Having located its neighbour, it would have been rude to pass only a few km from Li Mizzani and we were feeling still in need of a good tomba having spent most of the week exploring domus je janas (groups of rock cut tombs).
The site had been so busy on our previous visit, we weren't surprised to see a few cars parked along the fence. We wandered in, to find just 4 people there, and in a combination of Italian, German and English, struck up conversation, and were fed delicious local cheese for our efforts. Cheers, Salvatore!
A couple of A4 laminates hung in the tree confirmed - the magnetic energy here is being used for natural healing!
I'm not sure about the claims that it can cure glaucoma and infertility, amongst other things, but this certainly is a beautiful place with a definite charm. I'll be back again.
23 May 2008
The drive up to Li Mizzani is up and down - and up again! - a narrow twisting lane into the mountains which was quite dramatic and good fun, but not as dramatic as the monument itself.
Set among scrubby, sandy bushveldt, alive with flowers and buzzing with insects and birds, this is a strange tomba di giganti compared to others. The stone is slightly different shape – more of a lozenge with wide feet, and with no carving. And all the big slabby stones which would have formed the arms reaching out either side of the stele are gone. All that remains is a low wall that marks the forecourt. Perhaps it never had slabs?
We climbed up onto what appeared to be a gorsedd stone just metres away from the back of the tomb to observe where the stele appeared to point at a cleft in the distant mountains. Hmmm. I wasn't entirely convinced. Everything points to something if you look hard enough.
We met an Italian professional photographer there who, rather charmingly for these days, still shot on film. He was fascinated by our photocopied pages on Sardinia from TME. "Where did you get this?" he asked. I wrote down the name of the book, author and the URL of this website for him.
And up here, the trees seemed to be alive with goldfinches.
On the SS133 from Palau, about 3km west of the town and about 1.5km from the junction of the SS133 and SP123, there's a turn down the side of the Vecchia Gallura restaurant signposted "zona archeologica".
TME mentions a sign to "Tomba di Gigante S'Aiacciu" which later turns into a sign for "Li Mizzani" - these are in fact two separate tombas. See http://www.palau.it/tombe.html.
To get to Li Mizzani, it's about 4km from the main road - take the left fork as signposted, and go uphill, then downhill, then uphill again - carefully! It's narrow and winding, and precipitous in places, and you'll be needing first gear!
Eventually we found the sign to the right to the tomba, and parked there to walk down the slope and through the gate, to the left away from the church, and through another gate - where we found quite a few parked cars. It's about 350 metres in total from the signpost to the tomba.
Through a small gate, then to the left a few paces .... well, we obviously weren't going to get the place to ourselves, as we'd had at many of our other stops, but we weren't expecting it to be quite so busy!
Maybe a Saturday thing, maybe an equinox thing, maybe just local custom ...
There were a couple of people laid out on one side of the funeral corridor, one laid in the corridor itself with his head through the portal in the stele, and people sat either side of the stele; as more people arrived, they formed a queue sat on the bench seat around the esedra.
Someone asked if I wanted to join the queue - but I just wanted to take photos and wasn't entirely sure what was going on. Beardy meanwhile sat quietly right at the far side of the esedra. Every so often, the person under the portal would move on, and the next in the queue would take their place - all had come prepared with roll mats or doss bags to lie on.
Beardy was convinced the lady sat waiting was giving him the evil eye and, being unable to check out the tomb properly, we didn't stay over long. A strange experience - still, interesting to see the site being used for something.