Porto Torres

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Porto Torres
Comune di Porto Torres
Aerial view of Porto Torres and the civic harbor
Aerial view of Porto Torres and the civic harbor
Porto Torres is located in Sardinia
Porto Torres
Porto Torres
Location of Porto Torres in Sardinia
Coordinates: 40°50′N 8°24′E / 40.833°N 8.400°E / 40.833; 8.400
Country Italy
Region Sardinia
Province Sassari (SS)
 • Mayor Sean Christian Wheeler
 • Total 102.62 km2 (39.62 sq mi)
Population (31 August 2008)[1]
 • Total 22,289
 • Density 220/km2 (560/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Turritani or Portotorresi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 07046
Dialing code 079
Patron saint Gavinus
Saint day 30 May
Website Official website

Porto Torres (Sassarese: Posthudorra, Sardinian: Pòrtu Turre) is a comune and city in northern Sardinia, in the Province of Sassari.

It is situated on the north-west coast about 25 kilometres (16 mi) east of the Gorditanian promontory (Capo del Falcone), and on the spacious bay of the Gulf of Asinara.


Basilica of San Gavino

The story of Porto Torres begins several thousand years ago. For sure is known that human presence is started almost in 3000 b.C. this period in Sardinia is called Pre-Nuragic period. Some evidences of that are indeed Su Crocifissu mannu necropolis and li lioni necropolis, with more emphasis on Monte d'Accoddi that was hypotetically used for fertility rituals. After pre nuragig period, in Sardinia there was Nuragic period that in general is almost tha same to say Bronze age, from this age there are many Nuragic remains, in fact Porto Torres' territory was the land with the biggest amont of nuraghi in Sardinia, now because in early 60th years petrolchemical industy came in Porto Torres many of these nuraghes are destroied to find space for the industry. Nonetheless remain some of them, like nuraghe nieddu, nuraghe margone etc... From the same age there are a few Domus de janas as that thare is in Andreolu area of Porto Torres. While Bronze age was going and nuragic people still were here come from the sea the firts colonizers, the Phoenicia was their homeland. They in this parto of island did not leave many testimonies but there were rediscover some amulets that rapresent a god, Bes. Around 218-202b.C. Sardinia became part of Romanina dominations. That beacuse the second Punic war. Is in this new age that Porto Torres grew a lot, becames the second largest city in Sardinia after Calaris (Cagliari). At that time Porto Torres was known with another name, Turris Lybissonis. SOme legends say that was Julius Caesar in person to found Turris around 46 b.C. In fact Turris Lybissonis was the only roman colony in the whole Sardinia. From this age are the most importat ruins in Porto Torres. A big thermal complex, the biggest roman bridge in Sardinia and many many other things. With the end of roman Empire in 472A.D. Sardinian became part of Byzantine empire but, of course, was really far from the Empire so the influence of Costatinople was not so huge and just for that, in Sardina, grew a bigger automony from the empire. This autonomy sooner changed the political aspect of Sardinia. Aroun 9th century bore four different kingdoms in that suddivided the island. One of them had as capital Turris lybbisonis or what there was remined of it. The name changed and from now is called Torres, that why the kingdom was called Giudicato of Torres, but because the saracens' raids, the coast was an unsafety plate to live. Many people megrated from here to a new place, for example the founded Sassari at this time, almost 1131A.D. But arount 1060 A.D. the king of the Giudicato builded that was become the biggest romanic churc in Sardinia, The San Gavino Basilica. At that time in Porto Torres there was a bishop and San Gavino Basilica was a cathedral. Thus started the black period of Porto Torres culminated with left of the bishop, is the 1441 A.D. After that passed on this territory many kingdoms, from Aragon that builded many Aragone Towers on the coast to Savoy that gave finally the indipendence from Sassari, was 1842 and Porto Torres that was almost depopulated could bear egain. Almost one hundread years after the idipendence Porto Torres entered into the SIR project becoming ad petrochemical industrial city, was 1962. Now the city is passing through a bad period get worse because the crisis.

Main sights[edit]

  • The 11th-century, three-naved Basilica of San Gavino, which was built using only precious hardstones like marble, porphyry and granite, is the largest Romanesque church in Sardinia. Instead of the usual western facade and eastern apse, the cathedral sports two apses. The crypt holds several Roman sarcophagi.
  • Neolithic necropolis of Su Crucifissu Mannu and Li Lioni.
  • Nuraghe of la Camusina, Li Pedriazzi, Margone and Minciaredda.
  • Remains of the Roman bridge, the largest in Sardinia with its arches and a span of 160 to 170 metres (520 to 560 ft) on the Rio Mannu
  • Palazzo Re Barbaro
  • Catacombs of Tanca Borgona and piazzale Amsicora.
  • Aragonese Towers of the port and of Abbacurrente.

Transportation and industry[edit]

Chemical industries in Porto Torres

The port is connected by ferries with Genoa, Marseille, Toulon, Barcelona, Civitavecchia, Propriano, Expressway SS131/E25 to Sassari and Cagliari, and a national road to Santa Teresa Gallura (SS200). A railway operated by Trenitalia connects the town with Sassari, and the rest of the island.

Chemical industries support the modern economy of Porto Torres. Fiume Santo, a 1,040 MW power station owned by E.ON, is 5 to 10 kilometres (3 to 6 mi) west from the port, in the municipality of Sassari.[2]

Plans related to industrial conversion are is in progress in Porto Torres, where seven research centres are developing the transformation from traditional fossil fuel related industry to an integrated production chain from vegetable oil using oleaginous seeds to bio-plastics.[3][4]


  1. ^ All demographics and other statistics: Italian statistical institute Istat.
  2. ^ "Fiume Santo Power Station (Thermoelectric Power Plant), Italy". Retrieved 28 January 2011. 
  3. ^ matrica: green chemicals
  4. ^ A new age for the Italian chemical industry