The best things to do in Alpe Cimbra in the Summer [+ Biking and Hiking] by loveandroad.com
12.12.2019 - Folagria, Lavarone, and Luserna are the three cities that form Alpe Cimbra, a region famous for Winter holidays. However, Alpe Cimbra is also a Summer paradise, a place where you can find culture, nature, food, and wine with a dash of warm weather. We added hiking and biking into the mix, and had the perfect active Summer getaway in Italy.
Our trip to Trentino was divided into two destinations, two days visiting Alpe Cimbra and two days in Rovereto. The first thing I must tell you is that 2 days are not enough to experience all of the best things to do in Alpe Cimbra in the Summer, nor in winter. Even though we did a lot, I still have the feeling we’ve missed a few stunning trails, picturesque towns, and viewpoints.
To immerse yourself in the mountain life, go for epic hikes, breathtaking bike trails and visit all the forts, you should stay in Alpe Cimbra for at least 4 days. It’s better to choose your accommodation near the places you want to visit or the things you want to do, so you can save time and make the most out of the trip.
Best places to stay in Alpe Cimbra
We spent two nights in Folgaria and one night in Lavarone, the hotels were close enough to the starting point of our hikes and bike rides. The cities are close to each other and most of the places to visit and things to do in Alpe Cimbra end up connecting the cities and villages around.
Before we jump into the fun part and start talking about what to do in Alpe Cimbra, check out the hotels we stayed during the trip:
Alpen Hotel Eghel: comfy rooms, nice views, breakfast and a delicious restaurant that serves local recipes. The hotel is close to the slopes and hiking trails and for the relaxing moments it offers a pool and spa. I don’t think we need anything else.
Nordic Resort Millegrobbe: everything in this hotel screams mountain life! The food, the views, the spa, the rooms and dogs. It doesn’t matter if you stay there for a night or perhaps just for a meal or a massage, you just can’t visit Alpe Cimbra without stopping by.
What to do in Alpe Cimbra in the Summer
It’s time for the 10 best things to do in Alpe Cimbra in the Summer, from April to September. The warm season in Alpe Cimbra comes with mountain bike [from beginners to pros], breathtaking hikes [because of the heights and views], historical sights and local experiences.
Mountain biking in Alpe Cimbra is a must
Mountain bike should be Alpe Cimbra’s first name. Seriously, the region is packed with trails, bike parks, road and off-road adventures for beginners, intermediate and advanced bikers. It doesn’t matter what your level is, you’re gonna find routes to challenge yourself and pump your veins with adrenaline.
We are cycling enthusiasts, Rob at an advanced level and I’m at an intermediate one. Even after cycling the east coast of Taiwan, I’m still not confident enough for hardcore off-road tracks like him. That’s why I love biking in Alpe Cimbra, as you can have it all there, mountain bike, e-mountain bike, road bike, fat bike, and even family rides. The routes and trails are well marked, you can ride solo, in groups or if you prefer, join one of the bike tours in Folgaria, Lavarone or Luserna. You can bring your bike to Alpe Cimbra or rent all the equipment there.
The Alpe Cimbra bike trail map has over 600 km of roads and trails for MBT [mountain bike], road bikes and e-bikes, from stunning pastures and meadows to uphills with scenic views and historic exploration. The bike-friendly approach goes beyond the paths and trails, there are over 75 itineraries, 22 bike hotels and many bike points where you can find equipment to fix your bike, space to rest, places to recharge your e-MTB, information and food in this region.
Summer adventures in Trentino are safe and easy. All the information about hiking and cycling in Alpe Cimbra are in the Outdoor Trentino App. In the app you can find information, trails and services for all types of sports and Summer activities in Alpe Cimbra and Trentino.
From my experience, e-mountain biking is the easiest way to cycle around Alpe Cimbra as you cover a larger area at a faster pace, without getting too tired. We cycled in Lavarone with e-mountain bikes and it was the perfect choice for our group that had people with different levels of ability and strength. We left Millegrobbe Hotel early in the morning for a yummy stop for breakfast with a view. Then cycled to Forte Belvedere and finished at the Lake Lavarone [we’re gonna talk about these two places later on].
Bike Park Lavarone for adrenaline junkies
Looking for adrenaline and speed? Then you must go to Lavarone Bike Park. Their specialties are downhill and enduro with 4 tracks of more than 2 km each, from easy to difficult levels. At the park, you can rent all the equipment necessary for the downhill [especially the safety equipment] and there is even an instructor helping you figure out the curves and teaching some techniques.
For more information about the Mountain Bike Park in Alpe Cimbra, how to book your visit, prices and how to rent the equipment check www.bikeparklavarone.it.
Hiking in Alpe Cimbra for views and history
If mountain biking is Alpe Cimbra’s first name, hiking should be its surname. There is no need to say that there are endless hiking trails in Alpe Cimbra. In the app I mentioned before you can find hiking routes from easy walks, to themed trails, mountain tours, and long-distance hiking.
