Italy North to South: Along the Apennines (Part One!)

From Cinque Terre to the Gran Sasso

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: TBA  
Length: 13 days
Arrive: Levanto, Italy
Depart: Rome, Italy
Lodging: 10 nights hotels, 2 nights alpine lodge with private rooms and baths
Meals: All meals included except 1 dinner
Activity: Cultural Adventures, Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level: 11 hiking days on moderate to steep trails, 3-8 hours a day, altitudes on average between 4,000-7,000 feet, van support (for luggage or tired feet), team of up to 3 Trip Leaders
4p

Highlights

  • Hike the Apennines along the spine of Italy and through three national parks
  • Walk along an old Roman road and through the famous Carrara marble quarries
  • Experience the culture and cuisine of six different regions of Italy—Liguria, Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Umbria, Lazio, and Abruzzo!
  • Sip robust Barbera wine, taste hearty delicacies from Abruzzo
  • Explore Fiesole, in the hills above Florence, and Settignano, home of many Renaissance artists and sculptors
  • Overnights in wonderful hotels and a historic mountain lodge

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.

References

We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Join us for our newest creation in Italy—a hiker’s journey along the Apennines, a long sweeping chain of mountains that form the spine of the Italian Peninsula. Our adventure—Part I of a fantastic journey from Liguria to Rome (Part II will bring us all the way to Calabria)—is the happy invention of veteran WT Trip Leader Gianluca Canalicchio, who never tires of exploring his native country and sharing its delights with our travelers. Our hikes begin at the edge of the sea in the famed Cinque Terre, and bring us up into verdant mountains, through three national parks, and six different regions of Italy—each with their own distinctive cuisines and wines! We’ll hike along old Roman roads, through the famed marble quarries of Carrara, and on forested trails leading to summits with glorious views. A special treat is a stay at a historic mountain lodge set atop an eerily beautiful plateau in the Gran Sasso Massif, our gateway for hikes to the highest peaks of the Apennines. Along the way, we experience villages and towns that for centuries have been the keepers of local traditions. Amatrice, home of the renowned spaghetti all’Amatriciana; historic Fiesole and Settignano, set in the olive-covered hills above Florence; Norcia, the ideal Umbrian setting for hikes in the Sibillini Mountains—they’re all on this magnificent hiker’s adventure!

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-3
Ligurian Coast / Apuan Alps

From the enchanting beach resort town of Levanto, set just north of Italy’s celebrated Cinque Terre, we head to the mountains and follow an undulating trail paralleling the coast that brings us among the highest peaks of the Ligurian Mountains. In the Apuan Alps, our trails lead through the extensive network of ancient quarries where pure white Carrara marble has been excavated for thousands of years.

Days 4-5
Emilia-Romagna / Monte La Nuda / Pietra di Bismantova

Parco Nazionale Apennino Tosco-Emiliano is an extraordinary environment of grasslands, lakes, waterfalls, and steep summits—an amazing setting for our hikes. Starting right from our hotel, we head to the summit of Monte La Nuda (6,217’), set on the border of Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany. On a clear day, we can see as far as the Ligurian Sea! After a hike to Passo Pradarena (5,180’), we head to Castelnovo né Monti, a charming town set below the massive Pietra di Bismantova, an incredible flat-topped mesa that dominates the surrounding area. An optional hike brings us to its summit (3,435’).

Days 6-7
Flaminia Militare / Fiesole, Tuscany

For the next two days, we hike a section of the Sentiero degli Dei (“Paths of the Gods”) that connects Bologna to Florence on a long-distance trail of some 75 miles. The trail, built by the consul Flaminius in 197 BC, is called the “Flaminia Militare” and features original Roman paving stones in some places, as well as the remains of trenches and bunkers dating from the fierce fighting that took place here during World War II. On Day 7, we overnight in Fiesole, a town of Etruscan origins set in the hills above the magnificent city of Florence.

Days 8-10
Settignano / Norcia, Umbria / Sibillini Mountains

A wonderful hike leads to Settignano, once home to many artists, sculptors, and stonecutters, including Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci. After discovering the town’s stone-paved walkways and old villas, we head to Norcia, in Umbria, the “green heart” of Italy. Our hikes in Parco Nazionale dei Monti Sibillini bring us steeply to the summit of Monte Patino (6,178’) and onto the slopes of Monte Vettore (8,123’). On Day 10, we overnight in Amatrice, in the Lazio region, where no doubt we will dine on its namesake dish—spaghetti all’Amatriciana!

