Museums, galleries and archives

Archeological Park and openair Museum of Terramara in Montale

ss. 12 Nuova Estense - Montale - Castelnuovo Rangone - MO - 41050

Phone: +39-059/532020 - +39-059/2033101



From 22 May to 14 June, The Terramara opens on Friday and Saturday: 4.30 pm - 7.30 pm.; and on Sunday from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm and from 2:30 pm to 7:00 pm. The last entrance is possible 1 hour before the closing time.

The Terramare were Bronze Age villages that sprang up in Emilia and in the central region of the Po valley around the middle of the second millennium B.C. The settlements were built with artificial fortifications, generally composed of high embankments reinforced with wood palisades and surrounded by moats.

The lodges were often built on platforms supported on poles, similar to pile-dwellings, but placed on dry land and not over the water of a lake, a system to isolate them from the humidity of the terrain. The dwellings made with soil and wood were often rebuilt and as a result layers of rubble accumulated on top of each other giving rise to real hillocks.

During the course of 1800 the soil which formed the hillocks was used as fertilizer - these compost pits were called terre "mare" or "marne".

Studies have brought to light that the terramare were the expression of a fairly rich and technologically and culturally advanced society that disappeared around 1200 BC due to economic and social, but also, and above all, environmental factors.

The Montale Archaeological Park (23,000 m2) comprises an archaeological area and an open-air museum.

The archaelogical area is protected in a closed structure and the pits can be visited to personally "read" the land for traces of over four centuries of village life. Lying adjacent to the archaeological area, the open-air museum is a full-sized reconstruction of a part of the village, comprising the moat, the embankments with defensive palisades, the gateway to the village, and two large dwellings reconstructed philologically thanks to the data gathered from the excavations.

The interiors of the dwellings are furnished with bric-a-brac, crockery, tools, weapons - perfect copies of the originals.

How to get there
By car: Exit the A1 motorway at Modena Sud and turn right in the direction of Modena. At the crossing with the S.S.12 called Nuova Estense, turn left in the direction of Montale-Serramazzoni. After about 7 km coming into Montale, you will find the ticket office and entrance to the Archaeological Park on the left.