Via Francigena

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I Love Francigena: 7 hikes in October with free participation organised by Coop

Coop has always supported healthy and sustainable lifestyles, and in this post-Covid19 relaunch year it chooses to be a truly active promoter of outdoor physical activity and slow tourism. With these objectives in mind, Coop organised a series of walks free of charge, suitable to all and open to the public at the beginning of summer, and offers 7 more hikes during October 2022!

In particular, Coop approached Francigena Service S.r.l. as its organising partner and as technical-logistical creator of the events along the Via Francigena route. Starting on 1 October 2022, we will be holding a total of seven walks with free participation along the Italian Via Francigena, with the format of the well-known ‘I Love Francigena‘ events. The next tours will cover the regions Piedmont, Lombardy, Liguria and Emilia-Romagna and will require registration (free of charge) at least 5 days before the hike.

Do you want to participate? Discover the stages, register and join us for the stage you prefer!

◆ HERE IS THE CALENDAR OF OCTOBER’S HIKES ◆

Saturday 1 October – Lombardy, from Villanova d’Ardenghi to Pavia: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Saturday 1st October – Piedmont, from Palazzo Canavese to Viverone: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Sunday 2 October – Piedmont / Lombardy, from Vercelli to Palestro: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Sunday 2 October – Liguria, from Castelnuovo Magra to Sarzana: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Saturday 22 October – Emilia-Romagna, from Cassio to Berceto: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Saturday 22 October – Piedmont, from Borgofranco d’Ivrea to Ivrea: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Sunday 23 October – Emilia-Romagna, from Roveleto di Cadeo to Fiorenzuola d’Arda: sign up here or visit Coop’s website.

Click here for the full list of events organised by Coop

The hikes are organised with the aim of exploring and promoting the cultural, historical and natural heritage as well as the products of local gastronomy along the route of the Via. The itineraries we cover are suitable for everyone and groups will always be accompanied by an experienced environmental and hiking guide.

We also walked with Coop Outdoor in June and July 2022!

Here are some of our latest itineraries:

Piedmont: from Palazzo Canavese to Viverone

Emilia-Romagna: from Cassio to Berceto

Liguria: from Ponzano Superiore to Sarzana

Tuscany: from Gambassi Terme to S. Gimignano and from Strove to Monteriggioni

Lazio: from Sutri to Capranica

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The Via Francigena participated in the biannual meeting of rurAllure, an EU Horizon 2020 project

The European Association of Via Francigena ways took part in the 4th General Meeting of the European project rurAllure, dedicated to the enhancement of cultural heritage along the main cultural routes of Europe, together with the Way of St. James, the Via Romea Strata, the Romea Germanica, the Way of Mary and the Way of St. Olav.

It is a three-year project involving public and private partners and institutions from seven countries, financed by the European Commission and entirely focused on the potential of pilgrimages.

The project meeting was held on 5 and 6 September 2022 in Bratislava and Budapest, where the EAVF rurAllure team – consisting of Elena Dubinina, Simona Spinola and Nicole Franciolini – presented the status of the activities carried out since January 2021. The staff’s contribution is linked in particular to the promotion of rural heritage along the Council of Europe’s cultural routes – with a focus on mapping and dissemination activities for the main points of interest of the Via Francigena related to the thermal heritage of the three Ways to Rome addressed by the pilot project “Thermal heritage and others on the Ways to Rome“.

Completing the team’s activities are the development of a Via Francigena atlas and the organisation of events with free participation, aimed at spreading the message of an increasingly inclusive route. Among the best practices highlighted by the rurAllure Consortium are the weekend walks in Tuscany with free participation “I Love Francigena Termale“, organised in collaboration with the municipalities of Castiglione d’Orcia, Gambassi Terme, San Gimignano and San Quirico d’Orcia, but also with the precious support of Proloco Gambassi Terme and The Gambassi Experience. A moment of knowledge-sharing on the road, open to pilgrims and tourists discovering the Parco dei Mulini, the water square of Bagno Vignoni and the hypothermal springs of I Bollori and Putizza on the banks of Rio Casciani, in the surroundings of Gambassi Terme.

During the rurAllure meeting, the team of the Autonomous University of Madrid presented the workshop dedicated to blind people on the Via Francigena in Bagno Vignoni. The event, which happened last July, had the aim of bringing individuals with visual disabilities closer to the thermal heritage through a series of sensorial experiences on the field.

A workshop aimed at making the Via Francigena accessible to all, within the ‘Thermal Via Francigena‘ project of which the municipality of San Quirico d’Orcia is an official member. On the occasion of our walk, we were supported by relief maps and 3D models made by geologist Riccardo Rocca, which enabled participants to understand the geographical conformation and geological composition of the route, including height differences and indications in Braille.

