Region: Friuli-Venezia Giulia
Elevation: 2 m a.s.l.
Area: 90,26 km²
Population: 2007 (as of April, 2007)
Time zone: CET, UTC+1
Patron: San Martino
Patron-Day: November 11
The small town of Marano Lagunare is easily reachable from Lignano Sabbiadoro by sea and it is a required excursion. Different motorboats make daily trips from Lignano to Marano, to explore the city, the wonderful lagoon and the typical flavours of the sea.
In Marano there are even today many palaces from the Republic of Venice.
In fact, the city was one of the centre of the Republic and one of the most important palace, still visible today, is the Loggia Maranese, a close loggia with ashlar in Istrian stone, where the community gathered.
Near the Loggia you can notice the Torre Millenaria (Millennium Tower), 32 m., of which there are first news on 1066. It is likely that in the beginning it had been a sighting tower. The tower has been badly damaged by the earthquake of 1976 and the superior part has been rebuilt. On the same square faces the Palazzo dei Provveditori, home of governors of the fortress, that now hosts an exhibition of objects.
Of great importance is the Lagoon of Marano, whose considerable variations of salinity offer visitors different environments with different vegetations and type of birds. For this reason, in the lagoon there are two regional nature reserves: the regional nature reserve Foci dello Stella and the regional nature reserve Valle Canal Novo.
Reserve Foci dello Stella:
The nature reserve Foci dello Stella encompasses the delta of river Stella and the surrounding lagoon area: it is an extensive and lush cane field intersected by a winding water system, that extends smoothly into the lagoon. The cane field is a great expression of the reserve Foci dello Stella. The centre of the park is an beautiful example: the mouth of the river of resurgence located in a lagoon zone. Reason of high natural value is the presence of bird: many birds, both for species and for quantity, inhabit and animate the entire environment. Many of them stop on it during the migrations, many spend on it the winter and others choose it to nest, as the purple heron.
This area is the favourite by bird-watchers, because in the cane fields and canals they can see beautiful birds in their natural habitat.
The nature reserve Foci dello Stella is reachable only by water, so the excursion is only by boat.
Reserve Valle Canal Novo:
The reserve Valle Canal Novo is made by a former fishing valley of 35 hectares and by some arable lands. The valley is a lagoon area with ponds, not accessible by the tides by perimeter banks. The main aspect is that of a salt marsh, because the valley doesn't receive fresh water from inland, but only through rainfalls and three artesian wells.
The management of the waters coming from the wells and the creations of some structure allowed to differentiate the salinity from area to area and, thus, to increase the biodiversity of the valley, offering a large overview of vegetation and birds to all visitors.
In this valley it is possible to make different excursions by land between casoni, panoramic observatories and a bridge that goes in the water.
An excursion in Marano allow you to discover the casoni, the typical houses of fishermen, many of them are now restaurants, in which taste very good fish dishes, cooked according to traditional recipes.