Emilia Romagna

73 – (ITA Stage 25) – Forli’ – Cusercoli

Place of Departure FORLI’
Place of Arrive CUSERCOLI
Length – KM
Nation of the route Italy
Region Emilia Romagna
Uphill Gap
318 m
Downhill Gap
220 m
CAI (Diff. Escurs.) E
Praticability FootBike


Stage 25 – Forlì- Cusercoli – With this stage we resume the historical and main route. The route progressively leads first to the hills, then to the mountains, until it crosses the Apennines and enters Tuscany. You walk along paths, dirt roads, dirt roads. The route partly follows the ridge, partly the valley floor: in front of you the majesty of the Apennines in the distance. From the SS 9 (the historic Via Emilia) you can choose between two beautiful and evocative routes: one more naturalistic, the other more historic, but both lead us to Meldola. From Piazza Saffi, taking Corso della Repubblica, after crossing Piazzale della Vittoria, and following Via Roma or Via Emilia, you reach the Church of Ronco; those who had already arrived at the Ronco hamlet leave from here.

TO VISIT: near Ronco, after a few kilometers towards the sea, there is the town of Forlimpopoli, with its restored castle and town hall. It is the homeland of Pellegrino Artusi, singer of true Romagna cuisine. There is also an excellent Hospitality Institute.

At the roundabout in Ronco, before the church, go down to “Ronco Lido” and climb up the embankment of the Ronco river, with its meanders immersed in luxuriant vegetation, typical of the humid Mediterranean maquis, with lots of game and varied fauna. Ford the Rio Sanguinario, a canal that collects the waters of the airport located nearby. Then you come across some lakes, old sand quarries, now used for sport fishing and environmentally recovered. There is also an excellent golf facility. After the third lake there is a construction site for processing aggregates which can be avoided by crossing the river on an iron footbridge. Then you take a cart track and then the embankment again up to the crossroads with the SP 37. On secondary asphalted roads you then reach the Terme di Fratta.

TO VISIT: from here you can also visit Bertinoro, a town rich in history, famous for its gastronomy and enology. Thus we arrive in Piazza della Libertà, where there is the Town Hall and the Hospitality Column. The square is a terrace on the plain and you can see the entire Adriatic coast. In Bertinoro, the Rocca, the Interreligious Museum and the University are important. The route is 3.5 km long.

From Fratta you pass near the parish centre, now the seat of the Civil Protection of Bertinoro, an information and emergency point also for walkers. Then climb the ridge on the right ridge of the Bidente Valley. It is a gravel road, very panoramic on the plain and on the coast, which can be seen in the distance. You walk among vineyards and villas. There is also an educational farm where you can admire the equipment and ancient technologies for breeding silkworms and the silk industry. Then you descend on the road to Teodorano and arrive in Meldola, crossing the Ponte dei Veneziani. After the bridge, if you want to visit the center of the town, take Via Giordano Bruno.

SAN MARTINO VARIANT: (recommended for cyclists). From Piazza Saffi you pass the ancient gate and Rocca di Ravaldino and use the Via dell’Appennino cycle path up to San Martino in Strada, a locality mentioned by the Monk Albert in his Annales. Going further, take Via delle Caminate, go under the ring road. Then you go up the hills taking the Strada di Scardavilla (Monastery and Bosco di Scardavilla) You then go down towards the Ronco valley and, having passed the ring road under the road, you enter the center of Meldola, in the beautiful Piazza Orsini. Going south, towards the Apennines and leaving Meldola, you meet again the stretch of the Via Romea Germanica that comes from Fratta Terme. This variant section (from Forlì to Meldola) is 15 km long. From Forlì to Ronco it is 4.3 km. The Ronco-Meldola section is 16.2 km long.

From Meldola, take the Strada Rimbocca/Cà Baccagli (Davide Drudi institution), up to Strada del Mezzo. Continuing we reach the center of San Colombano. Cross it and then descend again on the Bidente river (note: it is the same Ronco river that takes the name of Bidente upstream of Meldola).

ENVIRONMENTAL VARIANT ON THE RIVER: (note: to be avoided in case of flooding of the river). Very naturalistic variant that runs along the river. After Strada Ca’ Baccagli, do not take the Strada del Mezzo but go down to the river which you follow up to Via Montescovo. Not suitable for cyclists. We then reach Gualdo, on the SP4 where we have to pay attention to the traffic. After a while you return to the river bank, on a gravel road that leads to Cusercoli.

Note for cyclists: In Borgo Sisa it is better to take the SAN MARTINO VARIANT: Borgo Sisa, Via Cavedalone, Forlì centre, Corso Diaz, Via dell’Appennino, Scardavilla, Meldola centre, Strada del Mezzo, San Colombano, Via Montevescovo, Gualdo centre, continue on SP 4 up to Cusercoli and then Cusercoli center. Or the main route from Borgo Sisa to Ronco and then towards the center of Forlì, to then take the VARIANTE SAN MARTINO towards Meldola.

