Campofiorito e la vallata del Torrente Batticano

The approximately 15 Km journey travels largely between the towns of Campofiorito and Corleone; it has significant elevation changes and therefore requires some physical effort. The trails have natural interest for wide panoramic views in the eastern direction towards Montagna Grande, the south face of the Rocca Busambra and the town of Corleone.

 

In the wide valley of the Batticano stream, there are ancient water mills and the viaduct of the former railway track, near the village of Campofiorito. In the immediate vicinity, in addition to the archaeological site of the ancient castle, there is the area called Conte Ranieri, identified as the seat of the Roman town of Thuryrium.

The loop route starts and ends in the center of the town of Campofiorito, a small settlement of about 1,300 inhabitants, located at 650 m. The itinerary, with an average slope close to 6%, takes place partly on asphalted roads with low traffic, sometimes bumpy, and partly on a stretch of former railway with dirt surface.

Ciminna, Ventimiglia di Sicilia e Baucina

The path, which has a “figure 8” route with a starting point and arrival at the center of Ciminna, about 650 meters high, reconnects the village to two nearby hilltowns of Ventimiglia and Baucina. Short, but rewarding, it has a change in elevation of almost 600 m with an average slope close to 6%; therefore it requires some physical effort and mainly follows along low or no traffic roads, mostly paved, except the only stretch along the Regia Trazzera 530 with dirt surface.

The route has natural attraction for the many tracts with panoramic views of the river valleys surrounding the three municipalities, of olive groves and of the mountain ranges of the Serra di Capezzana and of Ciminna and Pizzo di Trigna, the impressive mountain buttresses characterized by nearly vertical rocky outcrops.

From the historical and cultural point of view, the itinerary connects the village of Ciminna, with foundations from the Norman era in the most ancient buildings, with the two villages of Baucina and Ventimiglia, which, with their regular layouts, are examples of urban settlement projects of a feudal character of the period between the 16th and 17th centuries.

L’area costiera Est: Bagheria, Casteldaccia, Santa Flavia e Ficarazzi

The route is relatively short (27 km), and, compared to other routes, less demanding, although it has a change in elevation of almost 500 m and some parts on bumpy roads. It winds through the urban centers of Bagheria, Casteldaccia, Santa Flavia and Ficarazzi, and the related sea resorts of Solanto, Porticello, Sant’Elia and Aspra.

Much of the route, which runs along secondary roads in a hilly area full of orchards and vegetable gardens, is flat, but there are some challenging climbs, both in the interior and along the coast. The itinerary also uses roads with potentially significant traffic, especially in the summer when the coastal area is very busy and therefore requires close attention to motor vehicles.

Landscape and cultural interest is based on many features: the coastal and mountainous settings (the relationship between the sea and Mount Catalfano), the citrus cultivation in rural areas, the archaeological remains of the town of Solunto on the slopes of mount Catalfano, patrician villas of the 18th century near Bagheria and Santa Flavia and the urban centers which developed from that period.

Bolognetta, Baucina e Ventimiglia di Sicilia

The route begins and ends in Bolognetta (350 m high), passing through the villages of Baucina and Ventimiglia di Sicilia and passing from the south near the Natural Reserve of Pizzo di Cane and Pizzo della Trigna. The track, suitable for road bikes (despite bumps and potholes), requires good physical effort for the length and the sizable elevation changes over 1,100 meters with an average slope close to 5%) and goes mainly along on low traffic asphalt roads, with some tracts with medium traffic levels.

The route runs through cultivated areas with extensive presence of inhabited settlements and is of a landscape interest for the part near the mountainous group of Pizzo di Cane and Pizzo di Trigna and for the rivers Eleuterio and Milicia (to the west) and the tributaries of the San Leonardo river (to the east).From the historical and cultural point of view it is distinguished by the presence of the Thermal Baths of Cefalà Diana of Arab origin and the crossing of the three villages of Bolognetta, Baucina and Ventimiglia, which, with their regular layouts, are examples of urban foundations of feudal character between the 16th and 17th centuries.

Roccamena e i Fiumi Belìce Destro e Sinistro

The route begins and ends in the village of Roccamena (500 m), in the upper valley of the Belìce river (between the right fork and the left fork of the Belice), but it takes place mostly in the township of Monreale and partly in Corleone. Utilizing mostly low or almost no-traffic roads, mainly asphalted, but also dirt farm roads, the route takes us to the Sanctuary of Tagliavia, located at almost 300 meters high.