Days 11-13
Lake Campotosto / Campo Imperatore

Our hike in Parco Nazionale Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga brings us to Campotosto (4,659’), set near a lake that’s a nature reserve for migratory birds. We then head to Campo Imperatore, a beautiful, high-altitude grassland plateau in the Gran Sasso massif. We follow a trail that traverses the steep rugged limestone slopes of Corno Grande (9,554’) and Corno Piccolo (9,482’), the highest peaks of the Gran Sasso. Overnights are at a mountain rifugio that offers a spectacular setting, great food, and warm, welcoming service. Depart on Day 13 via Rome.

What the Trip is Like

This trip is rated Level 4+, Moderate to Strenuous. Most hiking is on average between 4,000 and 7,000 feet. However, at times we hike at higher elevations, as on Day 12 on the Campo Imperatore, but altitude is not usually a problem for people on this trip. Our trails vary from well groomed paths to those that are narrow and rocky, with some exposure at times. There is a good bit of up-and-down hiking during the 3-8 hours on the trail each day, so we recommend you make a special effort to get in top physical shape for the trip. Of course, you are always free to skip a day’s hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle.

Getting in Shape
We strongly urge you to “train up” for your trip. The best training for hiking is to hike, especially over hills or rough terrain. Next best are running, swimming, bicycling, or other sports exercise (stair-climbing machines are excellent preparation for hiking uphill). It’s important to take time to build up muscle and endurance prior to your trip. Try to incorporate exercise into your daily schedule at least a couple of months before departure. Your feet should also be well prepared—make sure your hiking boots are sturdy and thoroughly broken-in.

Explanation of Trip Levels

 

Departures

2017
Jul 2017

Trip Cost

Prices for this trip are being finalized. Contact us and we'll send them to you as soon as they are available. more on pricing

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $500
120 days prior to departure: 20% of trip cost
60 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule

More than 90 days prior to departure: No charge!
90-46 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of at least two Wilderness Travel Trip Leaders (and often three, depending on group size)
  • Accommodations in hotels and two nights in a mountain lodge
  • All meals included except 1 dinner
  • A glass of wine or beer with dinner
  • Cable cars and funiculars required to reach trailheads and overnight destinations
  • Transfers to Rome airport or train station at designated times at the conclusion of the trip

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare; transport to Levanto on Day 1; any meals not specified after each itinerary day in the Full Trip Brochure; airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff; additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors; pre-trip expense of medical immunizations (if any); travel insurance or passports; and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Arrival & Departure Information

You are responsible for your own transportation to the arrival and from the departure cities listed below. For more detailed information, including transfers, please call our office at 1-800-368-2794.

Please do not purchase your tickets until you are confirmed on the trip. Once your tickets have been purchased, please send us a copy of your airline schedule.

2017 Departures

Meeting Place:
Levanto, Italy

Suggested Arrival Airport:
Levanto, Italy (airport code: OLB)
Departure:
Rome, Italy

Suggested Airport for Departure:
Rome, Italy (airport code: OLB )
Suggested departure time: 1:00 pm or later

Our Trip Leaders

Here are the Trip Leaders scheduled for this journey (please note that leader assignments are subject to change).

Gianluca Canalicchio

Departure Dates:

Gianluca Canalicchio was born and raised in Rome, where his parents moved in 1960 from Umbria, when they left their life of hard work on their farm in search of new opportunities. He has a degree in accounting, speaks four languages (Italian, Spanish, French, and English), and loves dancing, ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

Giuseppe DiGiorgio

Departure Dates:

With a PhD in Agriculture and a green thumb for cultivating organic vegetables—a skill passed down from his grandfather—Giuseppe Di Giorgio applies the farm-to-table concept to his guided trips. “I love to show my Wilderness Travel guests Italy’s biodiversity from the ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips

JoAnn Lantz

Departure Dates:

From hiking the scenic peak of Monte Solare in Capri and staying at the picturesque Lagazuoi lodge in the beautiful Dolomites to ice-breaking (and often hilarious) karaoke nights in Naples, Trip Leader JoAnn Lantz manages to weave together unforgettable highlights from our group adventures and ...
Click here for a full bio and list of all upcoming trips