Introduction of Sant’Antioco – Nuragic places to visit

Sant’Antioco is the fourth biggest Italian island after Sicily, Sardinia and Elba.

Great personalities of the history appreciated this island, such as Antoine-Claude Pasquin that during his visit in Sardinia he wrote:

“gulf of Palmas, the finest and the best in Sardinia, with its smooth, shimmering waves and its amphitheatre of montains”

or the Admiral Horatio Nelson that in a letter of 21st December 1803 to Rear Admiral – Thomas Troubridge wrote:

“we got into the Gulf of Palma, which is without exception the finest open Roadstead I ever saw”


The different historical periods can be divided into:

  • pre-nuragic (6000 – 2000 BC) and nuragic (2000 – 200 BC);
  • phoenician- punic (800 – 238 BC);
  • roman (238 BC – 456 AD);
  • medieval.

During these periods its name changed many times, for the Punics it was Solki, Molibodes Nesos for Greeks, Insula Plumbea or Sulci for Romans and finally Sant’Antioco.

Pre-nuragic and nuragic period

Around the island, there are about thirty nuraghi, giants’ grave and domus de janas (House of the Fairies).

This is the locations of Nuraghi:


Maps downloaded from the app: Nurnet Map

The most important Nuraghi of the island are:


Nuraghe S’Ega Marteddu – in Maladroxia

Tis nuraghe was built with limestone blocks and remains an imposing structure, currently dominating the beaches of Maladroxia. The decision to locate the nuraghe here was undoubtedly taken due to the ample views provided by the place and also by the presence of Rio Maladroxia which made the surrounding valleys fertile.

It is possible to reach Maladroxia with ARST bus. The bus stop where get in is in Via Nazionale, and it is possible to get out in the Maladroxia entrance.


17 minutes by car from Sant’Antioco



Nuraghe S’Ega Marteddu


Grutti’e Acqua

The Gruttiacqua complex covers a vast area and includes several monuments providing evidence of human settlement over several centuries. The hills are 137 and 113 metres high and are joined by a wide valley with a number of conspicuous rocky outcrops. The hills have the remains of several nuraghi which document the various phases of the Nuragic civilisation. You can visit a variety of monuments in the nuragic zone included sacred well, tanks, stone circles, a nuragic village, an apsidal hut, giants’ tomb and enjoy the splendid view westwards towards Cala di Mezzaluna and Calasapone, southwards towards Africa and northwards towards the Pian of Cannai and the nuraghi in the interior of the island.


Reconstruction of Nuraghe and village as they might have appeared in the past.


Nuragi holy well

grutti 1

As the Nuraghe might have appeared in the past.


grutti 2.jpg

How the Nuraghe holy well might have appeared in the past

grutti 3

How circular hut might have appeared in the past


Grutti’e Acqua


Giants’ grave


It is possible to reach Grutti’e Acqua with ARST bus until COA QUADDU and walk in the centre of the island. The bus stop where get in is in Via Nazionale, the bus pass through Maladroxia and go until COA QUADDU.


The best path is that one in blue. 1h 30 minutes.

By walking it is necessary to go next to the coast until “Torre Cannai”, a tower of Sabaudo period”, going on until Peonia Rosa and start a white countryside path until the nuragic area.


Archaeological museum Ferruccio Barreca

The museum covers the Sant’Antioco history from prenuragic until roman period.

Here the most famous evidence.


Nuragic bronze statuette.

It was smuggled from a Nuraghe and sold to Cleveland museum of art in the USA. Today is come back to Sant’Antioco.


It is possible to arrive at the museum by walking inside Sant’Antioco.



Location of Archeological Museum in Sant’Antioco



Next episode – phoenician- punic period!

Simone Mastrogiacomo






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