We are in the historical territory of Villanova , an area with a strong historical and naturalistic impact with various oases, waterfalls and forests (so much so that it is the area of Sardinia where hunting is practiced the most). In our itinerary we have analyzed a large area and the area of Villanova Monteleone is of great interest from every point of view, from the naturalistic to that of tradition and craftsmanship. We made two different excursions, one to analyze Villanova Monteleone and the part towards Montresta and Padria, the other instead to discover the beauties of Monteleone Roccadoria (read the article) , the lake and some small villages. In this article I describe what to see in Villanova Monteleone and surroundings.
What to see in Villanova Monteleone
This small village has had a magnificent history and currently has a better future life than the cousins of Monteleone Roccadoria. Villanova Monteleone was the battlefield of numerous struggles over the centuries, starting from 1200 AD. During the wars between Doria and Aragonese it went into decline when it recovered thanks to the inhabitants of Monteleone Roccadoria who moved there. It is easy to get around in this village between climbs, descents, stairways and narrow streets. Inside the village we recommend to see the parish of San Leonardo , patron saint of Villanova Monteleone and the beautiful and historic church of Our Lady of Interrios , located 3 km from the village. Don't forget to take a nice photo of the beautiful staircase located in the center of Villanova. If you pass in the area in a hot period, don't worry, there will be some drinking water fountains in the surroundings, it will be normal to see locals filling 25-liter bottles and bins (water is good and free, better than that?).
NECROPOLIS OF PUTTU CODINU
Limestone rocks, entrances and an interior with a lot of history to tell. necropolis of Puttu Codinu are domus de janas and can be distinguished in 2 separate areas: one with 2 tombs and the other with 8 tombs. Among all the cells we must make known to the tomb number 8 which externally presents 2 mehir. Internally it is characterized by an anteroom, the main cell and the side rooms where the dead were placed. The anteroom 'simulates' a roof on the ceiling and the main cell recalls the double sloping roof with beam and joists that was typical of huts. We also noticed other fascinating symbols such as the " false door " typical of the necropolis that represents the afterlife. The site is well preserved and cared for in every aspect. Another site of interest and a few kilometers from Villanova Monteleone is the nuragic complex of Appiu , dating back to the Iron Age (about 900 BC) and formed by a trilobed nuraghe with a village of about 200 huts and tombs of giants with two dolmens. It has just been taken by a cooperative and we look forward to visiting it to understand how it is preserved.
SANTA MARIA DI CUROS CHURCH
Immersed in absolute silence and with the green vegetation that dominates it, over the decades the ruin of this church sees only sheep, shepherds and occasionally some explorers. We went to visit the easily accessible site by parking the car in a small open space along the road to Monteleone Roccadoria from Villanova. It is thought that the church of Santa Maria di Curos was built around 1200 but there are no official documents about it. It is mentioned (through a text of 1440) a village of Curos now abandoned that could be linked to the church. If you want to go into nature, take a leap, the path is traced but there are no indications. We are sure that with a minimum of sense of direction you will be able to see a historical monument and go back in time for a few minutes. In addition to the Nuragic sites, there is also a bit of Romanesque history to see in Villanova Monteleone and its surroundings.
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MONTE MINERVA OASIS
The historical region to which Villanova Monteleone belongs is precisely the Villanova, but adjacent to one of the historical regions with the greatest geological evidence of our territory, the Meilogu . This means that also in Villanova there are some testimonies regarding the history of the geology of the Sardinian territory in the form of extinct volcanoes, solidified lava areas and real volcanic cones. This is the case with the Monte Minerva , a spectacular bastion with a flat top that derives from a volcano, surrounded by a forest and characterized by a beautiful natural landscape with a network of paths. The oasis of monte minerva is also of considerable importance for some birds of prey that use the high cliffs as a habitat, perfect for nesting. From the mountain plateau it is also possible to have a magnificent view of Lake Temo , of Monteleone Roccadoria , of the landscape below as far as Bosa and the sea, the show is guaranteed.
Inside the forest, open to everyone and managed by the forestry agency of Villanova Monteleone, there is also a historical site of considerable importance, a domus de janas easily reachable after a 10-minute walk from the Oasis car park. Eight tombs immersed in dense vegetation , one of these has the entrance surmounted by a bas-relief with two bovine horns, probably a representation of the god of fertility. An advice? In Villanova Monteleone and its surroundings there are several areas of naturalistic and historical interest to see, the oasis of Monte Minerva is one of these, between a picnic and another, away from everyday stress and immersed in nature.
PADRIA AND THE PALATTU CASTLE
Surely in the surroundings you can discover other historical testimonies of considerable interest. In fact, do not forget to visit the castle of Palattu in case you are in the areas of Padria . The site demonstrates, through a series of testimonies, how the place was already inhabited in the Nuragic era, despite this the most consistent traces are to be brought back to the Punic age. It is possible to see a wall bastion with volcanic stones that probably were part of a Phoenician-Punic fortress. Next to this fortification, the baronial palace of the De Ferrera family was built, a strong house that gave its name to the entire site, precisely on Palattu.
CANYON AND SANTALE WATERFALL
Right in the municipality of Padria and a few kilometers from Villanova Monteleone there is an area of incredible geological and naturalistic value, the canyon and the waterfall of Su Entale . The Rio Sentale is one of the tributaries of the Temo river and before entering the major river it crosses a beautiful and evocative canyon. This was formed millions of years ago by creating waterfalls and trekking scenarios in the midst of nature. The descent to the waterfall is quite easy and we went in a period of little water (despite this you can see the small waterfall). Surely in Spring it is wonderful. What gives the eye, from below, is the beautiful canyon, which creates a suggestive landscape between vegetation, water and an endemic fauna to be respected. The path is traced only through the stone men, it is not difficult to get there, just hear the sound of the waterfalls, you will understand that you are immersed in nature.
A collection of our experiences on the island!
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