Ancient borgos, archeological sites, castles, sanctuaries, abbeys, rock churches, hermitages and caves are the frame to the beautiful Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga National Park, where the nature is rich in forests, springs, waterfalls, meadows, plateaus, peaks and rocky walls. It’s an enormous resource, involving also craft, food and wine and folklore.
This tour will take you to visit the most distinctive landscapes of the National Park, through off the beaten track paths, to discover unusual tracks and the most magical and well-preserved natural sites.
It is recommended to expert mountain-bikers with a good training level and driving skills. Experience, technical equipment and mountain bike are required. The itinerary may vary in case of poor weather conditions.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL
Check-in at the hotel and free time to visit the city.
DAY 2: GRAN SASSO AND MONTI DELLA LAGA HIGH ROAD (49,08 km, elevation gain 1060 m)
The route of the day will start from L’Aquila and follow High Road 80, the main road that, since the ancient times, has been a connection between Rome and the Adriatic sea, and L’Aquila and Teramo. This area is considered the heart of the national park, where Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga mountains meet. Campotosto lake, the widest European artificial basin, is an authentic paradise for the local flora and fauna. The destination is Crognaleto.
DAY 3: FROM CROGNALETO TO PIETRACAMELA (51 km, elevation gain 1000 m)
Characteristic of this route are the little old medieval towns castled on the mountains walls, such as Pietracamela with its labyrinth of alleys and little streets and cave paintings by the world famous painter Guido Montauti, or Poggio Umbricchio, Senarica and Cerqueto, real masterwork. The itinerary of the day will take you through the Mill Route and give you the chance to visit the Valle delle Cento Cascate (Valley of the hundred waterfalls). Then to Pietracamela, where you will spend the night.
DAY 4: FROM PIETRACAMELA TO RIGOPIANO (35 km, elevation gain 800 m)
The itinerary of the day is breathtaking, since it is dominated by the view of the Gran Sasso mountain chain: the majestic Paretone, mount Aquila, Brancastello, mount Prena and mount Camicia. Rising peaks and descending to the valleys, you will meet castle ruins and Castelli, birthplace of the famous Abruzzo ceramic art.
DAY 5: FROM RIGOPIANO TO SANTO STEFANO DI SESSIANO (36 km, elevation gain 1200 m)
South-west of the high peaks, there is what is known as “little Tibet”: the extraordinary scenery of Campo Imperatore plain. This is a wide plateau of glacial origin which stretches out for dozens of kilometres originating a unique and breathtaking landscape. During winter this plateau is inaccessible due to the snow, but in summer there are numerous tracks with different levels of difficulty. With the itinerary proposed you will start from Rigopiano, through Vado di Sole and descending towards Castel del Monte, Rocca Calascio and Santo Stefano di Sessanio, final destination of the day.
DAY 6: FROM STEFANO SESSIANO TO CAMPO IMPERATORE (25,5 km, elevation gain 1150 m)
The first stage of the day covers 13 km uphill (easy uphill) where you will enjoy an almost lunar, barren and wild landscape. You will see the first and main peak of Apennines, Gran Sasso, high more than 3000 m. The route will take you to Campo Imperatore, where you will check in at the hotel, which is an historical place. The hotel became famous in 1943, when, after the fall of fascism and the arrest of Mussolini, it was chosen as a prison for the ex-chief of state.
DAY 7: DEPARTURE
The tour includes:
- 6 nights at a hotel or B&B with breakfasts
- 6 dinners
- Local transfers
- Luggage transfers
- Medical and luggage insurances
- 24/7 Assistance from our team
The tour does not include:
Lunches, drinks and anything else not included in the list “The tour includes”.
- Transfer from/to the airport (Roma Fiumicino “L. Da Vinci” or D’Abruzzo “P. Liberi”)
- You can rent a MTB
- Packed lunches
Equipment you need to have:
- MTB in perfect conditions (you can rent one from us).
- Technical clothing for biking.
Contact us for a quotation.