These day all media are full of documentaries and reconstructions of one of the biggest tragedy of the last century: the sinking of the Titanic.
A celebration cruise sailed yesterday from Candada and a lot of events have been scheduled all over the world to commemorate the tremendous accident.
We would like to suggest you something very different, it is a cruise but over the longest Italian river. Take a cruise along the Po River, with departures from the province of Reggio Emilia, there are now two new moorings at Guastalla and Luzzara, in addition to the well known tourist port at Boretto.
The MS Stradivari and the MS Padus operate out of Boretto and take group bookings. Cruises with set itineraries are available for individual tourists in certain periods of the year. Along the riverside of Reggio Emilia, which is 20 km long, there are towns with a particularly strong and pervasive atmosphere: they are in the “Lowland”, special places with outstanding history and culture, which can rarely be found elsewhere along this Big River.
Brescello was the location for the famous movies about “Don Camillo and Peppone”, typical characters based on Guareschi’s famous books, which you can also find in the local museum.
Boretto is one of the best equipped river ports for pleasure craft, while Guastalla still has its features of a capital town, remnants of its time under Gonzaga domination.
There is also Gualtieri with its magnificent square and its Museum dedicated to the great naïf painter Antonio Ligabue, and Luzzara, with its Naïve Art National Museum dedicated to the local artist Zavattini and the typical “Po” feeling, among white poplars, floodplains, scrubland and many small ponds.
In this part of its winding course, the slowness of the Big River characterizes the people and places, channels, islands, accumulations of sand and croplands, irrigated since antiquity; and all of these receive the fertile gift of its water.
Although man’s progress has modified the territory into valleys and floodplains, it has also restored precious habitats and created parks to safeguard nature, places that can be enjoyed by nature lovers.
This land is constantly changing, and after every flood some part of it disappears: a path, ruins of a building, part of the woods; and at the same time something reappears: an old craft, the remains of a car, an ancient trunk.
The best way to relish this fascinating landscape and see the little capitals in the distance from the Big River is to embark on the Padus Motorboat in the port of Boretto, the best equipped and most characteristic of Emilia Romagna, from Piacenza to Ferrara. Departure is from the San Marco jetty at Lido Po at 3:30 p.m. every Sunday from April to September.
For cycling lovers, it is possible to load your bike on the boat, get off in Guastalla, and go back to Boretto along the 11 kilometres of bicycle path on the right riverside, enjoying wonderful landscapes and views of the Po River, among woods and groves.
This bicycle path starts in Brescello, goes through the towns of Boretto, Gualtieri, Guastalla and then winds into flatlands among town, with their own specific traditions, and incomparable food.
During sultry summer nights, lazier people can have fun on the Stradivari Motorboat; it is docked in the port of Boretto, and at its restaurant it is possible to choose from among the many excellent typical dishes of the Po Lands.