The route is quite easy due to low differences in height. The whole itinerary is mostly on paths and gravel roads (strade bianche), even if you will find some sections on asphalted road.
Some walks are quite long but can be shortened if requested in advance. The whole itinerary is well marked by the Official signs of the Via Francigena (white-red markings and yellow sign with the Pilgrim symbol on it).
Start: Lucca Finish: Siena
Arrive in Lucca and check-in at the hotel. If you arrive early, enjoy a visit to the town, explore its splendid gardens, majestic bell tower and impressive Piazza Anfiteatro, a II century Roman amphitheatre. Don’t miss a walk along the tree-lined walls of its perimeter. Dinner is on your own in one of the many restaurants in town.
After breakfast take some time to visit the wooden crucifix known as the Holy Face (“Volto Santo”), famous statue-reliquary in the Cathedral of Saint Martin and legendarily carved by Nicodemus. In the afternoon take a public train to Fucecchio where you will be picked up and taken to your accommodation in San Miniato Alto. Dinner is on your own.
From San Miniato, a paved road brings you to a spectacular route crossing the typical countryside of the Val d’Elsa. Following the Sigeric’s diary you meet two “Submansiones”: Pieve di Coiano (XXI, Sce Peter Currant) and Pieve a Chianni (XX, Sce Maria Glan), then you arrive at your accommodation. Dinner is included at the accommodation tonight.
Challenge: 7 hours, 25 km, 781m ascent, 654m descent
Today you enjoy the wonderful surroundings of the Via Francigena. Before walking up to the peculiar villages of Collemuccioli and Pieve di Cellole, stop for a visit at the Sanctuary in Pancole. If you arrive early, take some time to visit the famous town of San Gimignano and enjoy its charming medieval atmosphere. Dinner is on your own in one of the many restaurants in town.
Challenge: 6 hours, 18 km, 595m ascent, 540m descent
Today you walk a gorgeous path of the Via Francigena. Going up and down the Tuscan hills, crossing vineyards, olive groves, fields and woods, you finally reach your accommodation in Gracciano. Along the way, you can make a detour to discover the fascinating Abbey of Santa Maria a Conero of the XI century.
Challenge: 6 hours, 21 km, 209m ascent, 204m descent
From Gracciano, cross Pieve a Elsa and meet the ancient Etruscan Thermae (hot pool) of Caldane. After reaching Strove and its beautiful Romanesque Church, continue walking along the particular complex of Abbadia a Isola till you reach the medieval town of Monteriggioni, surrounded by its peculiar crown of towers.
Challenge: 4 hours, 13 km, 132m ascent, 57m descent
Leaving Monteriggioni, you walk on dirt roads along the Montagnola Senese, the main hilly area in the district. You pass the ancient medieval suburb of Cerbaia that appears currently abandoned. Across the wood you reach the Castle of “Chiocciola” and go up to Poggio di Riciano. Descend the old river of the Pian del Lago (or skip Poggio di Riciano to arrive directly from Chiocciola to Pian del Lago). At the end of the Renai forest, enter the beautiful town of Siena for its ancient pilgrim’s access of Porta Camollia. Dinner is on your own in one of the many restaurants in town.
Challenge: 6 hours, 20 km, 224m ascent, 245m descent
The trip and our services end after breakfast unless you have pre-booked extra nights in Siena with us or other extra services.
All accomodations are carefully selected because of their location, atmosphere and/or unique services. All rooms are en-suite.
You can find below the standard hotels of this trip. If a hotel is fully booked, then we will book a similar one for you and inform you about the alternative booked.
Extra overnight: You can book additional night(s) at any of the accommodations along the way.
Hotel Rex*** is 80 m from the main train station and 100 m from the ancient walls of Lucca. Rooms are quiet and well-finished with free Wi-Fi, air conditioned, telephone and fridge. Staff is helpful and courteous. Buffet breakfast is rich and varied.
What in the thirteenth century was a severe monastery cloister is now Hotel San Miniato, refined historic home sits on a hill overlooking the Tuscan countryside between Florence and Pisa. The rooms are comfortable, elegant and clean. Breakfast is good and rich.
Tenuta Sant'Ilario is immersed in the Chianti countryside, among vineyards and olive groves. Located 10km from San Gimignano, consists of a stone-walled villa, a restaurant and an outdoor pool. The accommodations, provided as rooms, villas or entire apartments, are furnished in Tuscan style with exposed beams and wooden floors. Rooms offer private bathroom, kitchenette in the apartments, free Wi-Fi but limited to common rooms and some rooms. Breakfast buffet is good and varied, during the summer it can be done in the outdoor garden.
The hotel is both overlooking the ancient Piazza della Cisterna used to welcome pilgrims from all over the world and charming hills of San Gimignano. This stately home is in an excellent position, into the heart of San Gimignano. The rooms are simple and modern with air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, TV and bathroom. Breakfast is very good although not particularly plentiful. The staff is welcoming and helpful
Hotel Il Pietreto is 4km from Colle Val d'Elsa and consists of an 18th-century country house with restaurant and two outdoor swimming pools. Rooms are equipped with classic furniture and offer TV, private bathroom not particularly nice and, in some rooms, an original fireplace; there is no air conditioned. Wi-Fi is free but does not have uniform coverage on the structure. Breakfast is ok.
Borgo Gallinaio is a medieval hamlet dating back to fifteenth Century, now converted into a charming hotel surrounded by the Tuscan countryside and located at short distance from Monteriggioni Castle. Rooms are spacious and furnished in a rustic style with wooden beams and terracotta floors and have private bathroom and free Wi-Fi. Location is quiet, and the staff is friendly and helpful. Quality breakfast is served in the courtyard.
Hotel Chiusarelli*** is in the city center of Siena and finds its natural setting in a neoclassical villa built around 1870. The Hotel has been completely renovated in 2013 and offers spacious and clean rooms with air conditioning/heating, telephone, free Wi-Fi and TV with Sky Vision. The Hotel doesn't have the lift. Quality breakfast.
You can start on any day of the week, subject ot availability, between April 7th and October 31st.
Arrival in Lucca
From Pisa Airport (PSA), you can take a train to Lucca with change in Pisa Centrale station.
From Florence Airport (FLR), take a public bus to Florence Santa Maria Novella Train Station, and then a train to Lucca (with change in Pisa Centrale).
Departure from Siena
On departure, if flying from Pisa airport PSA, you first need to reach Florence by bus. Once in Florence, you need to take a train to Pisa Central Station. From there, you can reach the airport by either bus or train.
As an alternative, you can catch a bus from Siena station to Pisa aiport: www.tiemmespa.it/index.php/Viaggia-con-noi/Altri-servizi/Lunga-percorrenza/Siena-Firenze-Pisa-Aeroporto.
You can also reach Pisa from Siena by train, but you always have to change in Empoli.
If flying from Florence airport FLR, you first need to reach Florence train station Santa Maria Novella by either bus or train (both direct). Once in Santa Maria Novella, you can reach the airport by either taxi or bus.
GPS tracks are available on request.
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