25 – Points of Interest

Fratta Terme – The spa has 13 hectares of parkland, and seven springs rich in precious mineral salts, that can be found on walks through the greenery and along the fitness trails. Then there are the mud baths and thermal baths, with thermal waters that make Fratta an ideal place to enjoy a peaceful holiday. Surrounding the area are numerous wineries that are open to the public for visits and tasting sessions with excellent local wines such as Albana, Trebbiano, Cagnina, Pagadebit and Sangiovese. For some years now, the spa has been home to IndianaPark, the largest outdoor adventure park in Italy, with aerial routes, acrobatic adventure trails and attractions for young and old alike.

Meldola – This was the first town where the ancient pilgrims stopped on their way to Rome along the Bidente Valley. It is overlooked by an imposing Fortress built by the Archbishops of Ravenna. It was also the epicentre of important economic phenomena – silkworm production, spinning mills, important quarries and agri-food markets – which brought the town to the attention of national and even international businesses. In this regard, a visit to the Silkworm Museum, located in the old town centre, is certainly interesting. In the hills between Forlì and Meldola, there is the Scardavilla Woods Oriented Nature Reserve, which covers an area of about 30 hectares. Visits to the reserve must be booked at the Museum of Ecology and Visitor Centre, which is located in the former Church of the Madonna del Sasso, in the historical centre of Meldola.

Ronco – On the ancient Via Emilia, and very close to Forlì, until the First World War it was the lido of Forlì: on the banks of the river there were bathing facilities where holidaymakers could bathe. The riverbanks, made accessible as part of the Via Romea, are now also visited by local walkers and cyclists. Nearby, the large gravel excavations, now restored, have become an exceptional habitat for fish and birdlife. It was the seat of a Hospitaller commandery. Immediately after the bridge over the Ronco River, there is a long straight road (Viale Roma) that leads to the centre of Forlì.

Cusercoli – It is a small, ancient village, located on the Bidente River, on a spur of limestone and conglomerate rock. Its name derives from “clauserculum”, meaning narrowing of the valley. At the top of the town is the medieval castle of the Conti Guidi, already well-known in the 11th century, with its church and bell tower, few remaining frescoes, very small Italian garden, rectory, sundials, and parish clock, with its ancient mechanism recently restored. In the castle, thanks to the Municipality and the local Pro Loco organisation, a wellequipped “Hospitale” for Romea Pilgrims has been opened. In the castle there are also 14 valuable glazed terracotta tiles from the school of Luca della Robbia, depicting the Stations of the Cross. Cusercoli offers several gastronomic events, such as the famous St. George’s Mushroom Fair and the Bidente Valley Truffle Festival. Its production of chaplets and rosaries is typical of the area.

Further Exploration:

Pagadebit di Romagna – This is a DOC white wine produced in these areas. The curious name means “pay debts” in Romagna dialect. The vine has the unusual characteristic of being resistant to adverse climatic conditions: thus, even in the worst years, farmers were able to produce wine that could be used to pay the debts contracted in the previous year. For this reason, another nickname given to this variety is “Straccia Cambiale” (“promissory note ripper”).


The rains of May 2023 created some inconvenience in Romagna.
The route of the Via Romea also suffered damage; with some cleaning interventions the closure of the main sections was avoided or at least the possibility of some variations such as not to interrupt the continuity of the stages. We are looking for help from the Municipalities and the Region to ensure that the situation becomes safe again over time, bearing in mind that the autumn season could accentuate the inconvenience. Along the Ronco/Bidente river, the Region is restoring the riverbeds (and with them the adjacent roads). Likewise the Municipalities and the Provincial Administration for the main and secondary paved roads.
STAGE 25 – Forlì-Meldola-Cusercoli
1)The Ronco riverbed is accessible, but only in part: the last part, for which the variant was defined, is missing. The completely accessible itinerary is that of Borgo-Sisa, Forlì, S.Martino in Strada, Meldola.
2) After Meldola the itinerary on the river is interrupted (yellow line in the Guide, located between points 10-12. Then follow the main itinerary

please, see the Official Guide of the Via Romea Germanica (www.guidaromea.eu)


WARNING! in the wetlands of the plains provide yourself with products against mosquitoes

Bold type for structures we already used
Red type for structures we have an arrangement (with Credential*)
(*) Prices might change for special situations: please book early and ask for confirmation

