Surrounded by mountains, Casa Appenninia offers a tremendous variety of activities that literally lead from its doorsteps in all directions. Explore the beautiful Gotra valley and river immediately below the village, or hike up into the vast forests that stretch up to Mt Gottero behind the house – and look out for mushrooms, orchids and some rare wildlife, whilst having picnics on alpine meadows or swimming in pristine streams.
The immediate area is very popular for walking and enjoying nature, but it also offers a very diverse range of specialised outdoor activities and adventure sports, including horse-riding for most of the year, river-rafting in spring and summer, and skiing in winter.
Hiking and Mountain Climbing
For those seeking more of a challenge, there are many serious hiking trails to test your mountaineering skills and endurance. The high mountains separating Albareto from Pontremoli and Zeri in Tuscany, and Varese Ligure and Sesta Godano in Liguria are mostly classed from moderately-difficult to very difficult. Some of these trails have change of elevation that can vary well over 1000 metres, others require rope assisted rock-climbing and abseiling.
The highest peaks of the Parmenses and Ligurian Appennines including Monte Penna and Monte Maggiorasca, are visible from the veranda and only a short drive by car.
Cycling and Mountain Biking
The northern Apennines are a popular destination for cycling holidays. Whether you are seeking to do some serious road racing, some off-road mountain biking or just want to explore the area on the more gently sloping roads, the area has something for everyone – and Albareto lies right in the middle of it.
The Upper Taro valley has many popular riding trails, and there are a few riding schools to help you explore these. For more information, please contact us.
Kayaking, canoeing and rafting
Most stretches of the Taro, Ceno and Vara rivers are navigable for small craft, including kayak, canoes and rafts. The fast-flowing waters of the melting snows attract thrill-seekers in spring, whereas summertime is preferred by those seeking to enjoy the beautiful scenery and a respite from the heat as they float at a more gentle pace downriver.
For those interested to learn, the tributary flowing into the Taro river from Albareto offers a great starting points for beginners. Pontestrambo a few miles upstream is the best (though not easiest) place to embark for seeing the river at its highest navigable section. There a few outlets that offer kayak and canoe courses, or just simply bring your own (Casa Appenninia has plenty of storage).
The immediate area around Albareto is largely unexplored for paragliding*, but there are quite a few established sites for paragliding nearby.
One of the most dramatic spots that is popular with Ligurian paragliding clubs is on the Cinqueterre 500m directly above above Monterosso Al Mare. The exact spot is 100 m due north of the intersection of SP38 and SP51, where the small road from Vernazza joins the coastal road from Levanto to La Spezia (1 hour drive from Casa Appennina).
* the area around Albareto also appears to be suitable for paragliding, and we hope to provide an update on this soon
The Gulf of La Spezia is a popular area for sailing, and Lerici is one of the best places to hire boats or take sailing lessons.
There are 13 locations with ski lifts accessible from Albareto, ranging from beginners slopes (15 min drive) to difficult high mountains (50 mins).
Cross-country skiing starts right on the door step…
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Food and Drink
All of the activities mentioned above require lots of energy, but the local food undoubtedly makes one of the best lunchboxes this planet has to offer.
>>> read about Food and Drink