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Argentario: the Lower Albenga Valley by bike

A stunning route along the Costa d’Argento

First Stage
Along the Lagoon
Orbetello lagoon
Orbetello lagoon - Credit: TPT

From Orbetello turn onto the cycle route near the Hospital and head in the direction of Orbetello Scalo. From here you continue until a roundabout, where you take the only exit onto the old Via Aurelia until a nearby crossroads, where you turn right onto the Strada di Camerette. This little asphalt road follows the railway line and after two kilometres arrives at a closed gate, from which point it is accessible only to cyclists and pedestrians.

Continue along the Orbetello Lagoon until you reach the end of the road (another gate) and come to another junction (8km): continue to the right (to the left there is a railway bridge) and, immediately afterwards, follow signs for Ansedonia and the Cosa archaeological ruins. Continue uphill until the end of the promontory (10.9), and after a road to the left (which leads to Cosa), head downhill for 1.1km until a junction (12), where you should continue straight on (right takes you to Ansedonia Mare, left to Aurelia) towards Capalbio Scalo on the S.P.68.

Second Stage
The World Wildlife Fund Nature Reserve of Lake Burano
Burano nature reserve, Capalbio
Burano nature reserve, Capalbio

After around 2.4km you will reach the entrance to the WWF Oasis of Burano (19.2), an ideal stop for nature lovers and birdwatchers. The route continues, without presenting much difficulty, along the side of the lake. At a junction (25.8) the road bends to the left and goes under the railway line, towards Chiarone and S.S. 1 Aurelia. After the underpass, keep left in the direction of Aurelia and Pescia Fiorentina, before arriving in Chiarone Scalo.

Third Stage
The Tarot Garden
Tarot garden
Tarot garden - Credit: Alessandro Bonvini

After this small town, which has a train station, turn right near two large pine trees (26.7), heading towards Aurelia on the S.P. 75. After 3.5km you will pass under the 4-lane S.S. 1 Aurelia road, and continue towards Pescia Fiorentina. At the next junction (31.2) turn left on the S.P. 93 "Pedemontana" road towards Carige. Almost as soon as you turn onto this road you will be able to see the Giardino dei Tarocchi, which is well worth a visit.

The Pedemontana road winds through cork oak trees and crosses the beautiful Maremma area, stippled with olive groves, vineyards, arable fields and farmhouses. At the end of Borgo Carige (35.9) leave the Pedemontana road and turn right onto the S.P. 63, heading towards Capalbio. After around 2km the road leaves open countryside and enters an oak forest, before climbing towards Capalbio (41).

Fourth Stage
Grosseto's Walled Towns
Contryside around Magliano in Toscana
Contryside around Magliano in Toscana - Credit: TPT

After a possible diversion through the town, continue downhill on the S.P. 63, which turns left towards Marsiliana, Albinia and Magliano. After an initial downhill section, the road continues to undulate before a flat section takes you to Borgo Marsiliana (55). From here, continue to Manciano on the S.R. 74 for around 400m until you reach a junction on the left for Magliano in Toscana. Take the S.P. 94 ‘Sant'Andrea’ road, which will soon carry you past the Albegna river.

Continue on the S.P. 94 with a slight climb up to Fosso Patrignone. After around 7km you can take a short detour to see the ruins of the church of San Bruzio. A couple of kilometres later you will come to a T-junction with the S.P. 160, where you should turn right for Magliano in Toscana, which you will get to after around 1km (65.6). After the historic centre you will be back on the S.P. 160, heading towards Albinia. The road is mostly downhill until the bridge over the river Albegna (78), and shortly after that you will cross the S.R. 74. Follow signs for La Parrina on the S.P. 128.

Once past the junction that goes to the farm of La Parrina, continue until Quattrostrade (82.4). Around 50 metres before the S.S. 1 Aurelia road, turn left onto a side road, the "Via vicinale dei Poggi", following signs for "Maneggio - Passeggiate a cavallo (Il Barbazzale)". After 500m, at a T-junction, turn right along the same road. After 1.4km along a dirt track, the road becomes asphalt once more until the S.S.1 Aurelia road (85.5). Here, turn left (direction Rome). For 500 metres watch out for the traffic, and then take the exit for Orbetello. Once in Orbetello Scalo, follow signs for the hospital, and at the roundabout take the bike path which will lead you to Orbetello (89).

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