One could say that a trip round the world starts with a single step. For four editions now Slow Travel Fest has been renewing its invitation to take the first step to discover the beauty of the places along the section of the Via Francigena that travels through Tuscany.
As well as the main event, on 21 and 23 September at Monteriggioni (Siena), hikers and walkers also meet from 14 to 16 September at Camaiore (Lucca), a town that is part of the circuit for the first time.
For this occasion, the town in Versilia is turning into a small capital for climbing, mountaineering and outdoor pursuits.
A much-liked destination for fans of rock climbing because of its natural climbing walls, it can be considered a base for itineraries throughout the Apuan Alps. This year too, great sportspeople of the field will take part, such as Rolando Larcher, Maurizio Oviglia and Maurizio Zanolla.
At Monteriggioni the theme is Walks & Talks. Trekking, mountain biking and many other activities feature, encouraging visitors to try different avenues. Art, music and cultural happenings also play their part.
Indeed the event opens with the Decameron told and sung by David Riondino in the ancient cloister of Abbadia Isola, a perfect setting to narrate Boccaccio's stories.
The biodiversity of Montagnola Senese also makes it possible to explore caves, such as the one of Buca dei Frati, while the blue pools of the Parco Fluviale dell'Alta Valdesa are perfect for thrilling descents by raft.
The programme also includes a leisurely cycling event to explore the ancient railway line between Colle Val d'Elsa and Poggibonsi.
Not only trekking, but also rafting, cycling and caving, as in the Buca dei Frati cave, in Montagnola Senese
Another new feature of Slow Travel Fest 2018 are the orienteering sessions so that visitors can get immersed in the splendid woods of the area and learn how to manage in them. For those who would prefer a more relaxing and meditative approach to nature can try various types of yoga and experience Forest bathing, a Japanese practice that helps increase wellbeing through movement, breathing and sensory exercises. Any excuse to get going.
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