Along the Spallanzani Path: a Tour between Nature and Culture

Logo CC

Emilia-Romagna is famous for its natural beauty and its cultural richness, and the Spallanzani Path is a perfect union between these two charming worlds.

The tour, which takes its name from the famous Reggio Emilia naturalist and explorer Lazzaro Spallanzani, offers a unique experience capable of blending the discovery of nature with scientific and cultural history.

The path, which winds through breathtaking landscapes (Bismantua Rock, Carpineti Castle, Monte Cusna and Monte Prado, San Pellegrino Hospice), gives visitors the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of Italian nature.

Overall, it is a "low" and "medium" mountain route, approximately 125 km long, with an overall altitude difference of around 5,000 metres which can be fully covered in 8 walking days.

The tour crosses all the vegetation types of the Reggio Emilia Apennines, starting from the town of Reggio Emilia to the town of San Pellegrino in Alpe, the highest in the entire Apennine range.

However, not all stages have the same level of difficulty. It is necessary, in fact, to make a distinction between the first six - low and medium difficulty - compared to the last two, in the ridge strip, which in winter are only accessible by expert hikers.

The best seasons to cover this tour are spring and autumn, when nature offers evocative shows thanks to its warm and enveloping colours.

This tour will focus on the first stage which leads from the town centre of Reggio Emilia to Ventoso di Scandiano.

  • Length
    24 hours
  • Interests
    Nature & Outdoor
  • Target
  • First stop - Museums Palace Reggio nell'Emilia

    The tour starts from the Reggio Emilia Museums Palace, where there is the private collection by the scientist Lazzaro Spallanzani.

    The Parco del Popolo (Public Gardens), next to the Museum, is a charming Italian-style museum. Several important statues and monuments are located among valuable trees, including the centenary Cedar of Lebanon.

    After a short tour through the rooms of the museum to discover the Spallanzani collection and a walk in the streets and squares of the town centre, we continue along Via Emilia San Pietro until we come across the magnificent San Pietro Cloisters, a superb example of Renaissance and Mannerist architecture.

  • Second stop - Campo di Marte park Reggio nell'Emilia

    From here we continue along Via Sante Vincenzi and reach the so-called Polveriera, a building located in the old Piazza d'Armi, built in 1869 for military purposes.

    The complex, restored in 2016, is a new space for aggregation and social inclusion for the town. In the Civic Hall, since 2020, is a 60 square-metre wall drawing made by the artist Emanuele Sferruzza Moszkowicz called Hu-Be.

    Along the "Polveriera" you follow the red and white signs to the "Campo di Marte", one of the most beloved parks, very popular with families.
    Inside are many trees, such as lime trees, horse chestnuts, oaks, plane trees, ash trees and several conifers (cedars, pines and firs).

  • Rodano park Reggio nell'Emilia

    At the Via Gattalupa crossroads, cross the street and enter the SIC Rodano-Gattalupa ecological rebalancing area (site of community importance).

    On the left is a detour to the Mauriziano Park with a circular path, signposted with 610 A variant, leading to the summer residence of the poet Ludovico Ariosto.

    After taking Via Metastasio, the route becomes entirely cycle-pedestrian and, after passing the underpass, it connects to the river path of the Rodano torrent.

    In some observation points equipped with huts among the trees you can observe many birds typical of these areas, including the wonderful storks coming from the nearby Gavasseto colony, 2 km away from the route.

    A little further on you reach the crossroads with the Rodano torrent bridge, recognizable by its red colour.

  • Fourth stop - Sluices and canals Reggio nell'Emilia

    We continue the tour along the Rodano torrent and reach the sluice, a typical element of this countryside for water intake from the irrigation canals.

    Continue to the Via Anna Frank crossroads and, after crossing the street, you enter the roadway along the left bank of the torrent. Here you can admire an important historical element, the Secchia Canal, an artificial waterway built by the Romans to bring river water into the town of Reggio Emilia.

    The canal was used until 1800, with small boats with which traders entered the walls to unload goods. It is now a water intake used for irrigation, but it still keeps the charm of an ancient artefact.

  • Fifth stop - Farm Reggio nell'Emilia

    The tour continues walking a few metres higher, among views of the surrounding countryside and vegetation. You reach the asphalt road (Via del Bosco) at the Gazo bridge, where an important battle took place in the past.

    Keep to the right and first go along the asphalt road, then through the fields and vineyards. In the rows flanking the path, in addition to the typical grapes for the production of the  Lambrusco wine, is the recovery of an ancient white grape vine: Spergola.

    The tour continues along Via Mabrazza, Via Sabatini, Via Dei Brugnoli to the town of Fellegara through amazing rural views.

  • Sixth stop - Scandiano Scandiano

    A little further on, the Tresinaro torrent cycle/pedestrian path begins. The route, to be followed until the town of Cà de Caroli, is very easy. Go along the Tresinaro until you reach the Via del Cristo bridge.

    We are in Scandiano, and from here you can divert to the town centre, which is certainly worth visiting for its beautiful Boiardo Fortress and the birthplace of Lazzaro Spallanzani, from which the naturalist left for his scientific trips in the Apennines.

    Finally you reach the town of Ventoso, originally (1988) the starting point of the path.

Last update 26/12/2023

Information offices

IAT Reggio Emilia
Via Luigi Carlo Farini, 1/A - Reggio nell'Emilia (RE)
+ 39 0522 451152 Opening: all year round
UIT Scandiano
Piazza della Libertà, 6 - Scandiano (RE)
+ 39 0522 764302 Opening: seasonal

You may also like...

OFFICIAL TOURIST INFORMATION SITE © 2024 Emilia-Romagna Region Tourism and Commerce Department