Experience in Montevecchio

The mining area of Montevecchio (Old Mountain) is located at about 10 Km from the city centre of Guspini and follows the lead and zinc mining lode between Arbus and Guspini.

Montevecchio recalls the important mining activity which took place in the area from 1848 to 1991 and is part of the Historical and Environmental Geo-mining Park of Sardinia (which in turn is part of the UNESCO Global Geoparks Network). The mining structures that have profoundly marked the history of the neighboring municipalities can be found along the road that from Guspini leads to Gennas (better known as Montevecchio) and that then slopes down to the sea through the territory of Arbus.

Going forward from Guspini to the mining village you will get soon to Levante yard, where you will first reach the Diga dei fanghi (Dam of Mud) and Sciria’s buildings, from whose station the trains used to transport ore to San Gavino.

Continuing up you will see the rectangular tanks still full of water by the Laveria Principe Tommaso (Principe Tommaso Washery). A little higher up, you will find the Pozzo Sartori (Sartori Shaft), with its well recognisable structure made of reinforced concrete, and the Pozzo San Giovanni (San Giovanni Shaft), in whose winch and compressor rooms are stored valuable and undamaged historical machinery.

The latter shaft, which has recently been restored, is as much as 290 meters deep and is entirely built with stones and red bricks. It was used to link 6 different mining tunnels. Next, along the hairpin bends leading to the top of the hill, you will see the Pozzo Sant’Antonio (Sant’Antonio Shaft) and its characteristic crenelated tower.

This is characterized by a neo-Gothic style which was very popular in between the nineteenth and the twentieth century.

Once you get to Gennas village you will find numerous facility buildings (schools, hospital and so on) among which the Palazzina della Direzione (the Directorate of the Mines), which stands out and can be visited by tourists, and the Mensa Impiegati (the Canteen of the Employees), currently used as an info-point. Beyond the village, on the west side of the hill, the last mining sites in the territory of Guspini are: the Albergo Operai (Workers’ Inn) <<Sartori>> and the massive Sanna mining yard.