Nature & OutdoorNature & Outdoor

Rivers and Lakes of Emilia Romagna

by /// April 26, 2022
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes



On spring and summer weekends Emilia Romagna offers fantastic spots to relax in nature, away from traffic and city chaos.
Among the valleys of the Apennines the best spots where you can enjoy some peace and quiet are the beautiful rivers, streams, and lakes of Emilia Romagna. Here,  you can sunbathe, enjoy the gentle coolness of the rivers and bathe in the clear waters of the lakes!

  • Brusia Bridge in Bocconi, Portico San Benedetto (FC) | Ph. RomagnaToscanaTurismo
  • Scaffaiolo Lake (MO) | Ph. Massimiliano Galardi
  • Trebbia River in Brugnello (PC) | Ph.
  • Calamone Lake (RE) | Ph. Carlo Alberto Conti
  • Bargetana Lake on Prado Mount (RE) | Ph. @marco61montefuso
  • Parma’s Santo Lake (PR) | Ph. Ghelli91
  • Verde Lake (PR) | Ph. Giorgio Tanzi
  • Ninfa Lake (MO) | Ph. ComuneSestola
  • Lago di Suviana (BO) | Ph. BolognaWelcome


The Piacenza Province is renowned for the clear waters of its rivers. If you’re looking for a place to have a refreshing swim, in the town of Marsaglia there is a beautiful white sandy beach on the banks of the Trebbia River (among the cleanest rivers in Northern Italy).
This valley is still unpolluted for the most part and the upper stretch of the stream is one of the most evocative places of the Apennines.

We advise you to check with local Tourist Offices to find out current regulations on bathing in waterways.


The Province of Parma is particularly renowned for its food and its naturalistic beauties. As a matter of fact, it is one of the capitals of the Food Valley, and the birthplace of many of the culinary excellences of the region.

Near the village of Varsi you can find places to relax in the shade of the many trees that cover the area, with the possibility of taking a regenerating bath in the river Ceno, or, going up the course of the river Taro, near Bedonia and Tornolo you can find clean waters and wonderful beaches, which are definitely worth the trip.

The lakes of the Alta Valle del Cedra represent another beautiful spot. They are partly in the Cento Laghi Regional Park and partly in the Apennines National Park. Here you can find pools of water formed at the bottom of depressions (glacial cirques) carved out of the ice during the last glaciations, such as Ballano Lake (1341 m asl, equipped with picnic facilities on its shore), Lago Verde (1507 meters above sea level), the small Frasconi Lake (1600 m asl), Verdarolo Lake (1388 m above sea level) and the Lakes of Scuro and Sguincio.

Lake Ballano and Lago Verde are two excellent starting points for excursions to discover the spectacular mountain ridge between Tuscany and Emilia Romagna.

Lastly, in the Northern Val Parma we suggest you visit the two lakes of Lagoni, located next to the refuge of the same name and from which it is possible to reach other smaller lakes. There is also Santo Parmense Lake, the largest glacial lake in the region, and also the largest natural lake in the northern Apennines, easily accessible from the Lagdei Refuge, located a few kilometers from the village of Corniglio.

We advise you to check with local Tourist Offices to find out current regulations on bathing in waterways.

Reggio Emilia

In the hilly area of the Reggio Emilia Province, one can find some relief from the summer heat in the Secchia and Enza rivers, while the lakes of the province are all located at higher altitudes.
Such as the Calamone Lake, also called Lago del Ventasso, located on the north-western slope of Mount Ventasso, in the Ramiseto municipality.
This is one of the largest lakes of the Reggio Emilia Province, surrounded by large beech and white fir forests.

This is the area of the Apennines National Park, where you can also reach the Bargetana Lake, located within the spectacular basin of the northern slope of Mount Prado, with shores surrounded by amazing green pastures, especially during in the spring.


The Modena Apennines are home to most of the highest peaks in the entire Tuscan-Emilian Apennines and therefore also to most of the mountain lakes, isolated places where you can find refreshment after long walks in nature.

Among them, we recommend a visit to Santo Modenese Lake and Baccio Lake, which are both located at an altitude of 1.501 meters.

Then there is Ninfa Lake, which is located within the Monte Cimone ski resort, and Scaffaiolo Lake, which is located above the Corno alle Scale ski resort.

Las but not least, Torbido Lake, which is only full during the spring months, and Turchino Lake, a small body of water, which is situated in the Regional Park of the High Modena Apennines.

We remind you that bathing is usually not allowed unless otherwise indicated by the local authorities. Please, contact the local Tourist Information Office for more precise information.


Bologna is the capital of  Emilia Romagna, renowned for its Towers and Tortellini. Although the city of Bologna is a true concentration of events and social occasions, its territory is no less impressive.

For all those wishing to find places to enjoy the beauty of the freshwater, we recommend the areas along the Santerno river near Castel del Rio, and the two Lakes (created for hydroelectric purposes) of Suviana and Brasimone, within the regional park of the same name.

We advise you to check with local Tourist Offices to find out current regulations on bathing in waterways.


In the Province of the cities of Forlì and Cesena, we recommend the amazing “Peschaia” under the Brusia bridge, near the village of Bocconi, a place usually very popular among locals during the summer months.


If you love silence and relaxation, we suggest visiting the Ravenna Province, on a day-trip to the Lamone  Valley. Here you will find many places where you can stop and relax, but if you want a really impressive spot we recommend the Valbura Falls, just above the small village of Fantino.


Walter Manni

Explorer and Adventurer: loves sailing the oceans, climbing the highest mountains and surfing on the waves of the web

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