Overview for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to Acquapendente
The Southern Tuscany section of Via Francigena starts in the medieval town of Siena, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its imposing walls, narrow cobblestone streets and magnificent palaces. The route will take you through the most beautiful Tuscan countryside, dotted with wonderfully preserved hilltop villages such as Montalcino (where the world-renowned Brunello red wine is produced); San Quirico with its Horti Leonini, a perfect example of an Italian garden, and Vignoni Alto, a tiny hamlet with a beautiful castle. Rolling hills, cypress-lined back roads and the Crete Senesi (the area south of Siena where grey crags give an impression of a lunar landscape) will be the background for your walks, making this trip an unforgettable experience.
- The spectacular landscapes of the Southern Tuscany countryside
- The medieval city of Siena
- The hilltop villages of Castiglione d’Orcia, San Quirico d’Orcia and Radicofani
- Delicious Tuscan culinary specialities
Itinerary for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
Day 1: Arrive Siena
Your journey will start in Siena, one of the most beautiful towns along the Francigena, famous for its palio: you will be able to spend the day walking through its paved streets, looking for coats-of-arms on the walls of the contradas, or climbing the Torre del Mangia to enjoy a unique view over the roofs of the town; not to be missed is a visit of the Duomo (cathedral), which will impress you with its amazing black and white columns. In the evening you can sit down at a table in Piazza del Campo to enjoy a plate of pici all’aglione for dinner, admiring the illuminated Palazzo Pubblico.
- Overnight in Siena (Hotel Chiusarrelli or similar)
Day 2: Siena to Lucignano d’Arbia
After breakfast, you start your wonderful Via Francigena trip along the astonishing Tuscan countryside. Walking alongside cultivated meadows, with its colours changing from the greens and yellows of spring and summer to okras of Autumn, you will pass through the medieval village of Cuna, just a few hundred meters before entering the town of Monteroni d’Arbia, with its famous watermill. The last part of the walk leads you to the fortified hamlet of Lucignano d’Arbia, along its characteristic cypress tree-lined entrance.
- Walking for the day: 21 km, 7 hrs ↑307 m ↓467 m
- Overnight in Lucignano d’Arbia (Hotel Borgo Antico or similar)
Day 3: Lucignano d’Arbia to Buonconvento
Today’s walk is through a series of rolling hills and wheat-cultivated meadows in the heart of the “Crete Senesi”, a clay area that never ceases to amaze the passerby, with the distinctive grey-coloured soil that makes it look like you’re on the moon. Your destination for today is the walled town of Buonconvento, rightly considered one of the most beautiful villages in Italy.
- Walking for the day: 14 km, 5 hrs ↑259 m ↓293 m
- Overnight in Buonconvento (Hotel Ghibellino or similar)
Day 4: Buonconvento to San Quirico d’Orcia
Today your journey will take you towards San Quirico, over dirt roads and some asphalted ones: these, however, will be compensated by the beautiful views of the Val D’Orcia, among hills tinted with charming shades and scattered with vineyards and cypress trees. In San Quirico you will stand enchanted before the gate of the Collegiata, trying to recognize the various architectural styles that blend into its decorations, before enjoying a rest among the green hedges of the Horti Leonini, a fifteenth-century garden.
- Walking for the day: 22 km, 7 hrs ↑500 m ↓400 m
- Overnight in San Quirico d’Orcia (Affittacamere L’Orcia or similar)
Day 5: San Quirico d’Orcia to Castiglione
You will continue your journey across the fabulous landscapes of the Val D’Orcia: just beyond San Quirico you will enter a timeless world visiting Vignoni Alto, and you will be able to enjoy a reinvigorating rest in the thermal waters of Bagno Vignoni, with its pool in the middle of the main square. The other pearl of the day is Castiglione, in the heart of the Val d’Orcia, which you will pass close by as you travel across one of the most beautiful panoramic sections of the whole Via Francigena.
- Walking for the day: 9 km, 4 hrs ↑200 m ↓300 m
- Overnight in Castiglione (B&B Il Vecchietta or similar)
Day 6: Castiglione d’Orcia to Radicofani
Today you will test your strength with a demanding section of your journey which will take you as far as Radicofani, but you will enjoy the opportunity of seeing the magnificent view from the Radicofani fortress. You will also be able to visit the Pieve di San Pietro, a little jewel dating back to the thirteenth century, and take an evening walk in its old town centre, admiring the magic of the illuminated Fortress.
- Walking for the day: 21 km, 7 hrs ↑900 m ↓300 m
- Overnight in Radicofani (Agriturismo La Selvella or similar)
Day 7: Radicofani to Acquapendente
The longest walk of your trip is also one of the most rewarding, thanks to the astonishing panorama you will be offered. A short car transfer will lead to the main square of Radicofani: the imposing Rocca (the castle) is dominating the entire valley, giving a view stretching out for kilometres over the Tuscan hills and Monta Amiata. Walk along the old consular road Via Cassia until you reach the final stage of the trip in Acquapendente (you will have a short transfer from Centeno to Ponte Gregoriano to avoid a section with car traffic).
- Walking for the day: 31 km, 12 hrs ↑516 m ↓972 m or shorter option: 25 km, 10 hrs
- Overnight in Acquapendente (Albergo Toscana or similar)
Day 8: Departure
Departure on your own or extra nights upon request.
Hotels for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
Accommodation is in selected 3-star hotels in towns, agriturismi* and inns in the villages and the countryside. All rooms have en-suite facilities. All places have been carefully hand-picked by us and their quality is regularly monitored. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour. Some hotels have a swimming pool and indoor restaurants.
