This issue takes us back to Canterbury, where the EAVF General Assembly took place last spring. The association met in person again six months after the arrival in Santa Maria di Leuca, final leg of the extraordinary journey “Via Francigena – Road to Rome 2021. Start again!”. From the Sanctuary of “De Finibus Terrae”, where the Adriatic Sea meets the Ionian, we returned to the starting point of the route. These are the northernmost and the southernmost points of the Via Francigena, which represent a “cultural bridge between Anglo-Saxon and Latin Europe”, to use the words of historian Jacques Le Goff.
Heading south, towards the continental territories of the Via Francigena, we find the agglomeration of Béthune-Bruay Artois Lys Romane, in the Pas-de-Calais: an area to be discovered slowly if you want to find authenticity. We invite you to come and explore these places, you won’t be disappointed!
Still traveling through France, we find an overview of the Fédération Française de la Randonnée Pédestre, which has been in charge of the GR® routes in France since 1947 and which, for over ten years, has been committed to the maintenance of the route of the Via Francigena – GR®145.
The Swiss section in the magazine is symbolically represented by two international bloggers, Marie and Karim, who accompanied the “Road to Rome” group last year, sharing their experience through videos, blog posts and stories: this storytelling shared by young people is a wonderful presentation card for the Via Francigena.
As for Italy, the core of this magazine issue is characterized by the special article dedicated to the Piedmontese section of the Via in the Susa Valley, which can be discovered on foot or by following the new cycling route. An area where beautiful events such as the Via Francigena Marathon – which has reached its fourth edition – have been organized over the last years. The Susa Valley will amaze you, try it to believe it!
In the section dedicated to municipalities, you can find two interviews with the mayors of Collecchio and Medesano, both in the province of Parma. Mayors are key pillars of EAVF’s network: thanks to their passion and commitment, they help increase the sense of community and local identity around the Via Francigena.
Finally, in the magazine you will find an interesting special on the Via Matildica del Volto Santo: a great itinerary of faith, nature and culture in the Italian regions of Lombardy, Emilia and Tuscany.
In the meantime, the 2022 season has started with extremely positive numbers. We are longing to start walking again after the Covid-19 pandemic. We hope it will be a gorgeous six-month period for our beloved Via Francigena!