Grand Tour of the Alps
The Grand Tour of the Alps (GTA) is a touring itinerary which links the entire arc of the western alps in the Piedmont Region and is set out over a network of paths and stopping points, that is, intermediate resting points for overnight stays.
The GTA was set up in the seventies and was the brainchild of a group of touring enthusiasts who wished to promote a new kind of alpine tourism, excursions on foot which would provide a deeper knowledge of the areas visited, giving priority to those areas less well known in the world of traditional tourism.
The overall route of the GTA forms an itinerary of some 1,000km, a great trekking experience in the mountains of Piedmont which may be undertaken from south to north or viceversa.
The basic trail includes numerous circuits which encourage tourists to get to know a particular area in more depth.
Each stage of the GTA involves a walk of from five to eight hours, normally along mule-tracks and easy paths which lead from one valley into another via the most accessible passes. Paths are identified by red and white signs and also by metal flags bearing the logo GTA.
At the end of each day's walk, the excursionists have a GTA reception facility to welcome them (or alternatively a Refuge of the CAI ‘Italian Alpine Club').
The period we recommend for embarking on the GTA goes from July to September.
There are four stages of the Grand Tour of the Alps situated in the Province of Biella, in particular:
- Stage 15 from "Rivetti" Refuge to the Sanctuary of "San Giovanni d'Andorno";
- Stage 16 from the Sanctuary of "San Giovanni di Andorno" to "Oropa" Sanctuary;
- Stage 17 from "Oropa" Sanctuary to "Coda" Refuge;
- Stage 18 from "Coda" Refuge to the "Alpe Maletto";