How to arrive

Bologna Marconi airport (www.bologna-airport.it) > shuttle Bologna FS Railway Station = (www.tper.it); tel. +39-051-290290 TRAIN – (www.trenitalia.com) Bologna FS Railway Station – Forlì FS Railway Station  
Verona-Catullo airport (www.aeroportoverona.it) > shuttle Verona FS Railway Station = (www.atv.verona.it); tel. +39-045-8057811 TRAIN – (www.trenitalia.com) Verona FS Railway Station- Bologna – Forlì FS Railway Station  
Milano-Orio al Serio airport (www.orioaeroporto.it) > shuttle Bergamo FS Railway Station = (www.atb.bergamo.it); tel. +39-035-236026 TRAIN – (www.trenitalia.com) Bergamo -FS Railway Station Bologna – Forlì FS Railway Station  
Venezia-MarcoPolo airport (www.veniceairport.it) > shuttle Mestre FS Railway Station  = (www.atvo.it); tel. +39-0421-594672 – Airport Shuttle Service: www.airservicepadova.it
Shuttle Service booking : padova.booking-on-line.com
TRAIN – (www.trenitalia.com) Venezia-Mestre FS Railway Station- Bologna – Forlì FS Railway Station  

Where to eat

  Typical Dishes = Il Cucchiaio Typical Dishes = Dissapore Typical Dishes = Gambero Rosso Typical Dishes = Buonissimo
A&O Via Seganti,2 – 47100 RONCO – FORLI’ 0543-782710    
Conad Via Giannetto Vassura,38 – 47100 RONCO FORLI’      
La Mandragola-Ristorante-Pizzeria Via C.Pisacane,111 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 0543-338-8381126 lamandragola.meldola@gmail.com www.pizzerialamandragola.it arrangement
Il Bidentino – Ristorante Pizzeria Via Mazzini,34 -47014 MELDOLA-FC 0543-493796    
La Meridiana -Ristorante-Pizzeria Via G.Bruno,76 – 47014 MELDOLA 054433-492145 / 347-5343941    
La Coccinella – chiosco Via Della Repubblica,39 – 47014 MELDOLA 346-7729504    
Agriturismo Le Vigne Via S.Colombano,34 – Castelnuovo -47014 MELDOLA 338-8521665 / 0543-494900    
Ristorante Gualdo Via Nucleo,12 – Gualdo – 47014 MELDOLA 0543-494526 gualdoristorante@gmail.com www.gualdoristorante.com
Ristorante La Buga Via Gualdo interno,10 -47014 MELDOLA 0543-494743 labuga09@gmail.com  
Quelli della Notte – Pizzeria Via Carini,2 – 47012 CUSERCOLI FC 0543-989799 / 339-7524162    

Where to sleep

Agriturismo La Lenticchia Via Maglianella,12 – Magliano – 47121 FORLI’ 328-1887248 / 349-7773907 agriturismo@lalenticchia.net www.lalenticchia.net Convenzione
B&B Fiordinano strada Fiordinano 1/C – 47014 MELDOLA FC 0543-490370 / 349-4383380 info@bbfiordinano.it Arrangement
Ostello Castello – Cusercoli 47010 – CUSERCOLI (FC) 339-6040349 / 0039-0543-989195 info@prolocochiusadercole.it www.prolocochiusadercole.it
Ospitalità Pellegrina Parrocchia, 47010 CUSERCOLI FC 333-1201706 massimobonetti74@virgilio.it Arrangement
B&B – Faggi  Via per Voltre, 47010 CUSERCOLI FC 333-6942822 / 0543-989594   Arrangement
B&B Meldola Via della Repubblica,73 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 348 9001560    
B&B San Rocco Via Cavour,198 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 340 2556470 silvio.servadei@alice.it  
B&B Sport Via IV Novembre,17a – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 329 4152650   https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Hotel/Bb-Sport-612101425523226
B&B Adele Via Trieste,39 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 333 9137155 bbadelemeldola@gmail.com www.bbadele.it
B&B Trekking Via Palareto Teodorano, 4 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 349 5505214 bed.trekking@gmail.com www.bedandtrekking.com
B&B Del Bidente Via 1° Maggio,16 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 347 1725579 canestrini1@hotmail.it  
B&B Melissa Viale della Resistenza,10 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 348 8959141 info@melissabb.com www.melissabb.com
B&B La Cuccagna via Bruno 57 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 347-3023844 / 328-8160125 prenotazioni@bblacuccagna.it www.bblacuccagna.it
B&B Tenuta Stefenelli via Magnalova,3 – 47014 MELDOLA-FC 331-8418358 info@destefenelli.it www.destefenelli.it

Bike Service

Spacco Store Via Meldola,120 – 47030 FRATTA TERME FC 0543-460596/461105    
N.N.Cicli di Neri Nicola Via Indipendenza,1E – 47014 MELDOLA FC  366-4779854    

Pilgrim Service

 VISIT – EMILIA-ROMAGNA  logo-unione     www.emiliaromagnaturismo.it/it/vie-di-pellegrinaggio/via-romea-germanica
Associazione Il Molino – Protezione Civile via Fratta – 47030 BERTINORO 338-7468510 zanelli gilberto – 340-8149125 associazione.ilmolino@gmail.com  
Meldola-Ufficio-Cultura Piazza Orsini,29 – 47014 MELDOLA 0543-499452 fabbri.mo@comune.meldola.fc.it  
Morelli Marta – Guida Turistica 47122 FORLI’ 347-5573996 morelli-marta@libero.it  

Photos from the track