St Francis’ Spots on the Via di Francesco

St Francis in Tuscany

Uncover the rich history of St Francis' connection to Tuscan landmarks.

The Majestic Beginning

Stage 1: Florence to Pontassieve

Start your journey at the historic Santa Croce in Florence, the largest Franciscan church in the world. 

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Explore Via di Francesco’s starting point

Magical forest walk

Stage 2: Pontassieve to Consuma

Pilgrims walk through the enchanting Vallombrosa Forest, home of a stunning Benedictine abbey, on their way to Consuma. St Francis walked forest trails in this area on his walks to Firenze.

Mountains, Churches, and Frescoes

Stage 3: Consuma to Stia

Pilgrims enter Stia’s Piazza Tanucci by passing under a powerful fresco of St Francis by Pietro Annigoni. Take a photo alongside the Fratello Sole statue.

ArtSt Francis' Spot

Be inspired by the stunning fresco of St. Francis in Stia, capturing his love for nature and his eco-spirituality.

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Visit Stia’s modern chapel on your pilgrimage, and witness the touching iron tribute to St. Francis, “Fratello Sole.”

Nature's Sanctuary

Stage 4: Stia to Camaldoli

St Francis was said to have visited the Camaldolese hermitage.

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Experience tranquility at the historic Camaldoli Hermitage, surrounded by Casentino Forests National Park’s natural beauty.

Appreciating Nature's Majesty

Stage 5: Camaldoli to Badia Prataglia

Pilgrims can visit Arboreto Carlo Siemoni displays centuries-old trees and exotic species, deepening your connection to nature’s wonders along the Via di Francesco.

The Sacred Mountain Retreat

Stage 6: Badia Prataglia to La Verna

Visit the Santuario della Verna, home of sacred sites like Sasso Spicco, Bosco delle Fate, and the Chapel of the Stigmata.

Church & Sacred SiteNatural LandmarkSt Francis' Spot

Walk the sacred forest trail on the Via di Francesco pilgrimage.

Church & Sacred SiteNatural LandmarkSt Francis' Spot

Discover the spiritual allure of Sasso Spicco, St. Francis’ sacred meditation site, and ascend Mount Penna on your pilgrimage.

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Discover the story behind the Cappella degli Uccelli

Church & Sacred SiteNatural LandmarkSt Francis' Spot

Mountain precipice where St Francis turned a notorious brigand into a man of peace

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Marvel at the breathtaking art and architecture of Chiesa Maggiore della Verna. Daily procession at 15:00.

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Explore the spiritual heart of Santuario della Verna

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

See the foundational chapel built by St Francis and his followers.

Other Attractions

Outside Stages

See attractions outside the official route. 

Church & Sacred SiteSt Francis' Spot

Explore the historical Sanctuary ruins at Madonna dei Fossi, where St. Francis once performed a miraculous act.

Beyond Tuscany


Francis converts thieves
Montecasale is a powerful site where St. Francis profoundly impacted the lives of thieves and a young man named Brother Angelo. Here, he taught the importance of kindness and compassion, leading to the redemption of three thieves who turned away from their criminal past to embrace a life of spirituality and penance. Montecasale serves as a reminder that with understanding and empathy, anyone can find redemption and change their lives for the better.


Francis tames a wolf
The story of St. Francis and the Wolf of Gubbio highlights the importance of empathy and unity. After hearing the townspeople’s fears, St. Francis bravely confronted the wolf, uncovering its own challenges. By negotiating a peace agreement between the town and the wolf, St. Francis fostered a spirit of harmony, transforming the once feared predator into a beloved symbol of forgiveness and cooperation.


Francis is attacked

After renouncing his noble status, St Francis journeyed from Assisi to Gubbio. Passing by Valfabbrica, he encountered bandits who brutally attacked him, leaving him in a snowy ditch. Miraculously, he emerged singing, demonstrating his unwavering spirit and resilience. This event illustrates the importance of embracing life’s challenges and maintaining a joyful spirit in the face of adversity.


San Damiano

San Damiano is a crucial location for pilgrims walking the Via di Francesco, as it marks the beginning of St Francis’s spiritual journey. Here, he heard a voice from the crucifix that inspired him to rebuild the church and dedicate his life to serving the spiritual community. The site also became home to St. Clare and her followers, the Poor Clares, and was a place of miracles and significant moments in their lives. San Damiano serves as a symbol of embracing one’s calling and finding deeper meaning in life, reminding pilgrims of the power of faith and the impact they can have on the world around them.

Santa Maria degli Angeli

Santa Maria degli Angeli, located in Assisi, Italy, is a renowned pilgrimage site that celebrates St. Francis of Assisi’s life and teachings. The Porziuncola, its most significant element, served as St. Francis’ headquarters. In 1209, St. Francis founded the Order of the Franciscans there. Pope Innocenzo III granted St Francis a pardon for all who visited the Porziuncola chapel between the afternoon of August 1st and sunset on August 2nd. The basilica symbolizes simplicity, humility, and love for nature, embodying St. Francis’ enduring impact on cultural history.

