Italy: The Full Via Francigena

49 days / Self-guided walking

Gran San Bernardo to Rome

The Full Via Francigena

A pilgrimage of epic proportions, the Via Francigena is a historic route to the Eternal City of Rome, covering 1000 kilometres of stunning terrain and over 1000 years of history.

TRIP STYLE

Self-Guided Walking

DURATION/LENGTH

49 days/1000 kms

DATES

Any date to suit you

START/END POINT

Gran San Bernardo to Rome

GRADING

Moderate Walk

PRICE P/P TWIN SHARE

From EURO 5,690 / AUD 9,985

Make Enquiry SAVE/PRINT ITINERARY

Starting at the Gran San Bernardo Pass, on the border of Switzerland and Italy, and finishing in Rome, the Via Francigena pilgrimage has it all. There are the mountainous peaks of northern Italy, the rolling hills of Tuscany, countless sites of Roman and Etruscan histories and, of course, the unbelievable food and wine along the way.

Follow in the footsteps of the medieval pilgrims as you journey south to the Eternal City, making your final approach in the shadow of the Vatican City. Along the way you’ll have encountered the World Heritage-listed streets of Siena; Montalcino’s famous wines; and all the castles and hilltop villages you could ever dream of, fuelled by pasta, pizza, gelato and espresso the entire way. Now that’s what we call a pilgrimage!

Day 1 | Arrive in Gran San Bernardo

Located right on the border of Switzerland and Italy, Gran San Bernardo Pass is the perfect place to begin the Via Francigena Camino. There’s a palpable sense of excitement as walkers prepare to walk 1000 kilometres to Rome. We highly recommend arriving a day early to soak up these incredible mountains, which rise to 2400 metres, in all their alpine glory. And don’t forget to visit the Gran San Bernardo – or Saint Bernard – rescue dogs that were trained here from the 11th century until the 1950s.

Day 2 | Gran San Bernard – Etroubles | 13 km / 4–5 hours

Relax into this Camino with a break after 13 kilometres. Take a gentle walk towards the valley floor – a little focus is required for your footing – and be sure to stop to admire the views. Try a drop of the Genever, a botanically rich, malted, grain-based spirit which the locals drink with their coffee. It’s sure to warm you from the inside-out.

Day 3 | Etroubles – Aosta | 16 km / 4–5 hours

The mountains become less wild today though the spectacular views continue.  You will reach the 600-metre mark as you pass through fields and meadows, eventually arriving in the pretty town of Aosta, which is the capital of the Valle d’Aosta region. It’s located close to the Gran Paradiso National Park, which has an alpine botanical garden, trails and wildlife including ibexes and eagles.

Day 4 Aosta – Nus | 14km/ 3 hours

Today on the Via Francigena, you’ll walk across the ‘adret’, a slope in the Dora Valley that’s exposed to the south. The path then follows a network of pedestrian routes along the magnificent hillside to arrive in Nus.

Day 5 | Nus–St Vincent | 19 km / 4–5 hours

Spend a part of the day walking among vineyards dotted with olive trees as you approach the busier town of St Vincent, the first major sight on this path and a great place to spend a night. The Dorea Baltea, which has been flowing east, turns right here and begins flowing south. You’ll follow its flow tomorrow.

Day 6 | St Vincent–Verres | 14 km / 5 hours

Lots of ups and downs today, with sections of steep spurs, but the beautiful views of the magnificent Via Francigena continue throughout the day.

Day 7 | Verres – Pont-St-Martin | 15 km / 4 hours

Enjoy some gentle walking on mainly easy, undemanding roads, passing from village to village with many reminders of medieval and ancient times, from Arnad’s Romanesque Gothic church of San Martin to the Roman bridge of Pont-St-Martin.

Day 8 | Pont-St-Martin – Ivrea | 23 km / 5 hours

The theme of this stage of the Via Francigena is wine and the Piedmont region is world famous. You’ll be walking on mule tracks that take you right to the vineyards on steepish slopes and it’s very manageable walking. Ivrea, your final destination, is a welcome town to spend the night.

Day 9 | Ivrea – Viverone | 20 km / 4 hours

The moraine amphitheatre of Ivrea is a truly unique landscape. At the end of the day, the walk winds its way towards a sighting of Lake Viverone, the cherry on top of a very picturesque day.

