St.Francis Way: Stage 2, Chiusi to Città di Castello

Level
2
Distance
75 km
Duration
6 days | 5 nights
period
Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct
price from
€ 530
CO2 footprint
158 Kg/person
  1. Italy
  2.  | 
  3. Self-Guided
  4.  | 
  5. Tourcode ITSW350

During the obscure times of the Middle Ages an enlightened man, Saint Francis of Assisi, walked along the ridges and valleys of the Apennines, looking for God’s signs in nature and talking to people about peace, humility and brotherhood. His mystical figure fascinates many still today as his charisma and philosophy are respected all over the world.

On this trip you will follow the paths Saint Francis covered during his frequent pilgrimages between the area of La Verna (where he received “the stigmata”), and that of Città di Castello. Discover the traces of his passage, such as Franciscan hermitages, chapels, crosses as you walk through the typical landscape of Tuscany and Umbria; shady forests, orchards, olive groves and fields of wheat and barley.

Apart from amazing natural and religious places, along the “Franciscan path” you will visit towns and villages of great history and culture and you will have many occasions to taste the many traditional recipes from the local traditional cuisine.

Highlights

  • Admire he wild slopes of the Apennine mountains and the best-preserved forests in Italy, as well as hills, country houses, cypress lanes, olive grows and all the typical elements of rural Italy
  • Visit the Sanctuary of La Verna
  • Discover the medieval towns of Anghiari, where time seems to have stopped

Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival in Chiusi della Verna

Arrival in Chiusi della Verna

Head for the hotel and check in: if you arrive early enough, you can visit the Franciscan Sanctuary in the afternoon. The Sanctuary is opened every day of the year from 06:30 to 19:30 hrs (22:00 hrs in summer) To enter the Sanctuary, you need to cover your chest and arms and wear trousers / skirts long to the knee For more information check on http://www.laverna.it/en/

Day 2

From Chiusi della Verna to Caprese Michelangelo, 13 km

From Chiusi della Verna to Caprese Michelangelo, 13 km

Walk along the edge of the Catenaia “Alps” between the Arno and Tiber valleys. During the day, enjoy the many panoramic points overlooking the Casentino and Valtiberina valley.

Distance: 13 km

Elevation gain: +456/-820 m

Day 3

From Caprese Michelangelo to Anghiari, 20 km

From Caprese Michelangelo to Anghiari, 20 km

Walk on paths and dirt roads along the Valtiberina valley enjoying breath-taking views. Walk through the countryside surrounding Anghiari and cross castle topped hills, ancient parish churches and medieval villages and hamlets. The landscape is beautiful and the vast views are amazing; looking west it’s easy to recognise the imposing of Alpe di Poti mountain chain, in the north the Alpe di Catenaia, towards 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.

Distance: 20 km

Elevation gain: +672/-907 m

Day 4

Transfer to Sansepolcro, from Sansepolcro to Citerna, 16 km

Transfer to Sansepolcro, from Sansepolcro to Citerna, 16 km

A short morning transfer will take you to Sansepolcro. Today’s 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; leaving the centre of Sansepolcro you can immerse yourself in this rich countryside and spend many hours among corn, wheat and tobacco fields, pastures and country houses.

Distance: 16 km

Elevation gain: +322/-170 m

Day 5

From Citerna to Città di Castello, 20 or 16 km

From Citerna to Città di Castello, 20 or 16 km

Following the river Tiber, the itinerary crosses one of most cultivated valleys in Italy (Valtiberina). The most important and famous product is tobacco 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 preserved bank vegetation with by poplars and willows. In this area it is easy to see many birds of prey or water birds as Kestrel, Montagu’s Harrier, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Night-Heron and Moorhen.

Distance: 20 or 16 km

Elevation gain: +705/-903 m

Day 6

Arrivederci Città di Castello!

Arrivederci Città di Castello!

Our services end after breakfast, unless you have booked another service with us.

Arrivederci! and have a safe trip back home

Details

Is this for me?


