From Ravenna to Florence following Dante’s footsteps

Tour description

An exciting off-road route which follows Dante Alighieri’s footsteps. The tour starts whether from Florence, the city where the poet was born, or from Ravenna, where he is buried. Discovering villages and art cities in Romagna where Dante wandered during his exile between Tuscany and Romagna. A Grand Tour which crosses territories such as Mugello, Casentino Valley, Tuscan-Romagna Apennines, Lamone Valley and little historic villages such as Poppi, Romena, Pratovecchio, Camaldoli, Portico di Romagna, San Benedetto in Alpe, Castrocaro Terme and Terra del Sole, places that inspired Dante writing his Divine Comedy.  

Itinerary details

This itinerary, away from the traffic and any kind of air pollution, crosses the Apennines ridge characterised by an amusing alternation of ascents and descents. The route is mainly on dirt roads and never too difficult to ride with an e-bike: five stages with an elevation gain over 1,000mt and one below 1,000mt. 

Considering the ascents and descents, in order to simplify the trip, a daily luggage transfer for every stage is included in the provided services. The services include the presence of a tour leader qualified as a bike tourist guide as well.

For groups of at least 10 participants, a van service is also provided to accompany the group throughout the tour.

Level: Medium, with e-MTB

Average daily distance: 46 km

Total distance: 275 km

Daily itinerary

Day 1 Ravenna

Meeting place in Ravenna where, with the DantePass, it will be possible to visit numerous events organized on the occasion of the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death, at special terms. Overnight stay is included.

Day 2 Ravenna-Forlì-Castrocaro

The ride starts in Forlì, where this year there is the official exhibition about Dante as he lived there twice during his exile. The trip moves to Terra del Sole, a jewel of Renaissance town planning commissioned by Cosimo de’ Medici in 1564 as an example of perfect urban planning, Terra del Sole was also a fortress defending the northern borders. The route ends in the afternoon, in Castrocaro with its fortress and spa. 

Distance: 53 km.

Day 3 Castrocaro – Portico di Romagna

The ride leaves Castrocaro to reach Dovadola, where stands the imposing tower of the Castle of Guido Guerra, a member of the Guidi family who was mentioned by Dante in the 16th canto of the Inferno. The tour starts to climb a ridge that leads to the famous volcano of Monte Busca, a burning fountain of methane gas that comes out of the subsoil and is constantly combusting. From here, a pleasant descent leads to the overnight stop, the lovely Portico di Romagna, known for its characteristic humpback bridge.

Distance: 40 km.

Day 4 Portico di Romagna – San Benedetto in Alpe

The tour goes into the Tuscan-Romagna Appennine “selva oscura” [Dante’s dark forest] characterised by thick woods and hidden hermitages.                                

Then the tour continues into other forests climbing the Appennine and then descending towards San Benedetto in Alpe, a town known for its Abbey. In the afternoon it is possible to have a pleasant walk (9km round trip) to the Acquacheta falls whose beautiful scenery was described by Dante Alighieri in his Divine Comedy. The overnight stay will be in the small and quiet village of San Benedetto in Alpe. Distance: 30 km + 9 km to the Acquacheta waterfalls.

Day 5 San Benedetto in Alpe-Campigna

The tour continues discovering the territory of Casentinesi Forests National Park where an alternation of ascents and descents leads to Campigna. The overnight stay will be there in Campigna, a real heaven on earth for nature-lover walkers where to enjoy the silence produced by the beech forests.

Distance: 30km

Day 6 Campigna – Camaldoli – Poppi

The first stage of the tour is the Sacro Eremo of Camaldoli, an ancient monastery still inhabited by monks. The tour continues along a descent to Pratovecchio. Those who still have energy can climb for 5km to the Abbey of Romena built in 1152 and the nearby castle that hosted Dante in his first years of exile. Another short diversion leads to Porciano Castle, where Dante was a guest of the Guidi family. During his stay he wrote three of his famous Latin epistles. The route continues towards Poppi which is a must-see on a route through Dante’s places. Poppi is dominated by the Castle of the Guidi counts, near which the famous battle of Campaldino took place. Dante fought in this battle on the Guelph side. His participation is remembered by the “Column of Dante” in Poppi.

Distance 59 km

Day 7 Pioppi-Florence

The route heads towards Dante’s birthplace, Florence, stopping at Vallombrosa Abbey, whose cloister contains a medal depicting Dante and Beatrice. From here, a pleasant descent leads to the plain area between Florence, Prato and Pistoia “Piana Fiorentina”, then crosses Pontassieve and finally reaches Dante’s hometown.

Distance 70 km

Day 8 End of the tour in Florence

In Florence a lot of corners and places recall Dante’s life, first and foremost the House where he was born near “Torre della castagna”, we recommend visiting it after breakfast (closed on Mondays).

End of the tour and of this unforgettable adventure.

See you next time!

You can return to Ravenna by train or with us booking the return trip as an extra service.

Type of itinerary

linear, in group with a guide

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Duration

8 days, 7 nights

Number of participants

minimum 6 people

Departing calendar

2nd of April | 16st of  July 

20th of August | 8th of October

Departure

Ravenna

Arrival

Florence

Price per person in double room

1.300

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Included services

  • 7 overnight stays in a double room in a 3-star hotel or similar accommodation
  • 6 breakfasts
  • 7 dinners and 7 packed lunches
  • Dante Pass
  • luggage transport
  • APP and GPX tracks
  • authorised bicycle touring guide;
  • for groups of 10 or more participants, an accompanying support van is provided
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Services not included

  • tourist tax
  • breakfast in San Benedetto in Alpe
  • transport to the starting point and/or end point of the tour
  • medical/luggage insurance
  • bike rental and bike fitting
  • anything not specified under “included services”

e-MTB Bike rental price

30€ per day

Extra services:

Single room supplement: 180€

Code

DB-MG8 / itbg4090

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