SOTTOMARINA BEACH | ADRIATIC VENETO

Sottomarina Beach in Italy

Sottomarina beach is a 10 km strip of land along Adriatic sea, it is bordered by the Brenta River on the north and the Adige River on south.  At one time Sottomarina was famous for its soil quality that is particularly suitable for the growing of vegetables, today this area is appreciated for its fine sand that is rich with minerals. Sottomarina is a destination for families to enjoy peacefulness areas suitable for children play on the beach. There are a lot of places to stay and many different activities: parks, structures for volley ball, basket ball, tennis, small harbours, canoeing, centres where visitors can rent windsurfs, and horseback riding schools.

The beach itself and sea flood makes a gradual slope, 100 to 200 meters off shore you will find the depth to be only about 1.5 meters during low tide. This makes the area great for open water swimming and safe for young kids to play in the water.  Further, off-shore the seabed offers SCUBA divers a few unique excursions. There are the tegnùe, small natural reefs that are made up of organisms such as calcareous red algae and a large variety of life forms that populate this seabed.  There are also a few wrecks to dive with most being no deeper than 20 meters.  

Visitors should also go and see the nearby town of Chioggia, a small Venice with streets and canals, palaces and churches and houses with typical chimneys that recall the places told in Goldoni's plays.

Veneto Region,, Geography,, beaches,

ROSOLINA BEACH | ADRATIC VENETO

Rosolina Beach Italy

Rosolina beach and village is located south of Venice in the Veneto Region.  With long beaches, a variety of tourist offerings ,and the uniqueness of the environment of the Po Delta qualify the seaside resort of the province of Rovigo that is frequented by young people and families. This thin ribbon of sand that extends for nine kilometres, Rosolina Mare is a young beach city, was developed in the 1960s to exploit the considerable potential for tourism.  Due to its due location a lot of attention has been given to safeguard the environmental value of the area. There is a dense pine forest, together with the Mediterranean forest of oak trees that boarders the dunes of the beach.  The forest offers 172 acres with trees and a quiet retreat for a picnic and relax.

WHAT TO DO AT THE ROSOLINA BEACH AREA

There are several fish farms of the nearby are equipped for the breeding a variety of species. Rosolina Mare has numerous tourist facilities and numerous sport offerings. Swimming pools, bicycles that can be rented, tennis courts, horse ridding schools and the tourist dock of Porto Fossone fill sunny days spent at Rosolina.

You could also spend your days discovering the natural and historic beauty that surrounds Rosolina Mare such as, the Costal Botanic Garden of Porto Caleri.  The island of Albarella is only a few kilometres from Rosalina. This island has a stretch of sand of more than two and a half kilometres that slowly slopes into the sea and deserted long stretches. The backdrop of the island is 600 meters of forest with Mediterranean flora. Albarella also has a port with approximately five hundred mooring places and one of the most beautiful golf courses of Italy.

Veneto Region,, Geography,, beaches,

COASTAL WET LANDS OF THE FRIULI VENEZIA REGION

trieste-coast

For those riding near the small town of Marano lagunare, only a few minutes from the San Giorgio di Nogaro exit. For those who have more time available, it is worth taking a boat trip, which offers a splendid view of the huge lagoon, and in particular of the Regional river Stella mouth Nature Reserve which covers about 1,400 hectares. This important area has long been declared a “wetland of international importance” by the Ramsar convention, due, in particular, to the high concentration of migrant water birds that congregate there.

The main vegetation is characterised by huge reedbeds, interspersed with small lakes and inlets. At the mouth of the river, the thickets are only reeds (Phragmites australis), downstream they gradually give way to sea bulrushes and sandbanks which form muddy islands carpeted by halophylic (salt-tolerant) vegetation growing abundantly where there is a higher concentration of salt.

The small town of Marano hosts the regional Nature Reserve of Valle Canal Novo. It includes a visitors’ centre and provides visitors with information on the naturalistic aspects of the 140-hectare area, providing some tours, and even walkways on the water such as, for instance, the typical Caminada su l’acqua: observers are lead to typical hides made of reeds from which the landscape and bird-life can be viewed. To the extreme east of the Marano and Grado lagoon is the regional Nature Reserve of Valle Cavanata (330 hectares): an additional wetland recognized by the Ramsar convention of international importance, which has been blocked off from the sea and turned into a lagoon in the past.

