Among the most beautiful walks you can take in Val di Non is the evocative Sentiero nella Roccia, which leads to the equally unmissable Sanctuary of San Romedio.
The hike, lasting about 1 hour, is easy but requires hiking boots and a minimum of training.
After visiting the Sanctuary and having a look at thebear living in the adjacent enclosure, you can decide whether to continue to the Two Lakes of Coredo (it takes about 40 minutes) or to return to the car on foot or by shuttle bus.
Below you will find all the information you need to plan your excursion to the Sentiero panoramico nelle Roccia and the Sanctuary of San Romedio, even with children in tow.
How to get to the Sanctuary of San Romedio
The Sanctuary of San Romedio is located in the Non Valley, between the villages of Sanzeno and Coredo.
It can be reached on foot from Sanzeno, via the panoramic rock path that you will find in detail in this article.
It can also be reached on foot from the Two Lakes of Coredo via a downhill path in an estimated time of about 20 minutes (which doubles on the uphill return).
Otherwise, it can be reached by car by parking near the entrance or by the shuttle bus, which only operates in the summer. More details later.
Panoramic Trail and San Romedio Sanctuary
Panoramic Trail in the Rock
Park your car in the village of Sanzeno, at Al Mulino, and drive past the little church on the road to the left, as indicated by the sign.
The dirt track is almost flat and, in the first section, runs alongside rows of apples. If you have small children, take care that they do not stretch their little hands!
About ten minutes after the start of the route, you will find the sign for the Museo Retico, the museum dedicated to the archaeological evidence of the Valle di Non. If you wish, you can also park at the museum and start the route from this point.
Continue straight on to the impressive Sentiero nella Roccia, a path carved into the rock by the force of water over the centuries.
The walk along this canyon with vertical walls is very suggestive and is a wonderful adventure that children will also love!
The route does not present any safety problems for the little ones but, at one small point, the canyon is 1.70 metres high so be careful if you are carrying a baby backpack.
I do not recommend a trekking buggy, although many on the Internet recommend it.
The path arrives on an asphalt road and, with a final uphill climb of about ten minutes, leads to the entrance of the Sanctuary of San Romedio.
Sanctuary of San Romedio
The Sanctuary of San Romedio is a marvel. It consists of five buildings connected by 131 steps.
It is located at an altitude of 730 metres and is named after the saint who, in the last years of his life, lived on the rock spur on which the Sanctuary was later erected.
Legend has it that St Romedius, shortly before his death, wanted to go to the bishop of Trento, St Vigilius, to have his last anointing. But he found his horse mauled by a bear, so he harnessed the bear and rode into town on its back.
The bear has become the symbol of this place and that is why below the Sanctuary, in a fenced portion of the forest, you will find Bruno, a bear from captivity.
Inside the Sanctuary, you will find the chapel with the bones of San Romedio, the 131-step staircase with the votive gifts, and the little terrace at the top, on a 98-metre high cliff.
What to do at the Sanctuary of San Romedio
After visiting the Sanctuary, you can eat sitting at picnic tables with a picnic lunch or a packaged sandwich or ice cream bought at the bar located at the entrance (there is not much choice).
After saying goodbye to Bruno, you can also take the uphill walk which, in about 40 minutes, will take you to the Two Lakes. They are not bathing but it is a beautiful place to sunbathe and relax. There is also a nice playground for children.
To return to your car, you can either retrace your outward journey or take the shuttle bus which will take you back in much less time (10/15 minutes).
Shuttle bus timetable from Sanzeno to the Sanctuary of San Romedio
The shuttle bus connects the village of Sanzeno to the Sanctuary of San Romedio between mid-June and mid-September. Updated timetables here.
The bus departs from Al Mulino and runs every 20 minutes from 10:00 to 18:15 . Except in August when it runs continuously, in the other months it stops from 1pm to 2pm.
The ticket costs €2.00 one way or €3.00 return (free for children under 10) and can be made directly on the bus.
Car restrictions at the Sanctuary of San Romedio
It may be useful to know that, as in many other busy valleys in Trentino, the road that leads from Sanzeno to the Sanctuary closes to cars from 9:30 in the morning until 18:30 in the afternoon. During the hours when the road is closed, you can get to the Sanctuary on foot or by shuttle bus.
Where to park
We found free parking at Al Mulino right next to the little church. If you are not as lucky as we were, the fee for those paying is €4.00 for the whole day.
If you want to leave your car in the car park in front of the Rhaetian Museum, the rate is €1.00/h from 1 May to 31 October, €3.00 for half a day, and €5.00 for the whole day.
For the excursion to the Sanctuary of San Romedio, including the walk along the panoramic footpath, count from 2h30 to 3h (round trip).
The Sanctuary of San Romedio is open all year round with opening hours 9am-5pm from October to April, 9am-6pm in May, June and September, 8:30am-7pm in July and August. For info 39 0463 536198.
Admission to the Sanctuary is free. Dogs are not allowed to enter.
Near the Sanctuary, in addition to the aforementioned bar, you will find a drinking fountain and public toilets.