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Borgo Marina - The Fishermen's Neighbourhood

Borgo Marina - The Fishermen's Neighbourhood

Inhabited settlement established around 1833 and located around the canal harbour in Cervia, to accommodate fishermen from various parts of the Upper Adriatic area.

Initially it was a group of huts and its inhabitants, known as magna pes (“fish eaters”), were regarded as foreigners, thus marginalised by the salt workers and by the population living within the Quadrilatero.

Borgo Marina by dayThe seafaring sector in Cervia was affected by growing tourism activities in the area. Its development was due to the migrations of fishermen from Veneto, from the Po Delta region, and only in part from areas further south along the Romagna coastline; seafaring activities in Cervia were started by fishermen families living in the rows of houses in Borgo Marina, outside the old town Quadrilatero.

Borgo Marina, the Fishermen's NeighbourhoodThey were thus separated from the town’s liveliest section, associated with salt production and salt workers’ families; their life was still characterised by backwardness, with widespread poverty and illiteracy, their work was hard and dangerous.
The tourism boom, first in its pioneering stages, then increasingly on an industrial scale, contributed to boosting the limited income from fishing. The latter indeed found a new market outlet for the fish caught by sailors from Cervia in the new accommodation and catering facilities. Moreover the fishermen came up with the idea of “pescaturismo”, fishing excursions at sea for tourists with entertainment and informative moments.

Almost all the sailors’ and fishermen’s families came from Chioggia, Comacchio and Goro, having travelled to Cervia for salt transport purposes; others arrived between 1800 and 1900. At the turn of the century, marriages were still limited to within the community. This is why their surnames still feature prominently in town: Bellini, Bonaldo, Foli, Lucchi, Mezzagori, Modanesi,Nella, Penso, Picciarini, Ricci, Tiozzi, Trampalina, Veronesi and Zanini.

Borgo Marina by night

Every Thursday, from May to September, Borgomarina - Vetrina di Romagna takes place, an event featuring street markets and exhibitions of typical produce and craft from Romagna, performances and culinary suggestions from restaurants in the ancient fishermen’s borough, art exhibitions and cultural events.

Where: Via Nazario Sauro, Cervia

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