The whole lagoon is well visible from the state road linking Monfalcone to Grado. For many years it has housed many gulls, cormorants, mute swans and other waterbirds. The halophylic vegetation predominates and includes many strangely named species such as sea-lavender (Limonium vulgare) or the pickleweed which are the most common plants in this area. The year 1997 is a memorable year since two couples of spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia), a very rare species, nested for the first time next to a colony of re-introduced Graylag goose.
Slightly further eastwards, the Regional Nature Reserve on the mouth of the Isonzo river can be reached from the state road linking Grado to Monfalcone. The Isonzo river sources in the Julian Alps in Slovenia, and is about 140 kilometres long.

This is the most northerly area of the Mediterranean Sea, and the high rocky coasts, typical of the eastern Adriatic sea, end at Duino. They are replaced by low coasts and lagoons, which include Venice, and stretch down to the delta of the Po river, to the south-west, and form one of the most complex and important wetlands in the world. The Nature Reserve is located in an area with unique biological, geographic and historical characteristics. The protected area covers 2,350 hectares and has its core in the so-called “Isola della Cona”, which belongs to the municipality of Staranzano. The Reserve also includes some smaller territories located in other municipalities such as Grado, with its Caneo wetland and with a huge part of the estuary ridge; San Canzian d’Isonzo, with the so-called “Bosc Grand” wetland along the right side of the river, which is effectively less than one hectare wide; and finally, Fiumicello with its river beds of gravel and riverine woodland.

Legends and recent history

The legend narrated by the geographer Strabo says that many years before Christ, the Thracian, Diomede, had reared herds of white horses in honour of the goddess Diana (Arthemis) right in this area. For this reason the huge oak woodland carpeting the eastern bank of the Isonzo river was named Silva Diomedaea by the Romans. The once splendid woodland is now confined to the Isonzo river and in the Alberoni area. At that time the woodland served as a backdrop to the estuary of the mysterious Timavo river, the “shortest river in Italy” and the so-called “mother of sea”.
This river, which even today is still mysterious and mainly unexplored, runs underground for 40 kilometres and re-emerges just a rifle’s shot away from the Adriatic Sea, near the Duino castle, at the foot of the Karst area.

Slightly to the west of Isonzo river’s current position, the frightening, dark woodland Silva lupanica extended for kilometres as a natural barrier. It carpeted the whole of the low plains and acted as a border just behind Aquileia: the important city founded by the Romans in 171 BC.

Thanks to the road network “unwisely” built by the Romans, it was easier for Attila and his Huns to invade Italy: The barbarians conquered Aquileia in 452 AC after a long siege. As reported in Paolo Diacono’s Historia langobardorum, such invasion caused many pairs of storks to leave the area. A dramatic event which takes us back to the origin of Venice, when the Aquileia inhabitants took refuge first in Grado and later further to the West in the lagoon where they would set up a new, more protected city surrounded by insidious marshes and deep canals: Venice.
The areas around the Friuli-Venezia Giulia lagoon and more specifically, along the Isonzo river are acknowledged as steeped in European history. However, they have undergone a heavy development and significant environmental changes in more recent times. In fact, the area along the Isonzo river was progressively deforested and drained to be replaced by cultivated land as well as tourist resorts and new industrial sites. Grado itself, alas, is no longer an island due to tourist development. Hence, the strong necessity to preserve and, where possible, reintroduce at least some of the fauna and flora which have characterized this area for many centuries. For instance the storks, or the rare, white-tailed sea eagle (Haliaetus albicilla) after which the first Roman colony was probably named. A complex plan of refurbishment and, where possible, of restoration of degraded or reduced habitats is needed in order to reduce the continuous and progressive wetland degradation, in particular along the coasts.

A restoration plan

The estuary of the Isonzo river is still today one of the most important natural areas for its shallow waters, mudflats, wetlands as well as woodland and occasional springs. The so-called “Isola della Cona” is today linked to the mainland by a dam allowing easy access, but which also prevents freshwater from entering the Quarantia canal. All the springs in this area have been diverted and channelled into the new artificial Brancolo canal, causing the freshwater habitats to loose their original characteristics.

