Nuragic monuments of Sardinia

Photo by Astraftis.

Nuragic monuments of Sardinia is part of the Tentative list of Italy in order to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List. It is a proposed extension of Su Nuraxi di Barumini WHS.

The Nuragic monuments of Sardinia comprise 31 proto-historic buildings. They are testimonies to the Nuragic civilization, which flourished on the island between the 17th and 6th centuries B.C.

Map of Nuragic monuments of Sardinia

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The coordinates shown for all tentative sites were produced as a community effort. They are not official and may change on inscription.

Community Reviews

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Ilya Burlak

USA - 07-Oct-23 -

Nuragic monuments of Sardinia (T) by Ilya Burlak

I visited 4 of this serial site locations in August-September of 2023 on a self-driven tour around Sardinia, in addition to the already inscribed Su Nuraxi di Barumini.

Santu Antine was one nuraghe that I would call the most impressive, even more so than Su Nuraxi. Unlike the latter, Santu Antine's defined interior spaces actually allow proper exploration of the main structure, including several fairly walkable covered passages. It is hard to imagine that it would be overlooked for inclusion when and if the decision to extend comes along. It is also more photogenic, IMHO.

Palmavera is significantly more compact in its core, but its outer precincts are not far behind those at Su Nuraxi. There are a couple of uncommon surviving artifacts on the grounds, such as a sandstone nuraghe "model" on a circular altar and a stone chief's seat. Depending on how many locations are selected to be included on the extension list, it is questionable if it will make the cut.

Parco Archeologico Santa Cristina is a larger nuraghe+. Its central part is well-preserved remnants of a Christian village, centered on the church built on this site around 1200 CE. The nuraghe proper is located in a surprisingly wooded area a couple of hundred meters beyond the village. The central fortress here consists of a single truncated tower, while the rest has more of a feel of an archaeological dig, with only a few defined structure outlines. There is another roofed space that can be entered, however - a "barn".

Separated from the nuraghe by the aforementioned village - about half a kilometer away - is the sacred well temple; the triangular chiseled opening in the ground is clearly the killer feature of the park. I don't think the nuraghe is representative enough for the inclusion on the WH extension, but the well may further its case.

Finally, Sant'Anastasia is technically just a small archaeological site excavated around an 11th-century church. There is no nuraghe fortress/tower here. On maps, the place is called <em>Pozzo Sacro di Sant'Anastasia</em> - the sacred well - because its key feature beyond the church is also the Nuragic well temple, smaller, more ancient-looking, and with surprisingly a larger water reservoir than its counterpart at Santa Cristina. I doubt that Sant'Anastasia will make it on the final list of the WH extension, but I do know many other serial site locations that feel unworthy, so who knows.

We picked these sites due to their proximity to either our bases in Sardinia or our driving routes. Each requires between thirty minutes and an hour to see. There are no good public transportation options to reach them, so driving is required. At all these sites, guided tour options exist, but you can explore on your own, with the information provided either via a phone app, a booklet, a set of information stands, or sometimes by the otherwise unoccupied attendant.

Read more from Ilya Burlak here.


Czechia - 17-Nov-21 -

Nuragic monuments of Sardinia (T) by Matejicek

The addition of the Nuragic monumets of Sardinia with 31 components to the TWHS list of Italy in November 2021 was no surprise. It can be taken as an extension of the Su Nuraxi di Barumini WHS, which was inscribed in 1997. Extensions, or better said very extensive extensions - in this case from 1 to 31, might be controversial and contra-productive. However, this is not the case, in my opinion. From the scientific point of view, the original single component has been inscribed under criteria i, iii, iv, while the serial TWHS was proposed under iii, iv, v. Thus, the OUV will be (slightly) changed. The justification is based on 20 years of new excavations and findings. Furthermore, the serial nomination has ambitions to encompass all the aspects of the bronze-age Nuragic culture of Sardinia. It means that the original OUV will be enriched after the possible extension.

I visited only one component of the series in October 2017: No.22 Nuraghe Arrubiu - Orroli, which is located on the mountainous plateau in the southern part of Sardinia. I have very nice memories to the visit. The site was recommended to us by the stuff of the visitor center of Pranu Muttedu (another TWHS) as one of the finest archeologicel site of Sardinia. Nuraghe Arrubiu is quite remote but beautiful place (we went by a rent car), however, parking lot and quite big visitor center is well prepared for tourists, but there were only few other visitors in October. The ruins of the original Nuraghe is quite big and it consists of 5 towers surrounded by fortifications. The reconstructed appearance of the "castle" shown in the visitor center looked very monumental with around 25 m high central tower. Now it is lower because of a partial collapse. Despite that, the site is still interesting to explore and the main constructions are still well preserved.

One can have objections if the extension is really necessary and if the original Nuraghe would be enough. I would say that I have no problem with possible extension in this case. All the Nuragic structures have unifying and even for layman easily recognizable style. From the practical point of view, it is enough to visit a few of them to have an idea what Nuraghes are about. Now, you need to travel to the fairly remote component in Barumini for ticking off the Nuragic WHS...

Together with Domus da Janas pre-Nuragic TWHS, the serial Nuragic T-site would be valuable addition to the long WHS list of Italy.

Full Name
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia
Extension of
Su Nuraxi di Barumini WHS
Archaeological site - Prehistoric
2021 Added to Tentative List

The site has 31 locations

Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Giant’s Tomb of Coddu Ecchju - Arzachena (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Maiori - Tempio (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Well Temple of Predio Canopoli - Perfugas (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Palmavera - Alghero (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of Romanzesu - Bitti (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Santu Antine -Torralba (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe and village of Appiu - Villanova Monteleone (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sacred well of Su Tempiesu - Orune (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Village of Serra Orrios - Dorgali (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Orolo - Bortigali (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of Sa Sedda ’e Sos Carros - Oliena (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Losa - Abbasanta (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Giant’s Tomb of Madau - Fonni (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of Santa Cristina - Paulilatino (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of S’Arcu ’e is Forros - Villagrande Strisaili (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Necropolis of Monte Prama - Cabras (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Is Paras - Isili (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Megaron of Domu de Orgia - Esterzili (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghi Su Nuraxi and Casa Zapata of Barumini (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of Santa Vittoria - Serri (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Giant’s Tomb of Sa Domu ’e s’Orku - Siddi (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Arrubiu - Orroli (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Cuccurada - Mogoro (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Genna Maria - Villanovaforru (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Su Mulinu - Villanovafranca (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Sanctuary of Sant’Anastasia - Sardara (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Well Temple of Funtana Coberta - Ballao (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Seruci - Gonnesa (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Giant’s Tomb of Is Concias - Quartucciu (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Diana di Quartu Sant’Elena (T)
Nuragic monuments of Sardinia: Nuraghe Arresi - Sant’Anna Arresi (T)
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