The Giara di Gesturi is a windy plateau in the middle of Sardinia that rises about 300 metres above the surrounding landscape. With its steep cliffs it looks like a natural fortress. It is flat and stony. The vegetation consists of bushes and small oak groves. The volcanic underground is so impermeable that huge shallow lakes form, which can dry up completely in dry summers.
A special attraction of the Giara are the approximately 600 wild horses that live today on the plateau of the Giara di Gesturi. They are descendants of horses that were probably brought to the island by the Phoenicians in ancient times (about 2,600 years ago). Is Quadeddus is their Sardinian, Cavallini (little horse), their Italian name. It is a unique breed that can only be found here. Still in the last century they were occasionally captured and used for agriculture. But they are wild animals, not domesticated horses. Today they live again freely and without intervention of the human being on the Giara.
The Giara dei Gesturi plateau, because of its uniqueness, is now under strict protection. It must have been of particular importance for the lost Nuraghic culture (from about 1,600 a.d.). Nuraghi are defensive towers that have given their name to the culture. They can be found around the inaccessible plateau, always directly on the steep edge. At the foot of the plateau, in Burumini, lies the largest known nuraghe, Su Nuraxi. The nuraghs have left well sanctuaries on the whole island next to towers and stone settlements. But there is no written evidence. Therefore we know little about the faith and life of these people.
But parts of their culture are still alive on the island: The Launedda, a flute made of 3 reeds, is still played unchanged today. There are illustrations that are about 3,000 years old and show it in its present form. The Cantu a Tenore is a three-part singing that only occurs in this form in Sardinia. No one will be able to prove it, but there are suspicions that it – just like the Launedda – has been preserved over the millennia.