Capoterra stretches along the foot of Mount Arcosu and it is washed by the Stagno di Cagliari lagoon – known as Santa Gilla. Capoterra is a town with approximately 23 thousand inhabitants at the southwestern gates of Sardinia's capital city. In its immense territory, which has been inhabited since the Pre-Nuragic period, nature and history are intertwined. You will find enchanting and remarkably interesting landscapes on Monte Arcosu, consisting of almost four thousand hectares of forest, with a 'heart' of holm oaks and cork oaks, surrounded by Mediterranean scrub, where the Sardinian deer and the fallow deer wander undisturbed. The park is kept moist by watercourse and waterfalls. Located within the 1300 hectares of the Cagliari lagoon, one of the most important birdlife oases in Europe, there is the pond of Capoterra, where you can take a comfortable position and observe flamingos and black-winged stilts. Nearby, in the locality of Cuccuru Ibba, there are traces of the Neolithic era: a lithic workshop and round huts. In various localities, there are ruins dating back to the Nuragic age, necropolises and towers and, in particular, the Monti Arrubiu Nuraghe. Dating back to the Punic period (5th-4th century BC) there is a settlement in Su Loi and a necropolis in the locality of Sant'Antonio. From history to astrophysics: in the hills near the district of Poggio dei Pini, the astronomical observatory frequented by international teams of scientists stands out.
Its name comes from the Latin Caput terrae: during the Roman period, the town (perhaps an oppidum) developed near the lagoon. In the Giudicati period, it was the villa of the administrative region of Nora and, from 1120, of the Giudicato of Cagliari. After passing to the Signoria Pisana (Seignory of Pisa) and then conquered by the Aragonese, the village was destroyed and was uninhabited for three centuries. Until the middle of the seventeenth century, when the baron, Girolamo Torrelas, decided to repopulate it, granting plots of land to families from other parts of Sardinia as well as 'good conditions' for avoiding disputes with the lesser legal authorities.
In the village, worthy of note for its history and tradition is the parish church of Sant'Efisio, patron saint of the village, the original nucleus of which was unsurprisingly called Villa Sant'Efisio. Identities and legends materialise in the church of Santa Barbara de Montes, dating back to the Romanesque period, built on the eastern slope of the Capoterra mountains. 50 metres from the church, the Basilian monks built a chapel, where it is said that Barbara, a martyr from Cagliari, was beheaded during the persecution of Christians. The head, as it fell, gave rise to a spring, which is still active and is called Sa Scabizzada (the beheaded one). In the 20th century, the surrounding area became the summer residence of families from Cagliari: you will see beautiful villas set between palm trees and centuries-old olive trees.