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Val Marcia: The Witches Trail

Duration in hours
Distance in km
Suggested period

At the beginning of the valley seven crosses were built in 1656 to keep away the witches, who were thought to cast courses on the inhabitants, causing damages to the villages and the fields. This itinerary isn’t a strenuous one and it’s perfect also for children and seniors, as long as trained. In fact, you will have to face a steep climb that will bring you up at 1580 metres. Val Marcia, located at the south end of Bleggio, is enclosed by Mount Altissimo and Mount Cogorna and traversed by the river Duina and its little tributaries. Discover this wild valley and admire such an untouched territory offering many wonderful glimpses.

Itinerary: Balbido, Livez, Malga Dablino return via the same route.

Further information and useful links

For more information on routes, services (guides, mountain huts, shops etc.) and hiking friendly accommodation: Garda Trentino - +39 0464 554444


Route info
Route number
7,0 km
3 h 00 min
Altitude difference (+)
875 m
Altitude difference (-)
81 m
Technical skills
Physical effort
Highest point
1.556 m
Lowest point
762 m
Safety guidelines

Safety Tips

  1. Choose itineraries that suit your physical and technical abilities. Collect information about the area you are visiting and the trail’s conditions and get a detailed trekking map.
  2. Wear clothes and take equipment that suit the difficulty and length of your tour. Keep emergency gear in your rucksack, including first aid supplies.
  3. Do not go walking alone in the mountains. In any case, tell someone where you are going and report back on returning.
  4. Look at the weather forecast before setting off and always keep an eye on the weather.
  5. In case of doubt, go back. It is better to give up than risk bad weather or face difficulties beyond your strength, ability and equipment.
  6. Do not leave marked paths and do not take shortcuts.
  7. All described walks are in a natural environment and therefore their use is at your own risk.

This information is subject to inevitable variations, so none of these 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, it is advisable to check environment and weather conditions before setting out.

Punto di partenza

Park in the centre of Balbido, walk up the main road following the signs SAT 462 on the left, until you reach the last houses. Continue along the paved road until you arrive in the “Le Cross” area where the road turns into a dirt track and enters the woods; pass the SS. Trinità chapel and arrive at “Livèz”. Keep walking ahead towards Malga Dablino, make you way through the valley keeping to the left bank of the river Duina. After crossing Rio Torcòs and Rio Torcadìn, and passing near the “Acqua del Barbèr” spring, you will arrive at the “Jal demla Porcil” area, at an altitude of 1250m; continue on and ford the river Duina bringing yourself to the right orographic side of the valley, near to the sides of Mount Cogorna. Leave the forest road and climb up a steep path through the woods until you reach the source of river Duina. Here, you can choose to continue on either the steep track or the original old path, both leading to Malga Dablino.

When you have passed the water station, you step into the pastures around Malga Dablino (or what is left of it) and further on Bait dei Caciadori, The Hunters’ hut. Here, you will find a tucked-away corner where you can take shelter. It’s a fantastic location: a secluded and intimate basin from which you can stare in awe at the Val Marcia peaks, Gavardina, Rodola, Altissimo and Cima Pala. After, retrace your footsteps back to the starting point. Tip: those who wish to shorten their itinerary can drive to the “Livèz” area. This will cut the excursion time down by one hour.

public transportation

Balbido is connected by the intercity bus lines 211 (Riva del Garda - Tenno - Fiavè - Ponte Arche) and 210 (Ponte Arche - S.Croce - Cavrasto - Bivedo) to the other places in Garda Trentino.

Up-to-date information on timetables and routes here and on the website of Trentino Trasporti.


How to get there

From Ponte Arche/Comano Terme go towards Bleggio Superiore - Balbido (8 km).

Find out how to reach Garda Trentino.


Where to park

Free parking in Balbido.

You need to wear the right clothing and take the proper gear when you go hiking in the mountains. Even on relatively short easy outings make sure to take all you need so you don't run into trouble if things take an unexpected turn, for example a storm blows up or you have a sudden drop in energy levels.

What should you take when you go on a hike?

Your rucksack (for a day trip a 25/30L capacity should do) should contain:

  • water canteen (1L)
  • snacks (e.g. mixed dried fruit or chocolate)
  • First aid kit
  • windproof jacket
  • fleece
  • change of t-shirt and socks (in a plastic bag)
  • make sure to wear or at least bring a pair of long trousers
  • hat
  • sun screen
  • sunglasses
  • gloves
  • whistle to attract attention in an emergency


Make sure you're wearing the right footwear for the trail and season. The going can get rough and rocky underfoot and a pair of hiking boots will protect you from sprains. When wet, a grassy slope, rocky slab or steep trail can be dangerous unless you are wearing the proper footwear.

And finally... don't forget to bring your camera! You'll need it to capture the stunning views you come across all over Garda Trentino. And if you like, you can share your memories with us at #GardaTrentino.

Emergency telephone number 112.

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