The term Giara is used, in Sardinia, to indicate the highlands basaltic with volcanic origin in the area west of the island.
Of all the Giara of Gesturi is the main for its size and the ancestral wealth of flora and fauna that holds within it, as to be simply called Sa Giara.
Nearby are also the Giara of Siddi and the Giara of Serri.
Sa Giara has an area of about 44 square kilometers at an altitude of 560 m above sea level, almost completely flat except for the only two existing surveys, the Mount of 609 Zepparedda and Zeppara Manna of 580 m, created its own accumulation of basaltic lavas, all around the sides of the plateau are steep gorges landslides, called scalas, trails that were once the access roads all'atipiano.
The shape of the area, which today does not live any more and the only human presence is sporadic which seem, has helped to create isolation as an island that has allowed the preservation of an entire ecosystem where time seems to stand still, suspended space and nature expresses its harmony without even the touches of modernity.
Flora & Fauna
About half of the surface of the Giara is covered by forests of cork oaks and Mediterranean scrub with roach, holm oaks and lentiscus.
But here also live a variety of native plants, such as rare species of buttercup (Ranunculus revelieri, aquatilis and ololeucos) that create very impressive in spring coloring to white the Pauli, there is also Requien saffron and Sardinian lily.
The plateau, both for its isolation and because the nature reserve, and then banned the hunting, wildlife has a good presence: in fact there are foxes, wild boars, wild cats and martens, are also numerous species of birds, both migratory both resident who is living in the woods, like the owl, the buzzard and the jay, or next to Pauli, as the heron, the mallard and moorhen.
Special features of the Giara are the Pauli, seasonal ponds, which are formed in plateau depression.
Here you can see, in addition to a truly exceptional variety of flora, including a diversity of animal species.
Interesting is certainly the presence of two species of invertebrates archaic unchanged for over 200 million years, living on the sea coasts of pauli where they find their food.
Feature and attraction are the horses of the Giara, and maybe through these animals, you can fully understand the splendid isolation of Giara.
There is no certainty about the origin of the horses and we roam between mythic and suggestive hypotheses, what we know is their lives today, their appearance between the pony and the horse, their brown coat, and their height not exceed an average of four feet at the shoulder, they look strong and wild and their large almond-shaped eyes.
The area of the Giara is very old, as we demonstrate the many examples seen today, there are human settlements dating from the Neolithic Age excavated in Domus de Janas limestone present below the basalts, and there are also numerous nuragic villages and settlements dating Punic and Roman period.
The most obvious examples date from the nuragic period: there are many nuraghi, about twenty, along the margins of the plateau at the scalas, as sites of sighting and control access to the plateau itself.
There are other nuragic settlements as the Brunku Màdagui village dating from the period between 1800 and 1500 BC, which has the protonuraghe, the largest island (27m wide and 16m long), and village composed of huts, protected by a wall height of approximately 6 m.