Tour of Monte Isola by bike

Monte Isola is, as the name implies, a mountain on an island.
One of “The most beautiful villages in Italy”, Monte Isola is the largest inhabited lake island in Europe. It covers an area of 4.5 square km, a perimeter of 9 km and a height of 600 meters. There are 12 settlement scattered along the slopes and on the Lake shore, connected by narrow streets used by the local council bus and motorcycles: cars are banned, with the exception of those dedicated to public utilities. Spring is the best time to visit Monte Isola, when the temperatures are not yet too high, allowing you to walk in optimal climatic conditions; however, the island is fascinating in all four seasons and the navigation service runs 12 months a year from Iseo to Sulzano towards Peschiera Maraglio, from Sale Marasino to Carzano and from Tavernola Bergamasca to Siviano. The most usual route is the tour of the island which normally starts at Peschiera Maraglio. Following the coast in a clockwise direction, a walk among the olive trees (along this stretch, in some periods of the year, you can see fish hanging to dry on arches) leads to Sensole, from which you can admire the nearby island of San Paolo; the road then becomes steep and leads to the village of Menzino, where the majestic Rocca Oldofredi-Martinengo stands. Continuing north, you find the small village of Sinchignano, where you can admire the Church of San Carlo and then further on you reach Siviano, the capital of the island, which is a fortified village dating back to the Middle Ages, with tower houses and narrow streets. From here you go downhill towards Carzano, from which you can admire the island of Loreto. You are now on the coastal path again leading back to Peschiera Maraglio. A slightly more difficult option is to cycle along the route.
Recommended option- When you reach Siviano, for the more daring types, there is a challenging climb up to the ancient villages of Cure and Masse, renowned for their handmade “Monte Isola Salami”; from Cure there is a cobbled street which in just twenty minutes takes you to the Shrine of Our Lady of Ceriola, which dominates the mountain, offering tourists a breathtaking view. (Siviano – Sanctuary of Ceriola: 1h). The sanctuary can also be reached by taking the path of the same name, starting from Peschiera Maraglio (1.15 h)

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