A fabulous walking holiday in Italy following in the footsteps of St Francis on one of his many journeys around the Apennines. On the hiking tour along the St Francis Way, you shall walk from Chiusi della Verna to Assisi. From his sanctuary in the forested Apennines, you follow footpaths and trails through the mountains of the Upper Tiber valley, passing several interesting medieval villages. Walking through the typical landscapes of Tuscany and Umbria, through shady forests, olive groves, vineyards and orchards and of course fields of wheat and barley so often illustrated in photos of this region. During this ten-night tour, you will experience not only stunning landscapes but also a region full of cultural and historical interest. Whether this is a religious pilgrimage for you or if you are interested only in an enjoyable walk then this is the trip for you.
Chiusi della Verna
On this trip, you will cross several hamlets and some larger villages where access roads will be tarmac. Some walks will be on Strada Bianca (white roads). You will follow well-marked trails, old donkey trails and roads. Walking poles/sticks may come in handy.
A mixture of very nice 3 star hotels, guest houses and farmhouses. Night 9 in Valfabbrica does not include breakfast but there are several bars in which you can buy breakfast locally.
It is a requirement of booking this tour with Hooked on Walking that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the chosen activity and for emergency evacuation and hospital care.
During the day arrive at Chiusi della Verna. If you arrive early enough and have some time you can visit the Franciscan Sanctuary in the afternoon. The Sanctuary is normally open every day of the year and in the summer months into the evening. You can find some details at www.laverna.it/en/
Today you shall walk along the edge of the Catenaia Alps between the Arno and Tiber valleys. Today you shall come across many stunning views, in particular, those looking over the Casentino and Valtiberina valleys are impressive. Your destination today, Caprese Michelangelo is actually the birthplace of the renowned Renaissance artist Michelangelo.
Before setting off today why not visit the Michelangelo Museum. Today’s walk takes you along paths, trails and dirt roads along the Valtiberina valley enjoying more breath-taking views.
Your destination today Anghiari is an interesting town characterised by its 13th-century town walls. It really is a medieval jewel of the region. The town was established mainly due to its strategic position overlooking the flat valley below. The flat valley underneath the village was the location of the Battle of Anghiari in 1440. Then Florentine troops won the battle against the army from Milano.
Before reaching Anghiari though you have a wonderful walk crossing castle topped hills, ancient parish churches and medieval villages and hamlets. The landscape really is stunning, looking west it’s easy to recognise the Alpe di Poti mountain chain, in the north the Alpe di Catenaia, towards the south the flat plain of the Tiber river and east the Alpe della Luna. Once you arrive in Anghiari visit this amazing medieval hamlet and have a drink in “Giardini del Vicario” at Piazza del Popolo. It’s a lovely cafè-wine bar with a wonderful view over the valley.
After breakfast, you shall have a short transfer to Sansepolcro. It is worth spending a short while to explore this medieval town before starting your walk. It dates from the 9th century and has a number of interesting buildings. During the 2nd world war, it was saved from destruction by the efforts of a Tony Clarke who was a British officer of the Royal Horse Artillery who managed to halt the Allied artillery attack in order to save the Piero della Francesca’s fresco. After your short visit, your walk is a long promenade in the valley, following the course of the Tiber River. The itinerary links the two most important towns of Valtiberina. Along the route, you shall pass some lovely country houses.
Today you continue to follow the river Tiber, the route crosses one of most cultivated valleys in Italy (Valtiberina). The most important and famous product cultivated here is tobacco which is used for the production of Tuscan cigars. Today’s walk is completely flat and runs along country roads or paths parallel to the river, fields and pastures alternate with forested sections of poplars and willows. You shall also see much birdlife here such as Kestrel, Montagu’s Harrier, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Night-Heron and Moorhen.
After breakfast you have a short transfer, then you shall start walking through the nice wooded area to Pietralunga, a rural village at 566m of altitude. The old town with its steep narrow streets, the church of Madonna dei Rimedi and Pieve di Urbino really are worth a visit.
Today you head out from Pietralunga, where you walk through a scenic landscape passing the monasteries of San Pietro and San Benedetto. The abbey of San Benedetto, dates back to 12th century and was once an important place for pilgrims to visit. The final stretch to Gubbio is by taxi. The town of Gubbio is worth an extensive visit. It is one of the most beautifully preserved Medieval towns, with impressive buildings and Churches. In Gubbio, many traditional festivities are honoured still today. The must-see places are the Cathedral with many paintings from 16th century artists, Dukes Palace built in the 15th century, St. Ubaldo’s House, the ancient tower house where the Gubbio’s patron saint used to live and the Piazza Grand with its fabulous panoramic views to name but a few of the many highlights.
Today’s walk is quite long, along with the hills which separate Gubbio from Valfabbrica. The route offers breath-taking views towards the Mt. Sibillini. It is possible to shorten the walk by taking a transfer. (about 2km). It is a very nice walk through the lovely countryside in the heart of Umbria. Continue through a beautiful valley on the Sentiero Francescano to Valfabbrica.
The last walk and is a beautiful one along Umbria’ hills starting from Valfabbrica, a quiet town which was an important fortress in the middle age. The towns towers and part of the fortified walls are still well preserved. At the end of slopes, you can enjoy the landscape around you with woods, fields, country houses, parish churches with the Apennine peaks overpowering above. Assisi appears at the middle of the walk when you are in a wonderful panoramic point over the edge of the hills. A Highlights of Assisi are the St James Gate, the town of Assisi, the Upper and Lower Basilica and the tomb.
Departure after breakfast.
Fly to Rome, Florence and Pisa airports. There are several trains per day from all 3 destinations, going to Arezzo, where you change train to Bibbiena and then a bus to Chiusi della Verna.
2022 Prices – For complete tour price breakdown please click the book now button and select your holiday tour date. Prices will then be listed.
|Tour Code||Prices From (per person)||Book Now|
|LVAssi10N (10 Nights)||from £1090||Book Now|
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