Type of protected area - Where it is located
Typology: Regional Natural Park; established with L.R. August 21, 1978, n. 53.
The Ticino Natural Park extends for about 40 km along the Piedmontese shores of Ticino, between Lake Maggiore and the entrance to the Lombard territory. It occupies an area of 6,500 hectares and borders the natural park of the same name established by the Lombardy Region. Together with the Lombard Park of Ticino it constitutes one of the largest protected areas in Italy, characterized by the constant presence of the river.
Ticino Valley Natural Park (photo www.parcodelticino.pmn.it)
In the first stretch Ticino flows into a narrow valley which then gradually widens among woods and meanders, to continue up to the plain. Here the river branches between gravels and islets, between lanche (abandoned branches of the river) and vast loops, which offer an ideal environment for the rich aquatic vegetation (water lily, nannufaro, tifa) and for the fauna: mallard, gray heron, moorhen, pheasant, among birds; squirrel, hedgehog, wild rabbit, among mammals. There are several species of fish that live in the waters of Ticino. A project to reintroduce the otter has been launched for some years.
The woods cover 60% of the area, with traces of the original lowland forest and prevalence of English oak, hornbeam, elm. The presence of fountains, resurgences and ancient rural buildings is interesting: among these, the Mulino Vecchio di Bellinzago has been restored by the park and intended to host educational activities and exhibitions; it is one of the many water mills that were built in the Ticino valley.
Vecchio Mulino di Bellinzago - Ticino Valley Natural Park (photo www.parcodelticino.pmn.it)
Information for the visit
Ticino Park Management Body
28062 Cameri (NO)