Trails and pilgrimage routesTrails and pilgrimage routes

The Assisi Way

by /// January 5, 2023
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes



The Assisi Way is the result of the connection of many traditional pilgrimage routes that had already existed for centuries in the area, and which were linked to ancient and peculiar devotions. These trails give visitors the opportunity to experience the historical and natural world of the Romagna Apennines in a very spiritual context.

La Verna Sanctuary – Pic by Giordano Giacomini via Parco Foreste Casentinesi

The route starts in the little town of Dovadola, in the Forlì-Cesena province, and leads to the Hermitage of Montepaolo, the first Italian residence of Saint Anthony, a place surrounded by nature and an ideal refuge to restore the spirit, far from traffic and noise.

The route has been built around some pivotal places of pilgrimage. It passes through well-known places such as Assisi, La Verna (the sacred mountain of the stigmata), Gubbio, Montecasale, as well as other Franciscan centres of undoubted religious importance, such as the Casella hermitage and the thousand-year-old hermitage of Camaldoli, founded by St Romuald of Ravenna..
After Dovadola, Rocca San Casciano, Portico, Premilcuore, Santa Sofia, Corniolo and Campigna, the route enters Tuscany along a beautiful ridge in the heart of the Casentinesi Forests Park. Badia Prataglia (Poppi), Chiusi della Verna, Michelangelo Caprese, Pieve Santo Stefano and Sansepolcro come next, until you find yourself in Umbria. Once you’ve left Città di Castello and Pietralunga behind, you can head for Gubbio, where you can either continue on the Franciscan path through Valfabbrica or head for the beautiful Mount Cucco Park, passing through Gualdo Tadino before reaching in Nocera Umbra the same route that St Francis took on his last return to Assisi, aware that he was about to embark on the ultimate journey to an altogether different place…


Services and practical information

The Way of Assisi crosses three regions and is about 180 miles long; it can be done in 12 or 13 days on foot, by bike or on horseback.

La Verna Sanctuary – Pic by Fabio Liverani via Parco Foreste Casentinesi

The official website has full details about all the paths and stages of the Way, along with a list of Refuges and some tips on how to prepare for the journey and what equipment to bring.
You can sign up for your Pilgrimage Credential, an official document that recognizes you as a pilgrim and entitles you to use the shelters and facilities along the way.

The Emilia-Romagna segment of the Assisi Way covers about 45 miles in 4 stages:

Italian regions crossed: Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Umbria

Stage 1 | Dovadola – Capannina (13 miles)
Stage 2 | Capannina – Premilcuore (13 miles)
Stage 3 | Premilcuore – Corniolo (11.2 miles)
Stage 4 | Corniolo – Passo della Cisa – Camaldoli (14.3 miles)

Length: About 180 miles in total (about 12–13 days), 45 miles in Emilia-Romagna
Difficulty: medium





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Walter Manni

Explorer and Adventurer: loves sailing the oceans, climbing the highest mountains and surfing on the waves of the web

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