Distance: 24.7 km
Pontremoli, where the journey begins, invites us to admire its nooks and crannies and immerse ourselves in the history of the Lunigiana. The castle of Piagnaro, where the Stele Statue Museum is to be found, looms over the whole city and a magnificent panorama of the valley. The museum has a collection of famous anthropomorphic sandstone statues, which are shrouded in mystery.
In the church of San Pietro you will find the labyrinth of San Pietro, which attracts hundreds of pilgrims, including those on the Via Francigena.
We climb towards the village of Arzengio, an ancient Byzantine fortress, which even today preserves a portion of its original layout. Then we come to Ceretoli, which was most likely founded by the Lombards. Soon after that we reach the church of Dobbiana, which holds images and representations of the Volto Santo.
Once past Serravalle, the road starts to climb and gifts us a beautiful panorama: the river Magra extends before us, cupped in the valley. We approach Rocca Sigillina, the sometime stronghold of the Malaspina family, dominated by the ruins of a castle; then we are at Lusignana, where a museum of peasant life preserves relics of an everyday life that is now no more. From mule tracks, gravel paths and chestnut woods, we gaze over a landscape stippled with little villages.
One of these is Bagnone, where we are welcomed by the beauty of its old centre, its churches and its civic theatre.