Va’ Sentiero | 2024 Funding award winner

The world's craziest expedition on the world's longest trail in the world's most beautiful country

The Sentiero Italia trail, maintained by the Club Alpino Italiano, runs some 8,000 km across mountain ridges from Friuli Venezia Giulia to Sardinia. There is no mountain trek in the world quite so long and capable of boasting such scenic and cultural diversity.

To promote it, the Va’ Sentiero (VS) team devised an expedition with an innovative format, based on documenting the route and territories, and sharing the experience, both digital (storytelling) and analog, that is, inviting the public to join the expedition. To support the project, the VS team carried out a very successful fundraising campaign, managing to involve foundations, private companies and the general public through crowdfunding.

The journey lasted three years, from 2019 to 2021 (with two breaks and a pandemic in between) and was chronicled day by day on social media and by media partners (Touring Club Italiano, Repubblica, Gazzetta dello Sport, Radio Francigena). Thousands of people, especially young people, from sixteen different nations participated in the adventure.

Upon completion, the VS team produced a free guide available at vasentiero.org, translated into English. Sara Furlanetto and Yuri Basilic√≤ published the book Va’ Sentiero. In cammino per le Terre Alte d’Italia (Rizzoli) and the traveling photography exhibition Uno sguardo lungo 8000 km, which debuted at Triennale Milano in March 2023. Because of its achievements, Va’ Sentiero won the Grand Prix at the Europa Nostra. European Heritage Awards 2022, funded by the European Commission.

In the words of the Va’ Sentiero team, “The recognition of the Fondazione Italia Patria della Bellezza represents the crowning achievement of a long journey, not only physical, started in 2019 to bear witness to a part of Italy that often has little voice: that of the Highlands. With our film we want to tell the story of this incredible journey of ours, with the hope of inspiring many other people to set out – in a literal and metaphorical sense, to seek beauty up there, touch that vastness and become aware of it.”