Day 10 | Viverone – Santhia | 17 km / 4 hours

Begin the day with an uphill section before leaving the mountains behind and heading downhill. Don’t worry, the beautiful peaks are still clearly visible on the horizon. This is a nice, easy day to Santhia.

Day 11 | Santhia – Vercelli | 27 km / 8 hours

Truly hitting the flat now, you’ll see endless rice crops over the next few days.  Some people choose to take a train over some of the sections of this stage; however, others are not prepared to break the chain of the 1000km to Rome. Vercelli is a special stop for tonight; be sure to ask Cinza about the dish of the day. Her Michelin accolade is understated!

Day 12 | Vercelli – Mortara | 34 km / 8 hours

The path continues long and flat and though there’s no dressing up this section of the Via Francigena, there are always some unexpected delights along the way. A word of warning: don’t bank on your first coffee at any particular time, this stretch can be a sleepy hollow in parts.

Day 13 | Mortara – Garlasco | 21 km / 5 hours

An easy day’s walking surrounded by rice paddies once more, only interrupted by a section of road winding with the canals.

Day 14 | Garlasco – Pavia | 25 km / 5 hours | Optional rest day in Pavia

Still twisting with the waterways that support this crop-growing region, you’ll notice large farmhouses are well spread out along the path. A city rich with reminders of the medieval times, Pavia is a fantastic town that’s ideal for an extra night’s stay. There are markets and great eateries, so if you haven’t already been indulging in a daily gelato, now is the time to start. There are so many flavours, such little time.

Day 15 | Pavia – Belgioioso Santa Cristina e Bissone | 28 km/ 7–8 hours

Enjoy the beautiful walk out of Pavia, slowly leaving the city behind, and find yourself in solitude in the countryside close to the Po. Retrace steps of the ancient pilgrims as you make the long walk to Santa Cristina e Bissone, then take the train back to Belgioioso to spend the night.  It is worth the return for the only pizza place in town – it’s likely the best pizza you have ever tasted!

Day 16 | Santa Cristina e Bissone – Piacenza | 35 km / 9 hours

Starting in reverse with the train back to Santa Cristina e Bissone, this is a long, flat day so it’s good to have your fitness up by now. Today also includes a delightful boat crossing from Corte Saint Andrea to Soprarivo, where you will sign the book to note that you are a pilgrim heading to Rome.  If a 35-kilometre day isn’t your thing, you can stay on the train a little longer to reach Orio Litta, making the stage 19 kilometres instead.

Day 17 | Piacenza – Fiorenzuola d’Arda | 32 km / 8 hours

Exiting Piacenza is unexciting until you are back in the rural environment of the Po Valley. Walk through stretches of woodland along dirt tracks, eventually coming to one of our favourite stops at Fiorenzuola d’Arda, where our superb hosts will offer a paddock-to-plate meal on their agriturismo property.

Day 18 Fiorenzuola d’Arda – Fidenza | 22 km / 5 hours

While walking on easy, rural roads, you will notice the low hills of the Apennines on the horizon. This means one of the most interesting parts of the Via Francigena is just ahead of you. But first, overnight in Fidenza, a town and commune in the province of Parma, which was renamed ‘Fidenza’ in 1927 to recall the Roman name of Fidentia.

Day 19 | Fidenza – Fornovo de Taro | 34 km / 9 hours

This is a very big day and the only option to break this stage is at Medesano. Today we leave the Via Francigena to get to our accommodation, and then there’s the need to return on that walk the following day. Best be prepared for a tough day that is rewarded with views, as well as the good training for the Apennines ahead.

Day 20 | Fornovo de Taro – Berceto | 32 km/ 8 hours | Optional rest day in Berceto

Today is simply magic as you climb through landscapes of pastures and meadows. In the right season, you will witness the gathering of hay, an essential ingredient for the use of production of one of the regions gastronomic items – Parmeggiano Reggiano cheese. Pasta for dinner is a must in the very quaint town of Berceto, which is an ideal place to spend an extra day if you’d prefer to break up a few of the longer days.

Day 21 | Berceto – Pontremoli | 31 km / 7 hours

The landscape is decidedly mountainous now with the wide horizons and panoramas of the Apennines. You’ll tackle the most demanding stretches of mountain paths before entering Tuscany.  This is a valley carved out by the River Magra and though you’ll ascend 1000 metres of the Cisa Pass, it’s a beautiful stage on account of all the panoramic views. A stop at Previde at the 19km mark is also possible, though it is off the Via Francigena path.

