Italy: The Dolomites Walking in Nature Grade: Low Moderate Plus
The Dolomites are mountains on a grand scale with dramatic limestone peaks soaring skywards at every turn. Our walks amongst these towering monoliths take in the abundant pastures which interlink these peaks at lower levels. The area is truly stunning and the holiday memorable for the views, flora and fauna and Italian hospitality.
We will explore the abundance of Alpine flowers, hope to hear the calls of the marmot (and hopefully see them pop up too) and generally enjoy all that nature has to offer in this wonderful region of Italy. There are meadows, forests, turqouise lakes and cols all offering a chacne to see flowers, birds and wild animals.
We stay at the lovely Rifugio Negritellla, set on a high plateau with extensive views across the mountains and valley below. Primarily a winter destination, there is an air of tranquility and peace in the summer months – the perfect spot to escape the everyday.
There is one ‘free’ day on the holiday when you can visit the ‘Iceman’ in Bolzano, go shopping in the local village or relax at the refuge.
Itinerary: (subject to change)
Day 1 Arrival
Arrive in Venice and transfer to accommodation by private minibus. Holiday briefing followed by evening meal.
Day 2 Passo Costalunga via the Col de Ciampac
We head out along the Alta Via di Fassa, slowly walking through alpine woods and meadow towards the Col de Ciampac. After a fairly steep ascent to the col, we stop for refreshments and enjoy panoramic views. We then head down towards Passo Costalunga, stopping to appreciate alpine choughs and flowers as well as, if we’re lucky, one or two marmots. The descent is fairly long and walking poles are recommended if you suffer from sore knees.
Distance: up to 5 miles Ascent: 290 metres Descent: 530 metres
Day 3 Lago di Carezza to Passo Costalunga
We start our walk at the enchanting Lago di Carezzo and walk on forest paths, ascending right up to the scree-based mountains of Latemar, listening out for nutcrackers enroute. From here we contour the base of the Latemar range and then down through alpine meadows back to Passo Costalunga.
Distance: 6 miles Ascent: 430 metres Descent: 205 metres
Day 4 Val de Vailoet
We start from R. Negritella, traversing a forested mountain path into the Val de Vailoet, finally reaching a beautiful mountain stream. This gorgeous mountain valley has an array of unusual alpine flowers such as marsh saxifrage, round-leaved wintergreen, alpine toadflax and various orchids. We slowly make our way to Refugio Gardecia to have some well-earned refreshments before making our way back to base.
Distance: 6 miles Ascent: 485 metres Descent: 485 metres
Day 5 Free Day
Today is a rest day when you can visit the ‘Iceman’ in Bolzano, go shopping in the local village, go for a local mountain stroll or just relax at the refuge and enjoy the panoramic mountain views.
Day 6 R. Roda di Vael
Today we take a relatively high mountain path that contours part of the nearby Catinaccio mountains. Along this mountain path we’ll be spotting alpine highlights such as arnica, black vanilla orchid, edelweiss as well as alpine choughs, black redstarts and, if we’re lucky, marmots and chamois. Enroute we’ll stop at R. Roda di Vael for refreshments. Occasional parts of the ascent are along relatively narrow sections with steep (but not vertical) drop-offs along one edge. This walk is not recommended if you suffer from vertigo.
Distance: 5 miles Ascent: 360 metres Descent: 360 metres
Day 7 Passo Costalunga to Lago Carezzo
This is a lovely valley walk along the majestic meadows and forests between Passo Costalunga and Lago di Carezzo with optional extensions to go further down the valley to Adler or back up the valley to the base of the Alpenrose chairlift.
Distance: 4 – 5 miles Ascent: 90 metres Descent: 310 metres (450 metres with optional extension)
Please read the grade description below in full before booking.
Feedback from a previous trip: My first holiday to the Dolomites with Her on a Hill was amazing and exceeded my expectations. We stayed at a family run Rifugio, located at the top of a cable car station on a beautiful plateau. The accommodation was comfortable and run by a friendly team who were always happy to go the extra mile. But this holiday is for getting out and exploring the local habitats. Our experienced guide Madeline is enthusiastic and knowledgeable. The days were full and varied as we explored fabulous trails, identifying birds (The Nutcracker was a highlight) and plants (especially the rare Slipper Orchid) on our travels. Our walks took in the alpine terrain and were taken at a steady pace so there was plenty of time to stop and appreciate the wildlife. A fantastic Her on a Hill holiday that I would have no hesitation in recommending.” Debbie