The nature reserve

The nature reserve

The ‘Riserva naturale integrale Sasso Fratino’, in the heart of the Casentino Forest, Monte Falterona and Campigna National Park, is the first complete nature reserve in Italy (1959) and extends over 764 hectares of land on the Forli side of the Appenine ridge, including the districts of Bagno di Romagna and Santa Sofia in the province of Forlì-Cesena. The reserve is located on the northern side of the Tuscan-Romagna Appenine, and has a maximum height of 1520 m. (at Poggio Scali) and a minimum of 650 m. (at Ponte di Campo alla Sega). The morphology is extremely rugged with secondary ridges that surround deep ditches, originating from the erosion of the marl and the resulting collapse of the limestone banks.

The mountainside has alternating areas of steep inclines, some vertical, and relatively gentle slopes. The territory is crossed by many torrents that flow from southwest to northwest, with frequent drops and waterfalls caused by the stratification of the underlying rocks. Its prevalent exposure is towards the northeast. It extends for a maximum length of 6.6km and a maximum width of 2.2km.

The whole reserve, honoured with a ‘European Diploma of Protected Areas’ since 1985, was set up with the aim of preserving one of the few patches of forest that still remains almost intact today, thanks to the presence of sharp rocky inclines and a lack of access routes; ever present characteristics, which have impeded human colonisation.


It is totally forbidden to enter the protected area and will be treated as a criminal offence with a severe sanction from the forest guards, who keep the borders under surveillance.
The borders are well marked by many signs.


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