The beautiful mountain region of Pinerolese, located in the heart of the Cozie Alps, offers travelers and especially bike enthusiasts a new initiative that promotes sustainable and slow tourism. The UpSlowTour portal is an exciting project that invites outdoor lovers to discover the beauty and richness of this area. With a particular focus on the territory of Val Pellice around the municipality of Pinerolo, in Piedmont.

UpSlowTour and Casa Payer: Val Pellice at a Slow Pace
Hairless Heart, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Based on the concept of “Up” because it is a mountainous region, “Slow” because it promotes slow tourism, and “Tour” because it highlights cycling, UpSlowTour offers visitors fifteen cycling routes, each categorized based on difficulty and type. The result is a network of over 400 kilometers that passes through breathtaking landscapes and unique points of interest.

The project aims to promote sustainable development of the area, by enhancing the environmental resources but also the cultural aspects. The website allows users to explore the biodiversity of the area, learn about the traditions of the Waldensian world, and discover the linguistic minorities present in this area.

UpSlowTour is constantly evolving. The goal is to equip each route with free e-bike charging stations, bike racks, and cycle totems for bike maintenance. Intermediate stations are provided for more challenging routes that require several hours of cycling. Additionally, informative totems are available, providing detailed information about the routes, such as difficulty level, elevation, type of terrain, and landscape context.

UpSlowTour: route n. 13

UpSlowTour route

UpSlowTour represents an extraordinary initiative to discover the beauty of Val Pellice in a sustainable, slow, and environmentally respectful manner. We have chosen route number 13, the Loop of the Ridges. The itinerary winds between Bricherasio (388 m) and Colle Vaccera (1,502 m), staying along the ridge between Val Pellice and Val Chisone and offering splendid views towards both the plain and the valleys. On the way back, we take old mule tracks and tranquil secondary roads through the hilly areas of Angrogna, Luserna, and Bricherasio, allowing an elevated perspective of the villages in the lower valley.

Along the 38-kilometer route, we can reach Casa Payer, a countryside residence operating as a vegan accommodation. Surrounded by the forest, this renovated stone farmhouse immediately conquers us with its charming atmosphere.

Casa Payer, a green stay in Val Pellice

First and foremost, it is the life project of Luca and Paola, who, after returning from India, decided to live in nature and lead a rural life. From there, they had the idea to share this lifestyle with guests and travelers, offering a relational tourism experience that includes ecosustainable stays and homemade vegan cuisine.

Casa Payer, a green stay in Val Pellice

There is a strong commitment to reducing the environmental impact of the house and its inhabitants. The hosts first recovered an existing house to avoid consuming additional land. Then they created draining walkways around the building, invested in a completely natural renovation, and implemented systems for rainwater recovery. They also take care of the surrounding forest, sourcing wood for baking bread and heating water and the house. They use only electricity from renewable sources, and their personal care and cleaning products are ecological and vegan.

The spaces are spacious and waiting to be discovered. There are raised-bed gardens, solariums, and even a birch forest with hammocks, a large beech tree, an oven, and a spacious panoramic room ideal for yoga activities. We sleep in one of the rooms, each with independent access, a private bathroom, and a terrace. And so we allow ourselves a slow and light vacation, in close contact with the wild nature. We can explore the nearby stream, fully experience the enchantment of the forest, and listen to the silence. We can also participate in sourdough bread-making sessions and discover the goodness of a vegetarian dinner.

With UpSlowTour and Casa Payer, we live a unique experience that allows us to discover the territory of Val Pellice, its nature, culture, and traditions. In an authentic and sustainable way.