The Adamello Benta Natural Park needs no introduction. It is not only the largest protected area in Trentino but also one of the most beautiful natural parks in Italy.
The perfect destination to immerse yourself in the unique landscapes of the Dolomites. You can reach the park from the north of Val di Sole, from the east from the Val di Non and from the south through the Giudicarie valleys that penetrate the heart of the park.
Do not miss the amazing villages in the center of the park in the Rendena valley, such as Tione, Pinzolo and Madonna di Campiglio, with the typical historic centers of the Trentino valleys.
Almost every house is distinguished by the characteristic wooden loft, the flowered balconies and the sloping roof. After walking around the villages just look up and you will find yourself immersed in spectacular scenery.
On the one hand, the Brenta Dolomites, with their protruding karstic peaks, and on the other, the impressive Adamello mountains between the highest peaks of the Eastern Alps.
Some points from which to enjoy this spectacular panorama can be Lake Tovel, with its crystal clear water, nestled between the mountains. The valley has been inhabited for centuries and the protagonists of the place have always been the peasants, many pastures date back to the Middle Ages.
Visiting the ancient villages of Cerana and Irone, abandoned due to the plague of the 1600s, it is possible to imagine what it was like to live in the Alps in the Middle Ages. But above all, rather than man, the real protagonist here is nature.
The vegetation varies between the two mountain areas as they have different geological characteristics. Going up, you go from broad-leaved woods such as maple, cornelian, hazel, conifers such as spruce and larch and then above juniper and rhododendron.
Finally, on the peaks, it is possible to see numerous species that survived the glaciations, such as the edelweiss and the boreal linnea.
The fauna is perhaps the element that made the park more famous, starting from the Life Ursus project which reintroduced the brown bear. In higher altitudes, it is possible to observe the chamois, the ibex, and the golden eagle.
At this link you can find 10 Things to See in the Adamello Brenta Park to fully experience nature.
Water has always been the main actor in these places. For millennia it has eroded the mountains bringing to light the bare rocks of the Brenta Dolomites. Then the imposing glacier that ran through the entire Rendena valley, fell to the shore, leaving a wide, smooth valley. In its passage, the glacier has dug for several meters into the rock creating a difference in height between the main valley and all the smaller valleys. The streams that descended from the mountains were forced to make a leap, giving rise to imposing waterfalls that are very numerous throughout the park.
The most beautiful places to admire these jumps of water are the Val di Genova, the "valley of the waterfalls", with the famous Nardis waterfalls. Through the path "Sentiero delle Cascate" it will be possible to visit them all with a half-day walk.
Other types of waterfalls are those of the Vallesinella, with the waterfalls "Cascate Alte", "Cascate di Mezzo" and "Cascate Basse". Even these can be reached via a beautiful path that climbs up the valley with numerous wooden bridges. It is possible to make a beautiful ring that goes up along the Sentiero dell'Orso and goes down through the path of the Cascate Alte.
Other unmissable waterfalls are the Boion de l'Ors waterfall in the Brenta valley, the Cascata da la Canavacia waterfall in the Nambrone valley and the Rio Bianco waterfall in Stenico, which originates from a karst spring.
The lakes are also numerous from the larger lakes of Molveno and Tovel, where it is also possible to swim and enjoy the sun on the white sandy beaches. To the "coldest" alpine lakes, set in the mountains at high altitude.
Almost every path that Adamello climbs passes through some alpine lakes. Perhaps the most famous is the "Giro dei 5 Laghi" (Tour of the 5 lakes), reachable from Patascoss, in the municipality of Pinzolo.
Adamello Brenta Park promotes sustainable agriculture to preserve the ecosystem. So, in the park, there are many restaurants and hotels that have chosen to use organic and local products. The interest to preserve the environment and the local culture, therefore, starts from the cultivated field and reaches the table.
Through the "Park Quality products", the park supports local farmers who are committed to offering quality products and above all respect the environment.
The certified products are honey, mountain cheeses, and mineral water.
In addition, in other “Sapori di Pregio” label, all the traditional products of the park have been collected, recognized through DOP or Slow Food certificates. Some examples are the Noce del Bleggio, the ciuìga del Banale (a sausage), the Casolét of Val di Sole, the Kerner wine.
You will find all these products in the shops or directly at the table in the "Quality Park" restaurants and accommodation facilities. Because to get to know a territory in-depth you also need to savor it, as the park website mentions.
There are hundreds of marked trails within the park and not only for trekking but also for mountain bikes and road bikes.
The routes are of various types and there is something for everyone. The nature trails, the paths of geological interest and those to observe closely the protected species present within the park.
It is possible to do day trips or to take one of the many high altitude rings for excursions that can last two days or even two weeks.
To experience the park on foot at this link you can find 5 hiking trails in the Adamello Brenta Park.
For history lovers, there is the Path of Peace, which traces the places and wounds of the First World War, and the hiking trail “Il Sentiero dei Fiori”.
The park is committed to promoting sustainable mobility and it is possible to reach all the main towns by public transport.
Some places in particular, such as Lake Tovel, can only be reached by shuttle bus or on foot.
For bicycle enthusiasts and families, the park can be reached via the Val Rendena cycle path. Furthermore, there are many climbs of cycling interest and from here the Giro d'Italia passes every year.
If you are a mountain bike enthusiast, you will probably already know the Adamello Brenta Park. There are in fact two rings with 2 different difficulties between 130 and 170 km in length, which run along the crest of the two mountain ranges. For each stage, there is a refreshment point where you can spend the night. You will find more info on the Dolomiti di Brenta Bike site.
The accommodations with the eco-label "Adamello Brenta Quality Park" have been selected by the park because they meet certain sustainability criteria.
Some of these hotels, b&bs, camping and holiday farms use bio-architecture and recover ancient buildings. All the facilities are committed to using clean energy, reducing waste and water consumes, and encouraging a green lifestyle during the holidays.
Some structures are in the main tourist areas of the park and others are immersed in nature, to be able to better enjoy the natural park, the sounds and the smells of the forest and be able to leave immediately for some fantastic excursions.
Most of the structures also have a restaurant that offers breakfast and meals based on typical products from the Trentino valleys and on organic and local food.
Cover image: Pastures of Monte Spinale and Crozzon di Brenta, photo by Michele Zeni, via pnab
Author: Matteo Sartor
Cover image via unsplash