Via Alta Vallemaggia

Foto: Roberto Buzzini

The day starts at a leisurely pace, perhaps with a coffee on the terrace, followed by a first descent, passing Lake Sfundau (green) and Lake Cavagnöö (blue), set in a colourful geology. As you climb, you are rewarded with sweeping views of the Bavona Valley and Vallemaggia. 

The trail then turns into a small hidden valley that takes you to the Grandinagia Pass, situated at an elevation of almost 2,700 metres. On your way down, just past a barren scree slope, you will see a white-plastered chapel, namely the oratory of Saints Nicholas, Catherine and James, the last remaining trace of a hospice that once stood there in the Middle Ages, welcoming travellers, pilgrims and traders crossing the Alps. The wide saddle of the San Giacomo Pass is a short distance away. An easy-going dirt road, closed to traffic, skirts Lake Toggia and takes you all the way to the San Giacomo Pass. Built in 1929, the road had aroused fears among the Swiss of belligerent intentions. All that is in the past: today it is a place of utter peace and tranquillity, as is the Maria Luisa refuge.

Technical Data

  • Stage length

    14,5 km

  • Height difference ascent

    810 m

  • Height difference descent

    1220 m

  • Maximum height

    2697 m

  • Duration

    05:30 h

  • Difficulty


Attention! The walking times indicated refer to walking time without breaks and are calculated on the basis of parameters defined by Swiss Hiking Federation and experience. The actual walking times will therefore generally be higher, especially for longer stages.

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