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The Via Francigena attends the rurAllure General Meeting, the EU cooperation project

On 5 – 9 September the EAVF takes part in the biannual General Meeting of the European Project rurAllure, the three-year project financed by the European Commission within the Horizon2020 programme, focused on the promotion of heritage located in the vicinity of the main European cultural routes.

The Via Francigena, the Way of Saint James, the Via Romea Germanica, the Romea Strata, the Way of Mary and that of Saint Olav will be the main itineraries of this intense four days of conferences and site inspections organized between Bratislava and Budapest from Stuba – Bratislava University of Technology and KIFU, the Hungarian government agency for technological development. 

Representatives from over 16 entities including cultural associations, cultural bodies and organizations will discuss the challenges and developments of the four pilots on which the project is based: from the thermal heritage of the three itineraries that lead to Rome, to the literary pilot of the Ways to Santiago de Compostela, passing through the ethnographic heritage of the Norwegian way to Trondheim up to the naturalistic variety of the Way of Mary. 

The agenda of the Meeting includes a follow-up on the technological platform and on the sustainability objectives of rurAllure. On 7 September the group will leave Bratislava to reach Budapest via Esztergom. The city is located on the right bank of the Danube on the border with Slovakia and will allow participants to explore some of the main points of interest on the Way of Mary. 

AEVF will be represented by Elena Dubinina, Simona Spinola and Nicole Franciolini: this is the fourth edition of the General Assembly of rurAllure, after the meetings in Padua along the Via Romea Strata in January 2022 and that of Vila do Conde in Portugal along the Way of Saint James held in September 2021, after a kick-off online meeting

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Call for videomakers in France – September and October 2022

Within the project “I love Francigena”, the FFRandonnée and the European Association of Via Francigena ways are looking for videomakers to produce videos, photos and content for social networks.

In September and October 2022, the French Hiking Federation (FFRandonnée) and the European Association of Via Francigena ways (EAVF) are organising a series of hikes and meet-ups called “I Love Francigena“.

The events organised by the FFRandonnée Grand Est and the EAVF consist of three hikes that will cross some of the most significant stages of the GR®145 Via Francigena in France:

  • Hike 1: 21 – 23 September from Vitry-le-François to Brienne-le-Château (Grand-East, Marne and Aube)
  • Hike 2: 30 September – 2 October from Bruay-la-Buissière (Olhain Park) to Blessy (Hauts-de-France, Pas-de-Calais)
  • Hike 3: 7 – 9 October from Mamirolle to Saône and Besançon (Bourgogne-FrancheComté, Doubs)

These events are free and open to the public. Each walk will be 10-12 km per day with a certified guide presenting the local cultural heritage. Representatives of local authorities, the FFRandonnée and the EAVF will also be present, as well as numerous walkers, inhabitants, tourists, a photographer/videomaker and a blogger.

Your commitment:

  • Walk with us along the route for 3 days (you need to be in good physical shape, walking an average of 10-12 km per day and carrying a backpack).
  • Produce 1 one-minute video for each walk (3 in total).
  • Produce 2 real-life 20-second videos for each walk (6 in total).
  • Produce 1 1-minute 30-second video interview per walk (3 in total)
  • Share a minimum of 40 HD photos (120 in total).

Terms and conditions:

Please let us know if you are available for all 3 events or just 2 or 1, specifying which one(s).

  • You must be in possession of all equipment, the drone and a licence to shoot with the drone.
  • Accommodation, travel expenses and meals are fully covered by the organisers.
  • Remuneration to be agreed.

How to apply?

Send your application to jacques.chevin@viefrancigene.org including:

  • Your CV and list of your social networks.
  • Your portfolio.
  • A detailed quotation.

Read the full terms and conditions here

The French Hiking Federation (FFRandonnée)
The French Hiking Federation, our partner and associated body, is an association between several organisations that ensure hikers’ access to marked trails. Its slogan is ‘Les chemins, a shared richness’. By delegation of the Ministry of Sport and thanks to the commitment of its collaborators, the FFRandonnée promotes hiking as a sport and leisure activity, organising hikes, events, and hiking education in schools.

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Walking gives you appetite: Montana is with us on the Via Francigena

The Francigena community continues to grow, as does the network of partners supporting the Association: among the new entries is Montana, a historic Italian company leader in the production of canned meat, which had already accompanied us during the Road to Rome. Convenient and pocket-sized, it is an ideal food for pilgrims embarking on a journey!

Montana’s #CamminareMetteAppetito (‘Walking gives you appetite’) project was created to collect the best Italian walks and outdoor routes and make available the experiences, information and advice of pilgrims and lovers of outdoor activities.

More and more people, in fact, are choosing a healthy lifestyle, made up of outdoor sports activities and a conscious diet and at the same time respectful of the environment. Montana recognises itself in these values, which are common to those who, like AEVF, love the land, and has taken steps to support them with us.

