Cyclists are going to arrive in Emilia-Romagna.
Which are the places where they will be?
Emilia Romagna is the land of passion: food, women, engine, motorbike and obviously bicycle racing. Exactly, bicycle. When is the time of Giro d’Italia, the fans flock to the roadside or sit in front their monitor for a long time in a religious silence.
In the 2014 season, the Giro will run in this amazing land during 3 stages, expecially in Emilia except Lugo of Romagna, departure city for the first stage on 18th May 2014. We will talk about some places to visit in the first two stages. Giro d’Italia is also an opportunity to write about the territory, the artistic beauty along the cycle path, mountain villages.
1st Stage – From Lugo di Romagna to Sestola, 172 km
Lugo is located in the Ravenna province, not so far from the Adriatic sea. Here you can visit the Rocca Estense, town’s landmark. This stage is long 172 km and crosses towns like:
- Faenza. This town is an important center of pottery production. Faenza has important monuments in the city centre like Palazzo Milzetti (1792-1805), the elegant Teatro Masini and the City Art Gallery.
- Imola. It is located 30 km far from Bologna and thanks to its mild climate and to its great geographical position you can visit it all year long. The Rocca Sforzesca (Imola’s fortress), which dates back to the 13th century, is the most historical building, open to the public, hosts a rare collection of ancient weapons and a prestigious exhibition of medieval ceramics.
- Bologna. The capital of Emilia Romagna region, a town rich in art and history. Don’t miss Piazza Maggiore and the symbols of Bologna, like the Neptune Fountain by Giambologna, and the medieval Two Towers: Asinelli tower (98 m) and its neighbouring ‘twin’ Garisenda (48 m, also mentioned in Dante’s Inferno), and the Basilica of Saint Petronio.
- Vignola. This little town is famous for its cherries. You can also visit important monuments like Vignola’s fortress.
The stage ends in Sestola, the pearl of the Appenines and also the most important ski resort in the region.
You cannot leave this area without having tasted the traditional ‘crescentine‘, served with lard and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
2nd Stage – From Modena to Salsomaggiore Terme, 173 km
May 20 begins the 10th stage from Modena, an ideal city for its important architectural treasures that are a Unesco World Heritage Site. Visiting Modena you feel the flavours of traditional balsamic vinegar, local food specialities and the artistic beauty of the Cathedral, the Ghirlandina tower or Ducal Palace.
The stage crosses Parma, the food valley capital in Emilia-Romagna. In fact Barilla Industry is located in Parma and one of the most important ‘food event’ like Cibus is here.
Parma also represents one of the regional provinces, a territory with small villages rich in history and liveliness, castles, medieval parish churches and theatres spread in the countryside. Remember these tipical food:
- the Culatello
- the Spalla cotta
- the Fortana wine
- the Parmigiano Cheese.
Parma is a town rich in history, art and culture. You can visit the Baptistery, the Cathedral or the church of St. Mary of Steccata, but also modern architectures designed by worldwide famous architect Renzo Piano: the BarillaCenter and the Auditorium Paganini, once a former sugar factory but now a concert hall.
Parma has a lyric, opera and drama heart also and you can see the important Regio Theatre. In Parma you have the opportunity to visit many cheese factories and ham factories, that produce the famous Prosciutto of Parma.
This town and its territory offer the Street of Culatello, the Street of Prosciutto and Vini dei Colli (Wines from the hills of Parma).
This stage ends in Salsomaggiore, wellness center where you can enjoy regenerative treatments.