Arco and Val di Sarca Climbing and Hiking Areas

Arco and Val di Sarca Climbing and Hiking Areas

Page Type Page Type: Area/Range
Activities Activities: Hiking, Mountaineering, Sport Climbing, Bouldering, Big Wall, Mixed, Scrambling, Via Ferrata, Skiing
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 1312 ft / 400 m
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Long a favorite of German, Austrian, and Italian climbers, Arco is like heaven on earth with over 40 crags, thousands of single pitch sport climbing routes, hundreds of multi-pitch alpine climbing routes, and hundreds of bouldering problems. This climbing Mecca in northern Italy is known for its mild climate, great rock, and close proximity to both the Brenta Dolomites and Lake Garda. Few English speaking climbers come here unless it is for the annual Rockmaster competition every September.

Pick your rock climbing type or style and you can do it here.

Great spot for any SP gatherings in Europe

Getting There

Fly into Milan and take the bus/train over to Verona. From there, head north to Rovereto and then over to Riva/Arco on Lake Garda. Arco is 5km north of Riva.

If you are road tripping through the Austrian Alps, head down through the Brenner pass into Italy, go through Bozen and Trentino and exit in Rovereto direction Riva/Lago di Garda. Once in Riva, follow the signs north to Arco.

From the campground you can walk to many of the crags in and around Masone and Colodri or rent a bike and head to your crag. If all else fails, some friendly German or Italian may offer you a ride to the crags further afield. Its just that kind of place.

Red Tape


Just try to learn some Italian first.

When To Climb, Gear to Bring

The best seasons are spring and fall. Summers can be very hot on the rock. If you must climb here in summer, spend the day at Lake Garda and climb late in the day.

A 60m rope is vital (at Massone, a 70m can come in handy) on many routes, as is a selection of quickdraws, and a small trad rack can be useful on some of the longer routes.

Plenty of gear stores but one across the river from town (near Massone) is the best.


- There is a well serviced campsite (Zoo) at the north end of the town it is directly below the obvious big crag (Coldori).

I-38062 ARCO, Italia
Tel +39(0464)516232
Fax: +39(0464)518448

-Or you can stay at the fancier one across the street which has its own bouldering wall, bar, and swimming pool.

Campeggio Arco
38062 Arco (TN)
Tel. ( ++39 )-0464.517491
Fax ( ++39 )-0464.515525
E-mail :

-Have a coffee and pastry at the Café Trentino downtown.
That buff girl at the next table just might be Lynn Hill.

Mountain Conditions

The Best Known areas are (all ratings in Italian system):

Massone, the place to be, bolted limestone, 135 routes, 6- to 11

Laghel, bolted sport climbing, 38 routes, 6- to 9+,

Placche Zebrate (The Zebra Slabs) multipitch alpine climbing just north of Arco town, 23 routes, 4 to 8

Colodri, gorgeous rock right above the campground, 21 bolted multipitch routes, 6- to 9+

Baone, easy bolted slabs above a grove of olive trees in Chirano, 8 routes, 3 to 6-

Cime Alle Coste, 8 routes , 6- to 8

Red Point Wall, 15 bolted routes, 7- to 9

Rest Day Activities

-Lake Garda is a windsurfing and watersports mecca. The lake is a 5 minute drive, 10 minute bus ride away.

-Mountain Biking is also hugely popular with plenty of trails, and a bus service to get to the top of them!

-Cool waterfall south of Arco.

-Pseudo-German beergarden in Riva,

-Hiking, climbing, via ferrata in the Brenta Dolomites.

External Links

  • Arco Area Map

  • Arco Bus Timetables

  • Great article which captures the spirit of climbing at Arco.



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