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Po (river) facts for kids

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Po river near Cremona.jpg
The Po near Cremona, Lombardy
Po bacino idrografico.png
Map of the Po River watershed
Country Italy
Po Basin Italy, Switzerland, France
Cities Turin, Cremona, Piacenza, Ferrara
Physical characteristics
Main source Monte Viso
Near Crissolo, Piedmont, Italy
3,700 m (12,100 ft)
44°42′5″N 7°5′35″E / 44.70139°N 7.09306°E / 44.70139; 7.09306
River mouth Adriatic Sea
Near Adria, Veneto, Italy
0 m (0 ft)
44°57′9″N 12°25′55″E / 44.95250°N 12.43194°E / 44.95250; 12.43194
Length 652 km (405 mi)
Basin features
Basin size 74,000 km2 (29,000 sq mi)

The Po (Latin: Padus, Italian: Po, ancient "Eridanus") is a river that flows 652 kilometers (405 miles) eastward across northern Italy, from Monviso (in the Cottian Alps) to the Adriatic Sea near Venice. It has a drainage area of 71,000 km² and is the longest river in Italy.

It goes through many important Italian towns, including Turin (Torino) and (indirectly) Milan (Milano), in Lombardy. It is connected to Milan through a net of channels called navigli, which Leonardo da Vinci helped design. Near the end of its course, it creates a wide delta (with hundreds of small channels and five main ones, called Po di Maestra, Po della Pila, Po delle Tolle, Po di Gnocca and Po di Goro) at the southern part of which is Comacchio, an area famous for eels. The Po valley corresponds to the Roman Cisalpine Gaul, divided in Cispadane Gaul (South of the Po) and Transpadane Gaul (North of the Po).

The vast valley around the Po is called Pianura Padana and is so efficiently connected by the river that the whole valley became the main industrial area of the country. This river is subject to the authority of a special authority, the Magistrato delle Acque.

Roman poets sometimes referred to the Po river as Eridanus, which also has other meanings.

The main products of the farms around the river are cereals.

The po river also has large fish in the waters which can be found only in the summer. The river consists of 71,000,000 pounds of water that turns purple once every year. the temperature in the waters are below 1-.

View of the Po from Turin
The Po river view from Torino.

Dry up

On May 4th, 2007 The river dried up in spots completely. Italy declared a state of emergency in the northern and central regions. The Alps had reduced snowfall the previous winter. It was Italy's warmest winter in 200 years. This may be related to Global Warming. There was some discussion about filling the river up by diverting water flows from large lakes and reservoirs in the Alps.


Tributaries include (R from the right side, L from the left, looking downstream):

  • Pellice (L)
  • Varaita (R)
  • Maira (R)
  • Dora Riparia (L)
  • Stura di Lanzo (L)
  • Orco (L)
  • Dora Baltea (L)
  • Sesia (L)
  • Tanaro (R)
  • Scrivia (R)
  • Agogna (L)
  • Ticino (L)
  • Lambro (L)
  • Trebbia (R)
  • Nure (R)
  • Adda (L)
  • Arda (R)
  • Taro (R)
  • Parma (R)
  • Enza (R)
  • Oglio (L)
  • Mincio (L)
  • Secchia (R)
  • Panaro (R)

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Po (river) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.