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Walking the Via Francigena Pilgrim Route - Part 1

Canterbury to Lausanne

Guidebook to the first 1090km of Canterbury-Rome pilgrimage route the Via Francigena, covering from Canterbury to Lausanne. The route passes through England, France (Nord-Pas-de-Calais, Picardie, Champagne-Ardenne and Franche-Comte) and Switzerland to finish by Lake Geneva. Described in 52 stages, with information on facilities and pilgrim hostels.


Suitable from April through to October. Hikers continuing past Lausanne on the Via Francigena should time their journey to coincide with the summer opening of the Great Saint Bernard Pass.


Enjoy historic Canterbury, then in France visit lovely Arras, Laon, Reims, Langres, and Besançon. Continue to beautiful lakeside Lausanne, Switzerland.


Suitable for all levels of walkers, each stage is graded 1-4 for difficulty. The terrain between Canterbury and Besançon is also suitable for cyclists of all abilities. Lodging in gîtes, hotels and private homes is available with advance reservation on the entire route at intervals no greater than 35km.

Must See

Charming Canterbury, the White Cliffs of Dover, the English Channel, rolling French countryside full of historic WWI battlefields and cemeteries, world-famous cathedrals at Laon and Reims, the Champagne wine region, the historic walled cities of Langres and Besançon, the Jura Mountains, Gorge de l'Orbe, Lake Geneva and Lausanne
23 Feb 2023
17.20 x 11.60 x 1.70cm

A guidebook to walking the 2000km Via Francigena pilgrimage route from Canterbury to Rome. Part of a three-volume set, this volume covers the first 1090km, from Canterbury, England, through France to Lausanne, Switzerland. Suitable for most abilities, this section can be walked in around two months, or there is the option to cycle the majority of the way, shaving around three weeks off the total time.

The route is presented in 52 stages, of between 11 and 40km (7–25 miles). Variants for cyclists are shown on the maps but not described.

  • GPX files available to download
  • 1:100,000 mapping plus larger-scale town maps for key locations
  • Handy route summary tables and pilgrim lodging details help you plan your itinerary
  • Comprehensive information about refreshments and facilities along the route
  • Advice on planning and preparation

Table of Contents
The Reverend Sandy Brown Cicerone author SBROWN

By The Reverend Sandy Brown

Sanford 'Sandy' Brown is a long-distance walker and ordained minister who lives in Lucca, Italy. He was born in California and his great-grandparents migrated to San Juan Capistrano from Mexico in the 19th century. Inspired by The Pilgrimage by Paulo Coelho, he trekked the Camino de Santiago in 2008 and since then has walked over 15,000km on pilgrim trails in Europe and the U.S. He records his pilgrim adventures in his popular blog at In 2020, Sandy joined Cicerone Press as Associate Publisher for Caminos and Pilgrimages.

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