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The 10 best places to visit in the Dolomites

The 5 Best Places To Visit in the Dolomites, Italy [Full Travel Guide, Maps, Best Time To Visit etc.]

The Dolomites are one of the most beautiful natural wonders our globe has to offer and therefore, attract thousands of tourists each year.

We had to discover what all the hype was about and decided to travel the Alps and Dolomites in our camper van for almost a month.

This guide will make use of the experiences we made and covers valuable info about the Dolomites.

Table of Contents

Are you ready?

Well, let’s dive right in.

Where are the Dolomites located?

The Dolomites or also known as the Dolomite Mountains are located in North-Eastern Italy.

Covering an area of 141,903 hectares and extending from River Adige in the West to Piave Valley in the east, they form some of the most extraordinary landscapes Italy has to offer.

Therefore, the Dolomite Alps were declared as an UNESCO world heritage site in 2009.

Important towns and points of interests are Cortina D’Ampezzo , Bozen, Misurina, Passo Giau, Val di Funes and Alpe di Siusi.

Passo Giau Dolomite Mountains

(Passo Giau at sunset, Dolomite Mountains – @tropicalpassports)

The Dolomites, Italy – How To Get There?

There are many options on how to get to the Dolomites from your home country.

One of the most obvious ways on how to get there, especially for travellers living outside of Europe, is taking a flight to an airport close to the Dolomites.

Here are the closest airports to the Dolomites:

  • Bolzano Airport (BZO), Italy
  • Innsbruck Airport (INN), Austria
  • Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE), Italy
  • Treviso Airport (TSF), Italy
  • Verona Airport (VRN), Italy
  • Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP), Italy
  • Munich Airport (MUC), Germany

We always use trip.com to find and book cheap flights.

However, for people living in the United States of America it might be worth looking into costcotravel.

Their platform offers a simple flight booking service directly on their website or even the option to book your flight, hotel, rental car and activities all in one.

Once you have sorted out your flight to one of the airports listed above, you will then have several options on how to reach your final destination.

We always recommend to book a rental car for the Dolomites as it gives you great flexibility and saves you valuable time too.

Find the cheapest prices on Rentalcars.com.

They have reliable vehicles which not only save you the time you would waste with organizing public transport but also help you to explore more remote places where bus lines might not stop.

rentalcars.com car rental booking platform

(Rentalcars.com Booking Interface – the easiest way to explore the Dolomites)

NOTE: Buses and trains are not running frequently or at all in the off-season, hence, renting a car is a must.

Getting to the Dolomites without a car

Another great and budget-budget friendly option is to make use of the incredible bus and train services Europe offers.

If you are outside of Europe, you will most likely fly into Venice Airport and continue your journey on from there.

Once you arrive at the airport you can take the Cortina Express or FlixBus (major European Bus Company) to Cortina D’Ampezzo.

The town of Cortina D’Ampezzo is a great base for exploring the Dolomites and from there you can count on the Dolomiti Buses to help you reach all important sightseeing spots (high season and beginning of shoulder season only).

If you are already in Europe then you can easily reach Bolzano (Bozen) from Verona, Florence, Bologna or Milan in Italy.

All major cities from neighboring countries like Austria, Switzerland or Germany have bus and train connections to Bozen.

If you are planning a longer holiday it might be worth staying in Munich, Vienna etc. beforehand for a cultural visit and then catching the train to the locations mentioned above.

From Bozen, you can then go ahead and use one of the direct buses to Val d’Ega and Val Gardena.

You can find accurate info on schedules and departure times on these sites:

  • Dolomiti Bus –  transit schedules for the province of Belluno, Veneto Region
  • Südtirolmobil.info – journey planner and timetables for transit in South Tyrol, Alto Adige
Dolomiti Bus line 30/31, transportation in the Dolomites, how to travel the Dolomites with public transport

(The Dolomiti Bus – photo credit: Hans-Peter Kurz)

What is the best time of the year to visit the Dolomites?

After chatting to many other travellers and making our own experiences we can recommend these specific months of the year:

  • Mid-late June (Best for Photography):

Rifugios (Mountain Huts) like the famous “Dreizinnenhuette” are finally opening after a long Dolomiti Supersky season and the grass is greener than ever.

Flowers are starting to flourish and waterfalls are flowing after all the ice melted in higher altitudes.

The important lakes like Lago di Braies or Lago di Sorapis are full and the blue vibrant colors are already showing.

You can feel the summer-season kicking in.

The weather is warm and stable.

Public transport and the cable cars are running again.

