On water’s edge

On water’s edge


The Water Green Road

Pedalling along and towards the water, through nature and history

  • 1 day
  • May, June, July, August, September
  • Cycling and mountain biking, Summer outdoor

It is called the “Water Green Road”: a 143 km cycle-tourism loop itinerary, 138 km of which run on a bicycle/pedestrian trail, and a very small stretch of 4 km on a low-flow road.

The Water Green Road, which in the summer of 2021 was awarded the Italian Cycling Tourism Oscar, immediately slides along the banks of the Adige river, passing through Trento and Rovereto, then continuing towards Lake Garda. The return is along river Sarca, up to the Valley of Lakes. The final stretch is the one that involves a little more climb up to Monte Bondone, to then descend towards the city of Trento and climb up to the starting point.

Our advice? Travel along the Water Green Road calmly, without haste. Take a few breaks and set your curiosity perhaps with some deviation from the route to discover museums, sanctuaries, canyons.

You can take a cue from this itinerary, which sees the Water Green Road in 3 stages!


1st stage: By bike among vineyards and museums


The Water Green Road starts in Cadino di Faedo, at the point where the Adige Valley narrows between the mountains. The initial stretch immediately runs alongside the Adige river, whose embankment has been converted into a bicycle/pedestrian path.

Proceeding southward, you pedal gently through the vineyards of the Wine Trail. You traverse the village of San Michele allAdige, which is home to the Museum of Uses and Customs of the Trentino People, the most important Italian ethnographic museum in the region.

The trail is flat up to Trento and, following along the banks of the Adige river, takes you straight to the Le Albere district. First, you see the sixteenth-century Palazzo delle Albere, then the MUSE, the Science Museum, whose roof brings to mind the profile of Trentino peaks. In the Museum, you can see dinosaurs, primitive men, a tropical greenhouse and even a glacier.

Get back in the saddle and immerse yourself in the countryside of the valley floor, through orchards and vineyards, until you reach Rovereto, the City of Peace. Getting there by bike to the square by which you can access the Mart is a detour that we recommend you take. Just think that the great dome, which overlooks the square and is the symbol of the Museum, has the same diameter as the Pantheon in Rome.

The direction of the trail is southward, in the direction of the village of Mori. This is where the first ideal stage ends: don’t miss a visit to the Sanctuary of Montalbano, gathered atop a rustic staircase, with its beautiful spire bell tower and its majestic clock having a diameter of 4 metres.


2nd stage: Heading to the lakes!


From Mori, head towards Lake Garda. The bicycle/pedestrian trail runs along the Lake Loppio biotope, following the route of the old Habsburg railway from Mori to Nago. At Passo San Giovanni, you cross the hill towards the Garda basin to reach Nago. In front of you, a fjord with Mediterranean tones and colours: here is Lake Garda in all its beauty!

The descent towards the village of Torbole is very fast. Palms, olive trees, oleanders, lemons… the atmosphere is right for a break. You can dip your feet in the fresh water, enjoy an ice cream, the sun or whatever the landscape gives you.

The route then continues northward, towards Arco, along the Sarca river and then beyond, towards the Valley of Lakes. The bicycle trail skims the Marocche Nature Reserve: you find yourself in a seemingly lunar landscape, surrounded by gigantic rock blocks, formed by ancient landslides at the time of the glaciations.

As you pedal northbound, once you reach the village of Sarche, a detour takes you inside the Sarca River Park above the Limarò gorge, carved by the Sarca river. Then go back down to the lakes of Toblino and Santa Massenza: you are in the land of grappas, Nosiola and Vino Santo DOC.


3rd stage: This is where the climb begins!

Mountain bike - Mtb - Cicloturismo | © Andreas herr-kern.com

The third and last stage rises in altitude. Go up to Monte Bondone and then go back down to Sardagna, a panoramic terrace overlooking the city. There is time for a coffee break, or something else: you can take it easy, because in Sardagna you can ride in a cable car equipped for bicycle transport; you can descend to the city suspended over the Adige river.

If, on the other hand, you want to get back on the saddle without delay, you can retrace the climb in reverse, with its 18 km and 38 hairpin bends, where the Luxembourg champion Charly Gaul, during the 1956 Giro d’Italia, became a real legend, despite the prohibitive conditions, under falling snow. And here you are, back in beautiful Trento!

You have time for a tour of the city centre: the Renaissance façade of Palazzo Geremia, the imposing Buonconsiglio Castle and the elegant and well-kept lounge on Piazza Duomo. The return to Cadino di Faedo is on the same stretch of track as the outward journey.