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Fifth Stage in Lunigiana

From Terrarossa to Ponzano Superiore

From the Castle of Terrarossa, in the Comune di Licciana Nardi, the Via Francigena continues south, towards the town of Aulla.

The route winds through the ‘Greenway’ , a cycling and pedestrian path built on the site of the old railway. Once in Aulla, the Abbazia di San Caprasio, a very important place of worship from a historical point of view, is well worth a visit. Here pilgrims can find food and hospitality.

Leaving the old city centre of Aulla which was completely destroyed by the bombings of the Second World War behind you, we continue for a short stretch on the Cisa state road and then turn left after crossing the bridge over the River Aullella , towards the villages of Bibola and Vecchietto. After a short stretch on the paved road, the route continues up a steep path that leads to Case Burcione and then again uphill until you reach Bibola, a splendid example of a Lunigiana arched village.

Paths of Lunigiana: from Bibola to Ponzano Superiore

From the village of Bibola, which is still today dominated by the ruins of the ancient castle, continue downhill along a dirt road until you reach the hamlet of Vecchietto, a typical rural village. After crossing the village, you start climbing again up a path that gradually becomes narrower. The landscape, first characterized by well-cared for terraces and olive groves, is then dominated by a typical Lunigiana wood full of different types of trees. The path which is steep and rocky in some places, gradually becomes easier to face near the ‘Quattro Strade’, a road junction at the foot of Monte Grosso.

From here the Francigena route continues south towards Ponzano Superiore, first on a beaten dirt road and then on a narrower path. Once you reach Ponzano Superiore, a typical Ligurian village which still has its original medieval urban structure, the path turns left (obviously signposted) among cultivated fields and country houses.

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