Classic photo opportunity tour but always very stimulating through its history and breathtaking landscapes.
We leave Riva del Garda to head south on the state road for about 500m where the “Ponale” road awaits us, a must for cyclists who frequent the paths of Garda Trentino and the starting point for our climb towards Valle di Ledro.
Built around 1850 as a bold project, until a few years ago it was the only direct link to Valle di Ledro. After a few years of disuse, the route has been renovated and returned to hikers who can walk or bike it to discover the incredible views overlooking Lake Garda.
The route is almost entirely unpaved, with short stretches of tarmac in the old tunnels. The climb has a gentle and steady incline, but the stops will not be made to rest as much as to admire the fantastic surrounding landscape.
As we pedal onwards we pass from the Mediterranean scrub into a dimension suspended between history and nature in the pre-Alpine landscape of Lake Ledro.
Following its southern shore we head towards the town of Pieve di Ledro where we could have a pleasant stop to enjoy a good pizza, traditional dishes, an ice cream or just to enjoy the sunshine while lying on the beach.
We continue to skirt the lake as far as Molina di Ledro, where we will take the path that will lead us back to Riva del Garda.
Difficulty: 3 out of 5
Highest point: 670m above sea level
Difference in altitude: + 605m
Distance: 30-35 km
Time: ½ day (4-5 hours)
… at the end of the lake we will head towards Bezzecca, the main village in the valley and famous for the Battle of Bezzecca in 1866 between the Austrian and Italian troops under Garibaldi’s command.
The small difference in altitude that we will find from here on and the gentle slopes make this stretch of route easy and less demanding.
The greenest part of the Valle di Ledro, in Val Concei, is mainly covered in trees and can boast the oldest tree in the valley, a huge beech tree (faggio), which gives its name to the nearby refuge, a resting and refreshment point where you can taste typical home made dishes such as strangolapreti dumplings or venison with polenta.
The return will take place in the fragrant pine forest and then continue on minor roads to the town of Pieve di Ledro. From here we will go along the northern shore of the lake to Molina di Ledro where, weather permitting, we can have a regenerating swim.
The return to Riva del Garda, from here on, will be on the same route as the first leg.
Difficulty: 3.5 out of 5
Highest point: 971m above sea level
Difference in altitude: + 1050m
Distance: 47-52 km
Time: 1 day (5-8 hours)
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