A sea of... fossils

Route details Recommended period Spring, Summer, Autumn Phone+39 045 6565088
Useful advice: Starting from the Bolca Fossil Museum, it is just a short trip to the little valley of Pesciara, the deposit from which the fossils are extracted.
At the foot of the Lessini Mountains, in the heart of the valley carved by the River Alpone, the tiny village of Bolca offers a fascinating and exciting journey back in time for the whole family.

Here in Lessinia, fifty million years ago, there was a warm sea inhabited by fish, shellfish, algae ... vertebrate and invertebrate organisms that the subsurface layers of Bolca have carefully conserved, making this a unique place in the world to the point of being declared a "World Capital of Fossils" from the Tertiary Era (about 50 million years ago). Well worth a visit is the local fossil museum that preserves the fascinating "Angelfish", the pride of the collection.

Among the sites of fossil finds, the most famous is surely the Pessàra found in the Zovo district in the outskirts of Bolca. It is a hollow tunnel in which tens of thousands fossils of fish, plants and remains of invertebrates they were brought to light in an extraordinary state of preservation. For walkers, the Pessàra is easily accessible through the "paleontological walk" from the center of Bolca down to the cave allows you to discover the various geological phenomena.

To continue the itinerary and discover another extraordinary heritage you have to go as far as Roncà, a small village at the foot of Monte Calvarina. Here is the new Museum of Paleontology that offers a broad picture of the fauna and flora of the Lessinia from over 40 million years ago. The fossils on display, from the local deposit of Val Nera, the current Valle delle Chiese, today are the result of more than 200 years of study and research. The most outstanding finds were the skeleton and the reconstruction of a huge Prototherium, an animal of the Siren family, marine mammals of medium-large size.

An area manager and/or a geologist are on hand during the tour. In the rare case that the find is considered even of minimal scientific importance, it is kept and sent to the Museum of Natural Sciences of Verona.