A Mountain Getaway: The Intelvi Valley Known As the “Green Heart of Lombardy”

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We have to be honest, our summer holidays got off to a bad start this year and that’s why we decided on a mountain getaway just to recharge a bit.
With little time to organize, we decided on a place that we had never seen and above all, that wasn’t overcrowded (we love quiet and isolated places), and then it came to us: Val d’Intelvi just a short distance from Lake Como.


The “Balcony of Italy”

The first stop of this escape was Castiglione d’Intelvi. We found ourselves in a typical mountain village (1,182 residents) that is very characteristic both for its streets and for the panorama of the surrounding mountains.

Have you already chosen this as your destination?

The second part of this escape was absolutely breathtaking: Mount Sighignola, also known as the “Balcony of Italy”.
Mount Sighignola is one of the Lugano pre-Alps and is exactly on the border between Switzerland and Italy.
Once we arrived at the “Balcony of Italy”, we were enchanted because, being a clear day, we could see Ceresio (Lake Lugano), Monte Rosa and Monte Cervino. Another fascinating part of this area is that, being on the border, on one side we had our Tricolor flag, and on the other, the Swiss flag.
Then on our way down from Monte Sighignola, we stopped in Lanzo d’Intelvi, a small village that made us fall in love with its almost fairy-tale landscape.

Begna Waterfall

The third stop of this escape was the Begna Waterfall.
We arrived in Porlezza (a town on Lake Lugano) to be precise, up to the hamlet of Begna, and from there, with swimsuits on and backpacks on our shoulders, we climbed up a well-marked but somewhat challenging path (about a half an hour climb) to reach the spectacular waterfall.
On our way up, we came across a Roman bridge and were surrounded by nature in its purest state, our favorite place to be.
We spent the day soaking and relaxing in the crystal clear water with our four-legged friends by our side, as always.

Rescia Caves

The last stop during our getaway was the Rescia Caves.
Departing again from Porlezza (which we will keep in mind for a future trip), near a quarry, we found the entrance to Rescia Caves managed by the owners of the nearby campsite.
The tour lasted about an hour as we escaped the heat into the cool, magical passages of these caves. Even though it was summertime, we still needed a sweatshirt due to the high humidity.
Along the route, we found ourselves face to face with a gorgeous waterfall on one side and a direct view of Lake Lugano on the other.
They also told us that during Christmastime, nativity scenes are set up inside the caves.

Unfortunately, our impromptu mountain escape has come to an end, and to be honest, we think it is a shame that the Val d’Intelvi isn’t very well known because it has so much to offer!

photo copyrights: Fiorella Facchetti

About the Author

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Fiorella Facchetti

We’re Fiorella and Diego, a couple that loves to travel in a unique way.

We’d like to introduce you to our pups Nicklaus and Walpi who are always with us, and also our even bigger fur babies with tails and manes! (Obviously, it’s more difficult to travel with them).

Our motto for our traveling adventures is “We go where they can go” and that is true for our dogs and for our horses

Our goal is to discover every part of Italy from the north to the south! We love peaceful places and hidden wonders.

So every chance we get, we take off on an adventure with our 4-legged friends!