A trek into a secret hidden civilization in the Sardinian mountains

(Tiscali, Sardinia)  — If you’ve ever seen the old movie Lost Horizon, you’d think hidden ancient civilizations are a thing of fiction. But the long-abandoned Tiscali nuraghi settlement is just such a magical place.  Invisible from the rest of the world for hundreds of years until it was rediscovered in the 1900s, this ancient civilization was a whole village tucked into a deep caldera that sinks into the ground on top of a mouton ridge, accessible only by a hidden crevasse that cuts through the rock, then descends hundreds of feet into the caldera.  Protected there, a whole community thrived, with animals, orchards, olive trees and a totally isolated prehistoric society. It is just indescribable. And once you cut down through the trails, see the centuries old charred rock from fireplaces, you can understand why people lived here, totally protected from the wild wooly outside world.

You can only reach Tiscali by slipping through a narrow slit on the mountains, then descend several hundred feet to the ancient settlement.


It’s hard to tell the scale in these pictures, but that is a huge opening in the caldera, soaring hundreds of feet high. You can barely make out the prehistoric houses and the black char from the old fireplaces.

You can barely make out the crumbling nurgahi house clinging to the slope inside the caldera.

Here’s a cool 360 view of Tiscali.

We stayed at the great little famous Su Gologone hotel. It’s famous for its perfect execution of classic Sardinian food.

Here’s a map

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