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Hidden Treasures: Along the paths of peasant faith in Nago

Mountain tour · Lake Garda
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  • Shrine dedicated to San Giuseppe (St. Joseph)
    / Shrine dedicated to San Giuseppe (St. Joseph)
    Photo: IAT Garda Trentino, Garda Trentino
m 300 200 100 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 km

An easy walk between Torbole sul Garda and Nago which links up various places of worship and other signs of the religious faith of the local farming communities.

8.9 km
3:19 h
210 m
212 m

The trail links up a number of different places connected with the religious faith of local farming communities: chapels and shrines which were once a vital point of reference for the local inhabitants. The devotion of the local people is evident from the frequency of such religious structures in the towns and surrounding countryside.

The trail starts in the centre of Torbole and follows back roads as far as the pass Passo San Giovanni, the gateway to Garda Trentino.

The return stretch involves the historic road “Via di Santa Lucia” which in 1439 was the route used in what is known as “Galeas per Montes”. Brescia, an ally of Venice, was under threat from the Milanese troops and the Venetians needed to come to their aid. So they sailed up the River Adige with 25 barges and 6 galleys, which were then dismantled and transported by 2000 oxen to the harbour of Torbole, passing through the Santa Lucia valley. In 1440 the little fleet defeated the Milanese and conquered Riva del Garda.

Author’s recommendation

Along the Via di Santa Lucia you can follow in the footsteps of Goethe with the itinerary “In Torbole with Goethe”. User
Valentina Bellotti
Updated: February 11, 2019

Highest point
276 m
Lowest point
65 m
Best time of year

Safety information

The Hidden Treasures itineraries were designed in order to give visitors a chance to get to know places in Garda Trentino that are off the beaten track. For this reason, the signposting is not always in the same style and sometimes missing altogether. We therefore recommend you to take a good map with you on these excursions. And then bear in mind your general reference points: Lake Garda = South, Monte Stivo = East, Rocchetta = West, Arco Castle = North.

The telephone number for the emergency services is 112.

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.


You need to be wearing 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?

What you should have in your rucksack (for a day trip a 25/30L capacity should do):

  • 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
  • emergency telephone number: 112

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.

Tips, hints and links

  • In Nago you can finish the itinerary with a visit to the ruins of Castel Penede, perched in a panoramic position on a rocky outcrop overlooking Lake Garda. The castle is mentioned as far back as the 13th and had mixed fortunes until it was destroyed by Vendome in 1703. Reduced to rubble, it was used as a source of stone blocks for construction in Nago for over two centuries: it was finally converted into an artillery outpost by the Austro-Hungarian army during World War One. Today it is the perfect place for a relaxing stroll with views over Lake Garda.
  • For further information on routes, activities, events and accommodation at lake Garda:  APT Garda Trentino, Tel. +39 0464 554444 -


Torbole sul Garda (67 m)
45.868949, 10.875979
32T 645603 5081198



Turn-by-turn directions

In Torbole:
Start from the old Customs House (Casa del Dazio) in the old harbour of Torbole. Cross the road and head down via Fitta (holy picture in a display case), via Segantini, via Pescicoltura (chapel shrine of the Romani family). Heading back towards piazza Goethe, take the side street leading to the church of San Andrea (note the inscription “JHS” - Jesus Hominum Salvator -) and continue on in the direction of Nago, first up via Pontalti and the along the ancient Santa Lucia road (where there are three shrines, dedicated to the Madonna, Santa Lucia and San Leopoldo Mandic); At the start of the road, note the plaque in memory of the “Galeas per Montes”.

In Nago:
Once you get to Nago along the Santa Lucia road, take the first turn on the left and follow directions for the trail marked SAT 601 and continue on as far as the shrine of San Giuseppe. Turn left here and head north along the road across the fields (the area is called “Località Crone”) until you pass the gas power station. Shortly after you come to the shrine of San Pietro and turn right onto the road which leads to the Passo San Giovanni pass. On a rocky outcrop above the main road you can see the shrine dedicated to San Giovanni Nepomuceno. Head back to the shrine of San Pietro, then continue towards Nago along via Scuole. When you come to the cemetery in via Forni, turn right for the church of San Rocco (16th century) and then left into via De Bonetti (half-way down this road, high up on a wall on the right, there is a religious image which still bear signs of damage by bullets during World War Two.

Keep on as far as the church of San Vigilio (12th century, rebuilt in the 16th). On the opposite side of the street a portico leads into via Naschione (after a few metres, you can see a plaque on a house with the inscription “JHS”. From here you head back to the church of San Vigilio.

In order to get back to Torbole you can retrace your steps on the via di Santa Lucia. Otherwise, turn right and then left into via Sighele where you will find a bus stop.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Public transport friendly

The towns in Garda Trentino - Riva del Garda, Torbole sul Garda, Nago and Arco – are connected by a number of urban and intercity bus lines which will take you to the starting point of the trail. For up-to-the-minute information on timetables and routes:

In Nago the bus stop is in via Strada Rivana.

You can also get to Riva del Garda and Torbole sul Garda by the public ferry service. For up-to-the-minute information on timetables and routes:

Getting there

Getting to northern lake Garda / Garda Trentino: 


In Torbole, free parking in  Via Strada Granda or in the Busatte district. Pay parking in the Parcheggio Panorama and Lungolago Conca d'Oro.

In Nago you can find free car parking in the “Al Coel” car park which you enter from the roundabout (not suitable for campers or long vehicles).

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Author’s map recommendations

  • The “Hidden Treasures” map is available free of charge in the tourist information offices in Riva del Garda, Arco and Torbole sul Garda

Book recommendations for this region:

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Recommended maps for this region:

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8.9 km
210 m
212 m
Public transport friendly Loop Cultural/historical value Scenic Refreshment stops available


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