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EXPERIENTIAL TRAVEL TOURS / Parco del Monte Conero / Parco Nazionale dei Monti Sibillini / Parco Naturale Regionale Gola della Rossa e di Frasassi

Marche: between nature and culture

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Day 1
The arrival by train in Pesaro is scheduled at lunch time. Local coordinators will give you a welcome and then transfer by private bus to Urbino.

Free lunch and in the afternoon a guided tour in the old town of Urbino, a UNESCO world Heritage site, is planned.

Indeed, Urbino embodies the maximum architectural expression of the Renaissance in the Marche region. During that period, thanks to the Dukes of Montefeltro, Urbino was one of the most important Italian centres in terms of art, culture and even militarily. 
The Ducal Palace, which hosts the National gallery of the Marche region, is one of the art and cultural symbols of the Marches thanks its very well-known facade.

Urbino is also the town of Raffaello and during the tour you will discover places which prove his presence in the city.
At the end of the tour, a tasting of local products will be provided. 
Back to the accommodation for dinner and overnight stay. 

Day 2
After breakfast you will move to Carpegna, a delightful village at the foot of the homonymous mountain, located in the heart of Montefeltro. 
From here, a hike towards suggestive Sasso Simone and Sasso Simoncello starts. They are two limestone blocks that are based on hills of clay. Their shape recalls the Hunts Mesa of the Lower Monument Valley in the USA (even if smaller). The two Sassi soar among one of the larger woods of oak in Italy.
The hike is a pleasant walk in the shadow of oak trees, where you can find also beech, manna ash and other oak and maple species. From here you can enjoy panoramic views of Montefeltro. 
Packed lunch at the summit of Sasso Simone where you can appreciate the ruins of an ancient city, or rather, the attempt to build the City of the Sun by the Medici family from Florence, a new city which should have dominated and controlled all those lands.
At the end of the hike there will be a break with local products tasting and the unmissable Prosciutto di Carpegna DOP. 
Back to Urbino. Free time and dinner. Overnight stay.

Trail characteristics: 
Length: 12 Km
Elevation gain: +400 m and – 400 m
Difficulty: easy

Day 3
Breakfast and transfer to the Natural Park of Gola della Rossa and Frasassi, the second largest protected area of the Marche region.
It is planned to hike along a ring trail in the fascinating Valle Scappuccia, a suggestive site which hides incredible geological, flora and fauna and anthropological gems.
This is a ups and downs trail across beeches woods, Mediterranean maquis and coniferous where it is possible to come across wolf’s traces and the flight of the Peregrine falcon. 
Packed lunch. 
Then, you will have the opportunity to visit the suggestive Valadier Temple and Frasassi Caves. 
In the afternoon transfer to San Vittore alle Chiuse to visit the well-known Frasassi Caves. Those caves depict the majestic underground complex which is the result of the continuous and patient work of the waters of Sentino River and of some sulphur springs and limestone.
Limestone is the rock which composes the majority of mountains in the Marche region. 
In the afternoon transfer to Fiastra Lake and accommodation in a facility immersed in the green of the National Park of Monti Sibillini. 
Dinner with local products and overnight stay.

Trail characteristics: 
Length: 9 km
Elevation gain: +300 m, - 300 m
Difficulty: medium – easy

Day 4
Breakfast and transfer along the lakeshore for the hike to the Lame Rosse, one of the most suggestive places in the Marche region. 
It is also called the little Grand Canyon or “I camini delle Fate” (The Fairy Chimneys). It is an easy trail immersed in a holm oak wood at the end of which you will discover one of the most beautiful and unique landscapes of the Park. 
Packed lunch and time to rest along the shores of Fiastra Lake. Here there is the opportunity to rent a canoe or simply take a dip. 
Follows a transfer to Piani di Ragnolo across the mountain village of Bolognola. Here we are going to take a walk during the sunset admiring the summits of Monti Sibillini from above and say goodbye to the sun.
This itinerary develops along a plateau suspended at 1500 m altitude, from which you can enjoy an amazing panorama among the Nord side of the Park and the hills of the Marche region, until the Adriatic Sea. 
Packed lunch and transfer to Fiastra and its homonymous lake, for a pleasant walk along the shores and relaxing at the beach. 
Transfer towards San Ginesio and accommodation in the accommodation facility. 
The day ends with the tour of San Ginesio Town, a little treasure chest of beauties, with its intact mediaeval walls, alleys and the beautiful Collegiata and incomparable view among Sibillini. 
Dinner and back to the structure with overnight stay in Fiastra.

