The Cesano valley
The hills are the true feature of this itinerary which winds its way between the Cesano valley and the Tarugo Valley. There is little traffic on the road and the little-known hamlets and castles make this tour even more fascinating. The itinerary includes three climbs of medium difficulty (max. alt. 541 m) with slopes of up to 12%.
How to reach Orciano di Pesaro:
From the Coast: Autostrada A14, Fano Exit • Superstrada direction Roma, Calcinelli Exit • direction Orciano di Pesaro (S.P. 49)
From Inland: Superstrada Grossetto-Fano, Calcinelli Exit • follow road signs for Oricano di Pesaro (S.P. 49)
Start: The tour starts in pleasant piazza Garibaldi of Orciano di Pesaro located in the town centre. This piazza is a good reference point for cyclists with parking, bars and shops.
km. 0 Zero the milometer when leaving the piazza [W264 m]. From the piazza, take the road with no signposts that goes downhill next to the tourist office (Pro loco), and after 30 m turn left into via della Repubblica.
km. 0,3 At the stop sign, continue straight on.
km. 0,9 At the crossroads, turn left for Mondavio.
km. 2,1 At Mondavio, turn right for San Lorenzo in Campo. Branch off to the left to visit the centre of Mondavio.
Continue downhill along the S.p. 93.
km. 5,6 At the stop sign [⬆️120], turn right towards San Lorenzo in Campo (S.p. 424 “Val Cesano”).
km. 6,3 Leave the main road and turn right towards San Andrea di Suasa.
km. 8,4 At the stop sign, turn left towards San Lorenzo in Campo.
km. 9 At the stop sign, turn left towards San Lorenzo in Campo.
km. 10,4 At the stop sign, turn right towards Pergola. Continue once again along the main road (S.p. 424).
km. 12 San Lorenzo in Campo [⬆️168].
km. 13 after San Lorenzo in Campo, turn left towards Sassoferrato (S.p. 59).
km. 19,1 Madonna del Piano.
km. 22,6 Turn right towards Pergola [⬆️252]. The road starts to climb steeply.
km. 25,2 Top of the hill [⬆️420]. Continue straight-on towards Pergola. Downhill, take care on the bends!
km. 28,9 At the bottom of the hill [⬆️251], turn left at the stop sign towards Cagli.
km. 29,7 At the traffic lights, turn right towards the centre (“Centro”) along the full length of the “Corso” (main street) di Pergola.
km. 30,2 The road goes downhill towards the hospital. After the bridge (100 m), turn right.
km. 30,9 At the stop sign, continue straight-on towards Fossombrone. The road starts to climb (S.p. 40).
km. 37,5 Top of the hill [⬆️541]. Warning, take care on the steep downhill and bends!
km. 42,4 Cartoceto di Pergola [⬆️245]. Continue down towards Fossombrone.
km. 48,5 At the crossroads, turn right towards Isola di Fano [⬆️146]. The road is now level.
km. 49,2 At the crossroads, turn left for Fratterosa. The road starts to climb steeply (12%).
km. 51,2 Top of the hill [⬆️292]. After 200 m, at the crossroads, turn left towards Orciano di Pesaro (S.p. 41).
km. 53,3 At the stop sign, turn right towards Orciano di Pesaro. The road climbs up to Sorbolongo. And then on to Barchi.
km. 54,8 Sorbolongo [⬆️330]. The hamlet is on the left. Continue straight-on.
km. 57,8 Barchi centre. Continue straight-on.
km. 60,5 Orciano di Pesaro.
km. 61,4 Continue straight-on towards San Giorgio di Pesaro. Proceed for the old centre of Orciano di Pesaro.
km. 62,3 Arrival in Piazza Garibaldi of Orciano di Pesaro.
Mondavio ⬆️280 ➡️40
The town overlooks the Cesano valley and dominates the landscape with its towers, bell-towers, defensive walls and imposing castle “Rocca Roveresca”. The castle, designed and built by the military architect Francesco di Giorgio Martini between 1482 and 1492, is a perfect example of military architecture and represents the most important monument in Mondavio. The castle houses the Museum of Historical Re-enactments and the Armoury. Around the castle, in what was once the moat, there is now a permanent exhibition of “war machines” used during the XV and XVI centuries. The exhibition, the only one of its kind, includes 12 reconstructions of catapults, bombards and other siege weapons built from the original plans of Francesco di Giorgio Martini.
Information: Tourist Office, tel. 0721 977331.
Pergola ⬆️297 ➡️63
The town lies in the upper Cesano river valley on a wide terrace at its confluence with the Cinisco. Pergola is rich in medieval architecture, with its stone buildings, tower-houses, lancet arch portals and basreliefs all confirming the town’s importance over the centuries. Here there are numerous examples of religious architecture, with many restored churches that have been returned to their ancient splendour following the damage caused by the 1997 earthquake. The cathedral and the church of San Francesco are well worth a visit. Of particular interest are the public buildings of Palazzo Comunale, the ancient Palazzo Ducale, Palazzo Malatesta and the eighteenth century “Angelo Dal Foco” theatre. The museum of the famous “Gilded Bronzes” is not to be missed. The “Bronzi Dorati” are, in fact, a monumental group of gilded bronzes dated from Roman times found near Cartoceto di Pergola in 1946.
Information: Tourist Office, tel. 0721 736469; Museo dei Bronzi Dorati (Museum of Gilded Bronzes), tel. 0721 734090.
San Lorenzo in Campo ⬆️168 ➡️50
San Lorenzo in Campo is located in the mid-Cesano valley. The town grew around the famous abbey of the same name (a prime example of the Romanesque style) founded by the Benedictine monks in the late medieval and built using the abundance of material from the destroyed Roman “municipium” (town hall) of Suasa. At the entrance to the ancient castle, reached through an arched passageway, stands the sixteenth century Palazzo Della Rovere which today houses three museographic collections: archaeology, African-ethnography and natural history. Also worth visiting is the nineteenth century “M. Tiberini” theatre with its elegant hall and boxes decorated entirely with neoclassic and liberty style painted motifs. The characteristic castles of Montalfoglio (⬆️ 393) and San Vito sul Cesano (⬆️ 353) also form a part of the commune of San Lorenzo, both still completely surrounded by robust scarped defensive walls.
Information: TouristOffice, tel. 0721 776479.