Eremo della Carceri

Eremo delle Carceri, located 4 km above Assisi on the slopes of Monte Subasio, is a tranquil hermitage where St. Francis often sought solace for prayer and contemplation. It was here that he formed a deep connection with nature, embracing its serenity and beauty as a source of spiritual growth. As a place where St. Francis and his followers withdrew from the world, Eremo delle Carceri remains a testament to the profound impact of solitude and the natural environment on their spiritual journey.


Francis sells his father’s cloth

In Foligno, St. Francis made a bold decision to sell his father’s cloth and his horse to fund the restoration of San Damiano chapel, where he had a transformative spiritual experience. This pivotal moment in his life marked the beginning of his journey towards renouncing material possessions and embracing a life of devotion, selflessness, and service to a higher purpose.


Francis preaches to birds

Near Bevagna, St. Francis experienced a miraculous event where he preached to a diverse group of birds, who attentively listened and responded in unison. This powerful encounter reinforced his devotion to cultivating love, respect, and understanding among all living beings. Today, pilgrims can visit the location marked by a stone at Piandarca, following a path through the fields to a small kiosk commemorating the miracle. This site invites visitors to reflect on St. Francis’ teachings and the beauty of the natural world, celebrating his unique bond with all living beings.


Francis manuscripts

Spoleto’s cathedral holds a rare treasure: a manuscript authored by St. Francis himself. This artifact offers an intimate glimpse into his spiritual evolution, as he transitioned from pursuing knighthood to embracing a life of humble service. Pilgrims visiting Spoleto can connect with the saint’s transformative experiences, gaining deeper understanding and inspiration for their own spiritual journeys.


Sacred forest retreat

Monteluco’s sacred woods provide a tranquil haven where the Franciscan Hermitage stands, a place imbued with history as St. Francis received the chapel of St. Catherine in 1218. The hermitage encompasses the old oratory and the well, which legend says St. Francis miraculously filled with water. A pilgrimage to Monteluco offers a unique blend of nature and spirituality, where visitors can explore hermitages, caves, and churches, tracing the footsteps of St. Francis and other saints who sought solace in this mystical setting.


Lake visited by Francis

Piediluco is a delightful village deeply intertwined with St. Francis’s spiritual journey, where he often preached along the tranquil lakeside. The impressive Church of San Francesco stands as a monument to his visits, housing precious relics and captivating art. This peaceful sanctuary continues to inspire and uplift pilgrims from around the world.

Faggio San Francesco

Ancient tree protects Francis

Faggio San Francesco, a centuries-old European Beech tree, stands tall in Cepparo, Lazio, Italy. With its unique horizontal branches spiraling to form a natural canopy, the tree measures 12 meters in height and over 4 meters in girth. It holds great significance as it’s believed to have sheltered St. Francis from a storm, symbolizing the protective power of nature.

Poggio Bustone

Cave of visions

Experience the inspiring origins of St. Francis’ ministry at Poggio Bustone, home to the Franciscan convent and the Grotto of Revelation. In 1208, he received life-altering visions within the cave, setting him on his spiritual path. Explore this significant pilgrimage site and connect with its rich spiritual history.

La Foresta

Francis performs wine miracle

La Foresta, a serene sanctuary close to Rieti, offered St. Francis respite in 1225 during his struggle with health and the pressing crowds. It was at this tranquil location that the Miracle of the Wine unfolded, as St. Francis miraculously ensured a plentiful harvest and doubled the winepress yield, displaying his profound spiritual influence.



In the charming Italian town of Greccio, Rieti, lies the Hermitage of Greccio Sanctuary. Founded by St. Francis, this sacred site is famous for the world’s first nativity scene, which he organized in 1223. With breathtaking views of the Rieti Valley, Greccio’s sanctuary is a pilgrimage site that continues to inspire visitors.

Fonte Colombo

Fonte Colombo, nestled in the Rieti Valley, is a sanctuary deeply connected to St. Francis of Assisi. At Fonte Colombo, St. Francis sought solitude in the Sacro Speco, a hermit cave where he wrote the Franciscan order’s second rule alongside Brother Leo. Later, the sanctuary became known as “Franciscan Sinai” for its significance in the faith and the peaceful surroundings that foster reflection and connection.


Franciscan Order established

St. Francis embarked on an inspiring journey from Assisi to Rome in 1209, seeking Pope Innocent III’s blessing for his Franciscan order. Today, Rome is home to beautiful churches celebrating his life and impact, such as the Basilica of St John Lateran and San Francesco d’Assisi a Ripa. Be moved by the deep connection between St. Francis and Rome while visiting these sacred sites, like San Francesco d’Assisi a Monte Mario, where he first beheld the city and fell to his knees in prayer.