Interesting for the continuous climbs and descents, the path requires good physical effort for the elevations, its length and the recurrence of rough tracts and is suitable for MTB bicycles, although it can be run by road bikes, despite the fact that presence of some dirt roads with bumps and potholes. The route crosses extensive cultivated areas, with very few homes and there are almost no public services or facilities; the crops are grain and forage, with different colors depending on the season, but there are also extensive wine-growing areas.

Roccamena e Santuario di Tagliavia

The route begins and ends in the  village of Roccamena (500 m), in the upper valley of the Belìce river (between the right fork and the left fork of the Belice), but it takes place mostly in the  township of Monreale and partly in  Corleone. Utilizing mostly low or almost no-traffic roads, mainly asphalted, but also dirt farm roads, the route takes us to the Sanctuary of Tagliavia, located at almost 300 meters high.

Interesting for the continuous climbs and descents, the path requires good physical effort for the elevations, its length and the recurrence of rough tracts and is suitable for MTB bicycles, although it can be run by road bikes, despite the fact that presence of some dirt roads with bumps and potholes. The route crosses extensive cultivated areas, with very few homes and there are almost no public services or facilities; the  crops are grain and forage, with different colors depending on the season, but there are also extensive wine-growing areas.

Godrano, Ficuzza e Mezzojuso

The path, circular and mountainous, begins and ends in the village of Godrano, about 690 m high, with a large part of the trail in the municipality of Mezzojuso and crossing portions of the communes of Corleone (the enclave of the village of Ficuzza) Monreale, Villafrati and Cefalà Diana.

The path, with significant elevation changes (over 1,000 meters with an average slope of close to 5%), with notable climbs (over 17% uphill slope, and 21% downhill slope) and rough surface, requires good physical effort and use of a good MTB for the difficult conditions of the high roads in the Ficuzza Reserve.

The first part up to Mezzojuso, with significant slopes, follows along dirt roads and / or partially paved roads and crosses wide wooded areas, with no dwellings and services, except in the village of Ficuzza where there are also rest/picnic areas.

 

Vicari e la valle del San Leonardo

The route explores the eastern part of the Tourist district, crossing the territories of Vicari, Roccapalumba and Caccamo and requires good physical effort linked to some tracts with significant elevation changes. The hamlet of Vicari, almost 622 m high, is the starting and ending point of a nearly 27 km circular path with a height difference of 456 m and an average slope of over 4% with some remarkable climbing tracts (over 12%) and with a bumpy surface.

The route, which runs through extensive cultivated and grazing areas, with few public services and facilities, except in residential areas, is suitable for MTB bikes but can also be used with road bikes despite the presence of some dirt roads with bumps and potholes, and travels along mainly on low or no traffic roads, partly asphalted (with some bumps), but there are also some parts on dirt roads.

The historical and natural richness of the territory crossed is testified by the medieval village of Vicari with its castle of Byzantine and then Norman origin, from the town of Regalgioffoli (the ancient Rahal Jaffal of the Arab era) and from the orderly urban layout of Roccapalumba, typical of urban centers founded in the second half of the 16th century.

 

Castronovo di Sicilia, Monte Carcaci e l’alta valle del Fiume Platani

The route, about 44 km, explores the upper valley of the Platani River on the southern side of the province of Palermo, in the municipality of Castronovo di Sicilia, except the stretch near the village of Filaga, in the municipality of Prizzi. The village of Castronovo, at almost 500 meters above sea level, forms the beginning and end of a circular route with significant changes in elevation(over 1,100 meters with an average slope of about 5%), with some remarkable climbs (over 10%) and over rough terrain.

The route, which is suitable for MTB, but is also accessible by road bikes despite bumps and potholes, travels  mostly on low or no traffic roads, partly asphalted (with some rough parts) with stretches on dirt roads and a highway with fast traffic (SS 188).

 

The places crossed are rich in history: Byzantine fortifications of the 7th & 8th century AD (11 towers and walls more than 3 meters thick) on Mount Kassar, above the village of Castronovo, asseria Melìa (ancient monastery founded by Pope Saint Gregory the Great (later known in the Byzantine period with the title of St. Stephen), remains of the Roman villa in Contrada S. Luca (near the intersection between the SP36 and SS188) and the ruins of the rural village of Riena, built in the 1940s in a rationalist style.

The valley of the Platani River, the woods of the Monte Càccaci Nature Reserve and Lake Fanaco, reachable through rural roads, offer interesting landscape views.

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