Via Francigena

The Tuscan Francigena: 39 municipalities for a ‘homogeneous touristic product’

Redazione AEVF
Redazione AEVF

FLORENCE – completed today with the signing of the agreement between the 39 interested municipalities, the path towards the creation of the first uniform touristic product “Via Francigena Toscana”.  The representatives of the various municipal administrations signed the agreement today at the convention entitled “La Francigena. The sustainable footprint of Tuscany and other leading areas’, that was held in the Pegasus Hall of Palazzo Strozzi Sacrati, in Florence.

With the birth of the touristic product “Via Francigena Toscana”, the 39 signatory municipalities (grouped into 4 aggregations) are responsible for the management of hospitality and touristic information, of promotion and communication of the touristic product, of maintaining order on the hiking routes and the monitoring and analysis of tourist flows. 

As stated, the signed agreement identifies four municipal aggregations: North, Central North, Central South and South. 

The northern aggregation includes the municipalities of Pontremoli, Filattiera, Villafranca in Lunigiana, Bagnone, Licciana Nardi, Fosdinovo, Aulla, Carrara, Massa, Montignoso. The central northern includes Seravezza, Pietrasanta, Camaiore, Massarosa, Lucca, Capannori, Porcari, Montecarlo, Altopascio, Ponte Buggianese. The central southern Fucecchio, Santa Croce, Castelfranco, San Miniato, Castelfiorentino, Montaione, Gambassi.
Finally, the southern aggregation includes San Gimignano, Colle di Val d’Elsa, Monteriggioni, Siena, Monteroni, Buonconvento, Montalcino, San Quirico d’Orcia, Castiglione d’Orcia, Radicofani, San Casciano dei Bagni, Abbadia San Salvatore.

In addition, the agreement indicates the 4 leading municipalities of each aggregation: Pontremoli-MassaLuccaFucecchio e Siena, respectively.

The creation of the first uniform touristic product, in implementation of article 15 of the new regional law on tourism relative to thematic tourism products,completes the course begun by the region with the aim of guaranteeing the accessibility of the route in accordance with the fundamental standards defined by the same region for touristic products adopted by the European Association of the Vie Francigene.  

According to the agreement, Toscana Promozione Turistica and Fondazione Sistema Toscana will support the municipalities with promoting the touristic product.  Irpet will instead be the entity which will provide information analysis of its tourist flows. Regarding the task of routine maintenance, necessary for guaranteed integral and homogeneous accessibility along the tract, the municipalities will be able to use an entity of those contributing to the European Association of the View Francigene (EAVF).  

The agreement also predicts the establishment of one specific Tourist Destination Observatory that will look over all the public and private players that will be responsible for the analysis of the understanding of touristic events linked to the Via Francigena.  At a later stage, the implementation regulation of the new law permits the development of the so-called ‘hiking refuge’ which will facilitate free accommodation (with donation) to pilgrims and walkers.       

Thanks to regional finances, they proceed with the task of developing new enjoyable occasions for the Via Francigena.  Shortly the cycle path and waterway signage will be financed (with around 270 thousand euros).  They have also launched work on a circuit of thermal offers connected to slow tourism and the Via Francigena (in addition to the three centres on the route, the other 11 thermal structures that can be found within a 15km radius of the route are also being established). 

Other forthcoming actions include: the so-called Labyrinth, in the municipality of Capannori; small interventions in  receiving points and overnight accommodation managed by ecclesiastical institutes (50 thousand euros allocated); normal maintenance of the route, replacement of faulty signage and development of a task programme animation on the route (another 150 thousand euros); coordination among the associations that operate on the route to create the draft of a billboard promoting the activities on the Via Francigena.  

Fonte: Toscana Notizie