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Walking the Via Francigena from Aulla to Lucca

Stage 12
6 days
Starting From

Aulla to Lucca Map
Beginning in Aulla and finishing in Lucca, the twelfth section of Via Francigena features magnificent sights to see such as the Abbey of Saint Peter and the Church of Saint Michael, the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Francis, towers and castles, and an interesting archaeological site at Luni.


Medieval and Roman cities

All along this trip, you will hike through medieval cities with a lot of stories. Some are tied to the pilgrimage history, the castle of Aulla, for example, was founded for accommodating the pilgrims of the via Francigena.
In Lucca, the old town is still surrounded by an old wall that keeps the city intact and protects it. Now, this wall even became a promenade. Furthermore, the city remained its roman legacy especially with the Piazza dell’Anfiteatro, an ancient place of the Roman amphitheater.

Between wood and see

On the road to Massa, the trip will be the most challenging, rocky paths, loose stones, huge hills… But despite these obstacles, once you have passed Massa, the road between Massa and Camaiore will give you some rest and will help you to regain energy before the third part of this trip. In fact, after Camaiore the beginning of the road is flat but you will go through steep hills, roads, and bridges which are really beautiful but more challenging than before.

Lucca's culture

Lucca is known as the city of a hundred churches. The most famous church is the Duomo, an impressive structure renowned for its architecture and design. You can easily spot the Duomo due to its half-finished bell tower.
Birthplace of the famous composer Giacomo Puccini, Lucca is also welcoming the Lucca summer festival in June. This year, Paul McCartney is one of the famous guests.

Aulla to Lucca
Via Francigena
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From €718
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Included in this package
  • Bed & Breakfast
  • Specially chosen 2-3* hotels or equivalent
  • Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
  • Our Holiday or Pilgrim Pack
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Premium Accommodation
  • Airport Pick-up
  • Additional Night
  • Dinners
  • Day Tours Available
Not included
  • Flights/trains
  • Insurance
  • Drinks/Lunch


Day 1

AULLA (Arrival)

On your first day, take a walk around the town and go see the impressive Fortezza Della Brunella before tomorrow’s walk to Sarzana. The Abbey of San Caprasio is another popular tourist attraction, and one of the city’s oldest and most important buildings, definitely one to go see.

Day 2


The first day of walking starts with some easy roads to walk on. Later the route becomes a bit more difficult to walk – steep with rocky paths and loose stones, and also no facilities between Aulla and the town of Ponzano Superiore. Despite these obstacles, you can definitely overcome them, and once you do, you’ll feel a great level of personal satisfaction and achievement in doing this. From here, pick one of two routes to Sarzana – take the normal route, which is quite hilly, and on gravel tracks, or if there’s bad weather, take the slightly easier, but noisier, road route alongside the traffic. Once you enter Sarzana, take time to rest and try to visit the incredible Fortezza di Sarzanello and the Cathedral of Sarzana (Santa Maria di Assunta). A glass of wine would also be on the cards after that day of walking.

Day 3


Today’s walk is as challenging as the day before, but it is certainly doable. The first part jumps between tarmac roads, grassy tracks, traversing hills and crossing over rivers, so it’s quite adventurous in itself. From walking near the main roads, you will then need to pick old route which is shorter and less challenging, or take route by the fascinating archaeological site at Luni. Following this and going through Avenza, take the direct and flat route to Massa. Pass by a nice public garden on the walk into Massa. After that walk, you will deserve some nice pizza or Carbonara, along with a rest. If you have the time, visit the wonderful Cathedral of Saints Peter and Francis from the 15th century and the Malaspina Castle, which overlooks Massa from a hill.

Day 4


Going to Camaiore starts off quite easy, being on flat roads, so there is no problem here. There is some difficulty with steep hills, and then levelling off on tarmac roads and bridges. In Pietrasanta, feel free to stop and have some fritti, and wine if you wish, to fuel you for the rest of the walk. Passing through Pietrasanta, take the old route which is very easy to follow, going over roads and crossing bridges over rivers. From here, the walk is a little strenuous, with hills, tarmac roads and crossing bridges taking over most of the way, but by this stage you are very close to Camaiore. In this city, rest, have a drink, have some great food and visit the amazing Abbey of Saint Peter and the lovely Church of Saint Michael.

Day 5


On the last day of walking, the path to Lucca is a mix of hill-walking, tarmac roads, grassy tracks, stony tracks, through woods and gravel lanes. It is quite challenging, but don’t worry, this is all very manageable, particularly when you can stop in Montemagno or Valpromano for a small beer or a nice glass of wine. You are now at the end of your journey in Lucca – great work! While you’re in Lucca, there are quite a few things to see. If you have the time, visit the main sights: the Romanesque Church of San Michele in Foro, the Piazza Anfiteatro or the museum, Casa di Puccini. But before all of that, some pizza!

Day 6


After breakfast we bid you farewell.

Aulla to Lucca Elevation

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