Deer cave (Otranto)

Strada Provinciale 87 19 (Otranto)

Cervi Grotto is a coastal natural cave, located along the coast of Salento in Porto Badisco.
She was discovered on 1 February 1970 by five members of the Speleological Group of Salento "P. de Lorentiis" Maglie -Lecce- (I.Mattioli, S.Albertini, R.Mazzotta, E.Evangelisti and D.Rizzo) and is the painting complex Europe's mightiest Neolithic. At first he gave the name "Cave of Aeneas", because of the legend that Aeneas landed in Italy precisely in Porto Badisco. The current name comes from the subsequent discoveries of the pictograms.
The cave is not open to the public.
It is divided into three large halls trails discoveries paintings inside them.
The first corridor is about 200 meters long, and at some point it splits into two branches, one in the north at the end of which they were found two skeletons, and the other in the south-east.
The second corridor is rich in paintings, and also is 200 meters long and is accessed by a tunnel passing from the corridor. This corridor towards the end widens, giving access to two successive rooms. Towards the middle of the path is interrupted and there is the presence of a natural pond formed by dripping water, and subsequently there is the presence of a deposit of guano used by man Neolithic to paint.
The third corridor is also 200 meters long and its interior is accessed from the second hall through an opening very low.
To access the inside of the two inputs are complex:
A western, which is entered only in the first hall;
the eastern one, which gives access to all three corridors.
There is also the presence of a tunnel that gives access to the corridors, and was promptly dug and reinforced along the walls by stone walls, from Neolithic man;

The pictograms

The pictograms in bat guano and red ocher, depicting geometric shapes, human and animal, which date back to Neolithic times, between 4,000 and 3,000 BC
The figures represent hunters, animals (dogs, horses, deer), objects, magic symbols, abstract geometries and many scenes of hunting deer (hence the name of the cave). One of the most famous is the so-called pictograms God dancing, depicting one dancing sorcerer.



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