Trekking by Molise lakes

Contact me by for a date

“Trekking by Molise lakes” will explore the two principal lakes of the Molise Region, the Occhito and Guardialfiera Lakes, and the hills that surround them. It connects the pre-Apennine environments of the two lakes with the luxuriant rural environments, with the architecture of some small villages and monasteries in the open countryside, with the excellent culinary tradition of Molise, as well as with the uniqueness of the Croatian-Molise community. In addition, it allows you to be introduced to the phenomenon of transhumance, getting to know three Regi Tratturi (the sheep tracks): from Castel di Sangro-Lucera to Ateleta-Biferno, passing through Celano-Foggia.

Duration: 4 walking days, 5 nights, 6 days overall.
Destination: from Gambatesa to Acquaviva Collecroce.
Trail type: hill path.
Features: itinerant, cultural and historical; experiential; natural; food and wine.
Accommodation: guesthouses, agriturismi (farmhouses), and bed-and-breakfasts.
Where to eat: restaurant, farmhouses and trattoria.
Group size: 8-12 people. Extra charge for small group until to 4 people.

Difficulty: Easy
The trail contains numerous flat stretches and only a few uphill and downhill walks. Altitude differentials average 500 meters (1640 ft) per day, uphill or downhill, but do not have steep slopes. This itinerary is suitable to all ability levels, however hiking experience is desirable. The trails do not pose major challenges. The majority of the itinerary involves walking, except for brief segments by motorized vehicle. The overnight stays are comfortable.

Length of the itinerary: 82 km (51 mi)
Total elevation gain: +3130 m (+10269 ft)
Total elevation loss: -2845 m (-9333 ft)

Enticing atmospheres in the medieval historical centers of Gambatesa, Ripabottoni, Guardialfiera, Acquaviva Collecroce, and Termoli, with their artistic beauty in palaces, churches, fountains, crossroads, gardens and more.

The ancient ways of horizontal transhumance: Regi Tratturi Castel di Sangro-Lucera, Celano-Foggia and Ateleta-Biferno. Historical and cultural heritage that shows architectural, religious, and cultural aspects of the pastoral culture.

The castle di Capua in Gambatesa is one of the most beautiful fortresses in Molise. In addition to its elegant appearance, the manor is characterised by a series of Renaissance frescoes that are unique in the south of Italy. The remarkable works belong to the painter Donato Decumbertino, who worked for and with one of the major Renaissance artists: Giorgio Vasari.

The trip allows you to take in the environments of the Lake of Occhito and the water mirror of Guardialfiera. Both have Sites of Community Importance (SCIs), of The Natura 2000 network, and are set in pre-Apennine environments, among hills covered with woods and cultivated fields.

Your journey will be enriched by the delicious traditional cuisine of Molise and its excellent drinks. Traditional products and dishes, often handmade and old-fashioned, brighten the evenings of walkers. You can taste cheeses such as caciocavallo, pecorino, burrata, and manteca and try cured meats like soppressata, ventricina, capicollo, and rolled up ventresca. You can eat local seasonal vegetables and legumes and can drink Moscato white wine and Tintilia red wine.

In moments of rest, you will meet local experts, who tell stories and traditions of the pastoral culture of Molise. Then, you can visit a dairy and an artisan salumi factory.

The hills that divide the two lakes are markedly rural. We will be often walking on paths that run alongside vineyards, small olive groves and divide cultivated fields. The silence and the feeling of peace that you have along this segment of Molise are rejuvenating.

Guardialfiera lake ruin campobasso


Day 1

Arrival at Campobasso and meeting with Professional Nature and Interpretative Guide.
Transfer to Gambatesa by motorized vehicle.
Accommodation and explanation of the journey.
Dinner at restaurant.
Night in different guest houses, in twin rooms with shared bathroom.

Day 2

After breakfast, we start the hike from Gambatesa to La Foresta district (Macchia Valfortore).
Packed lunch.
Dinner in a farmhouse.
Night in farmhouses, in twin rooms with private bathroom.

We visit the castle di Capua and the historic center of Gambatesa, then descend into the valley of the Tappino stream and meet what remains of the Regio Tratturo Castel di Sangro-Lucera. After crossing the stream, we walk at the base of the pinewoods of Macchia della Terra. Then we get on Colle della Putina and go down to lake of Occhito. Arrived at the large reservoir, we take the long white trail that leads up to the farmhouse. Along the way we can enjoy the shade of different woods, meet cultivated fields, olive groves, and vineyards and admire the many panoramic views overlooking the lake.

