Penisola di Sinis – Isola di Mal de Ventre
The second largest marine protected area in Italy, designated in 1999, combines the peninsula of Sinis and the island of “Mal de Ventre”, or bad wind. The city of Cabras has taken an immediate interest in Peninsula of Sinis since it received management responsibility four years ago. Under the leadership of a member of the city council, the city successfully convinced the Ministry of Environment to recast the original site boundaries and the boundaries of the zones. This has led to an incredible amount of political, logistical and financial support for the marine protected area by the City of Cabras.
The natural beauty and cultural
human history of the protected area are always evident as is the support
the City of Cabras. The city
built a new building close to the ocean that provides office and support facilities for the marine protected area. Cabras has also
helped develop an app. 1,500 square foot visitor center near the historical
remains of the Greek city of Tharros, now a popular tourist destination.
They have also supported purchase of a bluff-top building within 100
meters of that visitor center to support offices and possibly an aquarium.
Further north on remote coastal beaches, the city has given the marine
protected area authority to operate and manage a barracks/residence
and an education center, which have many opportunities to help with
school outreach, conferences, and research teams.
addition to many facility projects to manage, the marine protected
area conducts several critical marine research projects to support
management priorities. For instance, they have been collaborating on
a research project to track lobster movement, inside and outside of
the no fishing zones in the marine protected area. They also have several
projects to evaluate environmentally sustainable means to protect coastal
dunes and coastal bluffs from eroding. Numerous Greek and Phoenician
ruins, including burial sites, line the coast of the marine protected
area. Also, it receives tens of thousands of visitors daily during
the summer, placing beaches and beach dune communities at extreme risk.
of Sinis is on the west coast of Sardinia. It is 99 square miles, has
15 miles of coastline, much of it stunning beaches, and relatively
small amount designated as Zone A, no access or fishing (2 square miles)
or as Zone B, limited access and fishing (4 square miles).