Via Francigena

Discovering the most introspective Emilia-Romagna: “Open Monasteries” on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October 2019

Picture of Redazione AEVF
Redazione AEVF

Retrace the steps of everyday life of a medieval monk, have lunch in silence with the cloistered nuns or take part in a picturesque evening trekk ending with a harp concert in an ancient abbey. These are just few of the initiatives planned during “EmiliaRomagna Open Monasteries“, the event scheduled on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October 2019 uniting 20 regional monuments.

From the splendid Abbey of Nonantola (Mo) – recently reopened to the public after the post-earthquake restoration and a monument 2019 of a special Jubilee granted by Pope Francis – to the Cathedral of Sarsina (Fc), the event also included lesser known gems, such as the Monastery of San Pietro in Modena and the Monastery of Santa Chiara in Lagrimone (Pr).

For a whole weekend, the heritage of parish churches, monasteries, cloisters, crypts, abbeys and places of ancient worship, situated along 18 routesof Wayfarers and Pilgrims of EmiliaRomagna, is revealed to public, offering rarefied atmospheres, silence, introspection and a full immersion in the most beautiful autumnal nature.

Some of the monuments open their doors to external visitors for the first time. Thanks to the experienced art guides the public will learn in depth their origin and history, art and architecture. The initiative is promoted by APT Servizi EmiliaRomagna and CEER – Office for the pastoral care of sport, tourism and leisure, in collaboration with eight regional Dioceses (Piacenza-Bobbio, Parma, Reggio-Emilia, Modena-Nonantola, Bologna, Faenza-Modigliana , Forlì, Cesena-Sarsina) and ten regional routes associations (Via degli Abati, Via dei Linari, Via Romea Strata Longobarda – Via Nonantolana, Via degli Dei, Viae Misericordiae- Cammino di Dante, Way of Saint Anthony, Via Romea Germanica, Way of Saint Vicinio).

“Enhancing the cultural, architectural and religious capital of the territory by creating new tourist itineraries along the 18 routes of Wayfarers and Pilgrims of Emilia-Romagna means – comment the Regional Tourism Councilor Andrea Corsini –offering visitors additional travel opportunities. This Council is constantly working in two directions : allocating the funds necessary to reopen the monasteries destroyed by the earthquake, as recently the abbeys of Nonantola and Santa Chiara in Carpi and investing both in favor of the local communities and the tourism sector of the Emilia-Romagna”.

“The Open Monasteries” initiative, agreed between the Emilia-Romagna Region and CEER – declares Monsignor Carlo Mazza, CEER delegate – takes on a significance of particular cultural value in relation to religious tourism movement that has been greatly increased in recent years by Wayfarers and Pilgrims Paths promoted by the Region and Diocese of Emilia Romagna. In reality sacred places, such as monasteries, abbeys, churches and sanctuaries, combine secular and religious traditions of the territory constituting heritage of art, faith and culture that is quite remarkable. Their availability for a differentiated and intimate visit confirms a widespread desire for inner experiences and broad social sensitivity. The “Open Monasteries” is an event that will also have an impact on the territory and whose potential can grow thanks to the synergy with organizations and bodies “.

Scheduled free of charge and fee-requiring events and activities, including guided tours, workshops, excursions with stops in monasteries and churches, concerts of sacred music can be booked  via . There is plenty of choice, from a guided tour of the Monastery, the Abbey and the Cloister of San Colombano, to Bobbio (Pc), one of the main late medieval cultural centers of Northern Italy, to evening trekking with a final harpe concert at the Abbey of Sant’Ellero (Fc), a meeting with cloistered Clarisse nuns of the Regina Mundi Monastery of Lagrimone, Parma, and the writing laboratory with a quill pen at the Monastery of San Colombano, Bobbio.

The 18 Paths for Wayfarers and Pilgrims of Emilia-Romagna, a region boasting a unique concentration of routes on a national level, are increasingly turning to tourism experience. The website  provides visitors with relevant information. You can choose to stay in bed & breakfasts, holiday farms, hotels or religious hospitality facilities (over 4,700 hotels), visit ancient churches and convents, discover natural springs and monumental trees, and cross regional parks (2732 points of interest mapped), as well as visit farms of typical products of protected origin (around 300 structures), or visit the Taste Museums that narrates  a story and origin of gastronomic excellences of Emilia-Romagna. Thanks to the synergy with authorities, private operators and local institutions, the site presents a calendar with over one hundred events (festivals, markets, exhibitions, walks) that take place between April and December along the Paths and can offer an additional tourism package.

Source: press release

You can find more details about the initiative attached.