10 easy cycling routes in Lombardy
If you like to visit Italy by bicycle, Lombardy is for you.
1. Itinerary 1: Desenzano-Mantova
Rustic, wooded and damp due to the numerous springs is the landscape that surrounds the starting track: the Mincio Cycle Path, one of the first cycle paths built in Italy. Also known as the Peschiera Mantova, it runs mostly downhill for 43.5 kilometres, from Desenzano to Mantua, and accompanies the River Mincio to the Lakes of Mezzo, Inferiore and Superiore.
2. Itinerary 2: Milan-Abbiategrasso
Starting from the small Milanese church of San Cristoforo on the Alzaia Naviglio Grande. On the cycle-pedestrian path that runs alongside it, built to transport grain, wood and marble from Lake Maggiore to the Duomo, we head towards the Valle del Ticino Natural Park. Beyond Trezzano, about 12 kilometres from the Darsena, the roads are quiet, with little traffic. Once in the small village of Robecco, the eighteenth-century pier is striking. After about thirty kilometres, we head back to Abbiategrasso, passing through the ancient village of Cassinetta di Lugagnano.
3. Itinerary 3: Brescia-Franciacorta
Among the bubbles of Franciacorta, pedalling on undulating roads, through vineyards and monasteries, take the entirely paved cycle path from Paratico to Brescia. The track leads first to Clusane sul Lago, then to the Torbiere del Sebino Nature Reserve, in a landscape fresco where woods surround the mirrors of water. At the top, like a lookout, the Monastery of San Pietro in Lamosa.
4. Sondrio: the Valtellina Trail
The cycle-pedestrian path crossing, from top to bottom, the long Sentiero Valtellina, runs along the Adda. From Bormio to Villa di Chiavenna, passing through Tirano, Sondrio and Morbegno, the track, full of equipped rest areas, crosses numerous terraced vineyards, to the Pian di Spagna and Lago Mezzola Nature Reserve, a suitable nesting habitat for birds migrating north of Lake Como. Before leaving the trail, recharge your batteries with Bitto PDO cheese.
6. Bergamo: Chitò, the Imagna Valley Cycle Path
Breve, di appena 4 chilometri, è la Chitò, Ciclabile della Valle Imagna, così chiamata per l’ingegnere che ha progettato l’omonimo Ponte di Chitò, che attraversa la pista con le sue sei imponenti arcate di pietra. La partenza è da Clanezzo, a poca distanza da Bergamo, e l’arrivo a Strozza. Il percorso è sicuro, per la presenza di parapetti e, anche se perlopiù sterrato, è di facile percorrenza perché interamente pianeggiante. Boschi e sorgenti d’acqua fanno da sfondo, fiancheggiati a destra dal Monte Ubione e a sinistra dal torrente Imagna.
7. Monza and Brianza: the Villoresi cycle path
85 kilometres, sometimes asphalted, sometimes in gravel, along the Villoresi Canal (the second longest in Italy), which can be travelled without difficulty, especially in several stages. From Somma Lombardo to Cassano d'Adda, a cycle path immersed in the Lombardy countryside, also includes pleasant stops, such as at the Boscherona Park and the Reggia di Monza Park.
8. Varese: along the Lake
The entire cycle route runs along the perimeter of Lake Varese, with few differences in altitude. Set off from Buguggiate and, upon reaching the small port of Bodio Lomnago, admire the beautiful Monte Rosa and Campo dei Fiori. In Cazzago Brabbia the ‘icehouses’ are quite a sight. Once you reach Calcinate del Pesce and Lido della Schiranna, stop for a break in one of the bars in the area.
9. Cremona: the Walled City Cycle Path
In the Cremonese countryside, you will come across fortifications with an important past. The track starts from the “walled city” of Pizzighettone to reach Soncino, also surrounded by walls, on a surface that is sometimes asphalted, sometimes dirt. Suggestive views of the Adda and Oglio rivers, regenerating stops at the Valle del Serio Morto and Valle dei Navigli parks.
10. Lodi: the Paullo “ring” cycle path
This is, perhaps, the easiest of the 10 presented. Starting and ending in the same place: Casa Dell'Acqua Punto Park in Paullo, along a loop track, which closes in on itself. Icehouses, farming villages and green areas, along the banks of Lake Gerundo and the irrigation ditches of the Lodigiano.