Mount Maniva may be a name you are familiar with even if you have never been to this region as it is famous for it’s natural spring water. Maniva spring water‘s claim to fame is it’s very low sodium content, it is given a 5/5 ranking by the Good Health Guide. Mount Maniva is situated one and half hours drive north of Lake Garda, just to the west of Lago D’Idro. It is worth a mention in these pages because if you are touring Lake Garda then Mount Maniva has such a lot to offer and it is certainly worth a detour.

View Mount Maniva in a larger map

Lake Idro is glacial in origin and is the highest in altitude of the Italian lakes. A tranquil setting surrounded by wild nature, it is a fantastic destination for sports-lovers, especially wind-surfers and free-climbers as well as mountain biking, sailing and fishing-enthusiasts. The town of Vesta, on the east shore, features a rock wall on the banks of the lake, making it an important free-climbing attraction.

Take the SS669 which follows the course of the Fume (River) Caffero from Idro and start your way up Maniva, you very soon come to the picturesque village of Bagolino, which is most famous for it’s Bagoss cheese, and it’s Carnevale, which is usually held in February.

Continue up the mountain and you will arrive at Maniva Ski Resort. although a fairly small and not so well known resort, this can be to your advantage.

“The ski area offers 10 km ski-tourism runs inside a various and peerless backdrop, among pines and conifers woods. Runs are suitable for every levels, with tracks always at thier best thanks to the zeal of the snow-mobile drivers, who at the end of the day come with their means to reshape the wonderful runs Maniva is not just ski, but also snowboarding, ski-tourism, “ciaspole”, Nordic walking and all the other sport activities you can practise during winter on the snow.”- Eridio Holiday

Obviously if you travelling during the spring and summer months the ski resort will be closed, but don’t let that stop you as the area is fantastic for hiking and cycling, also for touring by car or motorbike.

“The high level terrain of Alta Valtrompia is both spectacular and easily accessible from Maniva. The starting height of 1700 mts allows easy access to the spectacular views and exhilaration of pre-alpine walking. Maniva is situated at the head of Alta Valtrompia straddling the two valleys of Val Trompia and Valsabbia. Within an hours walk, the area of Valsabbia with the centre piece of Lake Idro, comes into view. The alpine lake, picturesque villages and the alpine wood that surround it are pleasant focal points of the area. Further into the Maniva area the terrain becomes a rolling mountainous plateau of peaks and troughs ranging from 1600-2100 mts above sea level.

Small alpine lakes and mountain barns provide interesting navigation points for walks around the area. From the peaks of Mount Columbus and Mount Maniva you can see Lake Garda and the surrounding countryside with a rooftop viewpoint. The area has good coverage for GPS aided walking and the open terrain, easily identifiable, is ideal for their use. The generally stable and predictable weather system is a
real asset for trips into this environment and allows you to plan your walks well in advance.”- visit val trompia
I was up there last week with my friend Enzo, we walked along the SS345 (Passa Croce Domini), there was still snow so we stuck mainly to the road. Our destination was Lago Vaia, a very pretty little lake, surrounded by stunning scenery, which is very well stocked with trout. In the season it is possible to fish and pay by the kilo for the trout that you catch. Believe me, you would be unlucky not to catch at least one, and believe me also when I tell you that you won’t taste a better trout. Once the season starts I will dedicate a post to the fabulous location, where you