Day 22 | Pontremoli – Villafranca | 17 km / 4 hours

We break up this stage to enjoy a fabulous old town full of charm.  The Valle del Magra is characterised by typical medieval villages packed with outstanding historical and artistic features. An easy day with plenty to enjoy.

Day 23 | Villafranca – Aulla | 17km / 4 hours

A pleasant walk today to Aulla with plenty of woodland and a good amount of up and down to keep things varied.

Day 24 | Aulla – Sarzana | 16 km/ 4 hours

This is another good walk with plenty of tough uphill along the initial wooded spurs of the Apuan. You’ll be rewarded with a downhill stretch into Sarzana, the perfect place to find a taverna to enjoy a hearty lunch.

Day 25 | Sarzana – Massa | 29 km/ 5–6 hours

Re-entering Tuscany from Liguria, you’re back in wine country and surrounded by delicious reds. There are great views today on the Via Francigena and you may even be able to see the sea in the distance.

Day 26 | Massa – Camaiore | 26 km/ 6 hours

Not the best walking in terms of terrain and beauty, with a fair bit of asphalt, but the food more than makes up for the walking. You can enjoy Tuscan soup, traditional ravioli with bolognese sauce, pasta made of spelt with Mediterranean vegetables as well as dainty tagliolini with white truffle sauce. All of it is delicious!

Day 27 Camaiore – Lucca | 24 km/ 6 hours | Optional rest day in Lucca

This is an exciting day and a peaceful walk along the banks of the River Serchio to arrive in Lucca. The completion of this stage is significant, having come from the Swiss/Italian border down to the valley floor through the Alps, along the Romanesque trail, through the Po and up and over the Apennines to arrive in Tuscany! This is the perfect place to celebrate and we won’t blame you if you don’t want to leave this quaint city. Perfect for an extra rest day, Lucca is bound to keep you entertained. It’s well worth checking out the Puccini and Mozart performances in the Chiesa di San Giovanni (Church) – a truly special experience.

Day 28 | Lucca – Altopascio | 19 km / 4 hours

Though leaving Lucca will be difficult, the call of the path will no doubt convince you. The industrial sections encountered while exiting Lucca are not the prettiest kilometres in the world, but the walking is easy and Altopascio has a fabulous restaurant with homemade pasta just waiting for your arrival. Tuscany’s pasta of choice is pappardelle, a thick noodle that’s perfect for a hearty ragu dish.

Day 29 | Altopascio – San Miniato | 29 km / 7 hours

Enjoy a day of diverse landscapes as you walk through the woods of Le Cerbaie and across the high ground forming the divide between the basins of the Serchio and Arno rivers. This is an unexpectedly wild, solitary place, which makes for enjoyable walking, before reaching an uphill stretch to climb to San Miniato. With a touch under 30,000 residents, the strategically located San Miniato is built across three hills with panoramic views of the lower Arno valley.  It sits at the intersection of the Florence-Pisa and Lucca-Siena roads and has historically felt the full effects of trade, travel and war. It’s worth making an early start today as San Miniato really is a wonderful town to explore.

Day 30 | San Miniato – Gambassi Terme | 24 km / 6 hours

As the trail crosses rolling hills with vineyards, olive groves and woodlands, things really start to feel quite Tuscan. There’s an extended uphill stretch to finish off the day, culminating in the village of Gambassi Terme, which has some welcoming hot springs to soak in if you wish. With some great little bars and restaurants, it’s the perfect small town for walkers to spend an evening.

Day 31 | Gambassi Terme – San Gimignano | 14 km / 4 hours | Optional rest day in San Gimignano

A more testing day awaits as the trail goes up and down and up and down before arriving in the well-known town of San Gimignano. The town owes its development and prosperity to the original Via Francigena and the flow of trade and pilgrims but now, centuries down the line, the sheer charm of the town is its main source of wealth, bringing both tourists and pilgrims.

With some of the world’s best gelati and endless slices of pizza, San Gimignano is a foodie’s paradise and once you’ve explored the sights, including the Duomo di San Gimignano, there’s no better activity than sitting on the steps at the Piazza del Duomo and watching as life lazily drifts by. You won’t want to leave this medieval town, complete with 13th-century walls, and if you have any spare time it’s definitely worth spending an extra night here.

