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SPLASH! Water Sports in Emilia-Romagna

by /// July 21, 2023
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes



In Emilia-Romagna you can practise a wide range of open-air activities. Only a few kilometres separate the seaside from the mountains, where you can experience both total relaxation and the adrenalin rush of an extreme sport.

Water sports, specifically, can be practised throughout the region: at the lakes, rivers and at the seaside as well. If you are a water sports enthusiast or would like to try one for the first time, you will find plenty of ideas in this article that may be just right for you.


Cervia (RA), canoe
Cervia (Ravenna), Canoeing on the Canal | Credit: Michele Vacchiano, via Shutterstock (editorial use only)

If you love relaxing sports, uncontaminated nature and sunsets, you’ll definitely enjoy a nice canoe trip.

In the Comacchio’s valleys you can glide through the waters of the lagoons and explore the nature reserve of the Po Delta Park. Ravenna and its northern beaches are also a good idea if you want to go canoeing: just check out the trips  organized in the brackish lagoon of the Pialassa della Baiona and the Valle della Canna where many species of birds nest in summer.

For those who prefer the experience of canoeing on the river, we recommend the courses at the River Side centre in Imola, which will give you the opportunity to navigate the Santerno river. Finally, don’t miss the chance to go on a canoe trip on the Ridracoli Lake, which allows you to observe the dam closely.


Cesenatico (FC), barche a vela
Cesenatico (FC), Sailing Boats | Credit: EvijaF, via Shutterstock (editorial use only)

Sailing is a sport type that combines physical and technical abilities, and summer is the perfect season to learn. If you wish to try it out, there are several sailing clubs organizing classes for all levels on the Romagna Riviera, from the beaches of Rimini to Ferrara.

If you would like to try your hand at the much more difficult freshwater sailing activity, Lake Suviana awaits you in the Saltapicchio Adventure Park, where you can enjoy sailing at high altitudes in the Suviana and Brasimone Lakes Regional Park, just a few kilometres from Bologna. 


Rafting in Emilia Romagna - Ph.
Rafting in Emilia Romagna | Credit:

In Emilia-Romagna there’s plenty of spots along the rivers descending from the Apennines where you can go kayaking or rafting. ONe of them is the Trebbia river, a tributary of the Po in the Piacenza area, where you can learn everything about the river canoe, or the Enza river which is particularly suitable for kayaking.

The western part of the Taro and Ceno valleys is well-known for the favourable conditions of its rivers and of some of their tributaries too.

If you feel like going rafting, which consists in descending tumultuous riverbeds with the sole help of a dinghy, you can try the River Limentra, not far from Bologna.


Wind e Kite Surf in Riviera Romagnola Ph. Archivio DT Romagna
Wind and Kitesurf in the Romagna Riviera | Credit: Archivio DT Romagna

Extreme sports lovers can find interesting activities at the seaside as well. Thanks to its weather, the Romagna Riviera is one of the best places for kitesurfing.

For those who want to try their hand at kitesurfing in Emilia-Romagna, make sure to get in touch with the schools of the Riviera which can provide advice and suitable equipment, while also giving useful tips on the best conditions for practising this adventurous sport.


Ravenna, The reef of Paguro platform
Ravenna, the Reef of the Paguro Platform | Credit: Ravenna Photo Archives

The underwater world is absolutely fascinating, but it requires the right amount of contemplation, training and cold blood. If you want to find out about the secrets of the Adriatic sea, we recommend diving in the Paguro Platform area, a platform for methane drilling opened in 1963 in Porto Corsini (Ravenna) and then destroyed in an accident, whose remains are still visible today.

Feel free to contact the many diving centers located along the coast to get more information on scuba diving experiences.


Rimini, giochi nell'acqua
Rimini, Playing in the Sea | Credit: Alex_Ugalek, via Shutterstock

As we all know, swimming is a healthy sport that is taught to children from an early age. Emilia-Romagna has very strong ties to swimming and boasts outstanding sports facilities including the numerous Olympic swimming pools of the Riviera.

Swimming enthusiasts can take swimming classes directly on the sea, in one of the many beach facilities along the coasts, that are also available for children.



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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