Most Popular Cycling Places on Lake Garda

The Most Popular Bike Routes Around Lake Garda

Most Popular Cycling Places on Lake Garda

The Most Popular Bike Routes Around Lake Garda

With its magnificent scenery and scenic roads, the Lake Garda is one of the most popular destinations for cycling enthusiasts in Italy. For both amateur and professional cyclists, Garda offers a wide variety of interesting routes around the lake and inland. 
In this article we will explore in detail the most popular cycling routes around Lake Garda, ideal for challenging workouts or enjoyable bike rides. From the Gardesana Occidentale to the Baldo climbs, from the Garda Ciclovia to the roads in the moraine hills, there is something for every taste and level of fitness. Are you ready to pedal? Let's explore Garda's most beloved cycling routes!

The Western Gardesana

One of the best-known cycle routes is definitely the Gardesana Occidentale, which follows the western coast of Lake Garda from Limone sul Garda to Peschiera del Garda, covering about 50 km. The road, classified as the SS45bis, allows you to pedal just a few meters from the waters of the lake while admiringsuggestive landscapes. 
From Limone to Riva del Garda the route is entirely flat, also ideal for families with children. Once past Riva, the first challenging climbs are encountered, such as the one toward the Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona. Other gradients are encountered after Torbole, alternating with more relaxed stretches. 
The Gardesana Occidentale offers unique views of the lake, and it is a joy to ride there in the early morning or at sunset. Popular on weekends, it offers a pleasant ride along one of Italy's most beautiful lakes.

The Mount Baldo Tour

For more trained cyclists, a very interesting route is the complete tour of Monte Baldo, the mountain overlooking the Verona side of Lake Garda. It is a challenging route of about 80 km with an elevation gain of more than 3,000 meters, offering breathtaking views from its peaks.
Starting from Malcesine, you immediately climb in hairpin bends to the Sanctuary of Madonna della Corona. Once at the top, you can admire Lake Garda from above. You then continue to Navene, continuing to the Fittanze Pass and the Tratto Spino Pass.
You reach the 1900-meter Rifugio Telegrafo, the highest point of the itinerary. From here you descend back to Rivoli until you return to the lake at Garda or Bardolino after the last climb of Monte Cingla. A challenging route reserved for experienced bikers, with technical descents and several dirt sections. However, the exertions are amply repaid by the breathtaking views!

The Garda Cycle Route

For those who prefer a more relaxing ride, the Garda Cycle Route is an ideal choice. This loop route of about 140 km follows the shores of the lake, with stretches in its own seat away from car traffic. The trail alternates between natural dirt and asphalt surfaces. 
Starting from Peschiera, you pedal toward Lazise, Bardolino, Garda, Torri del Benaco, Malcesine, renowned lake resorts. After passing Riva del Garda, the circumnavigation of the lake continues to Limone, Salò, Sirmione and gradually the other coastal towns until returning to Peschiera.
Thanks to the well-maintained surface and complete signage, the Ciclovia is suitable even for untrained hikers. Along the route you will encounter several refreshment points for a break. The Ciclovia allows you to calmly discover all the most picturesque corners of Lake Garda.

The Morainic Hills of Garda 

The Garda hinterland then offers interesting routes among hills, vineyards and orchards. A very scenic route is the Colline Moreniche del Garda, between Pastrengo, Valeggio sul Mincio and Villafranca di Verona. 
Starting from the center of Peschiera, you first climb up to the Sanctuary of San Martino Buonalbergo. From here you go through a succession of ups and downs with splendid views of Baldo and the Veronese plain. 
You pass through the villages of Castellaro Lagusello, Borghetto and Valeggio sul Mincio. You then pedal toward Villafranca for about 30 km among soft hills covered with olive groves, cherry trees and vines. A perfect route in spring, with hills tinged with green and orchards in bloom.

The Ring of Mount Luppia 

In the Province of Verona, among the most loved by cyclists there is Mount Luppia, starting from Cerro Veronese. This 30km loop trail has an elevation gain of 800 meters, and offers unique scenery.
After a challenging first climb, you reach a plateau of green meadows, perfect for admiring the view. You then cross the Grotto Forest to descend back down single track to the starting point. 
Mount Luppia is prized for its fun and scenic trails, suitable for both mountain biking and cyclocross. A good alternative to the busier Garda roads.

The Sarca Valley 

Moving to the Trentino side of Lake Garda, an area popular with cyclists is the Sarca Valley. Starting from Riva del Garda, we ride up the Sarca River to just beyond the village of Dro. 
You will be riding on back roads with several short but intense climbs, particularly good for training. The first 15 km are the hardest, with a continuous climb and several switchbacks.
Once past the town of Nago Torbole, the route softens slightly, while still remaining challenging. The Sarca Valley offers striking views and little traffic, and is a perfect place to test yourself away from the frenzy of the lake.

Rocchetta Pass and Lake Loppio

Also starting from Riva del Garda, it is interesting to climb to the Rocchetta Pass and then descend along Lake Loppio to Mori, for a total of about 50km.
After an initial uphill section, the Rocchetta Pass is reached. From here there is a splendid view of Lake Garda and the surrounding mountains. The second part is a quick descent to Lake Loppio, a completely different body of water from Lake Garda, more collected and peaceful. 
It runs along Lake Loppio to picturesque Mori, passing through villages such as Nago and Torbole on Lake Loppio. A nice loop ride with several landscape changes and elevation changes to stay in shape.

The Valley of the Lakes 

Inland to the north of Riva del Garda opens the beautiful Valle dei Laghi, popular with bicycle tourists. Starting from Riva, it climbs for about 15 km to Lake Tenno, a small jewel set in the woods, and then descends along Lake Toblino with its medieval castle.
Continue to Lake Cavedine, then on to the Gresta Valley, another area rich in alpine lakes and scenic trails. You can create several loops to run on roads with little traffic among typical Trentino villages. The Valle dei Laghi offers continuous picturesque views away from the lake heat.

The Ascents of Monte Bondone

For those looking for challenging climbs, Monte Bondone above Trento offers several slopes that are very frequnted by cyclists. The most classic is the one from Aldeno, which has nearly 1,400 meters of elevation gain distributed along 21 switchbacks. It starts on the outskirts of Trento and goes all the way up to the 1550-meter Rifugio Viote on Bondone. 
Another significant climb is from Sardagna, shorter but intense with an average gradient of 9%. Even more trained climbers climb from Ponte Alto to Rifugio Graffer with peaks of 14% gradient.
Bondone is a perfect training ground for climbers, with several slopes to tackle. The exertions are always rewarded by the unique views of the Brenta Dolomites and the Adige Valley.
In conclusion, Lake Garda and the surrounding areas offer an extraordinary variety of cycling routes suitable for all abilities and needs. 
There are scenic roads like the Gardesana, challenging climbs like those of Monte Baldo and Monte Bondone, pleasant rides between hills and lakes like in the Valleys of the Lakes and Sarca. Then there is also the Garda Ciclovia del Garda, which can be ridden by everyone, and interesting off-road tours.
Making the most of this rich range of routes, Lake Garda proves to be an ideal destination for all two-wheel enthusiasts, both professionals and amateurs. So, all you have to do is choose your favorite route and ... have fun!