The hamlets of the Metaurus Valley
The tour offers an ideal opportunity to visit the beautiful hamlets of the Lower Metaurus valley. The itinerary through the hills has some steep but short climbs and descents (max. alt. 417 m).
MUSEO DEL BALÌ
Start: The tour starts from Fano – Piazzale Amendola – in front of the west beach known as the “Lido”. The piazzale has a car park and public telephone. There are numerous bars and restaurants in the vicinity.
km. 0 The starting point is in the piazzale, at the mosaic “totem” opposite the beach. Cycling away from the sea, follow the road under the railway in the direction “mare-monte”.
km. 0,3 At the traffic lights, turn left and after 50 m turn immediately right towards “cimitero urbano”. At the top of the hill, turn left towards the cemetery (“cimitero”). At the next crossroads turn right towards Carignano.
km. 1,1 At the stop sign, turn right towards Carignano (white sign) [⬆️17].
km. 2 Leaving Fano, continue straight-on along the S.p. 45.
km. 4,5 Continue following the main road (S.p. 45) as far as Santa Maria dell’Arzilla.
km. 11,4 Santa Maria dell’Arzilla. At the junction, go straight-on towards Pesaro.
km. 12,8 [⬆️70] the road starts to climb steeply.
km. 14,2 At the fork [⬆️137] turn left for Sant’Angelo in Lizzola (S.p. 145).
km. 19 At the stop sign, turn left towards S. Angelo in Lizzola (S.p. 30), the road starts to climb.
km. 20,3 Ginestreto. At the next crossroads [⬆️254], turn right towards S.Angelo in Lizzola.
km. 22,3 Sant’Angelo in Lizzola [⬆️310]. At the next crossroads, turn left in the direction of Mombaroccio and immediately left again towards Monteciccardo (S.p. 31). The road climbs to Monteciccardo [⬆️382]. Here, the road starts to go downhill steeply.
km. 24,9 At the stop sign, turn left towards Mombaroccio (S.p. 26).
km. 28,8 Bottom of the hill [⬆️115]. After the bridge, the road climbs steeply to Mombaroccio.
km. 31,7 Mombaroccio. The entrance to the town [⬆️310] is at the top of the hill..
km. 32,4 At the junction, turn right towards Cartoceto (S.p. 26), the road starts to climb.
km. 33,5 Pass of Beato Sante. Continue along the main road. The monastery is on the left.
km. 34,3 At the junction for Fontecorniale, continue straight-on. Here ends the last climb of the tour[⬆️417]. Continue down towards Cartoceto.
km. 38,4 Cartoceto. The hamlet is on the left. Continue down along the main road towards Saltara.
km. 41,6 Saltara [⬆️160], turn left to visit the Museo del Balì. Stay on the main road, along the cobbled streets of the centre and continue down towards Calcinelli.
km. 44,7 Calcinelli is at the bottom of the hill [⬆️66]. At the traffic lights continue straight-on towards Fano. Pass under the dual carriageway and continue straight-on (S,p, 16 bis.)
km. 46,1 Villanova. The road runs level as far as Fano.
km. 46,8 Turn left towards the “campo sportivo” (white sign) S.p. 92 bis.
km. 50,5 At the stop sign, turn left towards Fano.
km. 56,1 At the fork, go left of the crucifix towards Fonte Avellana.
km. 58 At the roundabout, go straight-on towards Fano.
km. 59,5 Fano signpost. Outskirts of the city, S.Orso district.
km. 60,5 At the roundabout, follow the signs for Pesaro (via Papiria). At the next traffic lights, turn right towards Pesaro (via IV novembre).
At the second set of traffic lights, turn left towards Pesaro (via Gramsci). Keep straight along the main road.
km. 63,3 At the traffic lights, turn right towards the sea (“mare”) (via Carducci) and then into P.le Amendola. This is where the tour ends (Km 63,6).
Mombaroccio ⬆️310 ➡️20
Lying on the ridge of a hill, the hamlet of Mombaroccio is surrounded by a robust scarped wall built to protect the ancient castle. Two impressive cylindrical towers overlook the entrance to the hamlet.
Worthy of note is Palazzo Dal Monte, once the home of the XVI Century Dal Monte family and then subsequently the summer residence of the Sforza and Della Rovere families. The church of S.Marco is worth a visit, as are the museums (Museum of country life, Museum of Sacred Art and the Embroidery museum), the caves and the vaults. From the walls, there is a splendid view of the hills of the Lower Metaurus Valley.
Information: Town Hall, tel. 0721 471103.
A compulsory stop for visitors to Mombaroccio is the sanctuary of the Beato Sante (2 km from the centre of the hamlet), a centre of spirituality, art and culture. Of notable interest are the Church and Cloister which date back to 1536-1538. The complex also houses an art gallery. The woods surrounding the convent provide the visitors with shade and tranquillity, making it the ideal place to visit on a hot summer’s day.
Information: Mombaroccio Town Hall, tel. 0721 471103.
Cartoceto ⬆️225 ➡️25
Laid out in the form of a fan on the slopes of a hill, the ancient “castle” is characterised by its steep steps and narrow alleyways lined with houses built on various levels. The entire complex is surrounded by a scarped wall and preceded by the main square of the hamlet.
The unusual orographic conformation has meant that since the XIII Century, Cartoceto has been the most important centre in the Fano area for the cultivation of olives and hence the production of olive oil, which is an activity of primary importance for the area. Ancient knowledge linked to the cultivation of olives around Cartoceto dates back to 1178. In November, in fact, during the harvesting and oilmaking period, the square is transformed into a large market where the olive growers and mills from the area present their products. Places to visit include the eighteenth century theatre “Teatro del Trionfo” built inside the walls of an ancient crushing mill.
Information: Tourist Office, tel. 0721 898437.
Museo del Balì
The building housing the museum stands on a large hill terrace behind the small town of Saltara. The building itself is of ancient origin, as confirmed by a document stating the owner as being the Bishop of Fano as far back as 1165. The bishop, in fact, added the 4 towers to observe the “vault of heaven”. Today, the villa houses one of the most prestigious national planetarium with 35 fixed interactive exhibits, laboratories and teaching projects, an astronomical observatory, a congress centre, a space dedicated to temporary exhibitions and a 50-seat planetarium named after the well-known scientist Giuseppe Occhialini. The services also include a bookshop and a cafeteria.
Information: Museo del Balì, tel. 0721 892390.