The Cultural Route of the Via Francigena participates in the World Tourism Day 2020 by celebrating the rural communities along the route. The Via Francigena, medieval pilgrimage route from Canterbury to Rome, attracts walkers and pilgrims with its diverse culture and natural beauty of ever-changing landscapes.
World Tourism Day 2020:
Organised by the World Tourism Organisation UNWTO, the World Tourism Day 2020 is feted on Sunday 27 September 2020 under a focus on “Tourism and Rural Development”. This day celebrates the sector’s unique ability to drive economic development and provide opportunities outside of big cities, including in those communities that would otherwise be left behind. World Tourism Day 2020 also highlights the important role tourism plays in preserving and promoting culture and heritage all around the world. The Via Francigena crossing 3200 km of rural areas from Canterbury to the harbours of Italian Apulia via France, Switzerland and Italy, provides significant opportunities for economic development of rural areas and enhancement of their cultural and natural heritage
On 26 September and 3 October the European Association of the Via Francigena ways organises its free walking event “I love Francigena” in the rural area from San Pancrazio to Collecchio and Fornovo di Taro to Corte di Giarola in Italy. During these walks tourists will discover picturesque variants of the cultural route of the Via Francigena in the northern Italy (Province of Parma, Emilia Romagna region). These stretches are famous for its Romanesque parish churches of San Pancrazio, San Prospero, Santa Maria Assunta and landscapes shaped by the Roman centuriation more than 2,000 years ago: irrigation canals, rows of mulberry trees and ancient agricultural courts. The area of Taro Park is famous for its greenery and natural wonders.
"I love Francigena" is a series of annual walking events, celebrating the cultural route of the Via Francigena and offering a unique opportunity to enjoy the path, its cultural and natural heritage and local gastronomy.
The Via Francigena, the cultural route of the Council of Europe, crosses England, France, Switzerland and Italy along 3200 km of slow travel in mostly rural areas. The route provides significant opportunities for economic development for local communities thanks to the development of sustainable tourism and flow of pilgrims and walkers. The route facilitates intercultural exchange and dialogue of tourists and local population, enhancing shared European identity and heritage.
More information about the walking events here https://www.viefrancigene.org/en/resource/news/cammina-con-noi-sabato-3-ottobre-partecipa-i-love-/