Even though the Miramare promontory is in a densely inhabited area, it has a very interesting ecosystem thanks to the differences in temperature and tides and currents that are amongst the strongest in the Mediterranean. The brown alga Fucus virsoides, usually only found in the north Atlantic, has grown in this area since the last Ice Age. In deep waters you’ll find species such as the alga Lithophyllum incrustans, colourful sea slugs like Flabellina affinis and elegant spirogyras (Spirographis spallanzanii). In deeper, darker waters you’ll find colonies ofprecoralligenous life like the green alga Halimeda tuna and Codium bursa, various sponges and pillow corals like Astroides alycularis and Cladocora caespitosa. Sea bream, red snappers, croaker fish, sole and flatfish are just some of the numerous fish species that live in these waters. Thanks to the Marine Protected Area’s shallow waters and well-organised governance, beginners can have the chance to observe the area’s wonders up close with sea watching excursions, lectures and guided underwater tours.

Marine Protected Area

The Marine Protected Area is in the north-eastern part of the Gulf of Trieste and is dominated from above by the Miramare castle. It covers 127 hectares, 30 of which are zone A integral reserve, signalled by yellow delimitation buoys with signal lights and diamond-shaped cones. A protected zone runs for 400m around the entire A zone and is patrolled by the Capitaneria di Porto di Trieste. Miramare is the first Italian marine reserve to win EMAS certification for its Sistema di Gestione Ambientale and was recognized as a Mediterranean Especially Protected Area at the Barcelona Convention. Its new rules and guidelines are currently being approved.

Useful Contacts

Associazione Italiana WWF for Nature Onlus
(Ente gestore)
viale Miramare, 349 – 34014 Grignano (Trieste)
tel. 040/224147
Centro Visite: Castelletto di Miramare
Capitaneria di Porto di Trieste
tel. 040/676.611

By Boat

Within the Marine Protected Area there are no mooring buoys and you may not drop anchor. The nearby port of Trieste offers several spots for berthing: Marina di S. Giusto, Bacino Sacchetta, Porto Franco Vecchio, Porto Lido.