We are in the historical territory of Monteacuto , a highly flat territory that extends throughout the area of Ozieri and Oschiri. The only mountainous stretch is that of the Buddusò plateau and Mount Lerno in Pattada. In our itinerary we have analyzed a large area and for this article we have taken Oschiri as a reference point from which to start. This town of about 3200 inhabitants basically lives on agro-pastoral productions. The village is known throughout the island above all for an incredible specialty: the Panadas , puff pastry filled with meat and natural flavors, a delight. Before making the itinerary I asked myself, what to see in Oschiri 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 Oschiri
What to see in Oschiri and surroundings? This is a country that, besides being enriched by the strong agro-pastoral tradition, owes its beauty to the extraordinary landscape charm. Its historic center is a classic of Sardinian villages with cobbled, narrow streets that highlight the low and independent houses. Beyond this it is necessary to take note of the central square, of the parish of the blessed immaculate virgin. Not only that, our travel experience in Oschiri also made us appreciate the municipal forest characterized by pines tens of meters high. A very nice place to have a lunch break and a quiet walk admiring the flora of the site (cacti and endemic plants). Now let's move on to analyze the surroundings of Oschiri.
ROCK ALTAR OF SANTO STEFANO
R obert Bauval , do you know this name? If not, don't worry, here we are. This gentleman is none other than an internationally renowned writer and researcher expert on Ancient Egypt. Now you are wondering, what does Egypt have to do with it? Bauval went to this historical site near Oschiri to analyze 3 geometric shapes engraved on a granite stone which he immediately correlated (due to its shapes, size and distance between them) to the pyramids of Giza . In fact, only thanks to his studies and his convincing explanations, official science has recognized the pyramids of Giza perfectly aligned with the Orion belt. Extraordinary isn't it? I absolutely suggest you read Bauval's book Mystery of Orion .
Not just the Orion belt . We also talk about the mystery and charm of the rock altar of Santo Stefano which owes its name to the small church on the same site. Premise: it is unique in the Mediterranean . From the moment I arrived in front of the rock altar my brain was strangely jammed with an endless series of questions, with complicated answers. I looked at the figures and I wondered, why exactly these shapes? Why are they so deep and spaced out like this? But above all, why were they made?
The rock altar is nothing more than a granite bench on which a series of grooves with different geometric shapes have been engraved with a precise sequence: triangles, squares, circles but also dozens of cupels and crosses. In the same area there are several rocks steeped in charm and sacredness including hollows used for incubation rites. Other forms defined as the 'sundial' consisting of a circular hollow, surmounted by a step and surrounded by cupels. What is there to see in and around Oschiri? This beautiful site.
We have just visited a site that has an enormous historical and archaeological value, with uncertain dates (6000-3000 BC). The symbols in the rocks that cannot be explained are in fact without comparisons, linked to rituals and with profound sacred values, attributable to divine symbols or astronomy. Santo Stefano is an area with a still tangible sacredness given that it is supposed that the shamans gave birth or the rite of stripping was practiced before placing the corpse inside the domus. Bauval says "Pyramids are machines for converting a human to stellar body but they only work if properly activated." If the man of the future found a smartphone, devoid of electricity, in his hands it would be a simple piece of plastic, because obviously it could not work. Perhaps the pyramids themselves could be defined as stone devices to be activated by energy sources unknown to us. Who knows if the rock altar of Santo Stefano, with its unknown engravings can be considered as the pyramids. One day we will find out, perhaps.
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OUR LADY OF CASTRO
A church with great charm and visited by many tourists throughout the year. We know this and the elderly man who supervises has accompanied the church every day for many years. There were no "tourists" during our visit and we stopped a few minutes in the parking area to admire the splendid spectacle of the green valley below the church. The church owes its name to Castro ( castrum ), a Roman fort whose ruins are still found and which are the subject of archaeological excavations for recent discoveries in this area. What to see in Oschiri? A few kilometers away a fascinating church.
I am not a church expert but I can tell you that this has enormous charm and beauty despite being a simple country church. It is an example of how in medieval times the cathedrals did not have to have large dimensions, but also small, like this one. The church is about 800 years old and is structured with cut and squared red volcanic stones. The side part of the church is also very nice, it was a nice discovery, the landscape context and the historical and archaeological richness of the whole area adjacent to the church is also admirable.