For this reason, based on a restoration project dating back to 1983, the wetland has been progressively re-designed and reintroduced on a fifty-hectare area. This project, mainly financed by the Friuli-Venezia Giulia Region and by the European Union, includes the construction of a visitors’ centre to encourage eco-tourism and bird watching activities. Besides the shallow water areas, where frogs and amphibions live abundantly, also some islands, woodland, pools, canals, reedbeds and flooded meadows have been restored or newly created.

Fauna and Flora

Thanks to the recovery of degradated habitats, the many diversities in flora and fauna have widely increased. The most predominant are the bird-species which amount to over 300 species, of which at least 80 have also bred.

The most significant fauna species include, for instance, the black-winged stilt, which was nearly extinct in the past, the great bittern, the purple heron and the marsh-harrier which live in the dense reedbeds.

Thanks to the decrease of disturbance and habitat improvement thousands of ducks (up to 30,000 specimens) rest there during winter. This solution has had results beyond all expectations, considering the fact that this project had been criticised for being inadequate and restricted to too small an area for so many species. In other seasons there are great white and little egrets as well as the large, elegant spoonbill, which was considered to be nearly extinct as it requires highly specialized environmental conditions.

We should not forget the many water species living on the mudflats which emerge from water during low-tide, as for example the curlew, an elegant, mimical species with a long, curved beak, which has been adopted as the symbol of the Reserve; the noisy graylag geese, reintroduced with success, as well as thousands of white fronted goose from Siberia migrating to and from Africa. To re-establish such a complex eco-system, two groups of horses have been reintroduced to the area: one left free to graze in the pasture, allowing for a more uniform growth of the wetland vegetation; the other of trained ones used for the guided tours across the reserve. Both groups are Carmargue, an ancient, rustic breed which is used to the wetland habitat. Besides these horses, whose white mane recalls that of Diomede’s legendary horse, some cattle are periodically introduced into this area so as to re-establish the original balance between fauna and flora and the ancient migrations of the big grazing mammals. Even some amphibians such as the agile frog and the Italian tree frog have benefited from this improved habitat.

Sustainable tourism, environmental education, research

The Cona is well-known for its hides and screened footpaths, specially designed as observation points which do not disturb the wild fauna. The Marinetta observatory is undoubtedly the most interesting building after the visitors’ centre, which was inaugurated in 2002, and the “Museum of the Ducks”. It is entirely thathched with reeds, and is three storeys high. It overlooks the re-established wetland. It allows the noisy groups of visitors to enjoy an exceptional view of under water life and the Gulf of Trieste. The view reaches as far as Istria, the Karst and the Julian Alps; birds of prey are frequently seen swooping to capture one of the thousands birds in the area or plunging spectacularly into water.

Future prospects

The philosophy behind the projects carried out along the coast or in the lagoon aim at concentrating visitors in specifically designed areas so as to keep the more delicate and fragile territories as secluded as possible. This extremely effective solution has preserved the protected areas, and in some cases has also extended the territory as well as creating many new jobs related to sustainable tourism. In order to enhance the results reached so far, a biological station has been created in the Reserve with the aim of providing the guidelines for the managment and monitoring of the whole coastal and lagoon areas of the Region.

Geography,, Friuli Venezia Region,

BEACHES IN ITALYLampedusa Spiaggia dei Conigli

Italy is a peninsula surrounded by the mountains and the sea. The Adriatic east coast in the east, Tyrrhenian Sea in the west, the Lake District in the north and the southern islands of Sardinia and Sicily all equally offer some of the most fantastic beaches in the world. With over 5000 miles of coastlines, dry and hot summers and sunshine most of the year, Italy is one of Europe’s favourite beach holiday destinations. Summers are filled with a temperate climate and blessed with the cool breeze of the sea, enough to attract many to build homes and gardens right by the beaches. Whether you’re looking for the perfect beach or perhaps a way to cool down after exploring ancient cities, the warm waters, eternal sunshine and sandy stretches of Italy’s beaches are a must for all travellers.

