Trail Running Adventure in the Maira Valley, Italy: Unveil the Untamed Beauty of Piedmont
Nestled in the southwest of Piedmont, Italy, the Maira Valley, also known as Val Maira or Valle Macra, beckons trail runners to experience a unique holiday that harmonizes unspoiled scenery and unpolluted fresh air. As one of Italy’s well-kept secrets, this valley is a testament to natural beauty and historical charm, making it an unparalleled destination for self-guided trail running.
Maira Valley: A Gem of Piedmont
Maira Valley is a true reflection of Italy’s traditional spirit. With its ancient welcoming Occitan atmosphere, the region pulsates with traditional festivals, delightful Italian food, and the distinction of being a leading producer of confectionery, coffee, and white truffles in Italy. Beyond its gastronomic wonders, the valley is a sanctuary for nature lovers, where untamed landscapes blend seamlessly with the rhythm of life.
- Breathtaking Trails: Traverse a network of trails that weave through lush forests, serene meadows, and rugged mountain terrain. Runners can select routes that range from short, scenic journeys to longer, more challenging expeditions, each offering stunning views of pristine natural landscapes.
- Local Expertise: Each trail is meticulously designed by local trail runners who possess an intimate knowledge of the terrain. This ensures an exhilarating trail running experience tailored to all levels, from beginners to experienced runners.
- Maira Occitan Trail: The Maira Valley annually hosts one of Piedmont’s most prestigious trail races, the Maira Occitan Trail. This event provides the opportunity to tackle meticulously crafted trails and embrace the challenge, further enhancing the allure of the Maira Valley as a premier trail running destination.
Unleash Your Inner Trail Runner
Whether you’re an experienced trail runner or a first-timer seeking to conquer the mountains, the Maira Valley’s diverse terrain ensures an unforgettable experience. You can explore mountain paths, tackle demanding routes, or meander through ancient trails that wind past picturesque villages. The trails not only offer a great way to explore the area but also provide stunning vistas, fresh mountain air, and glorious landscapes. Moreover, the Maira Valley offers a safe environment for runners to challenge themselves and push their limits, thanks to its diverse terrain catering to all skill levels. The village of Elva and the enchanting hamlets of Marmora await your exploration.
Trail Running Crafted with Local Expertise
Every trail in the Maira Valley is meticulously designed by local trail runners who possess an intimate knowledge of the terrain. Each year, the Maira Valley hosts one of Piedmont’s most prestigious trail races, the Maira Occitan Trail. This event ensures that the trails are expertly crafted to offer an exhilarating trail running experience that transcends ordinary adventures.
Embark on this extraordinary self-guided trail running journey in the Maira Valley, Italy, where the raw beauty of nature converges with rich culture and history. Discover the untamed paths, indulge in local cuisine, and unveil hidden gems in this mesmerizing landscape.
|Time of departure
|INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
|NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
*This tour is based on a minimum of two participants. Only the services mentioned above are included in the price.
|August, July, June, May, October, September
This is an example of a tour on this route. Your final itinerary may be different depending on availability of rooms at the time of your booking.
Total distance: 81,1 km (6 days)
Level: Medium to experienced
Day 1: Arrival in Elva
Once you arrive at Dronero, the main village of the Maira Valley, our local guide Valentina Scigliano (a passionate trail runner) will welcome you and explain all the tours and paths to you. A welcome pack will be given to you with lots of information including a detailed map of the valley as well as a Maira Valley t-shirt.
Your guide will always be available during your stay in the valley for any information, questions, concerns or other support that you may require.
Following a briefing at the Tourist Office, you will drive in the direction of Elva.
As you drive along the winding mountain road up to Elva you may begin to feel as if you are going nowhere. It’s exactly at that very moment, after the last turning, that you finally get to see it: a beautiful pearl, set under a breathtaking crown made of 3.000m-high mountain peaks surrounding it.
Upon arrival Lorella your host at the Locanda di Elva will welcome you in the central hamlet, where the pelassiers (hair gatherers) used to perform their trade. After a short relaxing warm-up walk to the panoramic “Fremo Cuncunà“, you will taste some typical Occitan recipes in the Locanda.
Up: 245 m
Down: 245 m
Day 2: Borgata Chiosso of Elva
You will start running in Borgata Chiosso of Elva, 5 minutes by car from the Locanda.
8km and 1.500m of altitude are worth the effort because from the 3.000 m high top of Mount Chersogno you will feel on top of the world! The view from there is amazing and the path is completely suitable for running to the very top.
The return route follows the same track.
The dinner at the Locanda will be the icing on the cake following this first day of your trail running holiday!
Up: 1310 m
Down: 1310 m
Day 3: Elva to Marmora
You will drive from Elva to Marmora (it is about 45 min by car).
After checking in, and leaving your baggage at the beautiful Locanda Lou Pitavin, you will start running directly from the front door up the hill in the direction of Mount Buch and Costa Chiggia.
The track goes through hamlets of incredible beauty, ridges and hills and goes down back to Locanda Lou Pitavin.
Up: 1168 m
Day 4: Around Rocca La Meja
After driving a further 15 min journey you will park your car at Grange Selvest (parking costs are 5€/day), across the bridge on the left side and your next trail run of Rocca La Meja will start from here. You will experience the best of Maira Valley running around one of the most iconic mountains of The Maira Valley, the Rocca La Meja.
A lengthy trail around the area provides you with the opportunity to explore the heights of 2,500 meters above sea level and the stunning Lake Nero.
Up: 1050 m
Down: 1050 m
Day 5: Lakes, waterfalls, hills and peaks
A 30-minute drive brings you to the parking place on the small square of Chiappera, the very last village of the Maira Valley.
Here you will start running in the direction of Stroppia Waterfall,
Lake Niera, Lake Auto Vallonasso, Lake Nove Colori, and then back on the long round track of the Dino Icardi trail.
This trail run is stunningly beautiful, the perfect finale to your incredible journey.
Day 6: The final taste of Occitan
On the last day of your journey in Maira Valley you’ll have two options:
View the details of the trail running track by clicking here.
Up: 550 m
Down: 550 m
2. Take the opportunity to visit the heart of the Occitan culture and history at the Occitan Museum in Dronero. You’ll be given a guided tour of the museum by their friendly staff.