This forest area is part of the regional state property and we could only admire its beauty only in the initial part and reachable by car. Within the regional site you can find more details on what may be the paths to follow, but I suppose that a guide is needed. I personally have not done any excursions but I was still struck by the splendid landscape that began to be glimpsed directly from the dirt road. I saw many holm oak trees so I immediately assumed that it was the main element of the vegetation within the forest. A nice glance even from the forest yard alone, with the Mannu river crossing part of the forest and creating spectacular reflection effects, with the right light clearly.
NURAGHE BURGHIDU AND OASIS STEPPE SARDE
Just take the road towards Chiaramonti and after about ten kilometers you take a small road that takes you near this fantastic nuraghe, in the middle of the oasis of the Sardinian steppes. To get a few steps from the nuraghe you should enter a private property by car, alternatively leave the car on the roadside and walk (it takes a maximum of 10 minutes). Arriving at the site we realized how majestic the central tower is, with its blocks of trachyte stone and its height of 15 meters it was certainly the central pivot of a more complex archaeological structure (it was probably composed of 4 other secondary towers) .
The Nuraghe Burghidu is not part of Oschiri but of Ozieri. The only flaw is that the Tholos cannot be visited internally since some time ago a part collapsed and is at high risk, in any case we are talking about one of the best conservation states. The same area where the nuraghe is located is of natural importance since we are talking about the oasis of the Sardinian steppes. This portion of land of about 8 hectares is a semi- natural grassland and the oasis was established to protect the important nesting sites of the Little Bustard . We certainly didn't see the big bird nearby but we certainly enjoyed the vast area from a landscape and panoramic point of view. Among other things, the site itself hosts many other species of particular interest such as the big eye, the white stork, the Sardinian buzzard and the Sardinian tree frog.
SA MESANA GHOST VILLAGE
There is a sign indicating Sa Mesana , located in the middle. We are talking about a place near the coghinas lake and several kilometers to the east. This simple house of houses is now considered a ghost area but we can guarantee you that long ago it was an active and full of life area with its few houses it housed a dozen people, just think that there was also an elementary school that served the people of the place and to the children who lived in the neighboring areas of the lake, such as the coghinas village . Over time, life has almost disappeared and it seems that people have fled their homes overnight, leaving behind objects and memories that time will destroy. Old TVs, beds with broken mattresses, a few pictures here and there, some rusty chairs, ironing board and dishes on the drainer, this is Sa Mesana.
I said that life has almost disappeared, in fact almost, because during our visit we were able to caress a beautiful and very nice dog who lives there with Tonino , a hermit who has decided to move from social life to stay in Sa Mesana, without a mobile phone, without TV, without electricity. We had a chat with him, he didn't tell us anything about his private life but he told us something about the place, about how we lived before and about the fact that he has a pasture of cows several kilometers away. A polite, intelligent, kind person who we admire for the courage to be able to live this way in a world where you know, social media and technology dictate their laws of survival. We said goodbye to Tonino and perhaps, one day, we will come back to see him even if, perhaps, he will not be very happy to see us again and talk to us again, he wants solitude, it is his way of life, it is his world. So what to see in the Oschiri area? Sa Mesana is one of the abandoned places where you will see tangible objects, of a lived life but at the same time the silence overhangs the area, a grave silence.
Our final day was in one of the most beautiful moments of the excursion day and we were able to admire a beautiful sunset. Lake Coghinas is the second largest reservoir in Sardinia and the largest in Northern Sardinia, it was created after the dam in the Limbara and therefore it is one of the many artificial lakes present on our island (the only natural lake is that of Baratz ). Clearly the importance of the dam lies essentially in its water supply function but also in the fact that it has a hydroelectric plant. The lake is however precious from a naturalistic point of view despite being artificial, in fact both the environmental characteristics and those of the basin itself have facilitated the life of many plant and animal species such as perch , largemouth bass, carp and Louisiana shrimp only for name a few.
What to see in Oschiri and surroundings, perhaps in the summer season? It is a popular destination for those who practice sport fishing but not only, it is perfect for Bird Watching and during the summer season canoe and kayak excursions are organized. Also to be considered is the incredible and majestic architectural work of Ponte Diana , a construction built in 1925 which was, above all in the past, the most important access road from Tempio towards the Logudoro and the Goceano. Today other alternative ways have perhaps diminished this aspect but it remains an invaluable asset to be treated and protected with great attention for many reasons including, in addition to practical utility, also the preservation of memory. Surely there is a lot to see in Oschiri and in the surrounding areas and one thing is sure, in case of a beautiful day the sunset will be fabulous, perhaps accompanied with an icy Ichnusa.
A collection of our experiences on the island!
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Here is who has chosen us to organize their holiday to discover the less touristy Sardinia !