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Vigne di Donoratico

Cycling the poetic paths of Donoratico coast

Romance along the Etruscan Coast

Point of departure/arrival: Donoratico
Distance: 46km
Elevation gain: 200m
Road surface: asphalt
Activity level: Moderate – Easy
Note: A wonderfully scenic itinerary that encompasses all the characteristics of the Costa degli Etruschi in just a few kilometres. The most challenging stretch is the road between Bibbona and Bolgheri, where the rises and falls are quite marked in some points.

Depart from the square in front of Donoratico railway station on the Old Aurelia (SP39) in the direction of San Vincenzo. After 1.6km, turn left onto the “Accattapane” (SP16). Ride for about 4km up a gentle incline through vineyards beneath the hill of the Donoratico Tower, the village of Castagneto is visible ahead, as far as the intersection with SP329 (wide bend), where your turn left downhill. After about 300m, near Zi Martino hotel/restaurant (5.9km), turn right towards Bolgheri on SP16 alternate. After about 1km, leave the main road and turn right, following the signs for the Le Pianacce camping site. A little further on you will see a cross – do not go past, but take the little road (Via di Lamentano, the old Bolgheri road) on the left and continue for about 2km to an intersection (just before it becomes a dirt road). Turn left downhill to join “Via Bolgheresi” (SP16) and go right.

Ride along one of the most beautiful roads in the area through centuries-old oaks, famous vineyards (Sassicaia) and olive groves as far as the turn off for the famous Bolgheri cypress avenue (15.9km). Turn right here and ride uphill to Bolgheri where the road goes around the little village. Back on the cypress avenue, take the right turn for Bibbona after 500m. Continue up and down for about 5km through vineyards and olive groves as far as an intersection (23.5km) near an oil mill and sports field. Turn left downhill if you wish to visit the centre of Bibbona, while the itinerary carries straight on, still downhill, taking the Campiglia Road in the direction of the coast for 4.5km to join the Old Aurelia (SP39), where you turn left towards Grosseto. At San Guido (29.2km), turn left and go back up the cypress avenue as far as the turn off on the right for Castagneto Carducci (33.3km) and follow “Via Bolgheresi” again.

From here you can go back to Donoratico following Via Bolgheresi to the end (Zi Martino hotel) and then turning right for Donoratico, but we recommend you take the minor roads through the Castagneto countryside. At the intersection at 7.6km on SP16 (40.2km, sand coloured house and bus stop on the right), turn right downhill on the secondary road. After little more than 1km, turn left – from here there is a beautiful view of Castagneto Carducci and the Donoratico Tower. After 600m there is another turn off, go right past the Fornacelle farm. At the next intersection, go right again and immediately left onto a small road that leads to SP329 where you go right to join the Old Aurelia (SP39) near Il Bambolo hotel. Turn left here and continue onto Donoratico and the station square (46km).