The territory of Montalto and the Monteduro area
A site of community interest

The territory of Montalto is an area of particular importance in the Municipality of Vezzano, due to the presence of a large plateau at the foot of the great wooded buttress of Monteduro, in view of the nearby fortress of Canossa. At the eastern end of this area rises the isolated hill of Montalto, on top of which are the ruins of an ancient fortress, it too in a sight-line with the "Matilda rock", reflecting the fact that this fortress was part of the defensive network that protected the castle of Canossa during the Middle Ages.

Another salient aspect of the territory of Montalto is the presence of a large number of small villages, mostly medieval, which effectively illustrate the historical characteristics of late-mediaeval  buildings. Most of these villages still feature various tower-houses, which are local landmarks, creating the startling appearance of a "historical towered landscape" with few equals in the vicinity. Because of these characteristics, the whole area was recognized as “of particular landscape interest" in a Ministerial Decree of August 1985.

A convenient network of footpaths throughout the whole territory, indicated by the red and white painted marks of the Italian Alpine Club, reaches the ancient villages of Riolo, Cavazzone, Cà Lolli and Cà Rosino, to arrive subsequently in the remarkable woods towards the peak of Monteduro. Monteduro is the main naturalistic attraction in the territory of Montalto; within its forests are habitats of great ecological importance, which, in 1999, led to the whole area being designated a "Site of Community Importance." A special feature of this mountain is the presence of one of the largest Scotch Pine woods in the entire region. This conifer is an important witness of the Ice Age, having spread across Italy during this period, and later on surviving climate change to take refuge in a few restricted areas such as this one.