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GardaTrek - Top Loop 7: Back to the water
Surroundings, Torbole sul Garda - Nago
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A breathtaking finale for the Top Loop of GardaTrek: take the cable car down to Monte Baldo and return by ferry to get back to where you started from. 

End a day of hiking with a descent on a spectacular rotating cable car and head back to where you started from on the water, maybe on one of the historic boats which have been ferrying passengers about the lake since the turn of the 20th century. Finish the final stage of GardaTrek in style!

From the hut Damiano Chiesa a quite simple hike, almost entirely with lake view, leads to the cable car station. 
Along thi stretch you can easily spot some chamois jumping on the steep rock walls or on the pastures. 

Make sure to calculate the timing right so that you get to Malcesine in time to make the ferry boat to  Riva del Garda. Otherwise you can take one of the many buses which pass during the day (timetables here - line Riva - Malcesine - Garda).  Remember that, especially at weekends during the summertime, there can be large crowds waiting to take the cable car from Monte Baldo down to Malcesine so you may have to wait your turn.

Further information and useful links
  • For further information on routes and hike services: guides, shops and hiking friendly accommodation: 
    APT Garda Trentino, Tel. +39 0464 554444 www.gardatrentino.it

Route info
Route number
7,6 km
Activity time
2 h 50 min
Altitude difference (+)
345 m
Altitude difference (-)
655 m
Technical skills
Physical effort
Highest point
2.051 m
Lowest point
1.421 m

Before getting on board the ferry, take your time and visit Malcesine, one of the most charming village on lake Garda. 

Safety guidelines

The stretch of SAT 651 along the ridge coming down towards Bocca Navene is extremely exposed if the weather turns bad. In this case you are advised to take the dirt road down to  Rifugio Graziani and head towards Bocca Navene from there. Make sure to take the right footwear and clothing for the high altitude.

The information on this chart is subject to inevitable variations, so this means that none of the indications are absolute. It is not entirely possible to avoid giving inexact or imprecise information, given how quickly environmental and weather conditions can change. For this reason we decline any responsibility for changes which the user may encounter. In any case,  the hiker is advised to check the conditions of the places, environment and weather before setting out.

Punto di partenza
Mountain hut Damiano Chiesa - Monte Altissimo

Turn right when you come out of the mountain hut and head down the dirt track. When you come to the first bend at the end of the straight stretch turn right onto SAT 651. The trail leads across meadows with many glimpses of the lake, then you enter a wood and come onto a paved road. Before long you come to the mountain hut Rifugio Bocca Navene. Continue on down the paved road following signposting for SAT 651. Leave the road and head along a dirt track, first uphill then along the flat until you come to the terminus of the cable car. You can find the timetable and fares for the Malcesine – Monte Baldo cable car on the website where you can also buy tickets. It is only a few minutes on foot from the cable car station at the bottom to the centre of Malcesine and public transport.

public transportation

Timetables and prices for the cable car from Monte Baldo to Malcesine are available at funiviedelbaldo.it

You can then return from Malcesine to Riva del Garda by ferry or by bus:

  • by lake on the public ferry service. Times and fares can be found on the website of Navigarda.
  • by bus from Malcesine station. Times and fares can be found on the website gardatrentino.it.
How to get there

Getting to northern lake Garda / Garda Trentino: www.gardatrentino.it

Where to park
No parking slots available at the hut Damiano Chiesa: you can get there only on foot

The trek proposed here does not have bolted routes or via ferratas, and so there is no need for helmets, harness or rope. However, considering how physically demanding the route is, the length of the stages and the presence of some exposed stretches, this type of trek is only recommended for people who are very fit, who have a good sense of direction and who are used to hiking in a mountain environment.  
GardaTrek requires you to have standard hiking equipment for alpine terrain and we suggest you also bring a wind and waterproof jacket and fleece in case of bad weather, a torch, a change of underwear, sunglasses and sunscreen, a water canteen and snacks.

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