St Francis' Way




140,5 km


40:25 h

Difference in height

3.510 m

Elevation loss

3.558 m

The Way of Francis is an experience with a high emotional impact that allows an immersion in the spirituality and beauty of the lands that Francis of Assisi traveled during his life.

The Way of Francis, also called “The Way of Francis” leads to the discovery of the places that have marked the life and message of love, peace and humility of St. Francis of Assisi. It was born with the idea of creating a single path to reach Assisi, starting from the North (Florence – Rimini – La Verna) or from the South (Rome). The path is an opportunity to reflect on one’s own spirituality and to rediscover the meaning of one’s existence.

The route that crosses the Lazio Region winds for about 290 km and includes two routes: the “Salaria” and the “Tiberina”.

The stages affecting the municipalities in the DMO are as follows:
Stage 01LabroPoggio Bustone19.6 KmDifference in height: 840 mt. – Elevation loss: 640 mt
Stage 02Poggio BustoneRieti17,3 kmDifference in height: 675 mt. – Elevation loss: 603 mt
Tappa 03RietiGreccio23,4 kmDifference in height: 653 mt. – Elevation loss: 267 mt
Stage 04GreccioPoggio Bustone18,6 kmDifference in height: 552 mt. – Elevation loss: 474 mt
Stage 05RietiPoggio San Lorenzo21,8 kmDifference in height: 330 mt. – Elevation loss: 253 mt
Stage 06Poggio San LorenzoPonticelli di Scandriglia20,1 kmDifference in height: 589 mt. – Elevation loss: 756 mt

At a slow pace, the Valle Santa will be covered, a valley surrounded by rolling hills and an enchanting landscape. The path winds through ancient villages, such as Labro, Poggio Bustone, Colli sul Velino, Greccio, Contigliano, Rieti, Torricella in Sabina, Poggio San Lorenzo, Monteleone Sabino, Poggio Moiano but also along cultivated fields, luxuriant woods and suggestive panoramic views. Each step is an invitation to slow down, to appreciate the surrounding nature and to get in tune with yourself and with the world around us to create a deep bond with nature, letting yourself be enveloped by its tranquillity. The sounds of birds, the rustling of the wind in the trees and the scent of the earth provide an ideal space for meditation and seeking a spiritual connection.

The Valle Santa is immersed in the Reatina plain at the ends of which are the four historic sanctuaries, symbolic places linked to the life of San Francesco. The Franciscan Sanctuary of Greccio is historic and very important, famous for being the place where, according to tradition, Saint Francis set up the first living nativity scene in 1223. In addition to the Sanctuary, it also includes a Franciscan convent and a museum which preserves documents related to the history of the living nativity scene of Greccio and continues to be an important pilgrimage center for the faithful from all over the world.

Along the road, in the municipality of Rieti, there is the Sanctuary of Fonte Colombo, a place that exudes a profound spirituality and offers an atmosphere of peace and tranquility, the saint lived here and it is here that he wrote the definitive Rule of his Order. Also in the municipality of Rieti is the Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Foresta immersed in a valley in which the Acqua Marina stream flows, and is surrounded by chestnut and oak woods. The place is remembered for the “miracle of wine”.

In the medieval village of Poggio Bustone, which dominates the Rieti basin and the Lungo and Ripasottile lakes below, is the fourth of the Franciscan Sanctuaries, “It is here that Francis saw the beginning of his community adventure: the sharing and harmonization of relations between the brothers and the creation of the first Franciscan fraternity”, reads the official website of the sanctuaries of the Holy Valley. In the sanctuary there is the church of San Giacomo from the end of the 1300s, where you can admire interesting frescoes while to access the famous Grotto of Revelations, the Sacro Speco, you go along a steep path decorated with chapels in memory of the various episodes that happened to the Saint in the frequent ascended to the place of prayer. Whether you are a devoted pilgrim or simply a lover of nature and history, this walk will leave you with lasting memories and a deep connection with yourself and with the story of one of the world’s most beloved saints.

Author’s suggestions:

Along the path of San Francesco you will find numerous reception points, you can sleep in lodgings, B&Bs, farmhouses or in religious structures. On the official website you will find information about the route.

Visiting Suggestions

Along the stages are other places of interest that, time permitting, we invite you to visit.


If you want to access the detailed map for outdoor use and check all the data and statistics of the route, even in 3D, please see the page that Anima Reatina has published on the outdooractive portal