Highlights and tour details
Starting from Alessandria station and going along for several kilometers through the streets of the town you come to San Salvatore Monferrato, the first and largest of Monferrato’s towns to be crossed along this route, nestled in the hills of Alexandria. Leaving the street circuit behind us, is the road that leads us to San Salvatore through the town Clorio (part of the same country), the road is almost entirely flat, characterized by little traffic by car, where soon after a few kilometers we meet the first ascents in vicinity of the first stage.
The presence of a high Palaeologan tower built in 1413 (visible from many kilometers away), recalls the centuries-old affiliation of this country to the Marquis of Monferrato.
Leaving the village take the road connected to the next stage of the route, that is, Lu Monferrato and the few kilometers that separate the two boroughs, which will be entirely on trails on the ridge of the hills that divide the plains of Alessandria (left) and a beautiful stunning landscape ranging from the maritime alps to Monte Rosa. According to some studies, Lu Monferrato boasts a Roman origin but what will undoubtedly fascinate us is the fact that this small village retains a strong connotation typical of Monferrato villages, still in good part related to wine production and more recently to hazelnuts.
Then after going through the village we begin another suggestive scenic route which connects Lu to Cuccaro, the third stage of our bicycle ride. This stretch of road is absolutely the most fantastic from a naturalistic viewpoint thanks to the vineyards and hazelnut trees on both sides of the ridge from which you can see breathtaking views of the north side.
The arrival in Cuccaro will literally be downhill and this small village, as well as preserving the classic features of Monferrato, has been rumored to be the probable birthplace of the famous navigator Cristoforo Colombo. In support of which is no longer just a theory, there are studies and documents which you can nowadays (by reservation) visit at the Museum of the Colombian Studies Center, located in the center of the village.
At this point, you are halfway through the journey and after a short stretch of road outside the village we start the only dirt road segment, which is almost entirely downhill on a gentle slope.
The naturalistic context passed through here is also characterized by the presence of vineyards, hazelnut trees and some sporadic farmhouses including Cascina Bohemia (up to a short time ago possessed by the legendary Baron Liedholm) and by the farm Capra Regina, known throughout the area for the production of goat cheese.
The only stretch of dirt road ends at the crossroads with the main road which connects the villages of Fubine to Quargnento, with the last mentioned as our next stop. The plains, from this point on, will take us through to the end of our journey.
What you will notice upon reaching Quargnento is the presence, in some corners of the village, of reproductions of paintings by Carlo Carrà, a well- known local painter exponent of Italian Futurism.
Moreover, the beautiful basilica of San Dalmazio is definitely worth visiting in this quaint little town, located in the center of the village. We are heading towards the conclusion of our journey, with the last kilometers of the plains separating us from our return to Alexandria where a necessary and definitely rewarding visit to the Savoy Citadel (near the new bridge Meyer), is definitely recommended. By Claudio Pasero and Daniela Pestarino.