Day 32 | San Gimignano – Monteriggioni | 31 km / 7 hours

A simply lovely day of walking awaits today with perfectly pruned olive groves, avenues of cypress trees and rural hamlets bursting with rustic charm. Your destination, Monteriggioni, is a place you won’t forget in a hurry. It’s one of the most famous towns on the entire Via Francigena and is a circular, walled village set on a hilltop. It’s like walking through a fairy tale, made even more unbelievable by the abundance of mouth-watering Chianti wine on offer, which is grown in the surrounding landscape.

Day 33 | Monteriggioni – Siena | 21 km / 5 hours

Continue through the Sienese countryside, a distinctive landscape dotted with rural communities and medieval castles. Earthen colours surround the trail with a palette of greens, reds, browns and purples painting a most memorable work of art.

Walking the steep streets into Siena’s World Heritage-listed historic centre is an experience itself and you’ll find yourself in the Piazza del Campo, which is regarded as one of Europe’s greatest medieval squares. Here, the locals hold the famous Palio di Siena twice a year, in which ten horses and riders representing the city’s districts race around the square for the ultimate glory. Racing aside, Siena is a marvellous town with a beautiful Gothic town hall, a wonderful cathedral and the Torre del Mangia, which provides sweeping views of the surrounds.

Day 34 | Siena – Lucignano d’Arbia | 20 km / 5 hours

Walking out through the streets of Siena to head towards Rome, this is the most charming section of the Tuscan route, spoilt with those pencil pines typical of Tuscany. There are unforgettable views thanks to the crests of the Val d’Arbia too. It’s a fabulous walking day along gentle ridges traversed by dirt roads.

Day 35 | Lucignano d’Arbia – Montalcino | 26 km / 5–6 hours

The first section of the path is flat, then a number of ups and downs are rewarded with fabulous views once more. The end point, the small village of Montalcino, is a welcome sight, and known for its Brunello di Montalcino wine. We veer off the Via Francigena path to enjoy this fabulous village and its utterly delectable wine!

Day 36 | Montalcino – Castelnuovo dell’Abate | 14 km / 4 hours

Walk partly through the vineyards, partly through the more forested landscapes south of Montalcino to begin the day. The goal of the walk is to reach the stunning Abbey of Sant’Antimo (Abbazia di Sant’Antimo), which many call ‘one of the finest Romanesque religious buildings in Italy’. The church dates from the 12th century and is built in a picture-perfect setting, in a large valley with views of the hill town Castelnuovo dell’Abate, as well as wild forests and rolling hills covered in olive groves and vineyards. You’ll have time to relax and perhaps get the chance to listen to the chant of the monks.

Day 37 | Castelnuovo dell’Abate – Pienza | 21 km / 5 hours

Today you’ll walk to the heart of the stunning Val d’Orcia. Travel through rolling hills and beautiful sections alternating between vineyards and forests, then descend all the way down to the Orcia River. From here you’ll walk back up again, heading for the wonderful Ripa d’Orcia, a small fortified village in a strategic position above the River Orcia.

On the other side of the river lies the castle of Rocca d’Orcia and Monte Amiata, an extinct volcano, which is the symbol of southern Tuscany and important today for its thermal water. From here you walk along quiet country lanes to the beautiful medieval village of San Quirico, where you can have a drink in the square and stroll through the Horti Leonini, a 15th-century garden.

The final stretch is a beautiful walk to Pienza, a small, perfectly laid out Renaissance town. Pienza’s location in the centre of the Val d’Orcia, a wonderfully harmonious valley, helps the town to embody the fundamental principle of humanistic architecture – a balanced relationship between Man and Nature.

Day 38 | Pienza – Castiglione d’Orcia | 18 km/ 5 hours

Enjoy more picture-perfect Tuscan landscapes – a sight that’s never tiring – as you walk through rolling fields and past the odd cypress tree in the direction of the imposing Monte Amiata.

Upon reaching the Orcia River, you can make a short detour to the thermal village of Bagno Vignoni, a small village that was built in the 13th century to allow Lorenzo de Medici and various popes to relax in healthy thermal waters. Indeed, its peculiarity is that instead of the usual Piazza, there is a large thermal pool. The effect of the rising steam is incredible, especially on cooler days.

You’ll then walk back down to the Orcia River, after which you’ll climb up through a pretty landscape of olive groves and vineyards to Castiglione d’Orcia, on the other side of the river.

