A short distance excursion…. Galaria Etza and Iscala Omines
A small excursion, an easy trekking that will take you to the top of the tunnel from which you can admire the seascape, eastern side, and the Oddoene valley, western side.
In order to reach Cala Gonone, you have to walk from Dorgali through the new tunnel, which passes under a branch of Mount Tului, a limestone massif that dominates with its 915 metres most of the Gulf of Orosei, Barbagia Nuorese and Ogliastra.
Parallel to it, there is another tunnel, which can only be travelled on foot or by bicycle, dug around 1920 and replaced by the current one, as it is not suitable for modern large vehicles.
When we speak of the ‘Galaria Etza’, the old tunnel, we are not referring to the latter but to another tunnel excavated in the mid-19th century, located in the same direction as the other two but further upstream. This old construction can be reached on foot both from Dorgali and Cala Gonone.
Reaching Galaria Etza from Cala Gonone.
Coming from Cala Gonone, you can leave your car in a parking area before the entrance to the tunnel on the right. A dirt road, which passes above the two tunnels, will lead you to a junction after about 1 km.
If you take the right-hand branch, you will reach the Old Tunnel; if you take the left branch, you will be able to visit the top of Mount Tului. When you reach the Old Tunnel, a 115-metre-long bare limestone rock, you can walk through the entire tunnel to the opposite side.
Throughout the tunnel you can see the signs of the perforations made to break through the rock and create the passage; the natural lighting inside varies according to the day and the angle of the sun’s rays. At the entrance to the Tunnel, facing Dorgali, you will find a sign indicating the time of construction and looking to the right you can see another excavation, the first attempt at drilling.
Reaching Galaria Etza from Dorgali
From Dorgali, however, you can reach the old gallery by walking along the recently renovated road from the ring road to Monte di Dorgali (near the village exit towards Cala Gonone).
The term “Iscala“, staircase, referred to very steep roads, paths or mule-tracks that made it possible to reach a stretch of mountain or reach another side.