Veneto has a territory that is a small universe comprising high mountains like the wonderful Dolomites, a vast river plain and the sea. But not only. Because in the region there are beautiful cities, above all Venice, known all over the world.
The waterways between rivers and canals
In this tour we wanted to concentrate on the territory between Venice and Treviso, linked by history and the element of water. In fact, both are characterized by a play of canals and passages that give them charming and pleasant corners: and if in Treviso is the river Sile, one of the longest resurgence rivers in Europe, to create the magical atmosphere with palaces, mills and walls that are reflected in the water, in Venice is the lagoon with its green-gold luminescence to act as a scenic backdrop to one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
Veneto is a region rich in waters where the Sile and Brenta paths stand out, which are just two of the many possible ways to get to know the area. Another itinerary to follow may be that of the so-called “walled cities”, in which the city walls, castles and fortresses have over time constituted a very rich defensive fabric.
Examples of this are Treviso and Castelfranco Veneto, both surrounded and crossed by rivers whose course is enhanced by defense walls, medieval ditches and canals.
Castelfranco Veneto owes its name to its origin: in fact the families who lived in the Castle were exempted from paying taxes. Today in the center of the town stands the walled nucleus, square in shape, around which there are the squares intended for mercantile functions for which it was famous since ancient times together with the fact of having given birth to the painter Giorgio Zorzi, known as the Giorgione, among the major of the Renaissance.
The best preserved gate of the walled city is that of Treviso, defended by a quadrangular tower and which leads into the village through via Preti. A short walk leads to Piazza San Liberale, where stands the Duomo that overlooks a churchyard surrounded by a nineteenth-century balustrade enriched with statues from the destroyed Villa Corner del Paradiso.
Behind the building there is the seventeenth-century church of Cristo, while on the left of the church stands the gothic house Marta Pellizzari, called Giorgione’s house (piazza San Liberale – tel: +39 0423 735626 – firstname.lastname@example.org), because it preserves in an upper floor, an elegant decorative frieze attributed to the master castellan.
For a quick lunch break in the heart of Castelfranco, the Bistrò San Giustino (Via Francesco Maria Preti, 35 – tel: +39 0423 420918), right under the dome, offers really delicious sandwiches, to say by many, the best of all the Veneto! Here they say it is impossible to resist the shade of wine with the sandwich, but we preferred to accompany it with a nice cold beer, not just any but the Antoniana Marechiaro Beer with the aromatic scents of the Mediterranean for a nice North/South union.
But our tour took us first to Mirano, a town in the area between Padua, Venice and Treviso that draws character from the numerous patrician houses, built by the Venetian nobility between the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and softened by scenic parks.
On the central square there is the parish church of San Michele while the most interesting villas are located on the road to Spinea where the torrent Musone Vecchio laps the garden of Villa Erizzo now home to the City of Mirano that communicates with the romantic park of the eighteenth-century villa Morosini.
Very relaxing walking in the shade of weeping willows with the branches that caress the waters of the Muson and ponds on which stands the Castelletto, a striking nineteenth-century building that hides inside the Belvedere caves. The enchanting structure was built at the behest of a Venetian nobleman according to the dictates of the late romantic taste of the fake ruins.
Are you hungry after the tour? Two choices. The Barchessa da Paolo and Giò “Ai Molini” (Via Belvedere 14, tel: +39 041 5489986), a pizza restaurant located inside the eighteenth-century park of Villa Belvedere and built in a 17th century building, an ancient coach house horses.
While just below the bell tower is El Bacaro (via Bastia Within 12, open every day, except Sunday evening and Monday, tel: +39 041 431466), a small osteria with traditional cuisine based on fish to accompany a good glass of wine.
For us and Otto, however, only the possibility to eat and drink at the outside tables because dogs are not allowed inside.
But why have we decided to stop in Mirano from Puglia? Because here, in the quiet Veneto countryside, Emanuela and Monica had the idea of planting the luxury tents of the Glamping Canonici di San Marco, among the high walls of an old barchessa, where we were guests for our first night in Veneto. Are you curious? We will tell you everything in the post in #sognidoro.
Nearby we recommend a visit to Noale, a quiet town where is the protagonist the Rocca with five towers on the bank of the Marzénego built in the twelfth century by the Tempesta family.
To this first fortress a second one has been added with two entrance doors provided with swallow-tailed battlements, alongside the towers known as the Clock Tower and the Bell Tower, according to a frequent “island” typology in the Po Valley-Venetian plain in the Middle Ages, ie a castle without defensive walls that encloses the historic center of the village.
At the center of the village, where it is nice to walk slowly under the porticoes of medieval origin, near the Pillar of Peace, is the loggia of the Town Hall, built in 1848 on the previous sixteenth century.
Not far away and on the edge of the Draganziolo are abandoned clay quarries, partly acquired by the Municipality and recovered as an oasis managed by the WWF, as in the lake districts large areas of reed bed have been developed which are staging and nesting sites for many species of resting and stepping birds.