S.Vitale’s pine wood

Circular itinerary to the north-east of Ravenna (Day, km 38)


The itinerary, of great environmental interest, takes a tour around the historic pinewood following from Ravenna (via delle Industrie, near the mausoleum of Teodorico) the road of Porto Corsini (already used from itinerary 1.3, see page 52), continuing on the coastal strip – where it meets Marina Romea and Casal Borsetti – and then turning left to reach the Strada Romea near the memorial stone of Anita Garibaldi. Along the same Strada Romea (state road 309), which runs southwards having on the left the pine forest of San Vitale and on the right the marsh area of ​​Valle Mandriole-Punte Alberete, returns to Ravenna.

From Ravenna to Porto Corsini
The landscape is unusual and strongly contrasted, between the water stretches of the pialasse and the predominantly (but not limited to) petrochemical structures that predict the port of Ravenna, located around the mouth of the Candiano or Corsini canal. The term “pialasse” (for others, “piallasse”), which designates coastal lagoon areas in the Ravenna area, is of uncertain etymology; it probably comes from “take and leave” to indicate the action of the tide.
Evocative Risorgimento memory is, on the left (after 9 km), the Garibaldi hut, reconstruction of the small building – destroyed by a fire in 1911 – where the general, hunted by the Austrians after the fall of the Roman Republic, took refuge at night between 6 am and on 7 August 1849. Another 2 km and you reach Porto Corsini (named after the family of Pope Clement XII), a center formed with the development of the port-canal on the north bank; it faces the opposite Marina di Ravenna, to which it is connected by a ferry service.

Marina di Ravenna
The 67 state road connects it (13 km) to Ravenna, of which it is the most populous village, the port of call and the most popular seaside resort. Characteristic of the site, the mixture of port infrastructures and tourist facilities connected to the deep beach, which opens up in front of a well-preserved pine forest and stretches southwards as far as Riva Verde.

Towards the Comacchio Valleys
From Porto Corsini you enter the landscape, wet and coastal, of the “Pineta di San Vitale and Piallasse di Ravenna”, one of the six in which the Po Delta Regional Nature Park, established in 1988, is subdivided. Marina Romea, from the composed and measured building close to the green, follows that of Casal Borsetti, where you turn left to reach the stretch of the Strada Romea next to the Ravenna strip of the Valli di Comacchio. It is the same stretch that crosses the Rhine river to the north, whose course is identified here with that of the Po di Primaro, the ancient southern arm of the Delta.
Not far away, beyond the drainage canal on the right Reno and the road to Sant’Alberto, is the memorial stone of Anita Garibaldi, inaugurated on August 9th 1896 with a prayer by Olindo Guerrini, famous for its anti-clerical polemical vehemence. About a kilometer, on the right of the same road, is the Guìccioli farm, in which the heroic companion of Giuseppe Garibaldi died on 4 August 1849 (bronze bust of 1985).

The pine forest of San Vitale *
It stretches to the left of the Romea, the most illustrious survivor – long belonged to the homonymous abbey of Ravenna – of the ancient thick pine forests that covered the entire coastal strip from the mouth of the Reno to Cervia until 1700. Of significant naturalistic and environmental interest, it is crossed by paths that lead to the “Ca ‘Vecchia Visitor Center”; the most recommended, for the exciting spectacle of the pine forest overlooking the silence of the marsh, is that which runs along the bank of the Fossatone canal.
On the other side of the Strada Romea, the Valle Mandriole-Punte Alberete complex, divided into two parts by the embanked course of the Lamone river, is a wetland of fresh water qualified by the hygrophilous forest that occupies about a third of its 186 hectares. The second of the two biotopes, Punte Alberete, since 1968 a wildlife protection oasis entrusted to the WWF, is a rare relic of a flooded forest of remarkable ornithological value.