An easy hike to Monte Bar (Alta Capriasca, Lugano area)

I have been “begging” my family for months to go on a family hike to Monte Bar above Tesserete , to see the new Monte Bar mountain hut (website). Finally, they agreed. Thaaaaank you so much.

We leave home on a partly cloudy Sunday morning, after a hearty breakfast (a real must). We drive to Tesserete, continue to Roveredo and eventually reach the village Bidogno.

Where to park your car

From Bidogno we follow the signs and continue driving uphill – the road is narrow and full of bends – until we reach a metal bar. If your kids are prone to motion sickness, do bring a plastic bag (just in case). We park our car in the (free) parking lots by the side of the road, just before the metal bar; keep in mind that they are not plentiful so leave early. We are lucky, as there still is an empty spot.

The trail

From there, on foot, we walk along the paved road going uphill; there are many bends and a breathtaking view of the Gulf of Lugano.

“Sprinting” mothers constantly with baby strollers and “super sprinting” children in mountain bikes overtake us all the time. The walk is very pleasant but if you do it in summer, keep in mind that there is no shade, so it is best to use sunscreen and wear a hat. After about 20 minutes’ walk we reach alpe di Rompiago where we find cows, donkeys, horses, goats and chickens and a farm. They are all roaming around freely. You can eat and stay overnight at the farm, and buy their produce.

Soon after the farm, the road splits; you can either keep on walking along the paved road or take a shady path through the forest. I definitely recommend the path, especially if the day is hot (provided you do not have a stroller, of course). After a few minutes, you will find a small building, rifugio Tassera; it also offers rooms to those who want to spend the night away from the hustle and bustle of the city, surrounded by nature.

The trail through the forest is not an easy one, but it is the most interesting, as you get to wade small streams, walk on stones and cross-sloping paths. It is suitable to kids used to hiking…

The Monte Bar mountain hut

After approx. 1 hour and 30 walk, we reach the hut on Monte Bar, capanna del Monte Bar, and what a hut it is! Very modern (it was built in 2016) and, of course, already full of people. Fortunately, we find an empty table and, despite the hearty breakfast, we are hungry again. We order salami, cheese, polenta, juicy pork roast, cakes a lot more… Food is not cheap – and the bill was quite hefty. Then again, we really did eat a lot of food so we cannot really complain.

Inside the modern restaurant, you can find a small corner with board games, which are handy to keep children busy, as they are waiting for lunch. We appreciated it.

On the way back

As the afternoon was getting cloudier than the morning, we made haste and started our walk back. When we reached Alpe di Rompiago, a little goat decided to follow us. A sheepdog decided to follow the goat. A shepherd decided to follow the dog who was following the goat, who in turn was following us (like in the song “alla fiera dell’est” by Angelo Branduardi). When we finally get rid of all the animals and shepherd, the clouds are even darker and nearer. We try to walk faster but it is too late, it starts raining and we get soaking wet.

Outcome of the day: dad and kids – all three of them – blamed me for having forgotten to pack our raincoats: we were drenched from head to toe. Still everyone agreed that we really had had a nice walk!

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