The oldest boat in the Adriatic and a prehistoric stilt house settlement found in the sea near Savudrija


Underwater research by the Istrian Archaeological Museum in Zambratija bay led to an unbelievable discovery in 2008. At a depth of 2.5 to 3.2 metres, an entire prehistoric settlement of stilt houses built on oak pylons was discovered, stretching over an area of roughly 10,000m2. An analysis of the well-preserved remains of the pylons in the silty sea bottom confirmed that this sunken settlement dates to the period between the late Neolithic and the early Copper Age (between 4230 and 3980 BCE). This prehistoric stilt house site is unique in the coastal area, as all others have been found on land, near rivers or lakes, and in swamps.

The oldest sewn boat in the Mediterranean

In addition to the prehistoric settlement, in the northwestern part of Zambratija bay, remnants of a boat dating to between the 12th and 10th century BCE were found at a depth of 2.2m beneath a thin layer of sand. This finding is especially important, as it is the oldest example of a completely sewn boat ever discovered in the Mediterranean.

The remnants of the hull are 6.7m long and 1.6m wide. The architectural design of the boat, the sewing technique, the armouring and the hull impregnation system currently cannot be compared to any other example found in the greater Mediterranean. After research was completed, the boat was buried in layers and protected with an iron net.

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