Official Tourist Information Site
of Ravenna

Mouth of the Bevano river

Via Fosso Ghiaia - Lido di Dante

The MOUTH OF THE BEVANO RIVER is a gem nestled among the Pine forest of Classe, the Ortazzo and Ortazzino oases and the coastal pine forests.

It is one of the natural areas located south of Ravenna, and is one of the many treasures of the Po Delta Park.

This meandering estuary – the last one of the Northern Adriatic Sea – has almost completely preserved its original shape, as it has been spared from some projects of anthropisation of the area that were later abandoned.

Today, it is carefully protected because it is a much delicated system of inestimable conservation value, both from the geomorphological and biological point of view.

In the last 4 kilometres of its course, the Bevano river – after briefly meandering in its little basin between the Ronco and the Savio rivers – is enriched with the waters of four gutters, shaping its wide estuary.

To the north and south, after a stretch of coastal pine forest (partially private and partially state-owned) are the beach towns of Lido di Dante and Lido di Classe.

A mosaic of woods, untouched sand dunes, marshes, brackish ponds and wetlands populated by organisms of scientific interest.


The area can be visited only in specific times of the year and in specific points, either freely or accompanied by specialised guides that will tell you more about its evolution.

You can also discover the many tours (on foot, by bike or by boat) organised by the Bevanella Visitor Centre – located inside what once was the guardhouse of the nearby water-scooping system (reachable from Lido di Classe) – or the many activities offered by Pro Loco Lido di Dante with the support of the Municipality of Ravenna.

The visitor centre also houses a small interactive museum, which shows the geological evolution of the area and the functioning of the water-supply systems of the territory.

Mouth of the Bevano river - Kentish plover
Mouth of the Bevano river (Ra) – Kentish plover | Photo © Roberta Corsi


The area of the mouth of the Bevano river is home to unique naturalistic treasures, which are subject to strict protection rules. It is thus necessary to pay attention to access limitations in force throughout the year.

The Ortazzo and Ortazzino wetlands are truly unmissable.

Ortazzo is a wide salt marsh constantly submerged by the waters of the Bevano and Fosso Ghiaia rivers. It was originally a freshwater valley originated from the conversion of former rice fields.

Today, it is subject to the influence of brackish groundwater, as evidenced by the presence of common rush and salt sandspurry. It is characterised by a remarkable alternation of ponds, reed beds, dunes, Mediterranean vegetation and pine forests.

Ortazzino develops to the south of the Bevano river. It consists of fossilised twists of the river, coastal dunes and a vegetation that mixes Mediterranean scrub and shrublands typical of the continental climate. It also includes the fossil meanders of the Bevano river and part of its dunes, with wet brackish meadows and dry meadows dotted with juniper, green olive trees and sea buckthorns.

The largest area also includes the mouth of the Fiumi Uniti river and the Pine forest of Classe, and is part of Rete Natura 2000 for its unique ability to attract many species of reptiles, birds (with a maximum commitment for the protection of Kentish plovers, see focus), mammals (as wolves and polecats) and for the presence of habitats, which are a primary target for the European conservation policies.

Here, you can also admire a multitude of flamingos, various species of herons and other charadriiform birds that come here to nest, as black-winged stilts, pied avocets, gull-billed terns and Mediterranean gulls.

The area is a big draw for birdwatchers, and more extensively for bio-watchers, even though it may not be accessible during the nesting periods.

The walk along the coastal dune belt that unfolds into the brackish water is a very suggestive experience. You can stop here and watch the birdlife from the watchtowers, enjoying the breathtaking view of all the surrounding landscape.



Kentish plovers, the little “couriers” to protect

Among the many birds that populate this area, the rare Kentish plovers have a place of honour. They are small endangered shorebirds that nest right on the beaches near the Mouth of the Bevano river.

In the last few years, a few dozen units have been counted – a number confirming the good conditions of the whole marine environment.

These birds with very short paws run surprisingly fast around the beaches looking for insects and small invertebrates.

Due to the lack of wide and quiet beaches and to the rubbish rejected by the sea after winter storms, this species is currently considered “in danger” by IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature).

Sometimes, Kentish plovers overcome their feeling of mistrust and before the beginning of summer, in March, decide to lay their eggs near the beach establishments, where volunteers collaborating with local associations commit to supervise the clutches by surrounding them with small fences, thus avoiding them to be accidentally crushed or mechanically removed.

Further information

Opening times

Access to the area is limited and may vary according to the season.

Check the opening times directly by contacting Reparto Carabinieri Biodiversità di Punta Marina (RA):+39 0544 437379.

Entrance fee

Free entry.


The area is freely accessible on foor or bike, or by boat with guided tours starting from the Bevanella Visitor Centre.

How to get there

The area is located between the beach towns of Lido di Dante and Lido di Classe.

By car and on foot: the access to the area is limited and not permitted by car. Recommended starting points are the Bevanella Visitor Centre (via Canale Pergami, 80 Savio) or Parco I Maggio, in the area of Fosso Ghiaia (RA).

By bike: the area is easily reachable by bike from Ravenna or Cervia, through the pine forest of Classe and Milano Marittima. The whole area offers easy and marked trails. There are many towers and lookout huts along the way for all birdwatching lovers.

A cura della Redazione Locale

Ultima modifica: 8 February 2024

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