Finding 'secret' Italy

by Pete Hussey

After far too long I finally got to Italy a few weeks ago. Finding 'secret' Italy isn't as difficult as one might think as most, probably, stay around well worn tourist tracks but as I am lucky enough to have good friends in the Venice area I get to visit places a bit off the usual radar for tourists.

This time I was staying in a lovely house in Marghera and only saw Venice itself twice when passing through. One of the delightful places we visited this time was a Parco Regionale at Casier, a small municipality near Treviso.

We walked along a well made path along the river Sile and if you haven't been there I do recommend it. Overlooking this beautiful river is a large abandoned vegetable oil factory which may sound grim but stands there almost as an ancient castle guarding the waterway.

Along the way we saw swans and cygnets, coots with the tiniest chicks, ducks, trout, iridescent blue damselflies and red necked turtles.

Yes, turtles!

A couple of boys fishing accidentally caught one but didn't know how to deal with it so it took an Englishman (me) to step in and get the thing unhooked and returned to the water.

One of the attractive things here is the cimitero dei burci, a number of wrecked wooden boats slowly decaying in the shallows.

Apparently they were the shallow draft craft that plied these waters until the early 1970s but were then abandoned. Curiously they actually add character and additional interest to this lovely stretch of river. Of course, there is a convenient bar where one can refresh oneself with a well deserved spritz after a very pleasant hour or two.

(All photos taken using Fuji X-Pro1 + Fujinon XF 18-55mm lens)

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