In much of the Sardinian territory, numerous funerary sites have been discovered consisting of tiny caves carved into the rock, one next to the other, and grouped to form real necropolises.
The interior of these tombs, dating back to the Neolithic period, was often decorated with engravings, reliefs and rock paintings of great symbolic value. Due to their small size it was said that they were actually the homes of tiny creatures, the Janas, from which they take their name.
The Janas are described as tiny fairies with an ambivalent nature, sometimes benevolent and generous, others spiteful and vindictive.
The origin of their name seems to derive from Diana, goddess of the woods and the moon, protector of women, but in reality the Janas are also called by other names and described in various ways, depending on the various villages.
They are commonly known as beautiful creatures, with luminous skin and the head covered with a silver handkerchief. They leave their homes only at night. They are skilled spinners, they love weaving precious brocades in the moonlight, on gold looms, under which they often hide wonderful treasures, protected by equally terrible creatures.
There are many legends concerning the Janas, some say that they visited the cradles of newborns and attributed to them a fate, propitious or not, depending on their mood, others describe them as witches or vampires who ate blood or human flesh.
Anyone visiting Sardinia should not miss a visit to the Domus de Janas, following one of the many itineraries in the wake of legends, from Nuoro to Tortolì, from Cabras to Isili or Esterzili, to discover the treasures of the island.