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The Via Francigena in Lombardy

Stage n. 1 - From Vercelli to Robbio (distance in km 18.6)
"The first section of this stage follows the Sesia riverbank, surrounded by poplar trees and rice fields.
From Palestro the path runs along the narrow embankments separating the flooded fields. In the proximity of Robbio, it carries on along the verge of a suburban road with little traffic.
Extra care should be taken leaving Vercelli, where the route must necessarily follow the verge along a main road, SS11.
In Vercelli and Robbio there are several attractions of historical and architectural interest.
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access a water source."

Stage n. 2 - From Robbio to Mortara (distance in km 14,3)
“A very short stage. After crossing the Lomellina flat countryside, the first section follows wide unpaved roads and continues along grassy sheep tracks in the Madonna del Campo area.
There are some stretches along the verge of roads with little traffic. Particular care should be taken when crossing the bridge over the Agogna stream and leaving Nicorvo.
In Robbio, the Monastery of S. Valeriano and the church of S. Pietro, near which stood a “Hospicium” offering shelter to the pilgrims, are rather interesting.”

Stage n. 3 – From Mortara to Garlasco (distance in km. 23,6)
“Soon after Mortara the route reaches Sant’Albino Abbey, founded in the fifth century and later renovated. It is now a stopping point for the pilgrims coming from Mortara.
This beautiful stretch across fields, irrigation canals and unexpected woods, leads to Tromello, a stop on the Sigerico itinerary.
The route runs primarily along comfortable country roads; it follows tarmac roads only in the towns.
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access a water source and the only food stop is in Tromello."

Stage n. 4 – From Garlasco to Pavia (distance in km 25,5)
“The first section of the route, to the point where it meets the river Ticino, stretches through the lovely countryside of Pavia, irrigated by several canals and dotted with farmhouses and tree groves.
The crossing of the Parco del Ticino, along path E1 which here overlaps the Via Francigena, the river landscapes and the thick wood groves with a large variety of fauna, offer an impressive scenery.    
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access water sources or food, although there are two restaurants along the Ticino river."

Stage n. 5 – From Pavia to Santa Cristina (distance in km 28)
“The way crosses the alluvial plain of Basso Pavese, with its characteristic river terraces in the S. Lazzaro, Belgioioso and S. Cristina areas.
Along the route there are several interesting architectural constructions, mainly religious buildings: from the imposing façade of S. Michele in Pavia to the little church of San Giacomo.
There are quite a few stretches along the verge but mostly on quiet roads with little traffic; particular care must be taken at  the roundabout on SS617.
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access water sources”.

Stage n. 6 – From Santa Cristina to Orio Litta (distance in km 17)
“This section of the route skirts the low hills of S. Colombano dotted with vineyards and, passing through the centre of Miradolo Terme, it reaches the imposing building of Castello di Chignolo Po.
After crossing the Lambro it approaches the Lodi countryside, where at first it follows the riverbank and then the “arginelle”, or little banks, among the rice fields, all the way to Orio Litta, with some splendid scenery.
Particular care should be taken when crossing the bridge over the Lambro.
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access water sources”.

Stage n. 7 – From Orio Litta to Piacenza (distance in km. 22.1)
“From Orio Litta the route soon reaches the “Guado di Sigerico”, the “”Transitum Padi””, where a ferry crosses to the opposite  riverbank in Soprarivo (0523 771607 ferry service).
After a short section along the Po riverbank, stretches of straight paths along country roads lead to Ponte Trebbia. Soon after the river a pedestrian and cycle lane leads to the outskirts of Piacenza.
Great care should be taken joining the main road SS Emilia Pavese in Ponte Trebbia and along the stretch of secondary road between Calendasco and Incrociata.
Outside urban centres it is not possible to access water sources”.

Useful Information

Official website of the Vie Francigene

Regional website of Via Francigena in Lombardia

Train connections
Vercelli
Railway Milano-Torino and Pavia-Vercelli, Vercelli station
Robbio
Railway Pavia-Vercelli, Robbio station
Mortara
Railway Milano-Alessandria, Vercelli-Pavia, Novara-Alessandria, Mortara station
Garlasco
Railway Vercelli-Pavia, Garlasco station
Pavia
Railway Milano-Genova, Alessandria-Pavia, Vercelli-Pavia and Codogno-Pavia, Pavia station Railway Codogno-Pavia, Santa Cristina station
Orio Litta
Railway Codogno-Pavia, Orio Litta station

Useful links:

Trenitalia