Tour del Lago di Garda (clockwise)
Garda Trentino Verified partner Explorers Choice
Road Bike Garda TrentinoPhoto: Archivio APT Garda Trentino (ph. Paolo Calzà), Garda Trentino
A fantastic loop that runs round the entire perimeter of Lake Garda. The distance, which exceeds 140 kilometres, makes this itinerary suitable for the fittest cyclists.
Another "classic" for all the fans of the Upper Garda area who want to make the most of the mild climate of the lakeside area in wintertime. This route enables you to circumnavigate the largest lake in Europe, and to discover all the aspects of its beauty. Given the enormity of the lake, the distance is quite considerable, making this itinerary unsuitable for untrained cyclists.
From a technical standpoint, the route does not pose any particular problems. However, it is very hilly. It passes through various tunnels, some of which are very long, especially on the return journey. The use of lights and a high-visibility jacket are recommended. The loop can be cycled in both directions; however, we recommend departing in the morning when the Paler is blowing southwards, as this helps us along.
These roads are often used by professional cyclists as training routes. While you’re pedalling, keep an eye on who you might meet along the way!
We remind that headlights and rearlights as well as the use of reflecting suspenders are obligatory in tunnels, even considering that most of these are illuminated.
Give your bike a regular checkup, especially if you've had it for years.
Be seen: you must wear a high vis jacket (or sash) in tunnels and on country roads after sunset.
Always wear your helmet.
Make sure your front and rear lights are working.
Put out your arm to give advance warning of your intention to change position and before you do anything, check there are no vehicles coming up behind you.
Don't use headphones or your mobile phone handsfree kit: you need all your concentration on the road!
Obey the road signs: stop at traffic lights and don't ride on the wrong side of the road.
If you are cycling in a group, always go in single file.
You've got a bell: use it to let pedestrians know you're there. Don't ride on footpaths. If you have to then get off and push your bike.
If there are cycle paths use them. It's your safety that's at stake and the rules of the road say you must.
Tips and hints
- For more information on routes and bike services: rentals, workshops, shops and cycling friendly accommodation:
APT Garda Trentino, Tel. +39 0464 554444 www.gardatrentino.it
From Riva del Garda take the cycle path up to Torbole sul Garda, afterwards follow the “Gardesana Orientale (Eastern Gardesana)” road, which flanks the Lake Garda for 10 km, leading for some stretches into tunnels. Passing from Trentino into the region Veneto you arrive in Malcesine. Carry on always flanking the lake, passing through the characteristic veronese villages of Brenzone, Castelletto, Torri del Benaco, Garda, Bardolino e Lazise. Here do the Pre-Alps end and the Po Valley start: for 40 km you will have to pay attention to the several roundabouts that follow one another.
Continue past Peschiera and proceed to Desenzano entering the province of Brescia. Pass through the centre of town flanking the lake and continue past Padenghe, Moniga and Cunettone. At this roundabout turn right in the direction of Salò. After a panoramic downhill on the gulf, you'll get back onshore of the lake. Pass through Salò and take the “Gardesana Occidentale (Western Gardesana)”. Continue past Gardone and Toscolano Maderno and carry on up to Gargnano. Here starts an uphill road perched over the lake where the first tunnels characterizing the last stretch of the tour start. After a fast downhill you get back flanking Lake Garda passing the crossroad of Campione del Garda, pass through Limone sul Garda up to the starting point of Riva del Garda.
All loop itineraries can be done in both ways.
The towns in Garda Trentino - Riva del Garda, Torbole sul Garda, Nago and Arco – are connected by a number of urban and intercity bus lines which will take you to the starting point of the trail.
For up-to-the-minute information on timetables and routes: www.gardatrentino.it
You can also get to Riva del Garda and Torbole sul Garda by the public ferry service. For up-to-the-minute information on timetables and routes: www.gardatrentino.it
Getting to Lake Garda – Garda Trentino: www.gardatrentino.it
Free parking in Riva del Garda at the old hospital (via Rosmini) and the old cemetery (Viale D. Chiesa).
Pay parking at the Public Gardens Porta Orientale, Roman Baths, Viale Lutti (Ex Agraria), Monte Oro, Blue Garden.
Author’s map recommendations
- Garda Trentino BIKE Map - On sale in information offices in Riva del Garda, Arco and Torbole and online
Book recommendations for this region:
Riding your bike requires specific clothing and equipment, even for relatively short and easy trips. It is always better to be prepared… e.g. for bad weather or a drop your energy levels. The unexpected things also make up a part of the fun!
Do not compare a road bike with a mountain bike. They are very different, especially in technical terms, and facing a hill with a road bike could be much more difficult than facing the same hill with a MTB. Therefore, remember to throughly evaluate the type of route you plan to do and the locations you plan to cross. Do not forget to consider the current season. Has it been raining? Attention: the paint of the crosswalk could be very slick.
What do I need to bring on my bike tour?
- Bike helmet
- Bike gloves
- Bike glasses
- Waterproof/Windproof jacket
- Headlights and rearlights
- Reflecting suspenders
- Plenty of snacks (for example, dried fruit or energy bars)
- Water Bottle
- Bike repair kit (tire levers, mini bike pump, bike tube)
It is always advised to let someone know where you plan to go and how long you expect to be.
Emergency telephone number 112.
- 2 Waypoints
- 2 Waypoints
Questions and answers
Photos from others