La Piccola Cassia , recently rediscovered and made passable, retraces that stretch of the Apennines that the Romans used to connect the Po Valley and Rome.
Emilia-Romagna was initially part of the so-called Cisalpine Gaul, the territory occupied by Celtic populations. The Romans, proceeding in their expansionist design, came to conquer it, leading to a territorial reorganization which marked the landscape of the region in an incisive way also through the creation of a real road system.
Confirming the existence of a Cassia in the Emilia region, some toponymic "inheritances" can also be considered: in some names of places such as Cassiola, Cassola, Casola or Casolano widely spread in the territory between Modena and Bologna, in particular in the watershed between Panaro and Samoggia.
The important function of connecting road of the Little Cassia disappeared with the crisis of the Roman Empire but its history was not over. In fact, it returned to assume the role of strategic route in the Lombard era, especially during the conflict with the Byzantine Exarchate (attested near Bologna).
When crossing the Colli Bolognesi the itinerary is full of many historical-religious testimonies (Rocca di Bazzano, Abbey of Monteveglio, Castello di Serravalle and S. Apollinare, Badia, Bombiana, and many other historic towns and villages) and characterized by a very interesting and varied rural and natural landscape, which passes from the plains to the hills with badlands and vineyards.
Traveling along it you will also be able to savor the excellence of the territory: we are in fact in the lands of Parmigiano Reggiano, Bolognese cured meats and wines from the Colli Bolognesi (see also Typical products page ).
For more information you can consult the website of Piccola Cassia: