8 days
Moderate to Challenging

 Challenging hikes on ancient mountain trails

  Quiet, secluded mountains and beautiful, wild valleys

  Ancient, tranquil villages and expansive pastures

  Charming and comfortable accommodation in quiet mountain villages

  Delicious local food (Occitane and Italian cuisine)

Hiking in the Maira Valley

An undiscovered walker’s paradise in Piedmont

Tucked away in the Southern Italian Alps, near the French border, lies the beautiful Maira Valley.  With its tranquil villages, chapels and churches settled in an uncontaminated landscape, Valle Maira is now slowly being discovered as a walker’s paradise. You will not find busy roads, ski slopes and mass tourism here. Instead, you can expect pristine mountain scenery, lots of sunshine, small charming guest houses and delicious Italian food.

Traditionally, the inhabitants of the Valle Maira had more contact with France. The French border is only a few hours walk away and was easily reached via the mountain passes, while the route to the Italian plains and Po Valley was difficult and went through a rocky gorge.It was only when the road was finally built that more Italians began to arrive. Today, the first language of the valley remains Occitan – a romance language also spoken in southern France.

8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS From €1,100 per person sharing*

*Discounts available for triple rooms. Please enquire for prices.
*A high season supplement will apply from mid June to mid September.

*A single supplement charge will apply for solo walkers

ACCOMMODATION You will stay in renovated and cosy farmhouses located in quiet little villages, all with spacious rooms with private bathroom. You will be warmly welcomed, and the accommodation owners can tell you all about the area and the walks. The accommodation in Viviere is a lovely hut and has a few rooms. If there is no availability there, we book a room in the village of Chialvetta that is 2 km and 200 m lower than Viviere. A large breakfast is served each morning and, on walking days, you get a packed lunch prepared by the accommodation. The trip is on half-board basis and a delicious dinner with local specialities is served every night at the restaurant of the accommodation.

During high season it is possible that you might sleep in different accommodation to the ones indicated above. In choosing alternative accommodation we try to maintain the same standards and quality.

AVAILABILITY You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between June 1st and October 5th.
7 nights in double rooms in very comfortable mountain huts
7 x breakfasts
7 x dinners
6 x picnic lunches
Day 1: Pickup from Prazzo Inferiore and transfer to San Michele
Day 3: Luggage transfer San Michele-Ponte Maira (max. 15 kg)
Day 4: Transfer to start of walk in Chiappera & pickup at end of walk
Day 5: Transfer to start of walk in Sorgente Maira & pickup at end of walk
Day 6: Luggage transfer Ponte Maira-Viviere (max. 15 kg)
Day 8: Transfer to Acceglio bus stop
Map of Valle Maira, scale 1:20.000
Detailed route notes and maps with tracks on
GPS tracks
Pre-departure Information pack
24 hour phone assistance
Flights and transfers to first accommodation
Travel Insurance
Travel to Prazzo and from Acceglio
Lunches & dinners, if not otherwise stated
Personal expenses (drinks, phone calls, tips, etc.)
City taxes
Additional nights before, during or after the walk
Singe room supplement
 Transfer from Cuneo train station to San Michele
 Transfer from Viviere to Cuneo train station
DIFFICULTY The walks are over mountain meadows, woodland trails, dirt tracks, stony paths and inevitable pieces of asphalt roads in the villages. Some of the walks are long and more demanding as the climbs can be quite steep.  All the paths are well marked and regularly maintained.

Day 1: Arrive in San Michele Prazzo

Arrive in the village of San Michele Prazzo at 1370 m altitude and take some time to visit the beautifully painted Parish Church. You will be picked up from the bus stop and transferred to the first accommodation.

Overnight: San Michele Prazzo


Day 2: Lou Viol Dal Genesté San Michele loop walk

Distance: 10 km | Ascent: 600 m | Descent: 600 m | 4½ hrs approx.

Today’s walk is on the southern slopes above San Michele and follows part of the “Lou Viol Dal Genestè“. This circular route takes you into contact with nature, from forests of larch and spruce to grasslands and rocky crags, and Genestè (growing broom). Along the trail it’s easy to spot a variety of wildlife native to the area, such as marmots and ibex.

Overnight: San Michele Prazzo


Day 3: Walk from San Michele to Ponte Maira

Distance: 18.5 km | Ascent: 1000 m | Descent: 1000 m | 7½ hrs approx.

