Like an ancient pilgrim, you are embarking on the ferry that will take you to the opposite side of the Po, the great river that nurtures these fertile plains.
You've just left Pavia, one of the most fascinating cities on Via Francigena - a mosaic of different cultures and histories that have enriched the old town centre with all sort of artistic treasures.
Happy and inspired, you set off for the jouney ahead: an easy, meditative walk through the great plains, towards a territory where the proverbial Italian hospitality becomes legendary: Emilia.
Prosciutto di Parma, Culatello di Zibello, Parmigiano Reggiano... this is the local, extremely tasty gold - the result of a welcoming and fertile land, but above all of great passion. But art is just as notable as the food: from the Cistercense abbey of Chiaravalle della Colomba to the Fidenza Cathedral, the reliefs of which narrate the history of pilgrimage. A history as old as the world - and you are now part of it.