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Our Via Francigena walking tour follows one of the three major medieval pilgrimage routes, together with the Camino de Santiago and the Way to Jerusalem. We start in the Alps and walk our way through the heart of Italy to reach and enter the Eternal City of Rome.
DURATION: 13 days
PICK UP: Torino Airport
DROP OFF: Roma Fiumicino Airport
Our journey begins in the Alpine mountain valley of Susa, enters the beautiful city of Turin and crosses the Po Valley (Pianura Padana) rice fields. We then climb over the Apennines and descend into the walled city of Lucca. From here we enjoy the unique landscape of Tuscany, its medieval hilltop towns, San Gimignano, Siena and Montalcino, and stroll through picturesque vineyards, olive groves and cypress avenues. We climb Monte Amiata and head to Rome across the magical Val di Tuscia, enjoy breathtaking views of the Bolsena Lake and sojourn in the ancient papal city of Viterbo.
Our journey ends as we enter Rome, cross the gates of the Vatican City, and gaze at the Basilica of Saint Peter.
This trip is the perfect experience to fully live Italy from the Alps to Rome, an exciting walking tour going through some of the most spectacular areas of the “Bel Paese”. Of course food and wine is another major highlight of this trip as we walk our way through the culinary traditions of different regions of Italy and drink some of the best wines in the world!
If you have enjoyed the Camino de Santiago and are searching for a similarly enchanting experience but less crowded then this trip is what you are looking for!
If you would like to speak with us to know more about our Via Francigena Walking Tour, please write us an email. We would be happy to hear from you and help you planning your next adventure!
Pick up at 13.00 at Turin airport and travel north to the ancient city of Susa. We enjoy an afternoon stroll at the feet of the alps.
Our first days walk starts just outside of the mountain town of Oulx. From here we hike up through the Natural Park Gran Bosco del Salbertrand where if we are lucky we will spot deer, chamois and roes. The path is mostly through woodland until we arrive in the village of Exilles home to medieval fortress said to have once been the prison of Iron Mask. After our picnic lunch, and a visit to fortress, we descend into the city of Susa through the arc of Augustus passing by an old roman amphitheater. (14km/ elev -300m )
We start our day with a walk up the ancient path which leads to the 11th century Sacra of Michele abbey, the Italian equivalent of the sacred monastery of Mont Sain Michel in France. Here we will have time to visit the monastery which inspired the famous novel ’ the name of the rose’ by Umberto Eco and enjoy stunning views of the alpine valley of Susa. In the afternoon we head to Turin where a local guide will be waiting to give us an orientation tour of the city. In the evening enjoy free time to explore Turin before we gather again to enjoy dinner one of the cities oldest and most renowned restaurants. (10km/ elev. +400m)
We start our day with a coffe and pastry in the main square of the ancient roman city of Vercelli. From here a pleasant walk through rice paddies and cereal fields takes us to the village of Palestro, where a delicious picnic will await us. The extent of these rice paddies are reminiscent of of the high plains of central Spain known as the Mesetas.
After lunch we head towards Pavia to explore it’s beautiful city center. Tonights hotel is in a medieval castle in the countryside outside Pavia, where the count who still owns the property will invite us into his home to explore its ancient rooms filled with interesting art and artefacts.(11km/ elev +/- 0)
We now start to climb up into the Apennine mountain range, which stretches for miles forming the spine of Italy. We ascend along an old roman road through woodland and small mountain villages with stone houses – the views are breathtaking. Picnic lunch will be in Cassio, a small town lined with cobbled streets and stone houses. We end our day in the small mountain village of Berceto, important stop along the Via Francigena. Tonights dinner will be a mushroom feast with a local mushroom hunter who’s family has been doing this for countless generations. (17km/ elev +400m)
Leaving from the mountain town of Berceto, we climb up the final leg of the apennines along a path which was first laid out by the Longobards in the 8th century. The path leads us to Passo della Cisa, the famous mountain border between Emilia Romagna and Tuscany where views are stunning. After a picnic at the top of the pass we descend to the small city of Pontremoli, famous for its beautiful bridges over the river Magra. (17km or 13km / elev +400)
After the previous day’s more rigorous crossing of the mountains, today’s walk is more relaxing with long stretches of the river Serchio to enjoy before walking into the walled city of Lucca. We make a circuit of the city’s renaissance walls, taste delicious gelato and soak in the charming views. There is usually a chance to listen to some opera singing in this charming town. (7km/ elev 0)
Lunch will be on your own today followed by a free afternoon to explore the city center.
