dedicated insights) as well as other artifacts in the neighboring Padru Mannu estate. In this article, in fact, I will talk about what was and is in Father Mannu, in one of Piercy's estates.
While the whole area was focused on agriculture, Piercy's intuition and ingenuity led to the construction of a very modern dairy in the land of Padre Mannu, equipped with innovative English machinery. Imagine how 120 years ago milk and cheeses were transported to Cagliari and then traded on a large scale. They were the first signs of the beginning of an empire. Horse breeding and beer production also accompanied this activity. The labor, increasingly in demand, was mainly local and Piercy for this reason also had housing built for the families of the workers. It was almost a small village with even a small church.
Life in this area was active and continued even after the sudden death of Piercy (1888) but only until the death of Piercy junior in 1943. Since then the first conflicts with the peasants of the nearby areas began and some portions of land were, after 10 years, divided between some private individuals from Bolotana and Bonorva. The end was near, which happened in 1965. Currently, this site only tells about silence, loneliness, frost. Our visit Padre Mannu showed us only a few dilapidated buildings on which to take pictures , with the memory that years ago all this could really have been the starting point for a large village. The two hunting dogs , standing at the entrance gate, seem happy and proud to guard one of the estates of an intelligent entrepreneur and engineer. What to see in Bolotana and surroundings? The history, the ingenuity and what remains of one of Piercy's land, for many also considered a benefactor.
SANTA MARIA DE SAUCCU
We made an incredible and wonderful discovery and all in a completely random way. We were nearby and we thought we would go and have a look at the church of Santa Maria De Sauccu , a small and characteristic sanctuary dedicated to the Madonna. We would not have expected, however, that the sanctuary was located within a real village. Welcome to Santa Maria de Sauccu, which traces its origins back to the Middle Ages.
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Autumn, a wonderful time to visit this beautiful village that belongs to the municipality of Bolotana and is alive during the celebrations of Santa Mariedda. This statue is carried in procession in September from Bolotana to the small village church. During the days of the festivities the noveranti and the pilgrims stay in the fifty small houses (called Muristenes) present in the village and around the church. Well, the whole thing is gorgeous. Small clean, tidy Muristenes , surrounded by greenery and in a wonderful landscape context, the classic mountain panorama is nearby. Just think that in ancient times they were exclusive lodgings for monks , for other scholars they were also spaces dedicated to merchants. They differ from lollas which are instead lodgings generally occupied by street vendors during religious events. So what to see in Bolotana and its surroundings? Definitely this beautiful medieval village.
AGORA 'OF THE TAXES
We are always in Badde Salighes means valley of the willows) and in the portion of land between the estates of Padre mannu and the majestic and fascinating Villa Piercy there is a park, it is called Agorà dei Tassi . In this park we can find indigenous plants that live peacefully with important exotic plants from Piercy in the late 1800s. (They used to travel a lot, especially in India). Why is this site popular? For rates, indeed especially for the rate . Here we could see with our own eyes the oldest badger in Sardinia but not only, it is one of the oldest in Europe with its 1200 years and a trunk diameter of almost 8 meters. Crazy right? To know the age of the rate, a mathematical calculation must be made that takes into account the circumference of the tree and the rings. But be careful, each herbaceous plant has particular characteristics and therefore the calculation method is not unique and the same for all species.
Another peculiarity of the badger is its common name, that is "Tree of Death". Just to clarify the danger, the leaves and seeds of the Taxus baccata contain in fact a toxic substance, the taxin which causes breathing difficulties, heart problems, tremors, nausea, vomiting and, in large doses, can lead to coma and death. Knowing something of botany, in fact, we do not explain how in many public gardens, frequented by children, the Municipality put so many poisonous species such as badger and oleander . In any case, we have only looked and admired the beauty of a tree that in so many years has seen everything pass through those areas, nature and history, together. Are you wondering what to see in Bolotana and its surroundings? Do not forget, Agora dei Tassi.
A collection of our experiences on the island!
📝 Esperti della Sardegna
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Here is who has chosen us to organize their holiday to discover the less touristy Sardinia !