St Vigilius is one of the patron saints of South Tyrol and Trentino, as well as the patron saint of mines. His name comes from Latin and means the vigilant one. Along the Via Vigilius, you will come across traces of the bishop time and again. You walk past the Vigiljocher church, stop off at the pilgrimage site of Our Lady of the Woods, pass the San Romedio monastery and descend at the end of the tour via Via Vili, which roughly follows the route that Bishop Vigilius of Trento took to Val Rendena, where he was then stoned to death.
The Via Vigilius is a long-distance hiking trail that runs from the mountain station of the Vigiljoch cable car to the village of Vela outside the city of Trento. The trail can be walked in eight daily stages, with some sections requiring you to climb up to 1,300 metres in altitude. The longest daily stage measures 20 kilometres. However, the individual stages of the Via Vigilius can also be hiked as day tours. Good public transport connections, such as train and bus, make travelling to the respective starting points and the return journey from the respective stage destination relatively easy. An extraordinary experience, however, is to complete the entire route in seven or eight days. The total distance is 109.2 kilometres, with 6970 metres of ascent and 7090 metres of descent. The trail begins in South Tyrol and crosses the provincial border into Trentino on the third day. A large part of the Via Vigilius runs through the relatively unknown, very unique and above all very peaceful low mountain landscape of the Val di Non. Along the day's stages, there are always opportunities to stop and rest; overnight stays are mostly in small hotels or guesthouses, and once or twice in mountain huts. The Via Vigilius is an easy long-distance hiking trail, apart from a few short sections where a little surefootedness is required, but it demands a steady pace and good physical condition.