On the tracks of Sigeric
Since the early Middle Ages, the Via Francigena has been a 1,600km long route followed by pilgrims from all over Europe heading towards Roma, the heart of Christianity: in the year 990, the Archbishop Sigeric covered this journey in 79 days, as he returned to Canterbury after the archiepiscopal investiture of the pallium. His diary therefore forms the most authentic description of this itinerary which, in 2004, was named by the European Council as belonging to the “Europe’s Cultural Routes Programme” together with El Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Spain.
The Morenico-Canavesana stretch of the Via Francigena amounts to 55km: it takes in a beautiful area of the Moraine Amphitheatre of Ivrea created by the retreat of the Balteo Glacier, one of the world’s best preserved geological conformations of glacial origin, dotted by lakes and characterised by the long outline of the Serra, a moraine ridge of 25km. There were many places for pilgrims to restore physically and spiritually, and even now there are various Romanesque buildings bearing witness to the centuries.
In this territory, the Via Francigena follows the same route as long stretches of the Strada Reale dei Vini Torinesi (Royal Route of Torino Wines): here is an opportunity for sampling the famous DOC appellation wines Carema, Canavese, Erbaluce and Passito di Caluso.
And then there is the local cuisine, with its roots in tradition and seasons, offering tastings of soups and broths, delicious dishes based on mushrooms, chestnuts and onions, typical salami and cheeses: a boost of energy... goods that pilgrims will find a space for in their backpacks!