The Via dei Terrazzamenti: culture, wine, nature

A traffic-free trail through vineyards and wineries, waymarked from Morbegno to Tirano

Running between Morbegno and Tirano, the Via dei Terrazzamenti is a 70km traffic-free route that connects Morbegno with Tirano. It winds through the most characteristic landscape on the slopes of Rhaetian Alps, keeping above the valley floor between 300 and 700 metres above sea level.

Unlike anywhere else, this route will stick in your memory long after you have walked through Valtellina’s terraced vineyards. Not just of historic and agricultural value, these steep terraces are such an important feature of Valtellina and a constant visual reminder of the work that has been put in over the centuries to render the terrain (and most importantly, the gradients) suitable for cultivation. Next time you hear wine-making in Valtellina referred to as ‘viticoltura eroica’ (heroic winemaking), you (and your legs) will have a deeper understanding. Other than the dry stone terraces, the route unlocks a fascinating insight into valley’s day-to-day life and history, passing a wealth of fascinating buildings, as well as prehistoric sites, small-scale rural wine producers, ancient hamlets and farmstays.

Suitable for all levels of fitness and all ages, there are 40 designated rest areas along the Via dei Terrazzamenti set in idyllic locations, equipped with benches and bike racks, and often immersed in the vineyards. Each rest area features a detailed info board, outlining a host of nearby sites of interest that can be reached by foot from exactly where you are standing. Naturally, one of the biggest draws of this route is the proximity to the prestigious local wineries that you pass – make sure you schedule time for a tasting session to discover the traditions and flavours of the valley.

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Route map

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