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Via dei Monti or de Pontremolo

The ancient medieval route which connected Levanto and Pontremoli, in Lunigiana

Via dei Monti, or Via de Pontremolo, is a historic road which connected the canal port of Levanto, in Liguria, and the thriving town of Pontremoli, crossing Vara Valley and Zeri Valleys. The itinerary allowed the transport of goods that landed at Levanto Port to the crossroads of Pontremoli to continue along the Via Francigena towards Po Valley or Tuscany.

The recovery of the route, already subject of studies and insights by Prof. Tiziano Mannoni, is absolutely recent. Only starting from 2020, the recovery and valorization of the stretch of Via dei Monti from Riviera di Levante to the Vara Velley began, to be officially inaugurated in June 2023.

The entire itinerary, which extends between Liguria and Tuscany for 57 km, even touching the Alta Via dei Monti Liguri, is now completely accessible and signposted in both directions. The explanatory panels, with points of historical, artistic and cultural interest, and numerous trail signs accompany the hiker.

Via dei Monti in Lunigiana

Cavezzana Gordana - Via dei Monti
Cavezzana Gordana - Via dei Monti - Credit: Via dei Monti

The suggested itinerary, starting in Pontremoli and arriving in Castoglio, allows you to experience the rural reality characterized by a continuous alternation of woods, villages and pastures and immerse yourself in a journey through time, from the Middle Ages to today, among landscapes, knowledge and authentic flavors, in a territory where ancient traditions, linked to agriculture and livestock, fight every day against the unstoppable phenomenon of depopulation.

The starting point is the Church of San Pietro in Pontremoli, that can be reached by car taking the Pontremoli motorway exit, or easily reachable on foot from the Pontremoli train station. From the Church, you cross the historic center, the Magra river and the Verde river, near the Imoborgo tower and the Casotto Bridge, witnesses of a flourishing medieval past.

Leaving the town, the route continues slightly uphill along Gordana Stream, which just beyond gives origin to the canyon of the Giaredo Straits, and then reaches the medieval villages of Cavezzana Gordana and Torrano.

Continuing uphill through centuries-old woods and chestnut groves, the route reaches the territory of the Municipality of Zeri, touching the Pradalinara Pass, a panoramic ridge between Rossano Valley and Zeri Valley, with large pastures for flocks. The itinerary goes down to Rossano Valley, first to Piagna, then to Castoglio, both fascinating examples of rural villages with traces of ancient castles.

Instead, for any luggage transport or return to Pontremoli, it is possible to rely on private taxis.

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