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Trentino: pedalling in nature with the scent of wines and apples

30 September 2022

3 minutes

From the peaks of the Dolomites to the shores of Lake Garda, cycling in Trentino is a rewarding experience immersed in nature: five not to be missed itineraries.

From the peaks of the Dolomites to the shores of Lake Garda, cycling in Trentino is a rewarding, green experience embracing rivers, lakes, woods and meadows. Vineyards and apple orchards are an invitation to enjoy local flavours, while Mediaeval castles bear witness to an impressive past: here are five entirely green itineraries.

1. Dolomites Cycle Way

The route crosses the Fassa and Fiemme Valleys where, in summer, melting snows reveal broad, green meadows and the pure white Dolomia rocks against the backdrop of the majestic Latemar and Catinaccio Dolomites. The route unwinds through fir and larch woods for almost 50 km, flanking the Avisio stream and best travelled slowly; it largely follows the route of the famous Marcialonga, the most important Italian cross-country skiing competition held on the last Sunday in January. It sets off from Alba di Canazei in Val di Fassa as far as the Moena plateau and then up to Molina di Fiemme. It can also be travelled in the opposite direction.

2. Lakes Cycle Way

The Valle dei Laghi cycle and pedestrian way starts from the shores of Lake Garda and passes entirely along the Valle dei Laghi, unwinding like a long ribbon between the nature, culture and history of the Trentino area. It leaves Riva del Garda, flanking the River Sarca closely for 40 km before reaching places of castles, vineyards and lakes such as Cavedine, Santa Massenza and Toblino. Along the way, Arco di Trento - a holiday destination of the Habsburg nobility nestled at the feet of the cliff where remains of the castle still stand - is worth a visit. Crossing the fascinating landscape of the Marocche, we come to the tiny village of Sarche. The route can end here or continue along much more demanding sections for more experienced cyclists.

3. Following the River Adige

The cycling tour starts from Rovereto, an important cultural location and a must-visit to the famous MART - the Contemporary and Modern Art Museum of Trento and Rovereto. It then continues, intermingling nature and history: here, Vallagarina vineyards invite you to stop for tastings in wine cellars and the Taio biotope is a perfect nature reserve for watching migratory birds. Many Mediaeval fortifications on the banks of the River Adige include the imposing Castel Beseno which can be reached after a strenuous 2 km climb. On the way back, you will also cross the futuristic Nomi bicycle bridge. The route is entirely flat and over paved roads that are closed to vehicle traffic.

4. The apple orchards in Val di Non

A relaxing ride along country lanes and cycle paths through the famous apple orchards extending as far as the eye can see, dotted by castles and ancient noble mansions. This area is marked off by the Quattro Ville, with breath-taking views of the surrounding mountain ranges. Don't miss Castel Cles, the main stop, where you can admire Lake Santa Giustina below from a hilltop. Moving south, strictly guided visits are recommended to Castel Valer and Castel Nanno, private residences immersed in the Adamello Brenta Nature Park. The route is suitable for everyone in having no particular difficulties, while naturally also allowing cyclists to taste the famous local apples.

5. Valsugana Cycle Way

A cycling itinerary suitable for everyone set amidst the nature of Valsugana leading as far as the Veneto border. An 80 km ride among the scents and colours of apple orchards in bloom and cultivated fields, initially skirting Lake Caldonazzo lake and then the River Brenta, passing through tiny, characteristic mountain villages. If you have little time available, even the initial stretch from Pergine to Borgo Valsugana (about 30 km), is extremely representative and enjoyable. The cycle path also recently won the Press Award at the Italian Green Roads Award 2020, the Italian cycling tourism Oscar, for the most beautiful green ways in the country peninsula capable of merging local areas, culture and gastronomic excellence.