Story and photos by Tom Weber
matter the language you speak, Molveno the camera-ready, picture-postcard
perfect, lakeside village at the foot of the Brenta Dolomites in the
vast Adamello Brenta Nature Park of Italy's Trentino Alto Adige region
will welcome you, and countless other visitors from around the
globe, with open arms.
Molveno's a jewel of a locale actually
a pearl, according to the late Antonio Fogazzaro, a 19th century Italian
novelist with the snow-capped peaks above reflecting off the
glassy surface of the town's namesake lake, Lago di Molveno, below.
It was here in tiny Molveno that tourism
was first introduced into the Trentino, and has attracted many a VIP
from international high society, including King Albert I of Belgium
who was a frequent guest and enjoyed blending in anonymously with the
Lago di Molveno, formed about three
millennia ago, is the second largest natural lake in the Trentino side
of Italy's northernmost region, and one of the bluest bodies of water
I've ever seen.
During summertime, the lake is used for
swimming, sailing, canoeing and windsurfing. And its lush green park,
with loads of picnic tables and benches, is the ideal place to relax,
bask in the sun, and lay out a checkered tablecloth with all the fixins.
A ski lift, located in the center of town,
glides visitors directly to the top of the Mount Pradel Plateau
(1,400m), where numerous hiking trails and fixed-rope sentieri
(footpaths) begin. Unfortunately, the lift is currently out of commission,
but it'll be back in operation for the start of the winter season. So,
it looks like I'll be going up the old-fashioned way, on foot, to get
a panoramic view of the breathtaking Brenta Dolomites.
Meanwhile, back down at lake level, Molveno
proudly waves the bandiera arancione (orange flag) of the Italian
Touring Club, symbolic of the town's high quality, environmentally sound
tourism. It goes without saying that Molveno's squeaky-clean appearance
and tranquil setting are the major draws for this community of just
over 1,100 year-round residents.
This being in between the summer and winter
tourist seasons, Molveno is now tucked under the covers of a well-deserved
hibernation, and that probably explains why my lenses and I pretty much
had the lake and the village all to ourselves.
To learn more about the picturesque Trentino
area, including Molveno and its lake, visit the Department
for Tourism and Promotion's English-language website.
Next up on Under Doctor's Orders,
a tiny little hamlet tucked quietly away where the llamas roam free
and a Marian apparition is linked to its past: Deggia.
the Dolomites; Traveling
in Northern Italy; The
Little Village Atop the Hill; Piovene
Sutri: A Canterbury Trail