#8 - The Panoramic

#8 - The Panoramic
Difficulty: High
Distance: 122 Km
Elevation gain: 1271 Mt

This itinerary is one of the courses in the area that should not be missed: the road from Pesaro to Gabicce Monte enchants with its fantastic landscapes of hills and clifftops overlooking the Adriatic Sea, its quiet roads and fun “mangia e bevi” gastronomic stops.
The descent from Monte Titano is via the Murata and Fiorentino face, quite a technical stretch that meanders through vegetation until reaching the Conca River valley in the village of Conca Mercatino Conca, from where you follow the Conca torrent, which flows into the Adriatic Sea near Porto Verde and along the way feeds into a large number of trenches, that is, artificial canals parallel to the river used to irrigate the fields and activate the mills that until the last century fuelled the local economy. Having arrived in Morciano di Romagna, a community that seems to have even been founded in the Roman era, we move away from the course of the Conca River to head towards Pesaro. The ride takes us through the verdant hills of San Giovanni in Marignano, a town of Mediaeval origin, once considered the “breadbasket of the Malatesta” for the fertility of its land.
From here continue towards the sea, but before reaching the coast, take the Strada Statale Adriatica (highway) that skirts the sea up to Otranto, noting that our course follows it until Pesaro.
Just before reaching the provincial capital, the second biggest municipality in Marche in terms of population and the important commercial port, you tackle the first short climb of the day: the Siligata. After the climb you continue with a short descent towards Pesaro, then head towards Porto, from where you take the road that leads to Gabicce Monte in just over 20 km, which will shortly reveal the reason behind its name.
The course, pure pleasure for cyclists, offers repeated gastronomic “mangia e bevi” with no flat stretches, but devoid of excessively demanding climbs and characterised by mild bends. The road is quite wide with little traffic and leads to the interior of the natural park of Monte San Bartolo, a pristine area of 1600 hectares at 200 metres above sea level bordering the Marche coast, where park and sea embrace, creating natural crags with spectacular views.
Along the series of rises and falls you find panoramic rest areas – where taking a souvenir photo with the sea as backdrop is a must –  and stops in places such as Fiorenzuola di Focara, where you can rest for a moment in the shade, restore yourself at the coffee bar and fill your water bottle at the fountain.
Having reached Gabicce Monte, you go back down towards the waterfront, which from Cattolica starts to resemble the sandy coastal lowlands characterising the Romagna Riviera. Cycling along the waterfront, you pass through the most renowned coastal towns: Misano Adriatico, Riccione and before reaching the centre of Rimini, near Bellariva, you resume the ride back and continue to Gaiofana and Ospedaletto, heading for the Republic of San Marino through Faetano, a nice flat stretch through vegetation along the Marano River.
Having passed the state border, you once again climb the Faetano Castle face of Monte Titano, which presents two options for reaching the summit, one more challenging than the other, for climbers who still feel like pedalling.