TAVOLARA: THE SMALLEST KINGDOM IN THE WORLD
The island of Tavolara is the famous for being the smallest kingdom of the world. At the end of the eighteenth century, in fact, the family Bertoleoni arrived neat the Maddalena along Corsica, aboard a small boat coming from Genua in search of a land in which to leave. The family settled in Tavolara and lived breeding the goats, very common on the island. The island of Tavolara is located in the north-east of Sardinia, in front of Porto san Paolo, in the province of Olbia-Tempio. A part of the island is military zone property of N.A.T.O.
The island is, for the main part, a limestone massif overlooking the sea, with a strip of land, at sea level, which is located in front of the coast of Sardinia, and which allows to small boats to land on the island from the nearby Porto san Paolo.
The very few buildings present on Tavolara, belongings to the family Bertoleoni, are located on this small strip of land. The family Bertoleoni manages the restaurant of the island and the boats for the transport service from/to Porto San Paolo.
The human presence on the island of Tavolara is attested, with certainty, from the middle Neolithic and many artifacts have been found in the cave called 'del Papa'. In the upper Paleolithic, Tavolara was connected to the mainland and to the island of Molara but later, after the raising of the sea leel and the continuous erosion exerted bay the sea waves and strong winds, it separate itself from the mainland first, and from the nearby island of Molara, only 10000 years ago, later.
During the middle ages, few is known of the island which was, almost certainly, not permanently inhabited, but used as a military defence center, as can be seen from the numerous forts present. It seems that just after the year 1000, on the island, a colony of pirates has established.