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Where to Mountain bike in North Italy

Azzking's picture

By Azzking - Posted on 20 February 2011

I am heading to the north of Italy in september and really looking forward to some riding while I am there.
Has anyone been there and can recommend where is best to go.
I see they have some great mountain bike parks and trails but would love to know which come highly recommended.
Prali, Turin region, Livigno, Trentino ( I hear the mountain bike hotspot for europe). actualluy they all claim that.
Loking for some great downhill runs, chair lift ( would be nice) and some great xc single trails.
Would also be looking at bike hire options too.

Appreciate any help as my time will be a little restricted yet want to make the most of the trip.

ben.archer's picture

After having tried to find some good riding last August whilst on Honeymoon (yes I have an understanding wife Smiling we were extremely disappointed.

Despite almost every alpine resort we visited boasting "world class tracks & facilities" this was far from the truth.

We wasted at least two days trying to find anywhere to hire bikes - where the advertised hire places existed they were often closed or were charging over $100 a day for $200 Big W style hard tails with rim brakes and bald tyres.

I am sure that there are some great facilities and as we have family in the region and are often over would love to know where they are.

Rob's picture

I don't know much about Italy, but have been to Morzine a couple of times many years ago (was last there in '03). Their site ( reads...

Over the years the Portes du Soleil has become renowned as the prime place for mountain bikers from the whole world over. Downhill, endurance, cross-country…all appreciate the experience and infrastructure which have made this an MTB Mecca.

• 650 km of sign-posted tracks
• 10 permanent downhill runs
• 4 bike-parks
• MTB trial areas
• 24 ski-lifts equipped for taking mountain bikes

I recall one particularly nice run from the top of the mountain down some sniggle/rough trail, through the village of goats and then more sniggle by the lake... very nice.

Yes, yes, it's not Italy, but it's not that far away... we drove from London to Morzine for the weekend once - from Italy it's a bit closer than that! For more in France, you could also try Fédération Française de Cyclisme website ( If you're using Chrome auto-translation is very useful here Eye-wink There is a page with loads of links to Trace GPS with routes:

You could also try Garmin Connect... zoom into the area you are interested and try a filter. Although their search kindof sucks it can be useful.

Also, don't forget to ride the Stelvio Pass... the highest mountain pass in Italy (1808m vertical in 24km!). This also happens to be where Top Gear picked as the "greatest driving road in the world"... so hire a nice car! Eye-wink

Ray R's picture

The Dolomites are certainly worth a good look! Lots of mtb freindly trails, great cable cars etc. Sue & I did a 40 km circuit of Cortina last September - all downhill (used 2 cable cars, and one chair lift). My attached identity photo was taken on that ride.


They are really mtb organised in that area - the bus that runs up and down the valley has a large trailer on behind especially for bikes.

Rob's picture

@Ray R... that sure looks nice... got any more pictures from that trip? Smiling

herzog's picture

The Sellaronda is an all-day lift assisted circuit of the Dolomites. The most visually spectacular mountains on earth.

I've done it on skis, but in summer you can do it by MTB, and the Cablecars are open to assist.

Check this guy's loop.

Click on the stats for the altitude graph!

fauxone01's picture

Some options...

Although the hottest new area to ride in Italy is the mountains inland from the riviera so if you could get down there for a few days you won't regret it. Check out James McKnight's piece on Molini di Triori in last month's Dirt Mag - that kid is living the dream and says it could well be the best place to ride in Europe. Bike hire is not an issue either.

I'm going in May so will try and remember to post a review and some photos.


fauxone01's picture

Forgot to mention, a lot of the ski resorts close the lifts for bikes and hikers at the end of August so that could be an issue for you in September.

I'd try and talk the missus into the options I posted above. Its a beautiful part of the world and September is one of the best times to visit as the sun is still shining, the Med is warm but all the Europeans have gone back to work.

Azzking's picture

Thanks alot guys.
The dolomites sound impressive and several other good options there too. I have a friend in Alesandria who is a mad roadie (whom when was here jumped on my enduro with mtb tyres and rode to palm beach and back to Chatswood before we all got out of bed) and is investigating some locations also.
Let me know how the visit goes in May Fauxone01
thanks again

fauxone01's picture

Just got back from the best 4 days riding we could have hoped for. Amazing trails with huge variety and options for uplifts or pedal powered ascents. We went for van assisted uplifts due to the short stay but would love to do a couple of all mountain rides next time as well. Pretty technical tracks but not too steep so they stay nice and flowy. Plenty of crashes with numerous bruises and broken bike parts to show for it. Stayed in an apartment 2mins from the beach with loads of quality Italian restaurants to choose from. The four of us have ridden pretty extensively in France and Spain and now really can't see ourselves going anywhere else other than this part of Italy for the next few years.

Here is a quick and dirty vid of our first few runs of the trip which I posted to get the lads through the depression of the first day back at work. Aplogies if it makes you a bit quesy. Its a little blurry cause at this stage I had the cam mounted on the bars before switching to helmet mounted on day 2.

If you're heading to europe I cannot recommend this place enough although bear in mind they shut down in July & August due to the heat and crowds.


ae93gti's picture

that looks excellent.

what crash? was it edited out?

craked's picture

that was awesome ,I could feel my heart rate increase watching that, great filming ect ,music worked too.

fauxone01's picture

cause I'm working on a comedy crash medley for the lads and didn't want the riding footage to stop on this edit. there were plenty of spills including one where my backpack got caught on a rotting overhanging tree doing 30kph and brought it down on top of me, pinning me between about 200kg of timber and my bike! quite scary until my mates managed to lift it off me enough so I could squeeze out.

ae93gti's picture

that doesn't sound comfortable at all! Glad you're around to tell the story (and show the vid!)

Look forward to seeing the crash medley if you post it up for all and sundry.

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