Embrace the natural world in Valsugana
Five options for eco-friendly holidays by Lake Levico and Lake Caldonazzo
SUMMER 2020 – Take life slowly and savour every moment: travel by bike, eat wholesome food, breathe in the fragrant mountain air and take a refreshing, revitalizing dip in the lake. If this sounds like your perfect holiday, Valsugana is the place for you. Located just a few kilometres from Trento, the valley is the first sustainable tourism destination in the world to be certified in accordance with the criteria of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council.
It has earned the prestigious accolade for numerous reasons, first and foremost among which is the clean water in Lake Levico and Lake Caldonazzo: two of the warmest lakes in Europe. They are ideal for swimming and they have both been awarded sought-after Blue Flags. Then there is a long cycle path that tourists can use to get around without having to drive, as well as a vast network of paths in the Lagorai mountain range. Finally, there is a wide range of local foods such as deli meats and cheese from shepherd’s huts, not to mention Trentodoc wine. Here are five of the many ways in which you can embrace the natural world on holiday.
Harness the wind in a sailing boat
Sailing is a magical experience. The wind fills the sails and sends the boat racing across the lake, with the water lapping against the sides and refreshing spray occasionally cooling your face. If you have never tried it, a holiday in Valsugana is the perfect time to do so. The local sailing instructors will introduce you to the joys of one of the oldest ways of travelling across the waves.
Go stand-up paddleboarding around Blue Flag lakes
One of the best ways to explore Lake Caldonazzo and Lake Levico is to go stand-up paddleboarding (SUP). Paddle along slowly, basking in the warm energy of the sunshine and the cool vitality of the water in the lake. Valsugana is home to some of the warmest lakes in Southern Europe, providing the ideal conditions for swimming for many months of the year. The facilities and services on the beaches help to ensure that the water is always safe for swimmers.
Riding on the shore
Valsugana is home to a cycle path that is hugely popular with cyclists not only because it stretches out over an impressive 80 km but also because it goes through some spellbinding scenery, first by the lake and then through apple orchards and picturesque villages. On top of all of this, in 2020 it won an Italian Green Road Award: the most prestigious Italian accolade in the world of bicycle touring. Every year, the prizes are presented to the most outstanding eco-friendly routes in Italy, which must offer an outstanding blend of local character, culture, food and wine.
Listen to the sound of nature
Coots, mallards, reed warblers… there are all sorts of interesting creatures to spot on the shores of Lake Levico, especially for keen birdwatchers. There is an 8 km circular route with lots of benches where you can stop and admire the lake as you listen to the birds singing.
Strolling among trees and works of art
If you like walking and wandering in beautiful surroundings, make sure you go to Arte Sella during your stay in Valsugana. Technically it is an open-air gallery for natural works of art that constantly interact with the natural world, but when you get there you will see that there is much more to it than that. It will take you on a journey into a peaceful realm where you can lose and then find yourself once again.