In June 2016, blogger Romain was on holiday in Tuscany and saw the Via Francigena markup which made him curious. After some research, a year later, he’d decided to go through the Italian segment of the route several times with a friend. He describes his journey from Bourg-Saint-Pierre to Ivréa in 7 days, announcing his desire to continue to Rome in large stages either walking or by bike (depending on the region).
He was able to note the different characteristics encountered along the route in this valley (through the slopes): mountain, vineyards, villages, History and meetings.
Some practical tips are provided on tourism (famous peaks and passes, local gastronomic and oenological specialties, techniques of growing vines, History) and on the practical aspects of hiking (where to sleep, what to eat, how to get to a certain place…). Here is the description of his travels:
“We left the car in Ivréa, then we took a train to Aosta, then a bus to Bourg-Saint-Pierre in Switzerland. We spent the night at the Hotel du Crêt, in a dormitory. Good value for money.
“Bourg-Saint-Pierre – Great St. Bernard Pass: 13 km, 1100 m of elevation gain (d+), overnight at the Great St. Bernard Hospice. Nice step on trail, too bad that we see so much cars / motorcycles climb the pass. Superb welcome to the hospice, we highly recommend.
“Great St. Bernard Pass – Etroubles: 14 km, 1300 m of negative elevation (d-), overnight with good value for money in the Casa Alpina Sacro Cuore.
“Etroubles – Aosta: 16 km, 500 m d-, night in an apartment rental via Airbnb. Very pleasant town center, with many Roman remains.
“Aosta – Châtillon: 30 km (our longest stage), 620 m d +, 650 m d-, overnight in the hotel Rendez-Vous, good value for money.
“Châtillon – Verrès: 19 km, 670 m d +, 850 m d-, night in Il Casello to avoid.
“Verrès – Pont-Saint-Martin: 15 km, 200 m d +, 220 m d-, night in the campsite Montbarone. Great hospitality and our best value for money stay. The owner offers roaming pilgrims or hikers a private caravan with a wooden awning. There is also the pool to cool off. We highly recommend.
“Pont-Saint-Martin – Ivrea: 22 km, 360 m d +, 460 m d-. Return to the car we had left a week before. We made the trip between Ivrea and Bourg-Saint-Pierre by train (Ivrea / Aosta) and then by bus (Aosta / Bourg-Saint-Pierre).
“In the point of view of the equipment, stay “light”, but mind that:
– the route goes up to 2500 meters of altitude where the weather can quickly change.
– you stay outside for hours, so plan the different eventualities of time, heat, rain and cold.
– in June it was hot, even very hot, fortunately there are quite a lot of water points along the way and we also took advantage of automatic sprinklers.
– we hike on good paths, driveways or roads with little traffic, so forget your big mountain shoes.”
Source : lespiedssurterre.blog