Some parts of the Regional Natural Park of Tepilora, Sant’Anna and Rio Posada – 8,000 hectares of forests and rivers on the north-east of Sardinia, in the province of Nuoro – might make you think human history never set foot here.
Your gaze will span between holm oaks, junipers, strawberry trees and cork oaks, and rivers, streams and springs. There is a good chance wild boars, foxes, hares, deer and mouflons will pop out from the vegetation, and you might even spot a majestic golden eagle soaring around the top of Mount Tepilora.
Then, in a corner of this beautiful natural oasis, nestled on a small hill, you will see the medieval silhouette of the small town of Posada, near the remains of an ancient settlement where – about one hundred years ago – archaeologists found a small statue of Hercules dating back to the 5th-4th century BC. Furthermore, a number of finds were discovered near the river of the same name: statues and interior decor objects, evidence of the Roman colonization in this area in the early 4th century.
The village is overlooked by the 13th-century Fava Castle, at the center of an old legend according to which locals once resorted to an interesting trick to defeat the Turkish pirates who had them under siege: they sent a pigeon to die in the enemy’s camp, after feeding it the last broad beans they had. The enemy observed the viscera of the bird, full of food, and deducted the village still had plenty of food stockpiled – finally deciding to give up on the attack and leaving.
So much history, in fact, has passed through this splendid natural oasis.