This journey perfectly encapsulates the spirit of the Path of St. Francis and preserves its most beloved characteristics: forests, medieval villages, and abbeys, the enchanting town of Città di Castello, and the splendid Anghiari. It also passes through the Sanctuary of La Verna, a place permeated with very strong energy. It's a very beautiful journey, perfect for those who love unspoiled nature, the Middle Ages, the charm of the ancient, and the beauty of walking among cypress trees and olive groves.


It does involve some fairly challenging elevation changes for those on their first pilgrimage and not very well-trained. We suggest checking and carefully assessing your level of fitness.

Included


What is included

  • 5 Nights in *** hotels and B&B with breakfast
  • 2 dinners (Chiusi della Verna and Citerna)
  • luggage transportation from hotel to hotel
  • Transfer from Anghiari to Sansepolcro
  • maps and detailed description of the itinerary in digital form, app
  • Pilgrim Credential
  • Telephone support 24 hours
  • medical-luggage insurance

What is not included

  • Transfers to the starting location and from the arriving location of the tour
  • lunches and dinners
  • visits and entrance fees - tips
  • personal expense
  • possible sojourn taxes
  • everything that is not mentioned in the "What is included" section.

Optional Services

These services can be added to the ones included in the base price of the tour:

  • Single room supplement
  • cancellation insurance
  • Transfers to reach the starting location or to leave the arriving location of the tour, which will be quoted on request.
  • official camino guidebook, shipped to the first hotel
  • travel documentation in printed form (maps and detailed description of the itinerary), shipped to the first hotel

Accommodation


Hotel Letizia- Chiusi alla Verna

A simple and quiet hotel, for people who wish to seek a genuine and familiar atmopshere. Set in a very green setting, in a great position close to the Sanctuary of La Verna. All the rooms, decorated with sobriety, have telephone and Tv, and some have a view on the Castle of Count Orlando.

Albergo Ristorante La Buca di Michelangelo - Caprese Michelangelo

The Albergo Ristorante La Buca di Michelangelo is a structure built in a stone farmhouse, in the midlle of the village of Caprese. This accommodation in rustic style, with beam celing, offers simple lightly hued rooms. An ideal accommodation for lovers of nature.  

Hotel La Meridiana - Anghiari

Set within one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, Hotel Meridiana overlooks a small square: its panoramic balconies will offer stunning views on the village and on the Valtiberina valley. This family-run hotel guarantees a pleasant, friendly atmosphere.

Free wifi, tv room, bar, internet point, convention room.

Country House Le Rasse - Citerna

Country House Le Rasse is a family-run structure in the green countryside outside Citerna. AMong the most appreciated features, apart from the friendliness of the staff, travellers mention the nice swimming pool with view on the surrounding valley and the delicious local  recipes offered by the restaurant.

Hotel Le Mura - Città di Castello

The Hotel Le Mura is near the Città di Castello's walls and rooms have a nice view on the city center. The accomodations are a little dated, but these are comfortable and spacious. These offer TV, air conditioning, free WiFi. The staff is friendly and kind.

When to travel


Throughout  Central  Italy  you  can  expect temperatures  between  10°  and  25°C  in spring and autumn and they can reach 35°C in  July  and  August.  Mornings  can  be  chilly but  they  quickly  warm  up  as  the  day  goes by.  Showers  are  common  in  early  spring and from September on and throughout the autumn,  although  not  every  day  and  they tend  to  be  either  short  and  intense  or prolonged but light. Because you are by the sea, the sea breeze tends to make the long summer days less hot.

What to bring


Clothing and other items
You will need your regular walking/cycling gear, including some sort of reflective garment. For the evenings, smart outdoor style trousers (or shorts) are invaluable, as are quick-dry t-shirts. These can be washed easily and will dry overnight and still look good for sightseeing or having a drink in town.

Take as little as possible to avoid potentially lugging a heavy suitcase up three flights of stairs at the end of the day. Please be aware that laundromats (“Laverie”) are not common in rural areas, so plan to do handwashing of small items.

Lightweight walking shoes/ trainers
For wearing around towns & villages. They can also be a back-up pair.

Socks & underwear
Take only good quality socks with quick-dry and insulating qualities. Road test them before you go on the trip. Take a suitable quantity of underwear as washing facilities are limited.

