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Southern Tuscany: Albinia to Capalbio via Magliano
This is a short ride in Southern Tuscany (45 km) that will take you inland from the coast at Albinia up to Magliano in Toscana and back to the coast at Capalbio.
From Rome, take the direct train (destination Pisa), which departs roughly every 2 hours from 8am on. Get off at Albinia. This station has stairs, which are always a pain with a bike. As you exit the station head out to the left and at the intersection with the main road you can either turn left into town and pick up supplies for lunch or to the right to start the ride.
This is a bit of a busy road. There isn't so much traffic, but cars do go fast. You have to ride on this for 4 km but it is wide and straight so cars can see you. At the intersection with the flashing light and signs for Magliano, turn left. Just to the right of this intersection is a bar with average sandwiches.
The road to Magliano has less traffic. It is relatively flat, with just a couple of uphill bits, but not steep at all. This is part of the Strada del Vino Colli di Maremma. Near the start of this road is a beautiful farmhouse on the right that always has a lot of sheep grazing in front. If you pass by in the spring or fall, you'll see plenty of lambs.
After about 12 km, make note of a road that goes off to the right with signs for Marsiliana and S. Andrea, just past a soccer field. You are almost at Magliano and you'll be coming back here to continue with the ride. You'll see the walled town of Magliano in Toscana just past this intersection. There is a road off to the right that goes up to the town. It is uphill but not steep at all.
Of interest are in Magliano are: Palazzo di "Checco il bello" and Palazzo dei Priori, the churches SS Annunziata, San Martino (the oldest in town dating back to the year 1000) and San Giovanni Battista. The views from the town are beautiful. On clear days you can see the coast. The view of the massive walls from outside the town surrounded by olive groves isn't bad either.
For a small town, Magliano has a number of good restaurants. These fill up on Sundays.
Take the road back to the intersection for Marsiliana and head left (the only way). Not far from the intersection, on your left you'll see the remains of the church of S. Bruzio (actually San Tiburzio but commonly known as San Bruzio). Not much is left of the church though you can still admire some carvings and its position is picturesque; 500 meters off the road and surrounded by olive trees.
This road has virtually no traffic and is also part of the Strada del Vino Colli di Maremma. It is little hillier than the other road but nothing too steep and the climbs are all very short. There are some nice views. You'll see some Etruscan tombs along the way but unfortunately they are not open to the public. At least not without an appointment.
In the distance you'll see La Tenuta di Marsiliana, a hamlet perched on a hilltop, the castle of which is now a vacation rental. At the intersection with the main road just past the soccer field, turn right. This is a busy road but you'll only be on it about 500 meters. Follow the indications for Capalbio to your left.
This road is quite flat and you'll see more wooded areas, which can make it quite nice in the fall when the leaves are turning. In the spring you can see fields of flowers. You'll get glimpses of Capalbio far off in the distance.
Just before you arrive at Capalbio, you can choose to either proceed straight and visit the town, which is really charming but an uphill climb to get there, or turn right and head toward Capalbio Scalo where you'll take the train back to Rome (or wherever you're staying).
Along this road is my favorite olive grove. The trees cover a hill and in the late afternoon sun the shadows of the trees planted in perfect rows is a beautiful sight.
You'll have to cross the Aurelia, a very busy and dangerous road. There is a flashing light but I've never seen it turned on. I always get off my bike and run across when the traffic breaks. Head straight down this road and you'll arrive at the station. There are a couple of bars here, one across the street from the station and the other next to it.
This is an unmanned station so it is helpful if you can get your ticket elsewhere before arriving. There is an automated machine but it sometimes doesn't work.
If you have time to kill before the arrival of your train, you can pass under the railroad tracks and visit the WWF center at Lago di Burano or go to the beach. See Bikes and Beaches - Southern Tuscany for details.
Slow Travel - Travel Notes - Biking: Articles describing bike routes and taking bikes on trains.
www.trenitalia.com: TrenItalia, the Italian train system.
Slow Travel Italy - Instructions - Trains: Notes about using trains in Italy.
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