Some hiking trails in Folgaria, Lavarone and Luserna are fairly easy and you can do them in a couple of hours, they are loops where you can start and finish at the same point. Those are the easiest ones, but not boring, that’s for sure.
We went for a lovely hike in Folgaria, we left the hotel in the morning and followed our local guide through the mountains behind the property. We crossed a beautiful golf course, went deep in the forest and up to the top of the mountains. The high altitude tour finished at the Sommo Alto Fort, an Austria-Hungarian fortress built in 1911-1914 that played an important role during the Great War.
We had a guide with us, but this trail was easy and well-marked, we could have done it by ourselves. The good part of having a guide is that you get an in-depth explanation about the place. The mountains, villages, and forts become more meaningful, you connect with nature and local history.
If you want to hike in Alpe Cimbra with a guide, my suggestion is to ask at the hotel which company they recommend or visit the tourist information centers in Folgaria, Lavarone or Luserna. They will give you the correct info about all hiking trails, guides and tours.
Hiking in Alpe Cimbra is a marvelous experience but also a dangerous one if you do it by yourself without knowing how to read the trail’s marks and the basics of mountain orientation. Always follow the signs, choose a trail that is appropriate for your hiking level or join a hiking tour to explore different and more advanced paths.
Eat a typical Trentino meal at a Rifugio
During any hike in Alpe Cimbra, you’re gonna find a refugiu [mountain hut] on the way. Those mountain restaurants/hotels are not only life savers for bikers and hikers that need shelter, bathrooms, food and a good night of sleep, they are also part of the culture of the region.
Even if you are not hungry or tired, don’t skip any refugio. Stop for a good coffee, a shot of grappa, a glass of wine or a proper meal. On the menu you can find game meat, tasty cheeses and hearty food.
During our hike in Folgaria we stopped for lunch at Rifugio Stella D’Italia, a house that was used as a base camp for the Sommo Alto Fort construction and now is a delicious stop for travelers, hikers, bikers and skiers. The Rifugiu Stella D’Italia is open from June to September and from December to April. The opening days and hours may vary due to the weather and seasons, it’s good to check if they are open for business before you start your hike.
Another must-visit place in Alpe Cimbra is the Lusernarhof, a mountain hotel/restaurant that welcomes sports enthusiasts throughout the year in Luserna. Our group had a mouthwatering gigantic breakfast there while cycling from Millegrobbe Resort to Fort Belvedere. The food was amazing, the views unforgettable and coffee with grappa gave us a good kick to keep cycling through the mountains. Lusernarhof restaurant prides itself for serving traditional Trentino food with the best and freshest ingredients of the region.
Golf for pros, beginners or just for fun
Our guide asked: do you want to play golf? I answered: yes, why not!? Last thing I knew I had a club in my hands, a sore wrist and abdominal cramps for laughing so much. My first golf experience ever was in Alpe Cimbra, at the Golf Club Folgaria, 1,200 meters above sea level. An 18 hole golf course opened in 2014 that offers a driving range, pitching green, putting green, and all the facilities you need to spend a whole day or just a couple of hours playing golf.
Are you a golf fan or enthusiast? So keep an eye on Golf Club Folgaria for international events, championships paired with gourmet experiences, which means the best food and wine from the region. The green is open from the 1st of May to the 30th of October, another awesome experience for your Summer in Alpe Cimbra.
The driving range experience was awesome, Rob did pretty well and I laughed a lot. My lack of direction and power to hit the ball was the consequence of a few glasses of Trentodoc [Trentino’s own amazing sparkling wine] served at the green during our aperitivo. Have you heard of Italian aperitivo? It’s a delicious mix of finger food, cold cuts and cheese served with drinks and wine at the beginning of the evening. It’s like a happy hour with an extra dose of happiness because you pay only for the drinks [or a couple of euros more than the regular price] and get marvelous food to go along with your cocktail or wine.
Most of the restaurants and bars in Trentino serve the aperitivo, so if you can’t have it on the golf course, find you way to the nearest bar and enjoy it.
Sleep under the stars in Alpe Cimbra
During the Summer nights the temperatures are comfortable and the starry sky is an invitation to stay outdoors. If you feel like trying something new, in Alpe Cimbra you can sleep on suspended tents in the middle of the forest.
When I first heard of it I felt a mix of excitement and fear. I was pumped by the idea of sleeping under the stars and scared of being in the middle of the forest enclosed in a small suspended tent. But I put my fear aside and jumped into this new experience. Literally jumped, as the tents are about 1,5m suspended from the ground and to get in and out of it you need a bit of skill.
That night I was feeling sick, I had a sore throat and a fever, so my experience of sleeping in the tent wasn’t the best one. I couldn’t breathe so well in the tend and even though it was Summer I felt cold because of the fever. Rob didn’t sleep well either because of me, which sucked.
