Cascata di Lares is one of the many waterfalls in Valle Genova, near Pinzola, in the region Trentino – Alto Adige, Italy.
In Pinzola you have to watch where the exit to Valle Genova (Cascata del Nardis) is. It is hard to imagine that the exit is a small narrow road for such a big tourist attraction. In summertime it can be very crowded.
In summertime you have to pay an entrance or parking fee of 6 euro. The closer you want to park (gps 46.169136, 10.721189), the more you have to pay (9 euros if you want to park close to the cascata del Nardis).) Why do? The trail to the first waterfall (cascata del Nardis) is very beautiful and not that long.
The first waterfall you see (and can’t miss) is the most famous and also the highest waterfall in Valle Genova, cascata del Nardis. From here is a gorgeous, though long walk (14 kilometer) to the end of the valley, to the Bedole hut. It is also possible to stop at la Todesca (after 8 kilometer). In summertime there is a shuttle bus that can bring you back to the starting point.
I visited Valle Genova two times, once in summertime and once in April. Unfortunately the first time we didn’t want to make such a long walk and the second time (in April) I had limited time but it was possible to drive further into the valley. The road was closed before I reached cascata di Lares. I tried to walk up to the waterfall but a wooden pedestrian bridge was completely destroyed and didn’t knew what to do. I was even not sure if I was close. Because of all the uncertainties I went back to my car without having a good view on cascata di Lares.
Afterwards I found out that it is a short walk, from Ponte Maria, to the lower part of the waterfall (less spectacular) and that is a steep walk up for 30 minutes, following a path at the left side of the river, before arriving at a meadow with a wonderful view.
I saw a lot of pictures of the upper part and Cascata di Lares is, according to my opinion, the most impressive waterfall in Val Genova. Even more impressive then the bigger and better known Cascata di Nardis. Maybe because Cascata di Lardes is more compact and looks more powerful. The river Rio Lardes thunders down over 350 meters creating a spectacle in the last part before the river joins Sarce di Genova.
From the restaurant at Cascata di Nardis it is a 50 minute walk along the river (almost 4 kilometer) until you reach Cascata di Lares, but is worth it. The path is easy and very pleasant. It is also possible to walk to the upper falls on a trail heading to Malga Lares.
There is also a shuttle bus going into Valle Genova with a bus stop at Ponte Maria, near Cascate di Lares. For more information about the shuttle bus in Valle Genova, look at the timetable to see the times and the fee.