Lago Di Sorapis at sunrise from the backside

(Lago Di Sorapis in June – full with vibrant blue glacier water)

  • July – August:

The high-season is in full swing and thousands of tourists visit the various areas of the Dolomites.

Buses and Cable Cars are running almost non-stop and every restaurant is open till late.

The colors are the most stunning now but you also risk to share the idyllic views with many others.

Make sure to book your accommodation way in advance to avoid being disappointed.

A great time to enjoy the endless list of outdoor activities with your friends and family.

The weather is warm (up to 30 degrees Celsius), however, you might encounter the occasional European summer thunderstorm in the evening.

  • Late September – Early October (Best time of the year for hiking the Dolomites and beautiful autumn colors):

September is the month we visited the Dolomites and it is indeed a very special time of the year in the mountains.

All rifugios are still open and the summer-season is slowly coming to an end.

This gives all nature lovers the opportunity to enjoy the hiking trails without the masses of tourists in July and August.

The green early-summer colors are slowly starting to fade and it’s a favorite time of the year for photographers to host their workshops and capture the stunning color change of the Dolomites to vibrant orange and yellow.

Saying that, we still had very green scenery in very late September as the Dolomite Mountains had lots of rain over the summer season.

Cable cars and public transport are still running until approx. 10th of October.

The days are still warm with 25 degrees Celsius but the nights are getting colder day by day.

A wonderful chance to capture that tasty early-morning low-hanging fog at Alpe di Siusi or the rolling clouds in the valleys.

The lakes are still filled with crystal clear mountain water and colors are shining brighter than ever.

The perfect time to witness the “burning Dolomites”.

the burning dolomites effect, glowing peaks in the dolomites

A natural phenomenon where the sun during sunset shines in a certain angle so it lights up the mountain peaks in a burning red color.

This is a great month to save up on accommodation costs if you do not fancy to pay thousands of dollars in the high-season.

  • December- April:

Marking the beginning of the Skiing season in the Dolomites.

An incredibly beautiful time to witness the thick snow blanket covering the mountains and valleys of the Dolomites.

Accommodation still has to be booked ahead as many visitors from Europe test out their skiing skills this time of the year.

3-5m of snow are quite normal and can create great photography opportunities with the pine trees bending under the weight of the snow, almost creating Lapland-like figures.

What time of the year should I avoid visiting the Dolomites?

  • Late April – May:

The snow is melting but a large number of hiking tracks are still too dangerous to take on.

The trails do not officially close but we do advise against hiking on these icy trails as some of them are totally exposed with drop-offs exceeding the 500m mark.

One wrong step and you might want to grow wings very fast. 

The weather is unpredictable and most services like restaurants, cable cars and buses are not operating.

  • November to very early December:

The worst time of the year to visit the Dolomites and also marking the start of the off-season.

All rifugios and restaurants are closed and it almost feels like you are in a ghost town.

Buses and cable cars are not operating and it is very hard to organize your visit if you do not rent a car.

However, also the cheapest time of the year to visit the Dolomites.

Activities (if running) and accommodation discounts are at their high and you won’t have to compete with anyone else for a photo at the most instagrammable spots in the Dolomites.

Unfortunately, all leafs have already fallen of the trees and the grass has now turned into a brown slushy due to the rain.

It is getting colder and a very warm jacket + a rain coat are an absolute must.

Nonetheless, still an acceptable time if you cannot choose your vacation slot at work as the mountain peaks are still unbelievably beautiful.

You might be lucky and find pockets of sunshine every now and then.

Are the Dolomites worth visiting?

The Dolomites are home to incredible mountain peaks and beautiful high alpine meadows.

Whether you enjoy hiking, climbing, skiing or cycling, visiting the Dolomites is one of the most captivating journeys you can undertake.

There are countless of things to do in the Dolomites such as hut to hut hiking, via ferrata climbing, mountain biking, photography, swimming in an alpine lake or simply relaxing in your own jacuzzi admiring the view out of forestis dolomites.

biking, hiking, skiing and climbin in the Dolomites

(A sunset bike ride around Alpe Di Siusi – @tropicalpassports)

What Languages are spoken in the Dolomites?

The Dolomite Mountains are known for their stunning landscapes but did you also know that the region’s diverse cultural heritage makes it home to over 5 individual languages and many more dialects.

Therefore, exploring the Dolomites is not only pleasing for the eye but more importantly a great way to learn about several languages in one single place.

Here’s an in-depth exploration of the languages spoken in the Dolomites:

  • Italian [the most obvious]:

As the official language of Italy, Italian is widely spoken in the Dolomites, especially in more urbanized areas, tourist hubs, and administrative centers.

Speaking Italian to “the locals” or Carabineri (local officers) can facilitate your journey and open you up opportunities to meet new hiking friends.

  • Ladin [rare to find nowadays]:

Ladin is a Romance language with several dialects spoken in the Dolomites, primarily in the Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol region.

Notable Ladin dialects include Fassa Valley Ladin, Gardena Valley Ladin, and Ampezzo Ladin.

Although, harder to find, it is still being used by the local people and is proof of the cultural richness of the area.

  • German:

In the South Tyrol region, particularly in towns and villages closer to the Austrian border, German is prevalent.

Many locals are bilingual, speaking both German and Italian.

Moreover, both of the languages are accepted by the law as the written languages of the South Tyrol Region which is especially helpful if coming from Germany.

Both of us are from Germany and we can confirm that it is one of the hardest languages to learn.

  • Cimbrian [the dying dialect]:

Cimbrian, not considered as dialect, is a Germanic language spoken in a few small villages in the Veneto region of the Dolomites.

It has ancient origins, dating back to the migration of Germanic tribes in the area during the medieval period.

Today, the number of Cimbrian speakers is relatively small to non-existing.

  • Venetian:

Venetian is an Italian dialect spoken in the southern parts of the Dolomites, including the Belluno province.

Originating from a Romance language with historical ties to the Venetian Republic, which once extended into parts of the Dolomites, it is still widely spoken but would be hard to distinguish for a non-Italian speaker.

  • Friulian:

Friulian, a mix of Italian and Slovenian dialect, is spoken in the eastern Dolomites, especially in the Friuli region.

Once again, it originated from a Romance language with both Italian and Slovenian influences.

Many locals who speak Friulian claim the region and it’s dialect as an own unique cultural identity, which adds to the linguistic diversity of the Dolomites.

  • Slovenian:

The proximity of the Dolomites to the Slovenian border, makes Slovenian another important language of the Dolomites.

In some valleys and villages, you may encounter people who only speak Slovenian.

  • English and other International Languages:

Given the popularity of the Dolomites as a tourist destination, English is often spoken in hotels, restaurants, and other tourist-oriented establishments.

If you cannot speak Italian or German, English will be the best language for communicating.

In fact, we never spoke any German or Italian in the Dolomites but spoke English if we had to ask for directions or points of interest.

In conclusion, the Dolomites offer a fascinating opportunity to practice several languages in the field.

There is no reason to be intimidated by the various languages spoken in the Dolomites because you could speak any language and still be able to communicate.

Furthermore, most of the visitor centers in the Dolomites have maps and information available in most languages.

The 5 best places to visit in the Dolomites

There is almost an endless choice of places to visit in South Tyrol and after completing our one-month roadtrip, we are convinced we found the 5 best places to visit in the Dolomites.

Let’s jump right in:

1.Tre Cime Di Lavaredo:

Tre Cime di Lavaredo, drei Zinnen

The iconic landmark of the Dolomites, typically known as “Tre Cime” in Italian or “Drei Zinnen” in German, is one of the most photographed subjects in the Dolomites.

The highest of the three peaks, Cima Grande, has an elevation of 2,999 metres (9,839 ft).

It’s positioned in-between Cima Piccola, at 2,857 metres (9,373 ft), and Cima Ovest, at 2,973 metres (9,754 ft).

If we could only visit one place in the Dolomites, it would have to be Tre Cime di Lavaredo with its stunning 3 natural peaks.

The best activities to enjoy at Tre Cime are:

  • Hiking
  • Photography
  • Rock Climbing / via ferrata climbing
  • Eating at one of the most famous rifugios

Below we will cover all the important information about the famous hiking trail of Tre Cime.

Let’s start.

How long does it take to hike the Tre Cime Di Lavaredo loop hike?

The loop trail wrapping around the iconic three peaks is 9.7km (approx. 6 miles) long and took us roughly 3.5 hours of hiking time to complete.

You can easily add more kilometers or miles to this hike (which we would highly recommend) if you tackle the detours we will mention below.

However, if you are like us and are on the hunt for that instaworthy picture plus sympathize the occasional snack break in one of the rifugios, you are more likely to average around 6-7 hours (including detours).

How challenging is the Tre Cime Di Lavaredo hike?

The Tre Cime Loop Hike is considered easy to moderate and is one of the most accessible hikes in the area.

The gravel path is wide and with assistance can even be attempted with a wheelchair.

This makes it all time favorite hiking route amongst families and groups of friends.

Nothing is particular challenging about this hike but please do not forget to bring water, sunscreen, a first aid kit and a hat for sun protection.

