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The Villanoviani

Itinerary: Verucchio (0 km), San Giovanni in Galilea (24 km), Mercato Saraceno (56 km), Cusercoli (96 km), Rocca San Casciano (120 km), Modigliana (141 km), Brisighella (162 km), Fontanelice (194 km), Sassoleone (212 km), Monte Sole (259 km), Marzabotto (271 km), Villanova (312 km), Molinella (338 km), Consandolo (352 km), Ostellato (383 km), Comacchio (403 km), Spina (416 km)


Duration: 72 hours
Total distance: km 416
Difficulty: easy
When: from mid-April to the end of October 
Motorbike: any 



Crested helmets, curved swords, pottery, cinerary urns, amber, necklaces, and rings, but also fabrics, spools... there is an infinite treasure of immense beauty and rarity that the necropolis of Verucchio has returned to us after almost three millennia of history. The one on display in the archaeological museum of Verucchio is therefore a cross-section that has no equal, one capable of telling the story of this civilization, which archaeologists have called Villanovian from the name of the town where the first traces were found of one of the main cultures of the earliest phase of the Etruscan civilization, between the 9th and 7th centuries BC.


It is therefore towards Villanova, which is located on the outskirts of Castenaso in the Bologna area, that our journey begins and it follows the roads and narrow streets among the valleys of incomparable beauty for those who love to travel by motorbike. This is how we head towards Torriana from Verucchio and then, having reached San Giovanni in Galilea, continue on up to Sogliano sul Rubicone and then descend, through an infinite series of hairpin turns, towards Mercato Saraceno on the Savio river. It is the provincial road SP53 that provides us with a route that is completely immersed in nature all the way up to the beautiful hamlet of Cusercoli from which we then reach Galeata. From there, facing the beauty of the curves of the Centoforche pass, we reach Rocca San Casciano and go on up to beautiful Modigliana first and then Brisighella. It is by crossing the unique charm of the Gypsum Vein of Romagna Regional Park that we reach the Senio valley and then, continuing, we arrive at Fontanelice sul Santerno. From Fontanelice we arrive at Sassoleone via provincial road SP34, to then reach Piancaldoli and Sasso di San Zenobi. Opposite us now is the historic park of Montesole, the site of the horrible massacre of the Second World War.


Kàinua, the Etruscan Marzabotto, is a short distance from the Reno river. It was one of the most important city-states of the Etruscan Po Valley, together with Felsina (Bologna) and Spina. In the museum, there are many objects of great value and beauty but it is the archaeological site, with its size and structure, that restores the grandeur and importance of the town founded in the fifth century B.C. We now cross the heart of the Bologna gypsum Park and the Abbadessa ravines, not far away from there is the MUV, the Museum of Villanovan civilization which was created in the very places where in 1853 the first remains were found of that culture to which was given the name of "Villanovian". But it is in Spina, a few kilometers from Comacchio, that we find the final point of our adventure, exactly 100 years after its rediscovery. In fact, it seemed to have disappeared into thin air and only the reclamation work of 1922 in Val Trebba gave the world an unparalleled archaeological treasure. Once past the threshold of the Museo del Delta antico (Ancient Delta Museum) set up in the eighteenth-century Ospedale degli Infermi (Hospital for the Sick), the spectacle that is offered to the traveler is impressive, especially with the new settings that give body, luster, and depth to the hundreds of finds on display. In addition to the splendid seventeenth-century heart of Comacchio, one last visit still remains for us to make, and that is to enter via one of the narrow streets that cut through the land that emerged from the reclamation, restoring to the world the beauty of a civilization that for a long time seemed lost, and arriving, scattered throughout the countryside at no more than 4 km from the center of Comacchio, in front of the archaeological excavations which, continuing on, still promise new surprises.




Last update 23/01/2023