Morning Trail characteristics: 
Length: 7 km
Total Elevation gain uphill: 300 m
Difficulty: easy

Afternoon Trail characteristics: 
Length: 5 km
Total Elevation gain uphill: 250 m
Difficulty: easy

Day 5
Breakfast and transfer towards Montefortino. From here we will continue the discovery of the National Park of the Monti Sibillini across one of its most famous and emotional hikes. 

The path develops in the high valley of the Tenna River within the steep walls of Monte Priora (2332 m) and Monte Sibilla, the symbol of the mountain chain (2173 m). 
After some minutes of trail, you will come across the river and you will go inside the spectacular and narrow Gola dell’Infernaccio dug between massive limestone walls. 
Out of the gorge, the path winds across secular beech trees until reaching the isolated Eremo of San Leonardo (a little hermitage). 
Packed lunch and then back through the same trail. 
The second stop is in the village of Offida, location of one of the two regional wineries of the Marche region. Offida is the sign of how important the wine is for the territory. It includes little architectural gems such as Santa Maria Della
Rocca where ancient and fascinating popular traditions are still present. 
Tour in a winery with aperitif-dinner. Transfer to Ascoli Piceno and overnight stay.

Trail characteristics: 
Length: around 8 km
Total Elevation gain uphill: 350 m
Total Elevation gain downhill: 350 m
Difficulty: medium / easy

Day 6
After breakfast the morning is dedicated to the tour of Ascoli Piceno, the travertine town and one of the most important cultural centres of the region. 
Transfer to Castelluccio di Norcia for lunch and last stop in the National Park of Monti Sibillini. 
Located in the south-west side of the chain, the village dominates three large plains of tectonic origin located at 1400 m altitude, close to the highest sector of the Sibillini. 
A magic place where during the late spring and the beginning of the summer, cultivated fields light up in yellow, red and blue creating an incredible chromatic spectacle during the well-known “Blooming of Castelluccio”. 
After an easy hike we will transfer by bus to Monte Conero.

Trail characteristics: 
Length: around 6 km
Total Elevation gain uphill: 200 m
Total Elevation gain downhill: 200 m
Difficulty: easy

Day 7
After breakfast we will transfer towards Monte Conero, soul of the homonymous National Park, the most ancient of the Marche region established in 1987.
You will hike immersed in the Mediterranean maquis between breath-taking panoramas and cliffs above sea. 
From the millennial Church of San Pietro, you will go along a ring of around 6 km admiring the beauties of the park and then you will reach the beach of San Michele descending through the suggestive Passo del Lupo: a fascinating trek with marvellous views. 
From San Michele you can reach by kayak the Spiaggia delle Due Sorelle (if you prefer you can stay and relax at the beach of San Michele). This beach is defined as one of the ten most beautiful beaches of Italy. It is a great emotion landing by sea in this beach characterised by thousands of stories and legends. Packed lunch and return to San Michele by kayak and then back to the hotel.
In the late afternoon there will be a transfer to a winery of the territory in order to have an aperitif with local wine-tasting, in particular the red Rosso Conero, a typical wine of this area. 
Back to the accommodation and overnight stay.

Trail characteristics: 
Length: 13 km
Elevation gain: +250 m, -500 m
Difficulty: medium

Day 8
After breakfast we are going to discover one of Ancona’s castles and one of today’s most beautiful mediaeval towns of the area: Offagna. 
It is located on a hill, its castle dominates all the surrounding landscapes, from the Apennines to the sea through the smooth cultivated hills. 
According to the time schedule, we are going to transfer to Ancona station by train for greetings with local referents. 
End of the trip.

Responsible tourism

What is sustainable tourism?
It is a tourist approach that pays the greatest attention to the environment and culture of the visited country.
It was created to stem and correct the distortions of mass industrial tourism, devoted to the “looting” of countries, especially those developing, and ends up becoming a travel mode that can be replicated everywhere, even in the territories close to home.

Features of our travels
Travelling with ViaggieMiraggi will take you to meet people and projects of the civil society of the visited country, with particular attention to the field of Fair Trade and Cooperation.
The trips will take place together with local representatives, exponents of the local culture, creators and guides of the itineraries. Stays will take place at small, locally owned accommodation facilities or, when possible, at facilities provided by projects visited or in families.
Meetings are scheduled before and after the trip to explain the characteristics before departure and to guarantee a moment for the return report. The price sheets of our packages are completely transparent: the distribution of economic resources is accessible in every step.

Take part in the change
By choosing a Sustainable Tourism trip you will be able to make a direct contribution to a form of virtuous, equitable and sustainable economy. Traveling with us will guarantee work for the activities of the projects that will be visited, transforming tourism into an instrument of emancipation and justice for the local populations, subtracting energies from a model dedicated to exploitation to put them in one focused on the Person and Nature.