VIA FRANCIGENA

FROM SIENA TO ACQUAPENDENTE – SECTION 14/16

Trip Style

Rolling Hills

Availability

All Year Round

Highlight

Duomo (Siena Cathedral) , Castello Bibbiano, Palazzo Chigi, Torre Alfina

From

€914 / Person

 

Grade

FROM SIENA TO ACQUAPENDENTE (8 DAYS/7 NIGHTS)

 

The Via Francigena (the French Way) is a long-distance walk pilgrimage from Canterbury to Rome. It is said the route was created during the fighting between the Lombards and the Byzanties. Both wanted more territory in Italy. The Lombards made the Via di Monte Bardone route to avoid the Byzantine areas, which would connect the Kingdom of Pavia with southern cities. When the Franks conquered the Lombards, the route was renamed Via Francigena (French Way). During the first millenium Santiago de Compostela, Rome and Jerusalem became the Holy places of Christianity and Via Francigena turned into a central hub for the Christian faith. Many pilgrims taking this route would reach Rome and then continue on to Jerusalem – Holy Land. There are several different routes to take to Rome, for example, there are routes coming from Germany and Austria, as well as Switzerland and the Czech Republic.

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This section goes from Siena to Acquapendente. The walk consists of walking along roadsides, over bridges, hills, and numerous earth tracks but you will be surrounded by beautiful fields, woods and over streams in the stunning Italian countryside. It is challenging, a reasonable level of fitness is needed. But the walk is certainly doable, as there are many flat roads and tracks with intermittent hills and slight inclines, that can be traversed without to much difficulty. All along the journey there are plenty of magnificent sights to see such as churches, cathedrals, towers and castles, not forgetting the incredible landscape of Italy. This walk is very rewarding, as the countryside and towns provide a refreshing euphoria throughout the route and at the end of the journey.

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PACKAGE DETAILS

Day 1: Siena (Arrival)


Siena is one of the most important medieval cities in Italy, as well as one of the most influenced by the Via Francigena passage. Before leaving for Quinciano the next day, feel free to check out the amazing sights that Siena has to offer. One of the more popular sights in Siena is the incredible Duomo (Siena Cathedral) from the 12th century. The Gothic Palazzo Pubblico and the distinct Piazza del Campo are two other popular sights definitely worth seeing. The large square in the heart of the city hosts the infamous medieval Palio horse race event every two years on 2 July and 16 August.

Day 2: Siena to Quinciano (5h 10m – 20.5km)


Walking to Quinciano today is a bit testing, as there is some hillwalking to do but it is not very stressful. Along the way, you can stop for some food and maybe some wine in Isola d’Arbia and see the lovely Romanesque Church of San Ilario. While in the town, relax after that walk and if have the time, you could visit the gorgeous Church of San Albano.

Day 3: Quinciano to Buonconvento (2h 45m – 11.5km)


The walk today is shorter than yesterdays. Gravel roads and tracks make for gentle enough walking to Buonconvento. Arriving in the town, it’s a small with a rolling and enthralling landscape, surrounded by beautiful and vast farms. The Castello Bibbiano and church of Saints Peter and Paul are the main sights to see here once you’ve rested. Also, treat yourself to some pizza. It may have been a short walk, but who needs a reason to have pizza? Just get some!

Day 4: Buonconvento to San Quirico d’Orcia (5h 40m – 22km)


Leaving for San Quirico d’Orcia, there are different routes to choose from. Generally, the walk is quite hilly; a mix of uphill and downhill walks, and earth tracks, so it is a bit challenging. But, once you reach San Quirico d’Orcia, reward yourself with a glass of wine or two. Depending on the routes chosen, you may need to walk along roadsides before entering San Quirico d’Orcia. During your stay, visit the Collegiate church of San Quirico and the very impressive Palazzo Chigi which is now known as the Horti Leonini. It is a fantastic public park that was once part of the palazzo’s grounds.

Day 5: San Quirico d’Orcia to Gallina (4h 50m – 18km)


Today’s walk is similar to the previous day with uphill and downhill walks taking up the majority of the journey to Gallina. It is another challenge, but one that will make you feel defiant when you conquer it. Gravelled tracks and paths also make up part of the walk, however, you will get to pass by a lovely public park. If you go through Bagno Vignoni, a thermal spa is there with the reservoir holding sulphurous water. There is an option to take a route that follows the Via Cassia instead of being diverted. However, you will need to consider how much daylight you have left, and if the roads are busy. The diversion from it is quite hilly and is longer. Once in Gallina, take time to rest and eat in the local restaurants before the walk to Radicofani.

Day 6: Gallina to Radicofani (3h 30m – 14km)


Walking to Radicofani starts with gravel tracks and grassy tracks through fields before inter-changing hills and gravel roads between fields. Crossing small rivers may also be part of the walk, if you decide to cross them, depending on the weather. If it’s raining, walking along the roadsides from Gallina would be a better option. Nevertheless, crossing the streams as well as going through fields and on grassy tracks, all the while taking in the incredible sight of nature, really is something to behold before taking the uphill route into Radicofani. The town is placed in top of a hill, with a striking view of the surrounding area. Take time to see Radicofani’s main attraction – the Rocca (castle) – and the Romansque church of Santa Agatha once you’ve taken a breather, and a glass of wine, from the walk.

Day 7: Radicofani to Acquapendente (7h 35m – 31km)


The last day of walking is the longest of all of the days. So it is quite the task, but reaching your destination at the end, you will be overcome with joy. You start with some nice downhill walking, reaching Ponte A. Choose between taking the historic route along the road, or taking the loop around Via Cassia. After taking one of the routes, your walk becomes uphill again, but not too difficult, for the rest of the way into Acquapendente. Now you can relax, do some sight-seeing and sample the culture of the town as it’s the end of the walk. We recommend visiting the fantastic Basilica del Santo Sepulcro and the Torre Alfina. Acquapendente’s streets have many inclines, but all are paved, so getting around is not a problem. The city is famous for its vegetable and wine products, so trying out some of the local foods, particularly if there’s pizza, wouldn’t go astray.

Day 8: Acquapendente, end of walking holiday


After breakfast we bid you farewell.

INCLUDED AND NOT

  • 7 nights in 3* hotels
  • 7 Breakfasts
  • Detailed Walking Notes
  • Francigena Holiday Pack
  • Luggage Transfer
  • 24/7 Customer Care
  • Flights/trains
  • Insurance
  • Drinks
  • Entrance fees (museums, monasteries)
  • Transfer from/to airport
  • Extra night stays
  • Upgrade to authentic & luxury accommodation
  • Dinner

Access

Way in:


Fly in: to Siena
Closest international airport is Florence Airport, Peretola. Take a train from Firenze Rifredi train station in Florence to Siena. You can get a taxi from the airport to Firenze Rifredi train station.

Trains are frequent and take approximately one hour to arrive in Siena. Can book train tickets on Italia Rail – www.italiarail.com

Way out:


Fly out: from Acquapendente
Closest International airport to Acquapendente is Rome Fiumicino airport. Take a bus from Acquapendente to Viterbo Porta Romana train station. From Viterbo Porta Romana train station, take a train to Roma Trastevere train station. From here, take a train to Rome Fiumcino airport.

Buses from Acquapendente are hourly. Journey takes approximately one hour and thirty minutes. Can check bus schedules here: http://www.cotralspa.it/Orari.aspx

Trains from Viterbo Porta Romana are hourly. Journey takes approximately one hour and 45 minutes. Can book tickets here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Trains from Roma Trastevere are every 10 minutes. Journey takes approximately 30 minutes. Can book tickets here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

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