Travel and Culture in
Cervia is famous for the sea, the sun and its beaches, but it is also a few kilometers away from some medieval villages and magnificent art towns which are waiting to be discovered. In the following lines we will bring include some destinations that you can reach when you wish to vary your usual holiday, based on sea and sun bathing.
In particular, in the old town centre of Cervia you can visit: the Assunta Cathedral or Church, with its works of art and you can go to the eighteenth century salt wharehouses, that contain the "Salt Museum". The warehouses are crowned by the St Michael’s Tower, which is 27 metres high and is situated on the bank opposite the port.
Forlimpopoli (23 km from Cervia): it is the birthplace of the famous gourmet Pellegrino Artusi, it is a fourteenth century fortress with a drawbridge and mighty walls. The Servi Church and the St Rufill’s collegiate church, with its bell tower in Lombard style, are beautiful, too.
Bertinoro (25 km from Cervia): the village Bertinoro is situated in a wonderful panoramic position. From the lookout terrace you can admire the surrondings as far as the sea. The village still keeps intact all its medieval fascination (characterized by the Clock Tower and by a special coloumn, the "Colonna delle anella", that is a symbol of the hospitality of the past), by the Cathedral in Bramante style and by the imposing Rocca, a fortress where also Barbarossa lived, among the others. Bertinoro is also famous for its typical local wine: the Albana. In fact, a legend tells that its name derives from an exclamation said by Galla Placidia who tasted this typical wine and said:"Oh wine, you are not worthy of this rough drinking cup, but I would like to drink you in a golden cup" (which is, in Italian, berti in oro).
Santarcangelo di Romagna (30 km from Cervia): it is a fascinating village of Roman origins, that was an important centre under the dynasties of the Malatesta, the Montefeltro, the Borgia and then under the dominion of the Church. If you visit the village, you can admire its refined palaces, the Collegiate Church and the picturesque Ganganelli Square, with its nineteenth century buildings. Typical of Santarcangelo are its streets made of stone and rock, its brick walls, its artisan shops, the small streets (contrade) of the old part of the village and its Roccca Malatestiana, of course.
Bagnacavallo (40 km from Cervia): it is a beautiful town with a medieval plan, built in a mainly Baroque style, characterized by long arcade streets and numerous seventeenth century aristocratic palaces. We recommend you to visit the wide Nuova Square, that has an oval form, the fifteenth century fortified "Castellaccio", the Goldoni Theatre and the neoclassical Palazzo Comunale (Town Hall). Anyway, the real wonder of Bagnacavallo is the beautiful seventh century parish Pieve di San Pietro in Sylvis, which was built in an early Romantic style and keeps inside some remarkable fourth century frescoes. A few kilometres away, in Villanova di Bagnacavallo, you can admire the naturalistic oasis of the "Fen Grass Ethnographic Centre ".
Riolo Terme (50 km from Cervia): it is an old village that was founded in the High Middle Ages and stands in the wonderful landscape of the low Senio valley. The imposing bastions of its fifteenth century Rocca (the fortress) are characteristic of this place and they are still today an intact example of the military Renaisssance architecure. Moreover, Riolo offers splendid parks, sport facilities and its beautiful spa.
Brisighella (65 km from Cervia): it is another old medieval village situated in an unpolluted nature, among olive groves and chestnut woods, close to the Carné Park. This little town offers the possibility to visit the magnificent Pieve del Thò (ninth century), one of the oldest Romanesque architectures in Romagna that was built, according to the legend, by Galla Placidia on a Jupiter Ammone temple. The old street Via del Borgo is also very picturesque: it is a raised street, with some arcades, that is also called Via degli Asini (Donkeys’ Street), because in the past it was crossed by convoys of donkeys that were going to the Vena del Gesso (the gypsum quarry). Then you cannot miss these places: the medieval Rocca (the fortress), the Clock Tower (1290), the Museum of the Rural Civilization and the Tanaccia Cave. In June and July you can also participate in the Medieval Festival, to live on the fascination of the High Middle Ages.