• getting to know the characteristics of a Karst environment
• walking in a peaceful natural setting
• enjoying beautiful views
• discovering the ancient history of the ‘Monte Orsino’ Shrine
Mode of Travel: on foot or by bike
The Omber Trail
Journey time: On foot: 1 h 30 minutes total. By bike: 50 minutes total
Difference in elevation: medium
Walk to San Bartolomeo
Journey time: on foot: 50 minutes, by bike: 30 minutes
Recommended period: all year round
How to get there
From the A4 motorway (Milan-Venice) take the ‘Brescia Est’ exit and continue along the SS45bis towards Madonna di Campiglio. From the ring road exit at Nuvolento and follow signs to Serle, After passing through the hamlet of Villa follow directions for the ‘Monumento Naturale di Cariadeghe’. Continue past the military area and park in the ‘Alpini’ car park (near the small church). The distance from Nuvolento is around ten kilometres.
Itinerary to discover the natural and cultural treasures of Serle. The route runs along paths, bridle ways and country roads with little traffic.
The one day itinerary tries to include the most interesting nature aspects of the Cariadeghe plateau, a large natural area that is a stunning example of a Karst environment. The area is distinguished by the presence of ‘doline’ i.e. funnel-shaped sinkholes in the ground, where water begins its journey underground through the cracks in the underlying rocks and long deep caves (only to be visited with an accompanying guide!)
The departure point is the ‘Alpini’ car park. We head along the road that climbs up to the left, and after about 200 metres we find a sign on the right saying ‘Sentiero degli Omber’ (The Omber Trail). Following this sign we set off on a trail leading into the woods. We follow these signs along the whole route, found at every junction. The territory is like an impenetrable wooded barrier broken at some points by some grassland areas of natural interest and by clusters of tall trees or by large lone trees, so impressive in appearance due to their monumental enormity such as beach trees, chestnut trees and hornbeams. Along the trail we will be able to admire the characteristics of this area: sinkholes and bare rock outcrops carved out and eroded by the water. The trail also leads close to the entrances of the most interesting caves of the plateau and on the ‘discovery’ of Bus Del Lat, caves used in the past to store raw milk. We then arrive at the ‘Casina del Comune’, a nineteenth century agricultural building that stands in a large meadow, an ideal resting spot. The return journey follows the same route. Within the protected area you can easily find restaurants and agritourism establishments offering excellent local products.
On our return to the Alpinin car park we take the same road on the left that we took in the morning, continuing along the surfaced road (with a slight gradient) for little less than a kilometre arriving at another large car park where there is a large explanatory information panel. From here take the small dirt track that climbs up to the left, following the sign to ‘Monastero di San Bartolomeo’ (St. Bartholomew Monastery). We climb up the hill for ten minutes until we reach the summit (933 m above sea level). The Monastery was built on the ruins of what was, for four centuries, the monastery of ‘San Pietro in Monte Orsino’. Inside there is a beautiful fresco attributed to Paolo da Cailina il Giovane. On request it is possible to visit an exhibition area of archaeological finds. Guided tours are organised in the summer on Sundays. On clear days the view is marvellous. The return journey follows the same route.
The Cariadeghe Plateau is heaven for caving enthusiasts. To venture among caves and tunnels (visits must be accompanied) contact the associations listed in the section ‘Opening times and contact details’.
Walks in Serle
The territory is rich in itineraries and routes. For more information
contact Pro Loco Serle.
Opening time and contact details
• Serle Pro Loco, via Don Pietro Boifava 25,
tel. (+39) 0306910139 (voicemail) and (+39) 3290079409.
www.prolocoserle.it; email@example.com (request an appointment).
Useful for tourist information. Cultural guided tours can be organised to discover the traditions and legends of the territory (minimum 10 people).
• Town Hall of Serle,office altipiano, piazza Boifava, 13, tel.
• ‘Santuario di San Bartolomeo’ open every Sunday in summer with guided tours at 11.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. and Mass held at 5.00 p.m.
For those who want to venture into the caves of the area with a specialist guide:
• Groppo Grotte Brescia ‘C. Allegretti’, www.ggb.it
• Associazione speleologica bresciana, www.speleoasb.it
Find out more
The following publications (all in italian) are available at the Pro Loco. Contact in advance to request an opening.
• Bernardo Zanola, Santi, demoni e briganti… leggende di Serle e di confine, (Saints, demons and bandits. Legends of Serle and its border) E 7.
• Bernardo Zanola, All’ombra del San Bartolomeo, (In the Shade of San Bartolomeo), E 10.
The following publications are available at the offices of the Town Hall.
• ‘Grotte, uomini e storie dell’Altopiano di Carideghe’ (The caves, men and history of the Carideghe Plateau)
• ‘I grande alberi di Cariadeghe’ (The great trees of Cariadeghe)
• ‘Cariadeghe tra storie e leggende, tra misteri e magie’ (Cariadeghe between stories and legend, mysteries and magic)
• Hiking map 1:5000. Prices vary
Informative material available at the Monastery of San Bartolomeo (Sundays in the summer)
• Il Monastero di San Bartolomeo (The Monastery of Saint
Bartholomew), DVD, E 7
‘Brostoi e formai’
Lovers of good cuisine cannot afford to miss ‘Brostoi e formai’, a food and wine festival organised by the Pro Loco in collaboration with the associations and restaurants of Serle. In a setting of rural alleyways, courtyards and loggias throughout the hamlet of Villa, various stands are set up to make for a unique itinerary. The undisputed queen of the festival are roast chestnuts, cooked in a perforated pan and accompanied by mulled wine, or as the Italians call it, ‘vin brulé’. The event takes place every year in October.