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Motociclisti sull'Amiata

Monte Amiata on motorcycle

The towns of Monte Amiata

What roads offers the best view of Monte Amiata if not the one that goes all the way around it? This loop allows you to reach the highest point accessible by road: steep roads and postcard views are important to this itinerary, but food and lovely small towns are also a key ingredient.

From/To: Arcidosso round trip
Distance: 55km
Time: 1 day
Type of Road: mountain
Province: Grosseto and Siena

Set your gps: Arcidosso, Castel del Piano, Prato delle Macinaie, Vetta Amiata, Abbadia San Salvatore, Piancastagnaio, Pietralunga, Santa Fiora, Arcidosso

Starting at Arcidosso, which is famous for its chestnut festival, we enjoy some real mountain roads with forests and steep slopes that are home to great skiing in the winter. The northern side of Monte Amiata, which we reach after Arcidosso, is the most photogenic one.

Along SP160, you'll come to small walled town: Montelaterone, which is 4 km away. If you are at all romantically inclined go and see the kissing alley. Castel del Piano is known for its folklore, with its Palio that sets neighborhoods against each other on September 8 in the lovely center of town.

The road then goes off to the right curving around in the woods. SP37 was once famous for its uphill race; for stories of it ask Enrico, a die-hard biker and manager of the Hotel Le Macinaie. The winding roads here lead to the Prato delle Macinaie - the forests are sublime.

We're heading towards the top now, so follow the Prato della Contessa with its turn to the left and after five minutes you will have reached the top. Heading back to the main road, which is now called SP81, the curves run through a natural wonder that smells like stories and fables: this road is amazing in autumn! Too bad the road is worn down in areas because of the cold winters. Be careful.

A natural tunnel precedes Abbadia San Salvatore, which welcomes us with its medieval roads and Abbey: its crypt is breathtaking. From SP81 to SP18, the road doesn't change - beautiful and flowing. We head down to 772 meters asl at Piancastagnaio. And the kickstand goes down: a walk in the shade of Rocca Aldobrandesca justifies the break. You can also visit old mercury mines.

The loop goes on: the roads to the right take us to the top while those to the left leave the area. Head towards Tre Case, then Saragiolo and Santa Fiora on the SP6. There's a wonderful peach orchard and park here. Going onwards you will encounter Bragnore before heading back to Arcidosso. Don't miss the Castle Museum.

Info web: www.provincia.grosseto.it, www.provincia.siena.it, www.parcoamiata.com

Take a look at the map.

By Motorbike