To fully enjoy the atmosphere and tempo of the Italian culture, you need to be sure to include time to visit a beach or two during your travel. There are several wonderful beach areas to enjoy and with the increase in environmental protection many of the Italian beaches are awarded the Blue Flag for cleanliness by the European Union. There are places to go and places to avoid. We have listed some of our favorite.

The key things to keep in mind

  • Use plenty of sunscreen
  • Most areas require you to pay for use of the chairs and umbrella. Cost will vary, and there is a trend to pay more if you are a tourist. All transactions should be done with receipt and the price should be posted at the entrance.
  • You can sit for free on the area that is considered the tide zone. A normal rule is about 5 meters from the water.

Other than the islands of Greece and the South of France, beaches in Italy draw more people per year than any other country in Europe. The hardest part is deciding which of the Italian beaches to visit, as each one has a storied history and separate features.

The Mediterranean hosts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Italy's beach resorts attract more and more tourists year after year, for it is said the Italian beaches are like treasures to discover and behold. The beach resorts were home to many tourists during the summer season, today many now claim this their year round home. The wonders of sea air provide some of the healthiest fresh air, known for their regenerative properties; the sea air is a relief and a healthy escape from city life.

Italy is a peninsula extending into the central Mediterranean Sea, northeast of Tunisia. Its 7,600 km of coastline has some of the most beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean, the Ligurian Sea, the Sardinian Sea and the Tyrrhenian Sea, in the west the Sicilian Sea, and the Ionian Sea in the south and the Adriatic Sea in the east. After exploring the cities, touring the lakes and walking in the mountains, the beaches are the perfect place to relax, unwind and reflect. Most of the year the beaches are sunny, and with 7,600 miles of shoreline bordering Italy and its islands, you can easily find waters where the temperatures are ideal for swimming. Miles upon miles of golden, sun drenched sand, in some places up to 1 km deep.  The sea welcomes the sun seeker in comfort and style. An array of colours, which one can quickly identify by the rows of neatly laid out sun umbrellas and deck chairs, which seem to almost dot the entire seashore.

The world famous Amalfi coast has many of the best beaches in Italy - you can throw a dart at a map and never go wrong. The sleepy villages along the coast lie on wicked curves, and its villas have acted as getaways for celebrities both new and old. Palm trees and expensive boutiques line the narrow streets leading to the pebbled shores of the Italian beach resort of San Remo. Here you can also try your luck at the luxuriant casinos and racetracks, the gambling mecca for western Italy. The lemon trees and fragrant flowers of the Isle of Capri provide a picturesque backdrop for its sprawling beaches. The statuesque arcs of the Tyrrhenian Sea guarantee that the resorts along its coastline are among the best beaches in Italy - the sights of the translucent blue and green grottoes more than make up for the lack of sand found here.

Sorrento was the home of the Greek sirens and the docks and cliffs of this town still call out to passing travelers. Connoisseurs of Italian beaches may shun this town, which is mostly made up of jagged rocks and crowded piers, but the combination of sunny locale and a wide array of shopping and nightlife make this one of the most popular destinations south of Naples.

Cinque Terre is another fine Italian beach resort, where a small, but hospitable strip of sand lays unassuming in the midst of the five fishing towns. Popular with American and European honeymooners alike, this quiet spot on the banks of the Italian Riviera is just steps away from scenic hikes, and exquisite seafood dishes constructed around the fishermen's daily catch. The only traditional beach in any of the five towns is located in Monterosso, but it is still one of the best beaches in Italy.

The white sands of the Venetian beach of Lido make it one of the most tempting beaches of Italy, even if the water lapping at your feet is not fit for swimming. Deluxe hotels offer endless privacy in one of the most romantic cities in the world, and waterfront huts are available for rental if your wallet feels too full. Another popular Italian beach resort is located in the antiquated Greek ruins of Syracuse. Fontane Bianche is a prime spot for cooling off in the summer, popular with both vacationing Italians and tourists. Nearby Taormina offers equally fine displays of sand and shade beneath the imposing shadow of Mt. Etna. When it comes to Sicily, though, any number of them rival the Italian beaches located on the mainland

Geography,, beaches,

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