12 May Nature Walk Ottiglio – Moleto
The trek begins in Ottiglio: a nice village perched on a hill and dominated by the castle and the church of San Germano both built in Pietra da Cantoni stone. The church has beautiful frescoes and a wooden choir from the ‘700. In Ottiglio you can also find an Infernot managed by Terra &Fuoco Association.
A bit of History first
The history of Moleto, the small village you will cross along the walk, is absolutely peculiar. Founded by the Saracens 1.000 year ago is almost entirely built in Pietra da Cantoni, stud with charming villas.
Moleto is also famous for the legend of the Treasury of the Saracens, hidden in the tangle of tunnels that form the Caves of the Saracens. During the centuries many have ventured into the caves but, no surprise, no one has ever found the treasure.
Today the caves, as well as the quarries of Pietra da Cantoni are closed for security reasons. But you will find a treasure much more accessible: the beautiful view and the opportunity to enjoy a drink listening to jazz when the Moleto outdoor bar is open.
Let’s get started!
The trek starts in Strada Provinciale 37, in Ottiglio (AL). You can easily park the car in the parking along the road to the right of this sign, the car park has a kids playground too.
Walk up-hills out of the village following the signs, the marks are red-white-red stripes and you will see them at junctions on trees or signs. Remember the number of the walk is 746, as you will notice, later on, this walk will cross other marked walks.
As you reach the top of the hill you can admire the view over Ottiglio village. Turn right onto a gravel road. As you reach a three-path crossing follow the road on your right.
From here on you will enjoy a relaxing easy walk in nature, between vineyards and fields with views over the area.
Keep going straight for about 500 metres until you reach a new crossing, this time, keep left and enter a walking path in the bush. If it had been raining this part can be muddy! We saw in a puddle lot of frog’s eggs, how lucky, and many little flowers.
As you get out of the bush you will have reached your second kilometre into the walk, keep following the path in the field until you reach the road. Walk downhill; from here you can see another valley as you reach Moleto.
At the crossroads turns left and enter the village of Moleto; it is a tiny beauty, so keep your camera at hand, there are lots of hidden spots to be photographed. The village is build using the Pietra da Cantoni stone.
Keep walking straight and cross the village, as you walk out the other side, on the right you can go upstairs and relax for a siesta in the grass, there is a little stand-alone church among the view.
Go back to the track and walk downhill towards the valley. The view is stunning this side and the path is right in the vineyards!
As you reach a brick farm, at the bottom of the valley, turn left into the gravel road. At this point, you are half way into the walk.
Coming back through the valley
The valley is sunny, open and silent, it is called La Valle dei Frati (Monk’s Valley). It is 2 km long and follows its curves to the left-hand side. When you reach the vineyard turn left, there are plenty of signs, but it could be confusing because there are other paths that cross at this point. Keep following the gravel road in the Valley.
There is another turning point at the end of the valley, keep walking straight; this is the last part of the walk and soon you will start walking uphill, on your way back to Ottiglio.
The walk uphill is not too hard and don’t worry, it is only 400 metres long! On your right-hand side, you’ll soon reach a pretty vineyard, the perfect spot for a last stop.
Keep walking uphill until you reach the three ways crossing you saw at the begging of this walk. You are almost done! Walk back downhill to the car park.
In Ottiglio central square there is a fun little local bar, they serve food and aperitifs if you need refreshments. If you have time and still some lust to visit the village, we recommend the old church right on top of the hill or a walk around the little streets.
Nature Walk Ottiglio – Moleto – Ottiglio, trek route n° 746
- 7,3 km (1,5 hours of steady walk, 2,5 hours with breaks)
What to bring
- Map (Download the map here, unfortunately in Italian only)
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Bottle of water
- Some snacks
- Mosquito repellant in the summer
Written by Monica Marescalchi and Tommaso Zavattaro | Photography by Monica Marescalchi.