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E3 – The Po delta bike ring

Distance: 60 km
Route: roads running along the levee
with light traffic and level ground.
Start/finish: Porto Tolle

The dykes are higher than the houses, there is a pleasant sea breeze and a soft light: these are the impressions you get as you visit Ca’ Tiepolo a Porto Tolle, the starting-point of the trip through the heart of the Po Delta.
After leaving the last houses of the town, you climb up the right dyke of the Po di Venezia, the main branch of the river, and continue until you reach Tolle.
When the branch of the Po di Venezia forks in two, you follow the dyke of the Po di Tolle almost until its mouth where you come to Scardovari, a fishing village which has a large fish market. After passing through Bonelli, a town of traditional houses with large cube-shaped chimneys, you come to the beach.
Cycling along the road that skirts the Scardovari lagoon, you will be accompanied by seagulls, oyster catchers, terns and dabchicks. The cane thickets of the mud flats and sandbanks at the mouth of the river give way to the “cavane” (water gardens) of the lagoon where fishermen breed shellfish and mussels which are one of the specialities of the Polesine.
It is worth stopping off at the Nature reserve of Ca’ Mello to see the Visitors’ Centre which provides information about the environment, agriculture and fishing in the Po Delta. You proceed until you reach the area known as Val Bonello Biotope.
The return route follows the left dyke of the Po di Donzella, passing through the hamlets of Cassella, Gnocca and Donzella before an easy return journey to the point of departure.