Day 39 | Castiglione d’Orcia – Radicofani | 27 km / 7 hours

Test your strength and fitness with a demanding leg of the journey featuring lots of rolling hills, though appreciating the view from Radicofani will repay all your efforts. You will also be able to visit the Pieve di San Pietro, a little jewel dating back to the 13th century. Take an evening walk through Radicofani’s Old Town centre, where you can admire the magic of the illuminated fortress.

Day 40 | Radicofani – Proceno 25 km / 7 hours

Another exciting section of the Via Francigena awaits! Leaving the fortress behind, you’ll walk along the old Via Cassia surrounded by scenery of infinite hills dominated by Monte Amiata. From there, climb to Acquapendente, which is the centre for the agricultural production of vegetables and wine and has a tradition of pottery craftsmanship. We have a wonderful farmhouse with fabulous rooms here and our hosts spoil us for dinner and breakfast with their home cooking.

Day 42 | Proceno – Bolsena | 28 km / 7 hours | Optional rest day in Bolsena

A gentler walking day with the first views of Lake Bolsena makes this a beautiful stage. Alternating between thick woods and meadows scattered with olive trees, this enchanting walk is topped off with views along crater’s edge before arriving at the beautiful lake. Some tasty, interesting food can be found here, with typical cuisine being something like sbroscia, a soup made from lake fish and tomatoes. This is also an ideal spot for an additional rest day, with plenty of eateries and walks on your doorstep.

Day 42| Bolsena – Montefiascone | 17 km / 4 hours

Once again, great lake views dominate this day on the Via Francigena, as you cross an area famous for the production of extra virgin olive oil – a tasting is essential. Don’t miss a chance to do some wine tasting at your destination of Montefiascone too!

As the story goes… Est! Est! Est! is the most famous white wine of Montefiascone. It got its name from the story of a German Bishop who sent his servant ahead to taste the wines along his route of travel, leaving messages on the walls of inns and taverns to tell his master whether he should drink the wine or avoid it. ‘Est’ (it is) meant the wine was good. It’s clear that the servant saw considerable virtue in the wines of Montefiascone because he scrawled ‘Est! Est! Est!!!’ on the wall.

Day 43 | Montefiascone – Viterbo | 17 km / 4 hours

Continue walking along the splendid ancient paved road of the Via Cassia Antica, where there are charming views over Montefiascone and Viterbo, not to mention thermal waters to soak in if you wish. Finish the day in Viterbo – the City of Popes – where taste sensation awaits in the form of the delicious local frittellacce (pancakes).

Day 44 | Viterbo – Lago di Vico | 18 km / 4 hours

Today you will explore the Etruscan hollow roads and typical Etruscan countryside. History tells us that here, not far from Rome and close to Civitavecchia, is a valley of very ancient times, where the Etruscans settled in before reaching Rome. Arrive this afternoon in Lago di Vico, one of the highest major Italian lakes, with an altitude of 510 metres.

Day 45 | Lago di Vico – Sutri | 20 km / 5 hours

Another super walking day through majestic woods to the delightful town of Capranica before ending in Sutri, the pearl of Tuscia. Here you’ll find a perfect square for people watching, as well as narrow streets to stroll in and a delicious local drop to celebrate the day. If you haven’t already discovered a local osteria, now is your chance – it’s a place serving wine and simple food with an emphasis on local specialities such as pasta and grilled meat or fish.

Day 46 | Sutri – Campagnano di Roma | 25 km / 6 hours

Start your day by walking past the impressive amphitheatre then continue through meadows and pastureland in fairly flat terrain. The final part of today is a magnificent path through nature with a stop at the Cascate di Monte Gelato, a mind-blowing castle.  This small village also lays claim to what they believe is the world’s best gelato. But what town in Italy doesn’t?

Day 47 | Campagnano di Roma – Isola Farnese | 21 km / 5 hours

Today you’ll approach the edge of urban Rome, with many interesting points along the way including the attractive historical centre of Formello, the Sorbo Valley and the ruins of Estruscan city of Veii. The penultimate day of your journey, it’s sure to be a day full of reflection and excitement.

Day 48 | Isola Farnese – Rome | 20 km / 5 hours

The Vatican City awaits and nothing can prepare you for the feeling of walking into Rome. It’s not just the 1000 kilometres behind you, it’s the grand monuments you face when you officially arrive into the ‘Eternal City’ that bring your journey to life.

