Stella d’Occidente is a timeless route, where even before reaching the road, you are travelling through local history and tradition.
The time required is short, the emotions intense and the memories will stay with you long after this ride through the hidden places of the lake's hinterland to breathtaking viewpoints.
Leaving the , the route heads towards Albarè on country roads, until reaching the cycle path to Affi. After the ancient village of Affi, the road climbs to Incaffi, with its fascinating ancient farm buildings. From here we continue to Monte Moscal, inside which is the West Star, NATO codename for the secret bunker of the Allied Terrestrial Forces Command for
Southern Europe, operative here until 2004.
Designed and built in the late fifties, the bunker served as a command post with strategic transmissions centre and control over the organisation and management of NATO operations in the zone of north-east Italy. The area is extremely interesting historically and culturally, and is open to the public; we can then climb the steep track up to the summit (414 metres), and admire the panoramic view over the plain of Affi and Albarè.
Descending from Moscal, our route plunges into the narrow gorge of Val Sorda. This short stretch of approximately 3 km is a thrilling ride alongside the rushing river, zig-zagging down to the Bardolino area, where we turn towards the Rocche. Climbing Rocca Vecchia, it's practically an obligation to reach the viewpoint, above the blue waters
of the Lake. The top is reached by pushing the bikes the last 150 metres. Awaiting us and rewarding our effort, the awe-inspiring panorama over the Gulf of Garda from a height of 250 metres.
We then descend Rocca Vecchia, only to climb Rocca San Giorgio, home to a 17th century monastery which is still inhabited by a few monks. Descending from
Rocca San Giorgio can easily take us back to the hotel, or, by taking a detour towards Garda, we can ride through the picturesque Valle dei Mulini, the ancient location of mills fed by the pristine river water in what is now a protected area.
We ascend once more to Costermano, and from here to Boffenigo Small & Beautiful Hotel