The Cave of Culleram

002_culleram_deSa Cova des Culleram in Sant Joan de Labritja is an ancient sacred sanctuary dedicated to the Carthaginian goddess Tanit.

Ibiza preserves a sanctuary in a cave built to worship Tanit, the Phoenician goddess of love and fertility: Sa Cova des Culleram, located in the Sant Vicent de Sa Cala area in the municipality of Sant Joan de Labritja in northeastern Ibiza. The inside of the cave is not open to the public and there is a lookout point two hundred metres above sea level that offers spectacular panoramic views of the island of Tagomago in the distance.

Sa Cova des Culleram was used by the Ibizans from the end of the fifth century to the second century AD. In 1929, a bronze plate was found that mentioned the names of Astrate and Tanit, Ibiza’s Punic goddess par excellence.

Considered one of the island’s most important archaeological sites, Sa Cova des Culleram was explored in 1907 by the archeologist Carles Roman. 600 terracotta figures (possibly votive offerings), a thousand heads from tiny figures and ceramic shards were found. Some of the most remarkable findings, which are now on display at the Archeologic Museum of Ibiza, were bell-shaped female figures bearing different symbols, the faces of some of which were painted with a fine layer of gold. The works were stopped in 1969 because of the difficulties of getting into the inside of the cave.

The cult of goddess Tanit and the Cave of Culleram became a symbol for the hippies of Ibiza during the 60th and 70th. In 1998 the cave was bought by the Authorities of Ibiza and is today open for public. The entrance is free.