Montana meat comes from an entirely Italian production chain and is the ideal travelling companion along the way because it is light, practical, tasty and high in protein. It is suitable for allə because it is gluten-free and environmentally friendly thanks to the 100% recyclable aluminium packaging. It is the first jellied beef in Italy to have the EPD environmental certification, which measures and certifies the environmental impact of a product on the environment in an objective and comparable way.

We therefore begin with Montana a great new journey as a spokesman for slow and sustainable tourism at local, national and European level.

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J’Aime Francigena 2022: upcoming hikes along the French section!

In September and October 2022, the French Hiking Federation (FFRandonnée) and the European Association of Via Francigena ways (EAVF) are organising a series of hikes open to the public and free of charge, called “J’aime Francigena“.

Three walking events lasting 2-3 days each are on schedule, taking us through some of the most significant stages of the Via Francigena cultural route in France, named GR®145.

Here is the programme:

Hike 1: from 21 to 23 September between Vitry-le-François and Brienne-le-Château (Grand-Est, Marne et Aube)

Hike 2: from 30 September to 2 October between Bruay-la-Buissière (Parc d’Olhain) and Blessy (Hauts-de-France, Pas-de-Calais)

Hike 3: from 7 to 9 October between Mamirolle a Saône and Besançon (Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Doubs)

REGISTER HERE

Each of these free group walks along the Via Francigena will be on average 10-12 km per day and the group will always be composed of a certified guide, who will present the local cultural heritage, representatives of local authorities, the FFRandonnée and the EAVF, a professional photographer and video-maker, and some bloggers and influencers, as well as all walkers, citizens and tourists who wish to participate.

For detailed information on the hikes, visit the events section on our website

Or send an e-mail to our contact person Jacques Chevin: jacques.chevin@viefrancigene.org

For information about our I Love Francigena events click here

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“Share Your Route” photo competition: share your Via Francigena with us

This photo contest is for all pilgrims, walkers and tourists from all over Europe to share their experience on the Via Francigena and other routes! Participating is very simple! 

Just follow these few steps: 

1. Publish a post on your Instagram, Facebook or Twitter profile that speaks about your travel experience and the cultural heritage you have discovered along the route. 

2. Tag the location, @rurAllure (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and the page @ViaFrancigena (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) along with the hashtags #rurallure and #viafrancigena.  

Write a short text below your photos describing your experience, along with impressions, travel tips or whatever comes to mind. You have time until 31 October 2022. Don’t forget to keep your profile public, so that your post doesn’t escape us, that would be a real shame! 

On 7 November we will announce the winners of the competition: up for grabs many prizes kindly offered by our partners, including Ferrino, Garmont and many other brands – expert technical equipment for hiking. 

Furthermore, if you have traveled several routes and want to share other photos as well, you can post your shots following the same rules, tagging only the @rurAllure page and using the hashtag #rurallure.  

Here are all the other itineraries participating in the competition: 

Too many photos to choose from? Problem solved, you can publish them all! A special category of is dedicated to the user who submits the most photos and to the author of the most interesting publication. 

For more information read the Terms and Conditions. 

Flyer 

The EAVF actively collaborates with the European project rurAllure linked to the enhancement of the heritage of the pilgrimage routes of all Europe, including the Via Francigena, focusing in particular on the mapping of the thermal heritage of Roman and Etruscan origin concentrated between Tuscany and Lazio. 

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Daily Pilgrims’ Mass at St Peter’s Basilica

St Peter’s Basilica, in preparation for the Holy Year 2025 which is now very close, is offering a special Mass to pilgrims arriving at the tomb of the Prince of the Apostles – a targeted journey of spiritual renewal and regeneration.

Among the many initiatives planned and as established by H.E.R. Cardinal Mauro Gambetti, Archpriest of St. Peter’s Papal Basilica and Vicar of His Holiness for Vatican City, the “Pilgrim’s Mass” will be celebrated every day starting on 1 August 2022, at 6 pm. Before the celebration, at 5:30 pm in front of the bronze statue of St. Peter, pilgrims to Rome will be welcomed and accompanied to the tomb of the Apostle, where they will receive the “Pilgrims’ Blessing“.

Further information can be obtained by contacting the Parish Office or the Sacristy of the Vatican Basilica at the following contacts:

ufficioparrocchiale@basilicasanpietro.va

06-69883462-69883731

accoglienza@fsp.va

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Call for influencers, bloggers and content creators

Are you an influencer and looking for an unforgettable experience this autumn? Are you sporty, adventurous and curious about discovering new places? Then we are looking for someone like you! 

In September and October 2022, the French Hiking Federation (FFRandonnée) and the European Association of the Via Francigena ways (EAVF) are organising the J’aime Francigenaparticipative events. 

