The town sits perched at over 700 metres on the north-eastern slopes of Monte Arcuerì, overlooking the San Gerolamo river valley below, protected by limestone-dolomite bastions and deep gorges covered in woods. With less than 600 inhabitants, Ussassai is the smallest of the towns of the Barbagia di Seulo, as well as being its easternmost, not far from Ogliastra along state motorway 198, the road that connects Seui and Lanusei. The views from town are breathtaking: around the shimmering walls outcrops of rock have been sculpted by the passage of time, erosion, and some now resemble known personages, like the one they call Dante because it looks like the poet’s profile. The limestone stacks effectively isolated the area for centuries and thus also preserved its pristine beauty. There is a myriad of streams, oak and cork trees and Mediterranean shrubbery in which to go hiking and biking, especially in the Takiggeddu, su Piss’e Irtzioni and Niala woods. A part of Montarbu (most of which is under the jurisdiction of Seui) falls under Ussassai, an area of pristine nature, home to one of Sardinia’s loveliest forests, a fauna oasis since 1980, where deer and mountain goats roam, the hunting grounds of royal eagles and peregrine falcons. You can also go visit the lovely landscape of bare peaks and verdant nature in something of an alternative way: on board a Trenino Verde (Green Train), whose Mandas-Arbatax line stops at the old Ussassai station that was inaugurated in 1893, today used exclusively for tourist services.