Sample hotels: Hotel Chiusarrelli, Hotel Borgo Antico, Hotel Ghibellino, Affittacamere l’Orcia, B&B Il Vecchietta, Agriturismo La Selvella, Albergo Toscana
*What is an agriturismo? A combination of the words for “agriculture” and “tourism” in Italian — It is a farm-stay, but it’s also much, much more. Typically, an agriturismo is an independently-owned farm that the owners have decided to use partially for accommodation purposes, in a way similar to English or American bed and breakfasts. One of the best parts of staying in a traditional agriturismo? The food. An Italian agriturismo will usually serve guests food that was prepared from raw materials – vegetables, fruit, eggs, meat, and often wine and olive oil – produced on the farm or from other local merchants.
Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.
Breakfast is included every day, as well as one dinner (Day 6). Packed lunches can be pre-ordered at the accommodations or you can buy products from local shops. For dinner, you will usually have plenty of options at the villages you are staying in. Throughout the trip, there are plenty of opportunities to taste both the great local food and a wide array of prestigious wines of the region.
Travel for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
The best way of getting to Siena is by flying to Florence or Pisa Airport.
Transfers from/to the airports
Arrival in Siena
From Pisa Airport (PSA), you can take a bus, a taxi or a train to Pisa Centrale Train Station, then take the train to Siena. There are many daily trains from Pisa to Siena (always with a change in Empoli) and the ride takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes. Price is about 10.50 EUR per person, one way.
From Florence Airport (FLR), there are many direct trains from Florence Santa Maria Novella Train Station (reachable by bus or taxi from the airport) that take from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours. Price is about 9,00 EUR per person, one way.
A faster way to get from Florence is Siena is by bus, trip lasts 1 hour and 15 minutes (www.sitabus.it). Price is about 7,00 EUR per person, one way.
Departure from Acquapendente
The closest train station to Acquapendente is Orvieto, about 30 km away. There are 2 buses running from Acquapendente (check www.cotralspa.it) from Monday to Saturday, trip takes 1 hour and price for a one way ticket is about 2,80 EUR.
There are no buses running on Sundays, so you have to take a taxi to reach Orvieto.
- Train timetables are available on www.trenitalia.com
- Bus timetables on www.busfox.com/timetable (Florence-Siena)
Hotel to hotel luggage transfer is included on all walking days.
Language: Italian. In big cities and resorts, many people speak English, but in remote areas, this might not be the case. However, most of the hotel personnel where we stay speak English and are ready to help you. You can always call our 24/7 helpline if there are any problems. Electric supply and plugs: 220V, 50hZ, two-pin round plugs. We strongly advise taking sufficient cash for your daily requirements. Banks and ATMs are available, and credit/debit card payments are widely accepted in towns and cities and big petrol station chains but might be limited at some of the villages we visit.
Up-to-date travel advice on Italy is available here. Detailed travel information and hints will be provided in your holiday information pack.
We strongly recommend protecting the cost of your trip and other non-refundable travel expenses with travel insurance. Our Signature Travel Insurance allows you to insure all of your expenses. While a Signature Travel Insurance policy can be purchased at any time, purchasing a policy within 20 days of making your initial trip deposit gives you the widest range of policy options, including a Cancel for Any Reason coverage. For complete peace of mind, we also recommend enrolling with Global Rescue, the worldwide leader in field rescue, evacuation and security extraction services.
Trip Info for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
Difficulty Grade: Moderare / Moderate to Strenuous
The route is moderate to demanding, but there are no particularly steep ascents. Some walks are quite long but can be optionally shortened using local transport or private transfers. A good level of fitness is required for enjoying the walks to the maximum (read more about difficulty grades).
The whole itinerary is mainly on paths and gravel roads (strade bianche), there are some sections on asphalted roads, especially on the first and last walking days. The whole itinerary is well marked by the official signage of the Via Francigena – white-red markings and yellow sign with the Pilgrim symbol on it. We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never try to shorten the path through the unknown and unmarked terrain. We will provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime.
When to Go
You can start your holiday every day between the beginning of April and the end of October.
What to Bring
We recommend that you travel as light as possible – airlines might charge you an extra fee, and during ground transfers, the place might be limited. Ideally, you should bring one piece of luggage weighing no more than 20 kg (to be checked in) and a daily pack (15 – 20 l rucksack) for your everyday essentials (snacks, drinking water, camera, etc.). Below is a non-exclusive list of what you should bring to this trip. If you need further advice, please contact a reputable outdoor retailer or us.
- Good hiking boots
- Hiking socks
- Several t-shirts (preferably breathable/fast drying)
- Packable waterproof and windproof jacket with hood
- Synthetic mid layer or warm fleece
- Trainers and/or sandals – to relax and wear inside the accommodation
- Sunglasses, sunscreen and lip salve
- Hat/Baseball cap
- Personal First Aid kit (wet wipes, flu remedies, stomach remedies)
Included for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
- 7 nights in selected 3-star hotels and agriturismi, private en-suite rooms
- 7 breakfasts
- 1 dinner on Day 6
- Transfer on day 7
- Luggage transfers on all walking days
- Holiday information pack including GPS-checked and regularly updated route notes and maps (digital copy sent by email and a hard copy delivered at first hotel) & pilgrim passport
- 24/7 phone support by our local office/representative
- Where individual members of a group require a single room, a single room supplement is applicable.
- This holiday is available for solo travellers. As costs are not shared, a supplement is payable on the standard trip cost
Options and Extras
- Additional nights before, during or after the walk
Other Trip-Related Costs
- Train and bus fares if you want to optionally shorten a walk
- Entrance fees for attractions and museums
- Flights and airport transfers
- Lunches and dinners not listed as ‘included’
- Drinks and snacks
- Personal equipment
- City tourist taxes
- Any items not explicitly mentioned as ‘included’ in the programme
Gallery for Via Francigena in Tuscany: Siena to AcquapendenteGo to top of page
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