The first testimony of human presence in this area dates back to prehistoric times. Barbagia, on the other hand, represents the wildest Sardinia, somewhat more “real”. What the Ancient Romans called “the land of the barbarians” was in fact a single, mysterious land, made of mountains, hidden caves, impenetrable bushes and deep gorges; and still today, for many centuries, Barbagia is a kind of living museum that preserves its proud nature and its natural hospitality. The trip to this land have to start from Mamoiada which is known all over Italy for the most spectacular Carnival featuring the Mamuthones and Issohadores; a wonder that you can appreciate all year long, visiting the Museum of Mediterranean Masks. In addition to the characteristic historical center in which the Church of Loreto stands out, and the one dedicated to the Blessed Vergine Assunta, all the surrounding of Mamoiada deserve a visit, with archaeological traces dating to the Neolithic as the ancient stele “sa perdida pinta”, or the stone painted, or the “nuraghe of Arrailo”, in the “Rione sa Pruna”. A few kilometers away there is Fonni which is famous for being the highest Municipality in Sardinia, from where the excursions to Gennargentu leave. In its historic center the places that deserve a visit are The church of St John the Baptist in late-Gothic style, the sanctuary of the Virgin of the Martyrs, alongside the Franciscan monastery and the oratory of St. Michael and the museum of pastoral culture, set up in a manor house of 1800, where it is possible to revive the flow of agro-pastoral life that characterized the country. The journey to the heart of Barbagia ends in Gavoi which is famous for its delicacies from the famous Sardinian pecorino dop. Here well worth a visit the churches of Carmel, San Gavino, San Giovanni Battista and Sant’Antioco, in addition to the Sa Itria country sanctuary. Two kilometers from the village, besides, you can not be abducted by the intense blue, especially in autumn and winter, of Lake Gusana, ideal for canoeing and for recreational fishing.
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