Riserva Naturale Diaccia Botrona
Extending over a thousand hectares, the Diaccia Botrona Provincial Nature Reserve, near Castiglione della Pescaia, is a true ecological paradise and one of the most significant wetlands in Europe. The protected area is considered the genetic bank of the Maremma.
The Provincial Nature Reserve of Diaccia Botrona is a protected area located in the heart of the Tuscan Maremma Grossetana, between the seaside village of Castiglione della Pescaia and the provincial capital Grosseto. The Oasis of Diaccia Botrona is all that remains today of the ancient Lake Prile – Lake Preglio – navigable in Roman times. Rated as one of the most important wetlands in Europe (classified exactly as wetland of international importance in compliance with the Ramsar Convention of 1971), the Diaccia Botrona offers a precious and incredible ecosystem that preserves a significant variety of living microorganisms, animals and plants: it is in summary a real genetic bank of the Maremma. The area, established as a reserve in 1996, is now extended over about a thousand hectares, of which seven hundred are occupied by marshes with its reeds and reeds – where some species of orchids live, some of them remarkably rare – visited every year for about 200 species of birds: peregrine falcons, osprey, red, white and gray herons, harriers, kites, egrets, tufted cuckoos and the beautiful pink flamingos. Various types of reptiles and mammals also live in the Provincial Nature Reserve of Diaccia Botrona, such as tortoises and snakes, otters, foxes, badgers, hedgehogs, porcupines, while in the slightly sweet and slightly salty waters shellfish and sea bass are mixed with eels and pike.
The Ximenes Red House and the Multimedia Museum
Inside the Provincial Nature Reserve of Diaccia Botrona, there is the famous Fabbrica delle Cateratte, better known as Casa Rossa or Casa Ximenes, one of the most authentic and representative symbols of the history of the Tuscan Maremma, a building beloved by the Maremma. Built by the Jesuit father Leonardo Ximenes in 1765, by the will of the Grand Duke of Tuscany Pietro Leopoldo di Lorena, Casa Rossa Ximenes was born as part of the Reclamation of the Grossetana Maremma, was to be used to restore the Castiglione della Pescaia marshes, regulating the flows of sea and river water that flooded Lake Prile with its locks. Today the house has been renovated and houses the suggestive and interesting Multimedia Museum of the Ximenes Red House. The multimedia path allows you to observe live all the animals present in the protected area thanks to the use of cameras, which can be operated from different positions within the building, which reproduce their movements on large screens.
The Multimedia Museum Casa Rossa Ximenes – Provincial Nature Reserve of Diaccia Botrona – Maremma Grossetana Tuscany
(Foto by Massimo Nardi)
Resources on the Provincial Nature Reserve of Diaccia Botrona
- Diaccia Botrona Nature Reserve – Wikipedia article on the beautiful protected natural reserve of Diaccia Botrona.
- Multimedia Museum of the Red House Ximenes – Official site of the multimedia museum (in the portal of the Maremma Museums) with opening hours, closing days, prices, history of the building, services, activities and contacts.