2016 is the slow walking year. The Minister of Cultural Heritage, Dario Franceschini, has declared it so, more specifically the National Year of Walks. In Italy there are more than 6500 km of natural, religious, cultural and spiritual routes (often little known) which are waiting to be walked, to make more and more people, and not only trekkers enthusiasts, appreciate the potential of our territory.
Without going too far, Italy has plenty of routes in every region, in every area. Each with its own peculiarities. There are those that need several days to be done, and those with few but intense stages: the experience that one gets is always strong, from a human and natural point of view.
Some of these walks are very well known and popular throughout the year. Here is a brief description:
Among our most attractive destinations there is the Via Francigena, a over 1,000 kilometers route that links the Great St. Bernard Pass in Aosta Valley to Rome, passing through some of the most beautiful natural views of the Peninsula and several places of historical, artistic and gastronomic interest.
A route opened for long to hiking enthusiasts and since two years ago enabled to cyclists too, with a dedicated track. On the web site www.viafrancigena.bike.it you can freely download maps and Gps tracks or you can load the various routes on your smartphone, so you can plan your adventure on two wheels in every detail.
THE ABBOTS' WAY
Apennine variant of the Via Francigena, is one of the devotional paths at the center of a renewed interest not only by pilgrims but by the whole walkers’ movement. A territory that, through hills and low mountain landscapes, is one of the most beautiful in the northern Apennines and it can also offers interesting culinary ideas. The route starts from Pavia and gets to Pontremoli after 192 km, in the footsteps of the St. Columban’s Abbots that used this path to go to Rome.
THE ST.AUGUSTINE’S ROUTE
Also called ”The Rose’s Way”, it is a pilgrimage route designed to link with its stages the Marian Shrines on the Brianza area.
The peculiar feature of this route is its shape, that draws a stylised figure of a rose. A 352 km long loop closed path, to be ideally done in 15 days' journey: it starts and ends in Monza, reaching 30 Marian Shrines.
THE GODS' WAY
The Gods’ Way connects, in about 130 km, Bologna to Florence, retracing an ancient historic road used since Etruscan times to join the city of Felsina (Bologna) with Fiesole - Florence. Renamed "Military Flaminia", it is characteristic for the cobblestones of Roman origin that we find in different parts along the route.
For those who want to travel the entire Way, the route starts from Piazza Maggiore in Bologna then it goes up to San Luca Shrine and then it follows the river Rhine up to Sasso Marconi; here you can climber up to the unique landscape of Contrafforte Pliocenico, finally joining Florence with a spectacular view from the top of Fiesole hills.
It 's a medium difficulty trekking, hard in some parts on the Apennines. The stages from Bologna to Florence are 4 or more on walk (depending on the walker skills), or 2 or more by bike.
THE LONG ST.ANTHONY’S ROUTE
The first section traces the 24 km long path of Saint Anthony’s last day of life and it connects the Camposampiero Shrine to Padua, passing by the Sanctuary of Arcella where the Saint died in 1231.
The Long St. Anthony’s Way instead links Padua to the Sanctuary of La Verna with a backwords path that retrace the "route" undertaken by the Saint from Lisbon during his long stay in Italy.
The Way then joins the Assisi’s Routes that connects the Sanctuary of La Verna to the St.Francis birdplace.
TO POST A COMMENT YOU MUST BE REGISTERED