No doubt it was a unique experience, it was safe and the surroundings were incredibly beautiful. The night sky, the stars and the sunrise were like a dream. Some people from our group loved it and told us they would do it again. If you want to sleep under the stars reach out for Alpe Cimbra Tourism Office they can help you with the suspended tent experience.
Discover the history of Fort Belvedere
We visited the fort while mountain biking in Alpe Cimbra, but you can also hike there or go by car. The Fort Belvedere is one of the many fortresses built in Trentino for WWI. Its strategic location gives us spectacular views of the valleys and mountains. Visit the fort and the museum to have a bigger picture of the region and its history.
On Trentino mountains and in Alpe Cimbra there are many forts, tunnels and constructions remained from the war that you can visit. Check out the routes and forts to visit in the Trentino Outdoors app. You can easily plan a day expedition mixing biking, walking, local food and history.
Relax or work out by Lake Lavarone
A summer trip to Alpe Cimbra is not complete without a stop by Lake Lovarone. We visited it as a reward for our morning biking session across the mountains, the perfect way to end our adventure. During the Summer, the lake becomes a beach with sunbathing lounges, restaurants by the water, spots for swimming and for water activities [it’s a blue flag lake]. During the Winter, the landscape is different and the lake becomes a huge ice skating rink. Cool down by the lake, enjoy a meal, a beer or wine. You can relax, swim or join a yoga class as we did.
Yoga by the lake, golfing, hiking, and cycling in Alpe Cimbra are not your cup of tea? No worries, there are other things to do in Folgaria, Lavarone, and Luserna that will keep you busy, happy and active. Here are three more cool experiences to add to your list of what to do in Alpe Cimbra. We didn’t have time to try them, so if you end up doing them, please come back to the blog and tell us how they were.
Fishing in Alpe Cimbra
You can go fishing on many rivers and lakes in Alpe Cimbra, check on the Trentino Outdoor App for the best spots or contact the hotel staff to get more info. They should know where you can rent fishing equipment, transportation and more.
Horseback riding in Alpe Cimbra
It the town of Carbonara, close to Folgaria, you can find the Centro Equestre Il Salice which offers horseback riding, classes on how to ride a horse, activities for kids and events throughout the Summer.
Paragliding In Alpe Cimbra
Are you ready to experience Trentino from a different angle? One of the cool things to do in Alpe Cimbra and around is flying above the mountains and getting a bird’s eye view of the region. There are a few companies offering paragliding in Trentino, we found one that operates quite close to Alpe Cimbra. Volo Libero Trentino has been flying over the Alps for 20 years and with them you can see the Cima Panarotta peak, views of Brenta Dolomites, the north-eastern Alpes, the Valsugana Valley, Lake Caldonazzo and Lake Levico. Be ready for an overdose of stunning nature and adrenaline.
How to travel to Alpe Cimbra?
Alpe Cimbra is located on the edge of the Dolomites mountains in the Trentino region, Northern Italy. Traveling to Alpe Cimbra is easy, but you’ll probably need to combine different modes of transportation to get there. The closest airports are in Venice, Verona or Milan. The three airports in Milan are the furthest ones from Alpe Cimbra, but they offer a wider range of connections from all around the world which makes them the easiest ones to be used.
You can also travel to Alpe Cimbra by bus and train. To find the best connections we recommend you to use the website Omio, it will give you all the possible routes including times and distances. FlixBus is fairly cheap and travels from most Italians cities to Folgaria. If you prefer to travel by train, then you can travel to Trento or Rovereto and from there take a local bus to Alpe Cimbra.
Renting a car can be the best/easiest way to get to Alpe Cimbra, especially if you are traveling with friends and family, or bringing your bike and gear along. Traveling by car in Alpe Cimbra gives you the freedom to explore the region at your own pace. Check the best car rentals in Italy here, you can pick up a car at either one of the airports close to Alpe Cimbra, or in Trento city.
How to get around Alpe Cimbra?
The places to visit in Alpe Cimbra are not far from each other, but the roads are a bit hilly, so cycling is not the fastest or easiest way to get around. Going by car or using public transportation are the ways to go. Local buses are reliable and you can find all the routes and timetables here. For buses and trains, you can either buy single tickets or buy the Trentino Guest Card. The card is a good option for those who want to save time and maybe money depending on how much public transportation you are going to use.
With a Trentino Guest Card you get:
Free public transportation within Trentino. Yes, not only Alpe Cimbra but also all around the region, including trains, suburban buses, ferries, and some cable cars.
Free admission to over 60 museums, 20 castles and 40 attractions in the whole region.
Access to Trentino App that helps you to plan how to get around the area.
You can buy the Trentino Guest Card at the Tourist Office or ask for one at your hotel reception.
Now you know everything about mountain biking in Alpe Cimbra, where to hike and the best places to visit. It’s time to book your flights and start planning your Summer in Trentino.