Warm jacket, hat, gloves
Bring a fleece, Polartec or warm layers for the evenings especially in spring or autumn; be sure it is totally suitable for your needs.
A fleece jacket which blocks the wind (Wind-stopper) is the most preferable. In the summer months a lightweight jacket is suitable for evenings.
If you are cycling/walking in mountainous or coastal areas, even in the height of summer, the weather can change very quickly and unexpectedly and you should be prepared for fog, mist, rain, snow or hail at any time. Always take an extra layer with you, as well as a warm hat and gloves.

Waterproof jacket & trousers
If you are caught in heavy rain, with good waterproof clothing you should remain dry. Remember that most garments will lose their properties over time. Few will remain waterproof for more than five years and many deteriorate in three years or less. We recommend a rain jacket with a good hood and collar and waterproof or thermal walking/cycling trousers or tights.

Dress code
In general, you should wear suitable clothing when entering a church (in many places, it is considered unacceptable to go inside wearing shorts or a tank-top). We suggest that women carry a shawl to cover up bear shoulders or low-cut tops. It also comes in handy when your shoulders get sunburned!

It is considered inappropriate for men to go without a shirt / T-shirt (other than at the beach).

Trekking poles (adjustable)
Highly recommended. A pair works best, depending on what you are comfortable with. If you suffer from back or knee pain this should be considered essential. Remember to practise walking with your pole(s) on different types of terrain in the months preceding your trip.

Walking boots
The importance of good footwear cannot be stressed enough. Your boots should be sturdy and of good enough quality to handle all types of terrain. Lightweight boots, (cordura/leather boots) which have Gore-Tex or sympatex water-proofing are most suitable for this trip. They should provide good ankle protection and be well broken in. Waxing leather boots regularly prolongs their life.

Walking tops & trousers
We recommend walking trousers and shorts and quick-dry wicking t-shirts. These can be washed easily and will dry overnight and still look good for sightseeing or having a drink in town. Wicking T-shirts are fast drying, keep moisture away from your skin and are available at outdoor stores. You should also bring one pair of loose-fitting trousers to wear in cities and for evenings out, etc. Shorts or zip-off trousers are useful in warmer weather.

Practical info

How to arrive


The  closest International Airports  to Chiusi della Verna are:

Perugia Sant’Egidio Airport: www.airport.umbria.it/en

Florence Amerigo Vespucci Airport: www.aeroporto.firenze.it/en

Pisa International Airport: www.pisa-airport.com/index.php?lang=_en

Rome Fiumicino Airport: www.rome-airport.info

Rome Ciampino Airport: www.ciampino-airport.info

There  are  several  daily  trains  from  all  3 destinations,  going  to  Arezzo,  where  you change  train  to  Bibbiena  and  then  take  a bus to Chiusi della Verna.

From Città di Castello take a train to reach Rome, Florence or Pisa train stations, then make your way to the airport. 

Mobile App


Use the SloWays APP for iOS and Android smart phones in combination with the written documentation provided.

The App has the detailed tracks and maps that you can use offline and without roaming. Thanks to the phone’s internal GPS, you can check your exact position on the map, so you always know exactly where you are. It also helps you self-navigate you way while travelling. More information on how to use the App inside the roadbook documents.

The navigation features include:

  • Offline navigation. Mobile data not required after initial download
  • Accurate GPS tracks
  • Autorotation of the maps
  • Daily route summary and elevation chart
  • Panorama of the track and at street level
  • Alarm and vibration that alerts you in case you go off track.
  • Emergency SMS button with position coordinates
  • Possibility to record and take georeferenced photos of problems on route alerting fellow travelers
  • Hotel information
  • Points of interest along the way
  • Historical background

Wanderlust Nominee Best Specialist Tour Operator 2023
Wanderlust
Nominee Best Specialist Tour Operator 2023
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Touroperating
S-Cape Countryside Travels srl
Borgo Allegri 16R
50122 Firenze FI
P. IVA 05227330486

 
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Touroperating S-Cape Countryside Travels srl Borgo Allegri 16R 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
VAT Nr 05227330486
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