Rome, the Eternal City, is the perfect starting place of this wonderful tour that will take us through the central part of Italy! Everybody has arrived and today a bunch of us took the chande to go on a guided walk to see the most beautiful sights of the city! The weather was simply perfect, Rome was not too crowded and we had a great time!
This morning we left Italy's capital and largest city by highway to avoid the big traffic of the morning, and went straight to the nice little village of Narni (what a change!) for our first coffee break. Riding through nice backroads and little villages we then reached Montefalco, another pretty medieval town, where we had a relaxing lunch. From Montefalco to Assisi it's a short ride, so we reached our destination early enough to have a walk through its centre and visit the St Francis Basilica, where the Saint was laid to rest in 1226. Assisi is nowadays one of the most important pilgrimage sites of Europe.
Not much time for taking pictures today, we had to ride and ride and ride! First stop was at the Trasimeno lake, the biggest lake of the italian peninsula. After that, we reached Cortona for a good coffee break and then San Giustino for lunch. One more stop in Urbino, a jewel of the Renaissance, and we finally reached the town (and Country!) of San Marino!
What a looong day! We started our ride with perfect weather and ended up riding in a thunderstorm for many hours! But we made it!!! We visited Tavullia, hometown of Valentino Rossi, where we tasted the famous "Cappuccino 46" and then headed to the Strada Panoramica, by the Adriatic sea. In Rimini it started raining very strong and we still had to face the Muraglione pass... a really unforgettable day!
After the long day of yesterday, today everybody dediced to rest and to spend the day in Florence. We had a nice walk in the morning and had a coffee break in a "secret spot", and then everybody was exploring on their own. We really needed some rest!
Today we went to see one of the most famous towers in the world, the leaning tower of Pisa... umbelievable that it has been leaning for approximately 800 years! After that, Oliver was awaiting us by the coast for a relaxing Picnic, then we were ready to ride towards the inland again, through tiny curvy roads untill we reached San Gimignano, the Manhattan of the Middle Ages! From there to Volterra, our destination for today, it did not take too long and we could relax at the hotel before dinner or go for a walk through its very old historic centre.
If we wanted to go straight to Siena, it would have been a very short ride today, but we made a good detour and went to explore the Chianti wine region! After a wine lesson, we went to Greve for lunch and then reached Siena in time for exploring its marvellous city centre!
What a great day! Perfect weather and beautiful winding roads south of Siena, in the area of the "Crete Senesi". Our first stop was at the abbey of San Galgano, where we could also see the original sword in the rock! Then we continued to another abbey (Italians must be very religious!), the one of Monte Oliveto, before reaching Bagno Vignoni, where chef Oliver was awaiting us with another tasty picnic! Pienza, the wonderful village wanted by Pope Pius II in the 16th century, wasn't too far and we reached it in time for a stroll through its centre before having dinner all together.
Time to go back to Rome, last ride of this fantastic tour! Our first task was to get tested for Coronavirus and we did that in the beautiful Montepulciano, then we headed to Orvieto with its magnificent Cathedral, where we had also lunch. One "quick" photo stop in Civita di Bagnoregio and then we finally headed to Rome! Minoo, Steven, Lori, Michael, Edye, David, Dana, Rick, Jennifer, Leallen, it was a great pleasure meeting you, thank you for a great time together and see you hopefully soon! Safe trip back home!!!