The parks and reserves welcome you in and the first sight for a triumphant photograph is at the Monte Mario Belvedere. From here, you are able to catch a glimpse of the dome of Saint Peter’s, before descending towards the city to finally reach Piazza San Pietro, your ending point and that of many pilgrims throughout the centuries. You’ll be immediately fascinated by the glorious history, monuments and archaeological areas of Rome. This is a magnificent moment and a memorable achievement, and the city is yours to celebrate this evening!

Day 49 | Finish in Rome

You’ll no doubt want to spend some time taking in all of Rome’s sights and, of course, restaurants. This is the home of carbonara, after all. The Travestere neighbourhood is particularly atmospheric. We hope that you’ve had the walk of a lifetime. Your epic pilgrimage officially comes to an end after breakfast this morning.

 

Visit www.wanderingtheworld.com.au for more information.

Inclusions

  • 48 nights accommodation, all carefully selected to enhance your Italian walking experience
  • Private en-suite facilities
  • Daily luggage transfers from hotel to hotel (1 x 20kg bag unless indicated otherwise)
  • Daily breakfast
  • Information packs with route maps and instructions on how to locate hotels
  • Luggage identification tags
  • Pilgrims passport
  • Emergency contact details and 24/7 local on-the-ground support
  • Pre-departure and ongoing support from Australian office

Optional Inclusions

  • Suggested rest days as outlined in itinerary or if required
  • Upgraded accommodation including agriturismo (country) properties and premium/high-end styles
  • Private vehicle transfers to the trip’s starting point
  • Single supplement for your own room
  • Additional night’s accommodation before or after trip (please advise at time of booking)

Not Included

  • Flights
  • Travel to trip’s starting point
  • Transfers not already outlined in detailed trip itinerary
  • Lunches
  • Evening meals

Accommodation

We know from personal experience that a good night’s rest can make or break a trip, which is why we carefully hand-select all our accommodation. We ensure we pass on our knowledge and firsthand experience of the best places to stay to all our walkers.

Your accommodation along Italy’s walking trails is booked in advance, is on a twin share basis with private facilities, chosen to make your pilgrimage experience as rewarding as possible. You may be staying in local bed and breakfast style properties including small hotels and guesthouses. At times we will stay in small remote villages, with limited choices, however, our assortment always guarantees your own private en-suite facilities. Wherever you end up, you’ll be well looked after, warm and comfortable and, most importantly, ready to tackle the next day’s walk.

Single supplements for your own room are on a request basis.

In many places there are luxury, upgraded options available. We can recommend some very special, unique places to enjoy the Italian hospitality in 4 and 5 star or more. Please ask us about these options.

Food & Dining

Italy is world famous for its cuisine and although you’ve come for the walking, the eating will be a focal point, with countless famous and traditional must eat meals awaiting your discovery. Italians are the masters of turning simple into spectacular, with the focus on regional, seasonal and fresh ingredients.

Breakfast at your place of accommodation, is usually continental style and may include cereals, yoghurt, bread, pastries, ham, tea, coffee, and juices.

Lunch, at your own expense, will depend on where you are on your walk and what is available, and is often purchased at a local café or bar. Lunch choices along the trail may include a slice of pizza, some panetteria (bakery) delights and if you have a sweet tooth the choices are many, not forgetting the gelati to round off any meal. Or perhaps a picnic you have brought with you to enjoy in the perfect spot.

There are plenty of choices for dining on the walking paths in Italy. In most places you can choose from the less formal eateries such as an enoteca, osteria or a trattoria, serving local wines and simple tasty wholesome food. There is usually a pizzeria in town that cater for early diners, and in the larger cities there is overwhelming options and with Michelin recognised and quality establishments you are spoilt for choice.

THE WALKING

This trip is a self-guided itinerary, ideal for groups and independent travellers who prefer to navigate their own way, in their own time.

You will be provided with an information pack with easy to read maps and instructions, complete with directions to guide you on the well-marked paths and tracks. Your information pack will be available at your joining hotel on the first day of your trip.

TRIP GRADE

Moderate – This itinerary is carefully designed for easy to manage walking days.  Between 14-24 km per day, approx. 4-6 walking hours. There is a basic level of fitness required and some uphill stretches in part.

Given you only need carry a lightweight day bag and your water supply, which can be replenished in the various villages on route and other essentials such as snacks and rainwear. It makes this trip very manageable for an inexperienced walker with a reasonable level of fitness.