This evening’s dinner is an unforgettable experience! We will be guests at the Domus Romana (I century B.C.) and we will enjoy drinks and food of the Ancient Rome’s cookbooks. All of this surrounded by beautiful pieces of archeology.
We are among the rolling hills of Tuscany, tramping through grape vines, olive groves and wheat fields. The walk takes us along the crest of the hills stretching San Miniato to Gambassi Terme with a fresh picnic lunch in the middle. In the afternoon we head to San Gimignano, a town born because of its strategic location along the Via Francigena and the need to host pilgrims.
Enjoy some time in the evening to explore before we all meet again for a delicious aperitif and antipasti.
(15km/ elev +/- 300)
Setting off from San Gimignano we continue our journeys through the Tuscan landscape heading to the fortress village of Monteriggioni, today is one of the most spectacular and picturesque sections of the pilgrimage route. The day ends in the city of Siena where we can enjoy exploring the streets and square where the world famous Palio medieval horse race takes place.
Tonight you are in for a treat because we will be staying in the town of Bagno Vignoni and our hotel is right on some natural thermal springs so we will be able to soak in the hot water and relax our muscles after many days of walking. (12km/ elev +200m)
We leave Tuscany and enter into the Val di Tuscia, our destination now just round the corner. The morning’s walk is accompanied by incredible views of the lake of Bolsena, so big that for a while it seems like the sea. In the afternoon we head to the medieval city of Viterbo, known as the city of Popes, in honour of the period when it used to be the home of the papacy. (12km/ elev + 200m).
Today we leave Viterbo and head to Lake Vico, where we will hike though the natural parks beech forest and over the Cimini hills. The Lake is a volcanic cove and was formed by volcanic eruptions many thousands of years ago. (11km/ +/- 400m)
After a picnic we will walk up to the medieval town of Caprarola where we will visit the enchanting Palazzo Farnese which features a distinct pentagonal design and an extraordinary columned staircase. Inside we will explore the richly frescoed rooms made by some of Italy’s finest artists. A story of lust, intrigue and secrecy awaits us in the palace’s charming terraced gardens.
In the evening we head to Rome stopping at a place where we will enjoy a panoramic view of the eternal city and the Vatican. In the evening your will be free to dine at your own leisure, the hotel is located right in the historical center by the Colosseum and the Fori Imperiali so you will be spoilt for choice.
We have arrived at the end of our pilgrimage, the holy site to which people have been traveling for centuries. In the morning we will stroll through the ancient city slowly heading towards the Vatican. Along the way, we will see all the major sites of Rome: the Fori Imperiali, the Altare della Patria, Piazza Venezia, Palazzo Chigi, the Trevi Fountain, Castel Sant Angelo and many more.
A buffet lunch will be waiting for us in a small restaurant near to Castel Sant Angelo. After lunch, we will meet our local expert and head into the Vatican to visit the Basilica of St Peters, the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican Museums. The perfect way to end our journey.
A delicious fair well dinner party will wait for us in a restaurant right in the square of the Pantheon
After breakfast at 09:00, we head to Rome airport.
If you wish, we can help you to extend your stay or make other independent departure arrangements such as early taxis to the airport.
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Walk through olive trees and vineyards.
You will have the beautiful chance to reach Rome, the Eternal City, as pilgrim.
A nice hotel and a good night’s sleep are an important part of your overall travel experience!
