Weekend getaway: Val di Mello- the green jewellery

Val di Mello- the green jewellery

Just 2 hours away from the metropolitan city of Milan lies the peaceful little village of San Martino, in the province of Sondrio. Whenever you decide to go by car or use the train (+short ride on a bus) you can visit it for one day, but better plan at least two days: you will definitely fall in love with its astonishing nature!

This charming village is surrounded by impressive landscapes, composed of giant granite walls, crystal blue rivers and lakes, spectacular waterfalls and shimmering meadows, besprent with aromatic flowers in all colours: a green fairy tale to dive into and forget about time! Val di Mello is a side valley of Valtellina and was declared a natural reserve in 2009. It is easily accessed by foot from the centre of San Martino, following a narrow path through the stone houses, sinking in the cool forest and meandering along the river basin.

Val di Mello can satisfy everyone’s taste. There is a little bit of everything for everyone: easy mountain trails for family walks or picnic by the river side-don’t forget to take a picture of the lake “The Bidet of the Countess” with the dominating snow-covered massif of Monte Disgrazia in the background; long and spectacular sky runs passing through high mountain rocky passes ( every two years the famous Trofeo Kima sky race event takes place and brings passionate trail runners from all around the world); multiday hikes around the multiple surrounding valleys( the Alta Via of Sentiero Roma is one of the adored hiking itineraries here); sport or multi-pitch climbing; classical alpinism on granite walls or bouldering some of the thousands huge boulders in the valley-it is a famous spot that held the Melloblocco international bouldering meeting for many years.

And after a marvelous day spent outdoors what could be more satisfying than a glass of craft beer and some specialty from the valley. Typical Valtellina dish are the tasty pizzoccheri: a pasta dish made with buckwheat flat ribbon tagliatelle, potatoes, cabbage, melted Casera cheese, and sage butter. Or you can try the special polenta con cervo-buckwheat polenta with deer meet, covered with souse of red wine, rosemary and olive oil.An easy and delicious option is just pane di segale (ring-shaped rye bread) with bresaola- dark red, air-dried salted beef and some DOP alpine cheese from the valley. And of course never skip the dessert! The best choice here is Bisciola: a round, rustic sweet bread made with raisins and walnuts.

Whatever you choose-it is great way to fill up your energy reserves for the next amazing day and prepare for another great exploration of Nature.

 

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