LUGGAGE TRANSFERS

For your comfort and enjoyment Wandering the World arrange a daily luggage transfer. All you need to carry is a day pack and be free to enjoy your walking. Luggage allowance is one bag per person of no more than 20kg. Luggage must be left in the reception of your hotel before breakfast (8am) each day, before you move on.

It is essential to attach a bag tag provided to ensure your luggage is delivered to your next accommodation.

*Please note only one bag will be moved each day, additional charges will apply if your bag is heavier than 20kg. Should you require special arrangements for additional luggage transfers, this can be booked ahead of time.

GROUP SIZE

Wandering the World guided groups have a maximum group size of 12 participants. This small group size has many advantages including flexibility to stay in a wider range of accommodation options, dining together of an evening, the opportunity to get to know your travelling companions, and the freedom to walk alone or together.

TRANSFERS/TAXIS

If for any reason you wish to shorten your walking day, there are taxi and sometimes train options in the villages.

On some itineraries, there are times when Wandering the World may arrange a transfer for you or can do so at your request. For example, this might be where small villages do not have accommodation with private facilities, or we want to take you to a special out of the way hotel we know you are going to love. In this case Wandering the World will either arrange a transfer for you or suggest in your trip notes that you will need a taxi at your own expense.

Occasionally transfers are required due to limited accommodation options.  A simple procedure is outlined in your trip notes explaining the details of your private transfer, the designated meeting point and the agreed time.

WEATHER

The weather and climate on our Italian walks is very varied, region to region, and of course from day to day. Each season has its benefits, with lovely long warm and sunny days in Spring and early Summer, to cooler walking temperatures early Spring and late Autumn. Some sections may be too hot for walking mid-summer, and some more likely to be wet, or even snow at other times. Talk to Wandering the World when making your plans, to discuss your preferences.

Once on your walk, the weather can play an important part on the enjoyment of the journey.  Checking the forecast can assist with your plans.  If you strike warm weather, which you think may be uncomfortable, leaving early to avoid the hottest part of the day can make a difference.

24/7 SUPPORT

Your information pack will include details of local emergency contacts and international contacts.

We have local on the ground support to give you any assistance you may need

We also check in with each hotel at the end of each day to endure your arrival.

GETTING THERE / GETTING HOME

This itinerary begins in Gran San Bernardo and ends Rome.

The closest international airports to Gran San Bernardo are Geneva and/or Milan.

There are bus and train options for arriving and departing your walking commencement destination.

Train bookings are recommended.  Please note you can only book two months in advance of the date of travel.

From Geneva and Milan Central Railway Stations by Train/Bus:

From Geneva and/or Milan Station take the train towards Brig bound for Gare de Martigny.

Change platforms at Gare de Martigny for train towards Sembrancher.

Change platforms at Sembrancher for train towards Orsieres.

At Orsieres change to Bus 211 towards Le Grand St Benard, Hopsice (3 per day).

Arrive at Great San Bernard Pass. (approx 5 hrs).

NB:  The above trains run like clockwork and are very well connected.

For more information see the links below.

Regionalps – Buy tickets

Schweizerische Bundesbahnen SBB – Buy tickets

Service d’automobiles TMR – Buy tickets

TRENITALIA

Getting from Rome

Train and Bus Options:

To Rome Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport and /or Rome Ciampino Airport, refer to the links below for more information:

www.trenitalia.com

Rome2Rio.

INSURANCE

Insurance is compulsory for everyone who travels with Wandering the World. The insurance policy must include cover against personal accident, medical expenses, emergency repatriation and personal liability. Wandering the World recommends insurance coverage for cancellation to be taken at the same time your deposit is paid, as no exception to the cancellation provisions can be made.

BOOKING AND TRAVEL TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Wandering the World’s full booking terms and conditions are available upon request and will also accompany your initial invoice for deposit.

“The moment I arrived at Gran San Bernardo, I felt the adrenaline! The full panorama of the stunning mountains eclipsed me, it was like the world’s most picture-perfect postcard. I felt I could reach out and touch the peaks, the breathtaking beauty with endless views was overwhelming in the best possible way.  From this point, the 1000km ahead of me was a dream long in the planning, and I loved every-step, every morsel of food, every drop of wine all the way to the Eternal City of Rome”.   Glenyce, Founder of Wandering the World.