A challenging hike high above the valley with beautiful views. The walk goes through woods and meadows and you will encounter only a few tiny hamlets. Arrive at the accommodation in Acceglio and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of this place.

Overnight: Ponte Maira


Day 4: Chiappera loop walk

Distance: 11 km | Ascent: 700 m | Descent: 700 m | 6½ hrs approx.

A short morning transfer will lead you to Chiappera, the last restored village of Valle Maira at 1620 m altitude, where the day’s walk starts. The village has a bar and a church with astonishingly beautiful frescoes. The initial climb to the striking Rocca Provenzale is tough, but after Colle Greguri (2309 m) you have a leisurely walk back to Chiappera, where you will be picked up and taken back to your accommodation.

Overnight: Ponte Maira


Day 5: Sentiero dei Frassati loop walk

Distance: 17.4 km | Ascent: 900 m | Descent: 1100 m | 7½ hrs approx.

Another short transfer in the morning will lead you this time to Sorgente Maira, where today’s walk on the Sentiero Frassati starts. This itinerary goes past a few smaller and larger mountain lakes, such as the deep blue Lago Apzoi at 2300 m altitude, as well as a series of bunkers that Mussolini had built on the border with France. At the end of the walk you will be picked up and taken back to your accommodation.

Overnight: Ponte Maira


Day 6: Walk from Ponte Maira to Viviere

Distance: 11.5 km | Ascent: 800 m | Descent: 500 m | 5½ hrs approx.

Today you leave Ponte Maira for the tiny mountain village of Viviere, located in the cooler and more forested northern slope of Valle Maira. A long climb eventually brings you to the Colle Ciarbonet (2206 m), from where you descend to Viviere and your accommodation in a cosy and welcoming mountain hut.

Overnight: Viviere


Day 7: Colle Oserot walk

Distance: 15.5 km | Ascent: 950 m | Descent: 950 m | 7 hrs approx.

This final stage takes you up to Colle Oserot. This is a very nice walk along steep limestone cliffs and green meadows with great panoramic views. You can also stop for refreshments at the Rifugio Gardetta, on the Gardetta Plateau.

Overnight: Viviere


Day 8: Arrivederci Valle Maira!

The trip and our services end after breakfast, unless you have booked additional nights or services with us. From Viviere you will be brought to the bus stop in Acceglio.

Getting to Valle Maira

  The best airport to fly to is Turin (TRN)
/ The closest train station is in Cuneo.

From Torino airport (TRN), reach the train station Torino Porta Nuova and take a train to Cuneo.

From Cuneo, there are limited direct connections to Prazzo: you need to reach Prazzo Inferiore by bus (with change in Dronero). In Prazzo Inferiore, you wil be picked up and taken to your accommodation.

Check train timetables on www.trenitalia.com

It is also possible to pre-book a transfer from Cuneo or Dronero to the accommodation.
Valle Maira hiking Lake Apozoi
Hiking in the beautiful Maira Valley in Piedmont
San Michele walk in the Maira Valley
Valle Maira walking holiday
The Maira Valley
Old farmhouse in the Maira Valley
Hikers in the Maira Valley
Hiking trail in the Maira Valley
Mountain stream in the Maira Valley
Path to Priet
Clouds drifting through the Maira Valley
Church in Valle Maira
Chiappera and the Torre Castello
Hiker in Valle Maira
Gardetta Plateau in Valle Maira
Maira Valley farmhouse
View over Lago Visaisa from the Sentiero Frassati
Lago Nero
Walk to Ceaglio
Rifugio Viviere, Valle Maira

Tour Reviews

5.00 based on 1 review

I turned 50, and on that occasion my wife and I decided to take a proper mountain trip. Found this trip on Wildrover’s pages and took the chance. It was a wonderful experience that I will never forget. Everything was arranged with good food and great accommodation. it was very rustic but at the same time clean and really charming. the trips up in the mountains I can’t describe in any other way a “WOW”. There were majestic mountains and we took one step at a time and had no problems with our bodies. We had taken care to go on a few trips with a backpack before we took the trip, which I think is wise at our age. We saw lots of marmots, and there were many cows and horses grazing in the Alps, which also had its charm. We started going after breakfast every day, around 09.00 in the morning. We were mostly at home between 14:00 and 16:00. then we sat down in a good chair with a bottle of wine to share and a good book each. Then there was a 4-course dinner and then it was off to bed. thank you Wildrover for an unforgettable trip, will never forget!

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