The programme includes three hiking events of 2-3 days each organised by the FFRandonnée and EAVF, which will take you through some of the most significant stages of the cultural route of the Via Francigena (GR®145) in France

  • Hike 1: 21-23 september from Vitry-le-François to Brienne-le-Château (Grand-Est, Marne et Aube) 
  • Hike 2: from 30 september till 2 october from Bruay-la-Buissière (parc d’Olhain) to Blessy (Hauts-de-France, Pas-de-Calais) 
  • Hike 3: 7-9 october from Mamirolle to Saône and Besançon (Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Doubs) 

These events are free and open to the public. Each walk along the Via Francigena will cover on an average of 10 – 12 km per day and will be accompanied by a certified guide who explain about local cultural heritage. Representatives of local authorities, the FFRandonnée and the EAVF as well as walkers, tourists, locals, a videomaker and influencers will participate in each hike. These events will be publicised in the media and press and via digital marketing and will receive greater public attention in France, presenting the Via Francigena and the Cultural Routes.  

By joining us, you will have an opportunity to: 

  • Experience a ‘slow travel’ adventure, walking with your backpack along the Via Francigena, the historic pilgrimage route linking northern and southern Europe. 
  • Explore rural areas off the beaten track, discover cultures and traditions, taste authentic food and confront yourself every day! 
  • Contribute to the revival of sustainable tourism in Europe. 
  • Increase your visibility, your reputation and strengthen your image on an international level. 
  • Cultivate new collaborations and find new partners. 
  • Be relayed on social networks and the AEVF website (the EAVF website receives more than 4 million visits per year and has 69,000 followers on Facebook and 26,000 on Instagram). 
  • Accommodation, travel expenses and meals are fully covered by the organisers. Remuneration or partial remuneration may be provided.  

 Terms and Conditions 

To apply as a ‘J’aime Francigena’ Ambassadeur you must be fluent in French. 

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On the way towards a Via Francigena accessible to all

On Saturday 9 July, our Association organised a workshop dedicated to blind people in Bagno Vignoni, in the heart of the Val D’Orcia in Tuscany, to bring those with visual impairments closer to the thermal heritage through a series of sensory experiences developed for the occasion by a team of experts from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.

The village of Bagno Vignoni, known for its 16th-century ‘water square’ in which 50-degree thermal water flows and for its rich thermal heritage, belongs to the ‘Thermal Via Francigena‘ project of which the municipality of San Quirico d’Orcia is an official member. The initiative was attended by Massimo Vita and Niccolò Zeppi, the presidents of the Siena and Florence sections respectively of the Italian Union of the Blind and Visually Impaired, together with Stella Funduleit, a member of the association in Siena.

Welcoming the group were Marco Bartoli and Virginia Pecci, respectively Deputy Mayor and Head of Tourism of the Municipality of San Quirico d’Orcia, who kicked off the proceedings: “We believe it is fundamental to try to understand the needs of every type of audience because this landscape belongs to everyone, no one excluded“, said Bartoli. “Thanks to the meeting, it was possible to lay the foundations for a very interesting and forward-looking project, which allowed us to look at Bagno Vignoni from another point of view, optimising efforts so that our heritage is within everyone’s reach“. Starting from this, we went through a brief excursus on the history of the village and its central pool, which through the centuries has found water as an element of crucial importance – as confirmed by the inscriptions dedicated to pagan and then Christian deities. Circumnavigating the square, the group was guided by the sound of the water flowing from the central pool into the canal, now partly covered, and then gushing into the Parco dei Mulini.

Supporting the walk were some relief maps and 3D models made by geologist Riccardo Rocca, allowing participants to understand the geographical conformation and geological composition, including elevation differences and Braille indications.

It was not a guided tour, but a shared moment where the feedback of those present had a fundamental weight in creating an itinerary that is increasingly accessible to those with visual disabilities and to anyone who wants to walk“, explained Simona Spinola, communications manager of viefrancigene.org. The itinerant workshop, with which the participating group was very satisfied, at the same time providing indications for the development of the project and pointing out the need for improvements to the path in the countryside, concluded with a “sensory tasting” of some water collected at thermal sites along the Francigena and others that can be bought at the supermarket, in order to understand their properties and characteristics through smells and taste.

The Spanish team, composed of archaeologist Silvia González Soutelo, geographer Laura García Juan and geologist Miguel Gómez-Heras, emphasised that inclusive knowledge is one important way to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals: following the philosophy of ‘nothing done for us, without us’, people with disabilities are a fundamental part of the creation of inclusive dissemination content and not mere recipients. The initiative took place within the Horizon 2020 European project rurAllure, born to map out and disseminate rural heritage and sustainable tourism near major pilgrimage routes across Europe.