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The Iglesiente

L'Iglesiente Certainly the whole region, whose name today is Iglesiente, has always lived in relation to the mines, since the Nuraghic age and since the exploitation in Punic and Roman age, by the slaves' work and that one of condemned people. After the crisis of the high medieval age, the Pisans understood the richness of the subsoil and to give so a new impulse to the mining production. After a new decline during the Spanish domination, because of the richer American mines, there was a great mining boom, when tens of mines were opened on the mountains and in the hills. Today these places seem ghostly; distant from any inhabited centre, in wild and evocative places, neglected installations go into ruin.

After having routed the Cixerri plain, the itinerary arrives at Iglesias, a town that presents motives of historical and artistic interest. After being penetrated into the Iglesiante mountains that offer very fascinating panoramic views, the itinerary finishes on the long beach of Buggerru.

Road Map

From Cagliari take the 130 government street, in direction of Assemini-Iglesias. Assemini is an important handicraft production centre, where wood, iron beaten, pots, pitchers of terracotta and ceramics are manufactured.

Continuing along the 130 government street you pass for Villa Speciosa with its small gracious Romanic church of San Platano of the 12th century. The road continues in a plain in which appears the rocky cone with the ruins of the Acquafredda castle. We are at Siliqua, at the beginning of the Cixerri valley.

The town is situated at the feet of the Marganai limy bulky. It was founded by the Pisans in the 12th century, today there are few traces of the glorious past.

At the entrance of Domusnovas a signal indicates the direction for San Giovanni's cave. Dug by the torrent, it is long 850 metres and you can route it by car on a paved road... At half route, on the left, the cave gets on for another kilometre into the mountain and it is easily pass through it on foot.

Returned on the government street, after 4 Km we arrive at Villamassargia. Its historical attractions are some churches and the castle of Gioiosa Guardia on the east hill of the town.

Now considered a new point of reference for the Sulcis-Iglesiente province, Inglesias preserves in part the intact installation of the old centre founded and organized by the Pisans, closed by a ring of walls with four doors and connected with the near mining zones and the Cixerry valley.

Leaving Iglesias on the Via Cattaneo you immediately arrive at the imposing and evocative complex of Monteponi lead-zinciferous mine. Continuing on the road we see a landscape of split mountains marked by holes in the wells. On the left there is the complex of San Giovanni's mine. Turning on to Nebida you immediately arrive at a nice beach with a breathtaking panorama. Protacting, the road climbs up the coast precipice in a nice mountainous landscape.

Out from Iglesias in the direction of Fluminimaggiore, the road passes near the artificial Corsi lake for the irrigation of the Cixerry valley. Carrying on in a fine mountain landscape with lollipops forests and desolated mines, we arrive at the sacred ruins of Antas temple. It is a magnificent Punic-Roman temple.

Along the Rio Antas valley, there are two beauty caves on the mountains, one is called od Su Mannau, 7 Km long and routed by a river, and the one of San Pietro with nice concretions. Don't miss it.

Left Fluminimaggiore we reach Buggerru. The coast has some fascinating resorts and the panorama opens on the sea with its intense blue colour.

Continuing towards Arbus, reachable after about 20 Km in a very evocative landscape of high hills, we return to Cagliari.