The Italian Minister of Tourism Massimo Garavaglia participated in the “Via Francigena – Road to Rome 2021” relay during the stage between Siena and Buonconvento, aboard a historical train provided by the railway managers Fondazione FS Italiane.
Sunday 29th of August the European relay, organized by the European Association of Via Francigena ways for its 20th anniversary with the support of ENIT, welcomed pilgrims and tourists aboard a historical train carriage from the 20s, for a unique experience.
During this appointment, the conference hall carriage on the train hosted a meeting focused on the presentation of the “Road to Rome” project and the collaboration with FS Foundation, resulting in an extraordinary Via Francigena stage, in which the Minister of Tourism also took part. Garavaglia remarked the importance of the Via Francigena route as a leverage of territorial tourism development, harmonizing slow mobility with historical villages and local communities. An authentic tourism made of people and local excellences, to promote the economic relaunch of territories. A recent Irpet study revealed a 63% growth of pilgrims along the Tuscan section of the Via in the last 10 years, with a decisive impact even in the post-covid summer, due to an increasing public interest towards walking trips and Green tourism.
“The only way to make your dreams come true is wake up”, declared Garavaglia, underlining the importance of investments of resources in forms of tourism that focus on the trip itself, rather than transportation. At the table with the Minister were sitting Massimo Tedeschi and Luca Bruschi, respectively EAVF’s President and Director, together with Myra Stals, social media manager for Road to Rome, Luigi Cantamessa and Monsignor Liberio Andreatta, respectively General Director and f.f. President of Fondazione FS Italiane.