Technical Information
Duration: 5.5 hours (rest-times not included).
Length of the trek: 22 km (13.7 mi)
Total elevation gain: +730 m (+2395 ft)
Total elevation loss: -940 m (-3083 ft)
Difficulty: easy

Day 3

After breakfast, we start the hike from La Foresta district (Macchia Valfortore) to Ripabottoni.
Packed lunch.
Dinner at home restuarant.
Night in bed-and-breakfasts, in twin rooms and private bathroom.

From the farmhouse, we continue walking along the lake of Occhito until going up the valley of the Cigno stream and meeting the Regio Tratturo Celano-Foggia. We follow it until crossing the hill of Monte Castello and turn right onto Colle Guardiola, from which we can admire the hills that slope down to the coast, the Adriatic Sea, Matese Apennine, and a large slice of central and western Molise.

Technical Information
Duration: 6 hours (rest-times not included).
Length of the trek: 21 km (13 mi)
Total elevation gain: +1080 m (+3543 ft)
Total elevation loss: -620 m (-2034 ft)
Difficulty: medium

Day 4

After breakfast, we start the hike from Ripabottoni to Guardialfiera.
Packed lunch.
Dinner in a farmhouse.
Night in farmhouse or in different bed-and-breakfasts, in twin rooms with private bathroom.

From the village of Ripabottoni we descend on Regio Tratturo Celano-Foggia. Then we climb a hill close to the village of Morrone del Sannio. From here, we descend down an ‘interpoderale’ road next to the wonderful convent of San Nazario and the fascinating abbey of Santa Maria in Casalpiano, which goes back to what was once the link between the Roman cities of Bovianum and Geronium. After leaving the monastic complex, we keep going down to the bed of the river Biferno, and then continue along the first shores of Lake Guardialfiera.

Technical Information
Duration: 5 hours (rest-times not included)
Length of the trek: 20 km (12.4 mi)
Total elevation loss: +500 m (+1640 ft)
Total elevation gain: -725 m (-2378 ft)
Difficulty: easy

Day 5

After breakfast, we start the hike from Guardialfiera to Acquaviva Collecroce.
Packed lunch.
At the end of day, we transfer by motorized vehicle to farmhouse for rest.
Dinner in a farmhouse.
Night in a farmhouse, in twin rooms with private bathroom.

From the farmhouse, we hike a large slice of Lake Guardialfiera, almost to the dam, and then climb up a hill, among cultivated fields, olive groves and farms. Once climbed up Colle Coppere, we go down to the Scorciabove valley and climb up the opposite side of the valley. After crossing the Regio Tratturo Ateleta-Biferno, we follow it up until to Acquaviva Collecroce, where we get to see the largest historical minority community of the Croatian-Molise.

Technical Information
Duration: 5 hours (rest-times not included).
Length of the trek: 19 km (11.8 mi)
Total elevation gain: +820 m (+2690 ft)
Total elevation loss: -560 m (-1837 ft)
Difficulty: moderate

Day 6

Time to say goodbye and go back.
After breakfast, we transfer by motorized vehicle from farmhouse to Termoli.
Visit of the historical center and transfer to the railway or bus station of Termoli.
Otherwise, transfer by motorized vehicle to Campobasso for departure from the main city.

Write to to get info about price, booking and date.

For groups of 8 to 12 people.

What’s included

  • travel planning;
  • professional nature and interpretive AIGAE guide;
  • all breakfasts and dinners;
  • insurance and contract with tour operator;
  • all nights in twin rooms with private bathroom (except the first day – guesthouses with shared bathroom);
  • luggage transport during the six (6) days in Molise;
  • private transport by motorized vehicle, where necessary and according to the program.

What’s not included:

  • airfare;
  • transfer from Italian airport to Molise and back;
  • Single accommodation (available on request);
  • packed lunches (filled roll, fruit, and half liter water bottle);
  • wine and other beverages with alcohol;
  • and anything not specifically included above.

Last tips before departure…

Notice: This program may be to change, before and during the journey. Changes are based on the climate, the needs of travelers and the people that host the group of travelers.

More info about this travel!


    Share and find your next travel’s friends

    Other journeys


      Ti contatto per...