THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE OF NORA
A journey back in time, walking amongst the ruins of ancient civilizations, and finally the Roman Phoenician Carthaginian who made its mark on the history of this corner of the Mediterranean: an excursion not to be missed at the archaeological site of Nora, the city was founded between IXº and VIIIº sec. B.C. and you can still feel the atmosphere of a glorious past.
What we will see
- Santa Gilla lagoon and Sarroch refinery
- Nora: archaeological site with Carthaginian and Roman remains, thermal baths and mosaics, Sant'Efisio church (external)
- Panoramic tour of Cagliari
What we will do
- Having boarded the coach with our local guide, we leave the port and travel along the south-western coast in the direction of Nora, retracing the route that thousands of pilgrims take each year as they follow a cart bearing the statue of Sant'Efisio (Saint Ephysius), a Roman soldier and Christian martyr.
- Before arriving in Nora however, we cross the Santa Gilla lagoon (also known as the "Stagno di Cagliari", the Pool of Cagliari). This area of extraordinary natural beauty extends across 15,000 hectares, all the way to the mouth of the Fluminimannu and the Rio Cixerri, and is the natural habitat of many species of birds, including pink flamingoes, cormorants and herons that, with any luck, we'll be able to admire. Along the way we will also see one of the Mediterranean's key industrial facilities, the Sarroch refinery, before arriving in Nora.
- Founded by the Phoenicians between the 9th and 8th centuries BC, Nora had two ports: one protected from the westerly winds and the other from the north-westerly winds. After a period of prosperity under the Romans, the city fell into decline and, in the 3rd century BC, it was surrounded by the sea following a natural disaster.
- The archaeological site that we will visit features Carthaginian and Roman remains. The visible remains of the various dominant powers include Carthaginian deposits, various Roman constructions and, particularly, thermal baths with splendid mosaics, and an almost intact theatre that dates back to the Imperial age and the reigns of Trajan and Hadrian. It is also possible to see some underwater structures.
- We will admire the exterior of the small church of Sant'Efisio, which was erected on the very site of the saint's martyrdom and where, each year in early May, important religious celebrations dedicated to the saint take place.
- On the return journey, before boarding the ship, we will enjoy a panoramic coach tour of Cagliari.
What you need to know
- This excursion involves some walking. We recommend wearing suitable shoes.