Molveno: lake and town. Gateway to the Brenta Dolomites

Molveno is a beautiful tourist destination located on Lake Molveno (Lago di Molveno) at the foot of the Dolomites Brenta mountains in Trentino. The Brent region itself is rather popular in winter. Nearby are the popular ski resorts of Andalo and Paganella, and a piece further away (on the other side of the Dolomites di Brenta) one of the most popular resorts in all of Italy: Madonna di Campiglio.

It's different with Molveno - it's a mecca for summer sports: mainly paragliding and trekking. Molveno lies on the picturesque lake of the same name (Lago di Molveno). It is the gateway to an amazing mountain range: the Brenta Dolomites. A magical place and worth a visit if you love mountain hiking. If you are in the Trentino area or in the northern part of the lake Garda, then I definitely recommend going there. In the summer months you will find solace from the heat, as the village is located higher than the aforementioned Trento or Riva del Garda.

What to do in Molveno?

Molveno is a place mainly for those who appreciate active recreation. However, if you like blissful laziness or travel with children, this place is also for you. I think everyone will find something for themselves here.

Molveno (photo

Lake Molveno

Molveno is the only village located on Lago di Molveno. The lake is considered by many, especially Italians, to be the best Italian lake. The crystal clear water and the location make it quite right.

Lake Molveno
Lake Molveno (photo

Resting at Lake Molveno is very pleasant. True, the shoreline is pebbled, but right on the shore there is a huge lawn where you can sunbathe comfortably on the beach.

Lake Molveno beach
Lake Molveno beach (photo

The place is not as crowded as Garda. There is more space, fewer people, and the temperatures are lower. For us, the trip to Molveno was also an escape from the unbearable August heat there. Keep in mind that the temperature in the lake will also be lower, as it is in mountain lakes. For me, however, it was comfortable.

Lake Molveno
Lake Molveno (photo
Lake Molveno
Lake Molveno (photo

On the lake there is a rental Water bikes, boats and SUPs. There is also a mini-golf course nearby and a great playground for the little ones.

Lake Molveno
At Lake Molveno you can rent water equipment: boats, pedal boats or SUPs (photo

Cable car and trek to Croz dell'Altissimo

The Brenta Dolomites are a true paradise for lovers of mountains and via ferratas. There are a whole bunch of trails of varying difficulty and length. The Brentas lie within the Adamello-Brenta Nature Park (Parco Naturale Adamello Brenta). This is the largest of the Trentino parks, located in an area of 620 km². A separate article about the trails in the Dolomites di Brenta will be written someday and I will post a link to it here.

In Molveno there are cable car station Molveno-Pradel, Where we will reach the next station Pradel-Palon di Tovre. The first ascent is by gondola and the second by chairlift. The end of the second station is the chalet La Montanara, where the views are breathtaking. And this is just the beginning!

If you are in Molveno, I encourage you to take the cable car at least to the level of the La Montanara hut. This is an option for people who are not fond of trekking. Here you can drink something, eat delicious Italian pasta, and book accommodation. Next to it is an amazing observation deck overlooking the Brenta Dolomites.

Viewing terrace over the Brenta Dolomites next to La Montanara hut
Viewing terrace over the Brenta Dolomites next to La Montanara refuge (photo

The La Montanara refuge is located at a level of about 1,500 meters above sea level. My goal was to reach the top of the Croz dell'Altissimo (2339 m. above sea level). The road from under the hut according to the signpost takes less than 3 hours. I managed to get there in about 2 hours. If this is too long for you, I have good news. You can take a shorter hike to the summit Palon di Tovre (1913 m. above sea level). It is located about halfway on the Croz dell'Altissimo, and the views from there are equally interesting. According to the signpost, the route from La Montanara refuge will take about an hour.

View of the Dolomites di Brenta from the summit of Palon di Tovre
View of the Dolomites di Brenta from the summit of Palon di Tovre (photo:

More than an hour after reaching Palon di Tovre, I reached the summit of Croz dell'Altissimo. A short rest, a second breakfast and back down. Below are the views I found at the summit.

Croz dell'Altissimo
Croz dell'Altissimo summit (photo
Croz dell'Altissimo summit
Croz dell'Altissimo summit (photo

When going to the mountains, don't forget to check the weather forecast. The brilliant free map app, available for iOS and Android, will come in handy. In the summer in the mountains the sun is scorching - a hat, sunglasses and UV sunscreen are mandatory. Also take enough water with you. On the trail between La Montanara hut and Croz dell'Altissimo, I didn't see any spring from where to draw and refill it.

Tandem paraglider flight

The area around Molveno is a paradise for paragliders. All thanks to the Ora wind from Garda, which creates excellent conditions for this sport. Paragliding requires, of course, the appropriate licenses and equipment, but nothing prevents you from making such a flight in tandem with an instructor. A flight over Lake Molveno next to the majestic mountain peaks of the Dolomites di Brenta will be an unforgettable experience for everyone.

Children as young as 6 years old can fly, and the maximum passenger weight is 100 kg. The only requirement is a short run with the pilot required for takeoff. Tandempilot has a camera to capture your flight, which will be a great souvenir. Flights take place from spring to fall. There are two paragliding schools in Molveno that allow tandem flight:

The cost of a tandem paragliding flight is about €140.

City tour

Molveno itself is a charming mountain resort. The town center is small, but it is worth a stroll there. Here you will find atmospheric pubs and restaurants. Close to the center is a small church, Chiesa di San Carlo Borromeo, and right next to it is an observation deck overlooking Lake Molveno. From there you can watch the paragliders flying and landing, of which there are a whole lot in season.

Chiesa di San Carlo Borromeo in Molveno
Chiesa di San Carlo Borromeo in Molveno (photo
Molveno (photo

What else to see and do in the Molveno area?

Mountain lovers in the Dolomites di Brenta will find a whole host of mountain trails. It is worth going to one of the most popular huts in the Brentas: Rifugio Tosa Pedrotti (2491 m. above sea level). Via ferrata are also popular here, along with the most popular: via ferrata Bocchette.

If you're driving from the Garda side, it's worth exploring the Sarca River Valley, which you'll be passing through. There are a whole bunch of attractions and interesting places there: Arco, lago di Cavedine, Toblino, vineyards, the castle of Drena. A guidebook about the entire Sarca Valley is in preparation, stay tuned ☺️

An hour's drive from Molveno, this time to the north, is the beautiful Lake Tovel, which is also worth seeing.


Accommodation in Molveno is not among the cheapest, especially in high season. If you are going there in vacations and you want to stay longer, I recommend making reservations in advance. High prices are one thing, another problem is simply the limited number of accommodations in Molveno itself. You can also stay in nearby Andalo. Below you will find an up-to-date map of accommodations in Molveno:

I visit Italy every year, sometimes even several times. I even happened to live in this beautiful country for almost a year. I regularly publish articles about Italy on my blog.

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