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In this article we discuss the naturalistic oasis of Sbarai, a unique and particularly delicate environment located on Lake Santa Croce.

The Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai is a particularly suggestive and delicate wetland area, which hosts a wide range of different environments, linked to the variations in the water levels of the lake. An area that develops in the presence of dense vegetation, such as woods and reeds, which offer an excellent resting place and shelter for migratory birds, and for the reproduction of water birds.

Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai

The Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai is located on the shore of Lake Santa Croce, surrounded by the Alpago Mountains and the historic Cansiglio forest, in the province of Belluno. An area, which for the people of Belluno is like their home garden, as it is easy to reach for a quick trip, to relax by the lake and to practice some outdoor sports. This splendid natural body of water is set in a sunny basin, surrounded by pretty rural villages, such as Bastia and Sitran, with their typical terraced houses, with the classic roof made of stone slabs, straw and marsh reeds.

Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai

From the wide beach starts the path that leads into the naturalistic oasis, easily reachable along the flat path across the bridge, which plunges among the monumental white willows. This is an ideal habitat, to overcome the winter of many species of birds, such as the Gray Heron, the White Stork, the Pendolino, the Forapaglie, the Long-tailed Labbo, the Cannaiola and the Little Tuffetto, and which we can admire in the dedicated positions to the observation of avifauna.

Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai

Not very far from Sitran, we find the famous “bicycle tree”, an old chestnut tree that over time has incorporated an old two-wheeler into the trunk. It is possible to visit this area all year round, although we recommend the spring and autumn period, in order to enjoy all the nuances of the landscape. The stretch to be covered mostly develops on dirt roads and does not present any difficulty, the route is practicable both on foot and by mountain bike, paying attention in some seasons, because in some sections the path can become muddy.

Naturalistic Oasis of Sbarai

The story of the Bicycle Tree, taken from Paola Fantin's "The Book of Ancient and Legendary Trees".

“The story tells that in Sitran there was a farmer who in the first half of the 1900s managed to buy a bicycle, his pride and wealth. When he went to the fields to cut the grass, he always took it with him and placed it on the nearby chestnut. Years passed and the bicycle became old and shabby. The farmer, not having the heart to throw it away, one day in 1952, decided to hang it on a dry chestnut branch, without even imagining that, over time, the tree and bicycle would become one body and one soul. Forever"

THE TERRITORY ◊

The Belluno Province

A totally mountain area, embroidered by incredible valleys and well-kept villages.

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