Modena off the beaten path: Salse di Nirano

January 7, 2019Niry Fidelis

Interesting Geological Wonder Close to Modena and Maranello

Salse Di Nirano
So many of you are here around wondering what to do in Modena; here for you something unusual! Since I had an opportunity to live in a city called Modena for the past few years I went on discovering things that usually when it comes to Italy, are still not suggested because in term of tourism it has really too much to offer that many interesting wonders are misunderstood but still, deserve a visit, especially if nearby. This is how I discovered these so-called “Salse di Nirano”, a geological phenomenon certainly of international relevance, in Fiorano Modenese, a town close to Modena and Maranello.

Salse Di Nirano

The Salse di Nirano is a kind of cold mud Volcanos, gurgling and spitting out upwards to the surface the gaseous hydrocarbon deposits, principally methane, which leaks out through the typical cones carrying the salty grey waters together with the gaseous deposit. The dissolved mud brought to the surface deposits around forming a small hill. The entire area of Nirano Salse Nature reserve turns out to be dry with cracks due to the cold mud which tends to expand everywhere. It is not the only site of this phenomenon in Italy but it is undoubtedly the most important one. 

What to do in Modena

Nowadays so many pathways have been built around the park so that keep this wonder well protected and in fact it remains an ideal place for a nice walk or do some jogging and cycling if you are a sportsperson. Information boards, in both English and Italian language, located along the way gave a great idea of the phenomenon. There are publications in braille as well. The wooden pathway which ends at the roundabout was also well done for the wheelchair access. 

Let me but say that these pathways, in my opinion, have not been projected properly though because they don’t allow the visitors to go closer to observe the gurgling!

Things to do in Modena

Car parking is available at the entrance of the “Riserva Naturale regionale delle Salse Di Nirano” Regional Natural Reserve) and with just a few minutes’ walk from there, you will reach the volcanos area. There are no guardians or watchmen but sometimes you can find a man called the “Fagiolino” (Small Bean) by the locals who takes care of the Natural Park on his own free will. The admission to the park is totally free for self-visitors but if you are looking for guided tours offered by eco-guards volunteers, then you must pay a small amount and book it at least 2 weeks in advance ( 

Riserva naturale regionale delle Salse di Nirano

For your information there is also a nice restaurant at the foot of the volcanoes: “Da Guido” which I have tried several times, they serve good typical Modenese food. They have various set menus for different reasonable prices starting from €13.00 to €18.00, drinks not included.

Salse Di Nirano
As it is not so far from Maranello or Modena, I highly recommend you to visit it during your trip to the Ferrari Museum in Maranello or Modena, because it is very rare to see such an unusual phenomenon and landscape. It is one of my favourites in Modena! Remember that you could easily get your shoes dirty because the mud flowing everywhere, makes the ground very humid and since the wooden pathway ends at a certain point, you have to walk forward directly on the field. The Salse di Nirano is one of the best things you can do with children in Modena. Avoid during the rainy days.

Things to do in Modena

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Comments (13)

  • Unknown

    January 7, 2019 at 11:35 pm

    I will be sure to visit when I'm in the area. Thanks

  • simplysarah

    March 1, 2019 at 1:09 pm

    I have never heard of a mud volcano before, very interesting! The ferrari museum also sounds fun.

  • Unknown

    March 1, 2019 at 5:22 pm

    Wow, this is so interesting! Our earth is truly so amazing, thanks for sharing this! I loved your video also!

  • Dani

    March 1, 2019 at 7:31 pm

    Wow! I've never seen landscape like that. This would be very cool to bring kids to! They would love the volcanoes.

  • federica provolenti

    March 1, 2019 at 9:58 pm

    What a fascinating phenomenon and also the landscape looks glorious. Can you take the mud away and use for beauty facials?

    1. Niry Fidelis

      March 27, 2019 at 2:37 pm

      Actually I didn't see people using the mud for beauty facials so, can't give details. 🙁

  • Brittany Harris

    March 2, 2019 at 1:59 pm

    Very interesting place indeed! Is there ever a time when it gets a lot of tourists? Looks like a good place for jogging. Not many people in the way.

    1. Niry Fidelis

      March 27, 2019 at 2:38 pm

      It is quite off the beaten path so you never find too much of people there!

  • Manhattanite

    March 2, 2019 at 2:30 pm

    That looks so cool! Like it's on a different planet. Never heard of those before, will definitely visit if I'm in the area!

  • Laura Hosford Yunker

    March 27, 2019 at 12:57 pm

    I’ve never heard of this, very interesting article. Also, I love the video. What program did you use to make it?

    1. Niry Fidelis

      March 27, 2019 at 2:36 pm

      Hi laura, Im on my first stage with adobe premiere.

  • Expat Queen

    March 27, 2019 at 1:38 pm

    Great article, full of interesting facts. It inspires me to go visit. Love the photos and the detail in the blog is very helpful. Thankyou.

  • Debbie

    March 27, 2019 at 8:12 pm

    I have never heard of mud volcanos before…really interesting.

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