A park of 15,000 hectares where nature, history, and culture merge to create a landscape of inestimable value.
The Veio Regional Park includes 99 kilometers of trails, including the Via Francigena, that allow you to perceive the landscape variety of its territory in which gentle hilly hills alternate with deep wooded gorges crossed by watercourses and flat valleys.
Along the itineraries, you can discover waterfalls, woods, extensive pastures, necropolis, or suggestive "cuts" excavated in the tuff by the Etruscans. The tracks of the Park recently enlarged and developed, are now marked with the numbering of the CAI (Italian Alpine Club), which has included them in its national archive.
The paths are passable on foot and on horseback, and only some by bicycle or mountain bike due to the particular morphology of the terrain, with varying degrees of difficulty.
Established at the end of 1997, the park is located between Via Cassia and Via Flaminia. Its origins date back to the times of the Etruscans, the Falisci, and the Romans. These populations inhabited it over time, establishing their own settlement models: prehistoric hut settlements, fortified medieval villages, Roman and Renaissance villas, last century farmhouses.
The Park of Veio is the fourth largest park in the Lazio region. It includes nine municipalities north of the Capital: Campagnano di Roma, Castelnuovo di Porto, Formello, Magliano Romano, Mazzano Romano, Morlupo, Riano, Sacrofano, and the XV Municipality of Rome which alone, with an area of 7,000 hectares, covers almost half of the park.
The park, particularly in its northern area, still remains intact for the most part and presents numerous and important archaeological testimonies from the Etruscan and Roman ages and a series of complexes and monuments from the medieval age.
In the Veio Park, the approximately 1,200 hectares of land intended for civic use are composed of woods and pastures that perpetuate the ancient medieval heritage and are fundamental from an ecological point of view, for the integrity of the territory, and for the maintenance of the native landscape.
The Veio Park landscape is the result of the Sabatino volcano action that began about 600,000 years ago. The landscape is hilly and formed by large surfaces that, from the central area - the crater of Sacrofano - extend towards the peripheral areas of the park itself. The surface waters have dug the tuff forming narrow and deep valleys.
Over time, the eruptions of the Sacrofano volcano have diverted the course of the Tiber further east by a few kilometers. The remains of ancient volcanic buildings and the calderas invaded by lakes subsequently dried up have strongly influenced the morphological characteristics of the area.
Currently, in the countryside, you can still recognize a series of minor craters and the large sinking area of Bracciano Lake. The wealth of groundwater in volcanic areas has produced a significant number of springs, spread throughout the park.
The vegetation is characterized by agricultural activities and pastures, which undoubtedly represent one of the main aspects of the park and constitute a significant resource both from a production and landscape point of view.
Natural vegetation is limited to portions of land where the morphology of the landscape has imposed itself on the agricultural activities or where it has been abandoned. The wooded areas display the traces of its original vegetation: the landscape structure is historically linked to millennial systems such as grazing, production of wheat and oil, management of the oak forests in the hilly slopes and gorges, the most characteristic elements of this territory.
The valleys are very suggestive, narrow and deep or with overhanging walls of high landscape and extraordinary environmental value, formed over millions of years, thanks to the erosion of the soft tuff rocks caused by water flowing.
Their particular appearance and uniqueness have allowed the optimal conservation of the habitat of species such as the Hungarian Maple and the Cerro cork plant. The gorges also provide ideal conditions for the development and presence of ferns of which the Park can boast 16 distinct entities. Other species present are turkey oak, downy oak, field maple, lesser maple, black hornbeam, and ash tree.
The uncultivated parts of the territory and all the marginal areas - road edges, paths, clearings - present some species of a particular rarity such as the big-tailed mullein, the buttercup of small flowers, the meadow-prickle, and the hill yarrow. In the park, there are also 12 species of spontaneous orchids, all rare or uncommon. In total, the documented floristic species in the Veio Park are 730.
In the Veio Park, the natural environments that alternate with the semi-natural ones, shaped by traditional extensive agricultural activities, have allowed the persistence of a diversified landscape very rich in fauna. In particular, the sedentary and migratory avifauna is varied and well represented both by species related to forest environments, such as the green woodpecker and by species more closely related to agricultural contexts, such as the red-backed shrike.
Inside the protected area, there are several species of amphibians, including frogs and toads. In the Valle del Cremera - Zona del Sorbo, on the other hand, lives a particularly interesting amphibian present only in Italy: the spectacled salamander, protected by the European Union. Walking in the Park, traces of the presence of porcupine, hedgehog, badger, and wild boar can be encountered. These species with shy behavior are hardly visible.
Water, a precious but unfortunately limited resource, is an essential element for the survival of the ecosystems of the Veio Park. The ditch system that runs through the protected area is the main reservoir of environmental and biological diversity. The richness of groundwater has provided many springs, some of which are characterized by cold and thermo-mineral waters.
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