What is the Via di Francesco
Florence to Rome

Pilgrimage Through the Heart of Italy

The Via di Francesco invites pilgrims on a trail of self-discovery and cultural immersion. Walk from Florence to Rome in the footsteps of Italy’s patron saint – Saint Francis.

What is the Via di Francesco?

Walking the Via di Francesco is a transformative experience, taking you through rolling hills, lush countryside, and charming villages. 

The Via di Francesco is a scenic trail from Florence to Rome stitched together by a series of ancient and modern trails through the lands and places loved by St Francis of Assisi.

You’ll follow in the footsteps of Saint Francis himself, discovering the places where he lived, walked, and connected with nature. Along the way, you’ll immerse yourself in Italian culture, savoring local cuisine, and meeting friendly locals.

Why Walk the Via di Francesco

You’ve been called to walk. Since ancient times, pilgrimage trails have called the hearts of those ready for self-discovery and transformation. While the Via di Francesco walks with the Spirit of St Francis, the journey is a spiritual and personal one. It is non-religious, and open to all.


The Via di Francesco climbs up and down the spine of the Apennine mountain range through central Italy. The rugged mountain trails can challenge pilgrims. This is an invitation to take it slow and become present with the surrounding landscape.

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Via di Francesco Sections

The Via di Francesco is divided into 4 unique sections, comprising 30 – 35 daily stages.

Each section is managed by independent regional organizations. This website focuses on the six Tuscan stages, Florence to La Verna. To explore the other sections of the trail, click for the links below.

Florence to La Verna

Highlights: Florence, Casentinesi Forests National Park, Santuario della Verna

From your first stamp at Santa Croce in Florence to the serene forests of Casentino National Park, each step of Tuscan stages offers a new adventure and a deeper connection to your self and nature. At the Santuario della Verna, you’ll stand amongst Saint Francis’ favorite sites, feeling the sacredness of the pilgrimage.

La Verna to Assisi

Highlights: Gubbio, Assisi, Basilica of San Francesco d’Assisi

As you approach closer to the St Francis’ home city of Assisi, you’ll be treated to walks through lush olive groves and medieval towns. The beauty of Gubbio will strike you with awe and heighten your anticipation for Assisi. You may share a sense of homecoming as you arrive at Umbria’s crown jewel. This section is also known as the “Northern Route” by some guidebooks.

Assisi to Rieti

Highlights: Santa Maria Assunta, Cascata della Marmore, Faggio San Francesco

Hike along mountainsides trails through a sequence of medieval hillside towns. This section will inspire you with nature, including a 1,000-year-old tree said to be blessed by St Francis and the Cascata della Marmore waterfall. End the section at Rieti, the largest town between Florence and Rome.

Rieti to Rome

Highlights: Rome, Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican

The final 100 km of the Via di Francesco leads pilgrims into the Tiber Valley and to the waiting arms of Rome. Walk through flat trail and historic towns to the penultimate Saint Peter’s Basilica at the trail’s end.

St Francis and Pilgrims

St Francis is renowned for his love of nature – which he found in the forests and mountains of the first six stages.

“Even if you don’t believe in God, you can believe in St Francis. This is the walk of St Francis. A friend of peace, of nature, and of men.” – Luca Piantini, President of Via di Francesco Firenze – La Verna

Read more about St Francis.