Between Firenze and Fiesole: the World circuit
A short route but with some challenging inclines. More experienced cyclists will also be able to tackle it several times, remembering that the athletes of the World Championships rode along it 11 times, for a total of 182.6 kilometers!
The starting point of the world circuit is in the area of Campo di Marte, which for Florence is the temple of sports, in fact we are located between the Municipal Stadium "Artemio Franchi" - the stadium of the soccerv team Fiorentina - and the sports palace "Nelson Mandela Forum".
Passing initially through residential areas of the city, the route continues to Piazza Edison, then climbs in the direction of Fiesole.
The road, which winds gently uphill, among gentle bends, surrounded by villas and glimpses toward the city and the surrounding hills, leads to the area of San Domenico. Here stands an important fifteenth-century convent that preserves, among many others, some works by Beato Angelico.
After other bends, with views of Florence and a final gradient of 7%, we finally reach Fiesole. We are in a beautiful town of Etruscan-Roman origins, located 294 meters above sea level.
In Fiesole you can stop to learn about testimonies of the past, from the Roman Amphitheater and the archaeological area to the Convent of St. Francis, or enjoy the slow rhythm of the present.
Continuing along our itinerary, we take the road behind the archaeological area, in the direction of Pian del Mugnone; before leaving the town, it is possible to see a section of the ancient Etruscan walls. The road path then descends quite steeply, surrounded by the typical Tuscan landscape.
The valley floor of the Mugnone stream is squeezed between the surrounding hills; the point of junction is Ponte alla Badia, from which two steep climbs branch off; to the left, the road climbs toward the striking Badia Fiesolana, a church with a Romanesque façade and an outpost of a complex that houses the European University Institute.
The other side, however, the one you will travel, sees the tough climb of Via Salviati, with a gradient of up to 20 percent that skirts the imposing turreted bulk of Villa Salviati, home of the European Union Archives.
At the end of the challenging climb, you merge onto via Bolognese and head downhill among villas and glimpses of Florence to the Ponte Rosso area.
We are now in the vicinity of piazza della Libertà, dominated by the triumphal arch in honor of Francis of Lorraine and the ancient Porta a San Gallo. From here we take the direction of Piazza delle Cure, from which we follow Viale dei Mille, a 1.5-kilometer-long straight road, back to our starting point.