When considering a hotel, we look at more than just the rooms. We look for hotels or bed and breakfasts which are committed to ensuring their guests are well looked after and pay attention to detail, for example offering locally sourced breakfast produce, or a special selection of toiletries, or tea and coffee making facilities in the room. Wherever possible your hotel* will be perfectly positioned for exploring and will have a historical charm or maybe a new and innovative design. We choose the best possible places to stay ensuring that each night you are comfortably settled in a place that is welcoming and full of authentic local charm. We are on a mission to find the ingredients you need to wake up feeling rested and looking forward to each day of your Caspin Journeys tour!
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Pick up for this tour is from Turin International Airport.
Drop off is at Rome Fiumicino Da Vinci Airport.
If you plan on arriving a few days early just make your way back to the airport using the local shuttle services.
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We love our jobs and personally lead all our small group tours. Italy, Spain and England are our homes and our passion. We bring that excitement with us on all our tours so that you too share our favourite places.
We are very experienced and handle all the logistics while you relax and become immersed in the local culture, history and traditions.
We know the locals on all our trips and they love meeting our groups. We are small enough to get into private homes, chat to villagers, fit in small restaurants and enjoy all kinds of unexpected events that aren’t accessible to large groups of tourists following a red umbrella.
Our customer reviews say that Caspin Journeys takes the best care of you. We are a sustainable travel company and the only thing we leave behind is our footprints!
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We believe that where you sleep is an important part of your overall travel experience. So we put a lot of effort into carefully choosing the hotels for each tour.
We always look for attractive, clean and quiet rooms with private bathrooms. But, our priority is also to find the best possible accommodations to make sure that each night you are comfortably settled in a place that is welcoming and full of authentic local charm.
The result is a fabulous selection of delightful hotels, medieval palaces, family-run hotels, country residences, manor houses, historic inns, luxurious alpine hotels – sometimes with a spa, sauna or swimming pool facilities – and all with character, good food and a friendly atmosphere.
You will have to keep coming back to experience them all! Sweet Dreams!
Getting out and about on foot is a wonderful way to slow down the pace, relax and get some healthy exercise.
When we walk we see so much more – grapevines, wildflowers, ancient oaks, wheat fields, avenues of cypresses and pine, time resistant hills and valleys.
As we stroll through historic towns we learn about the culture of the people; as we stand in the splendour of the countryside, beneath the soaring columns of ancient temples, abbey walls and turrets of medieval castles we marvel at man’s ability to conceive of and construct such monuments.
Food is an all important part of each and every one of our journeys. We are foodies, we love to savour the authentic flavours of each destination we visit. And let’s not forget the wine “the drink of the gods” which will accompany every meal, even picnics!
Picture yourself eating Buffalo mozzarella from a farm in Amalfi, tasting a Sicilian cannolo with fresh ricotta cheese, home-made pasta, organic vegetables, fresh fish and so on.
Or why not consider a Gourmet Cooking Holiday in Tuscany, where you will learn directly from the locals?
If all this sounds mouthwatering then look no further, you are in the right place 😉
On our small group tours we use a combination of gourmet restaurants, local trattorias, traditional pubs, tapas bars and farmhouse meals, to give you the best overall experience!
Each adventure combines fantastic hikes and authentic cultural experiences which make for a phenomenal and enriching travel experience. – admire Giotto’s frescoes in Assisi – walk in the Castle gardens of Henry VIII – stand at the tomb of St James in Compostela – gaze at and touch the columns of a Greek temple – visit the birthplace of Napoleon Buonaparte – see how a Duke lives at Blenheim Palace – tread the streets of Pompeii – admire mosaics in a Norman cathedral – understand more about the Roman Empire Travel in the richest artistic heritage in the world, many of which are part of UNESCO. What are you waiting for? Don’t miss out on an unforgettable trip.
Our travel style attracts a similar type of people, outgoing, interesting, adventurous, cultured and curious.
You’ll enjoy the company of your fellow travelers on our small group tours. Italy’s food and wine, England’s local pubs, and Spain’s meditative and spiritual pilgrim route are best experienced amidst the camaraderie of the group.
Guests who join our small group tours become our friends. They return again and again to share new adventures as we explore these unforgettable destinations with like-minded travellers and build ever-lasting memories together.