My Via Francigena by bicycle

I arrived in Rome two days ago having started from Canterbury.
I used a Surly Ogre 29er hard tail which was perfect for the conditions.
My itinerary is as follows:
Day one
VF Canterbury to Dover 31.1km
Dover to Calais ferry.
VF Calais to Guines 19.6km stay at Le bien assis campsite (free for pilgrims) running total 50.7 km
Day two
VF day two Guines to Auchy-au-Bois 83.5km running total 134.2km
Day three
VF day three Auchy-au-Bois to Trefcon 104km running total 238.2km
Day four
VF day four Trefcon to Corbeny 95.6km running total 333.8km
Day five
VF day five Corbeny to Chalons en Champagne 96.8km running total 430.6km
Day six
VF day six Chalons en Champagne to Bar sur Aube 104km running total 534.6km
Day seven
VF day seven Bar sur Aube to Champlitte 114km running total 548.6km. Left Mark in Langres
Day eight
VF day eight Champlitte to Ornans 95.3km running total 643.9km.
Day nine
VF day nine Ornans to Pontarlier 37.9km running total 681.8km.
Day ten
VF day ten Pontarlier to Bursinel 80.8km running total 762.6km.
Day eleven
VF day eleven. Rest day in Bursinel running total 762.6km.
Day twelve
VF day twelve. Rest day in Bursinel running total 762.6km.
Day thirteen
VF day thirteen. Bursinel to Martigny 105km running total 867.6km.
Day fourteen
VF day fourteen. Martigny to Great St Bernard Pass 55km 1900 metre ascent running total 922.6km.
Day fifteen
VF day fifteen. Great St Bernard Pass to Pont St Martin 92.5km running total 1015.1km.
Day sixteen
VF day sixteen. Pont St Martin to Mortara 95.6km running total 1110.7km.
Day seventeen
VF day seventeen. Mortara to Piacenza 97km running total 1207.7km.
Day eighteen
VF day eighteen. Piacenza to Fornovo 75km running total 1282.7km.
Day nineteen
VF day nineteen. Fornovo to Pontremoli over the Cisa pass 71.4km running total 1353.1km.
Day twenty
VF day twenty. Pontremoli to Pietrasanta 71.8km running total 1424.9km.
Day twenty one
VF day twenty one. Rest day in Pietrasanta running total 1424.9km.
Day twenty two
VF day twenty two. Rest day in Pietrasanta running total 1424.9km.
Day twenty three
VF day twenty three. Pietrasanta to Gambassi 96.3km running total 1521.2km.
Day twenty four
VF day twenty four Gambassi to Lucignagno d'Arbia 79.3km running total 1600.5km.
Day twenty five
VF day twenty five Lucignagno d'Arbia to Acquapedente 83.1 km running total 1683.6km.
Day twenty six
VF day twenty six. Acquapedente to Campagnano di Roma 103 km running total 1786.6km.
Day twenty seven
VF day twenty seven. Campagnano di Roma to St Peter's Square, Rome 36.7km running total 1817.3km from Canterbury cathedral.

So I cycled for twenty three days and had four rest days. I essentially stopped in Sigerics submansions, camped in my tent for a few nights but mainly used cheap hotels, and the occasional osteria.

I used a Garmin 72 for navigation and Ortlieb single track panniers.

I hope this might help if anyone may be planning their own VF by bicycle. Unlike the Camino Frances, I think their is dearth of guidebooks.
I arrived in Rome two days ago having started from Canterbury.
I used a Surly Ogre 29er hard tail which was perfect for the conditions.
I'll be arriving in Canterbury at the end of this month to begin my VF...having grave doubts about the suitability of my bike for this trip. It's a Specialized Vita step-through, 24 speed hybrid with 700c x 32 tires (I put Continental Ride Tours on it). Do you think I'll be okay on it, or would I be better to find a mountain bike?
Thanks. What way did you go if not on North Downs Way? Did you use a guidebook? I thought I would get the e-books version of the Lightfoot guides as they have cycling as well as walking & horseback included, and also show Sigeric's possible route. I don't want to get lost along the way!

William Marques

Staff member
There were two ways way-marked by the AIVF before Kent County Council adopted the North Downs Way as their VF route.

I would take the VF as far as Patrixbourne then the roads via Bridge, Barham, Womenswold, Shepherdswell and Lydden where you hit the outskirts of Dover

Topofrancigena Typical Page.JPG

William Marques

Staff member
We went before the Lightfoot or Cicerone guides were printed but there were maps by the AIVF called the Topofrancigena (see above) which together with local maps were adequate for us. Their accommodation guide was useless then which is why we started the CPR which together with the AEVF now has some very up to date information.