Where to start and how to hike Tre Cime Di Lavaredo?

The trail begins at the car park at Rifugio Auronzo. From the car park, follow the gravel track with the signs saying “Path 101” and head east past Rifugio Auronzo. Always keep the three peaks on your left.

Tre Cime Car Park map

After 25 minutes you will arrive at a small chapel and will have the option to:

  • slowly ascend still following path 101 passing Rifugio Lavaredo until you unmistakenly get your first proper glimpse of Tre Cime from the front side

                                                or

  • you can turn left at the chapel and scramble over rocks to then walk alongside the three peaks all the way till you meet the path 101 again.

Note: this will save you about 5 minutes of hiking time but is definitely more challenging with a steeper incline and you will not pass Rifugio Lavaredo.

Choosing either option, you will arrive at the first viewpoint after 45min – 1h.

Lots of people call it quits here as this is already one of the most beautiful views you can get.

That is totally fine but if you stick around and follow our steps below you will get to see the best view ever.

What can you see on the Tre Cime di Lavaredo Circular Trail?

When you get to the first viewpoint you can see a cross with paths on it and a map explaining drone regulations and the area in general.

Most people usually then follow path 101 to Rifugio Locatelli (Italian) or Dreizinnenhuette (German). However, the most epic photo opportunities are on the small track above path 101 on the right.

The track is not easily visible but it follows along the gravel ridgeline of Patternsattel.

You do not need any climbing gear (the actual climbing track is located behind the rock wall you are facing), however, we do advice to exercise caution as the gravel is very loose and the track is exposed.

Tre Cime Loop Hike map

Before starting this track, you can scramble up a small rock to get a better view of the tree peaks.

Tre cime photo spot

(Standing on the “small rock” at sunset – first glimpse of Tre Cime)

After hiking this track for 15 minutes you will reach the first secret photo spot of Tre Cime Di Lavaredo.

A lego-like stone formation, perfect to snap a picture with your camera or drone.

Tre cime secret photo spot

(The small rock formation at sunrise – perfect to capture all 3 peaks)

Be careful when sitting on the rock formation as it made out of several huge rocks and if one of them is loose, you risk falling to death.

You will then continue to hike for another 20 minutes until you nearly reach Rifugio Locatelli.

Still on this track and roughly 150m away from Rifugio Locatelli, you will find a small cave system used as a shelter in World War II.

After exiting the shelter, you then have the choice to drink a beer at Rifugio Locatelli or continue a pathway up to your right which ends at the starting point of the Patternkofel climb (via ferrata climbing).

This is the perfect opportunity to start your drone and fly behind you (away from Patternkofel). At sunset, you will be pleased by orange light and an incredible backdrop.

This small detour takes 10 minutes and should be on every content creator’s list.

tre cime backside and via ferrata climbing

(A 10min walk from Rifugio Locatelli – @tropicalpassports)

Once you arrive at Rifugio Locatelli, you will then have to take another short but intense detour to the World War II shelters above the Rifugio.

Once you arrive there, you will enter the caves and look towards the world-famous peaks, almost like looking like through a window.

Set your Iphone or Camera to wide angle mode and snap away.

world war II bunker shelter

After descending from this track, we do recommend to follow the normal 101 path to Rifugio Malga Grava Longa (Langalm or Long-Olbe) and finish at the car park after that.

You can also hike the loop the other way but most people opt for the way we just explained.

What is the best time to visit Tre Cime di Lavaredo?

The hiking trail is open all year but if you would like to avoid the crowds, we do recommend sunrise and sunset (at least in the high-season from June to September).

Outside of these months any time of the day is perfect if you are not after that sunrise lighting.

In high season the car park fills very quickly and has sometimes reportedly been closed after 8am due to overflowing.

Therefore, arriving early in the summer months will be key to secure a spot.

Once the car park is full, the gates at the bottom of the valley will close and the only way is to wait till the evening to drive up or hike up with an elevation gain of nearly 2000m.  

In the months of June to August, the peaks will be fully hit by the sun at sunset, making them look like they are “burning”.

This creates an epic photo opportunity.

In the winter months, the sun sets in between the peaks which would be incredible to witness.

How do I get to Tre Cime Lavaredo Dolomites?

There are different options depending on the mode of transportation you prefer.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to reach Tre Cime di Lavaredo:

  • Reaching Tre Cime di Lavaredo by car:

To get to Tre Cime/ Drei Zinnen, type in Misurina into your Google Maps and follow the SS49 road towards Misurina. Just north of the town, take the toll road towards Rifugio Auronzo.

After a kilometer, you’ll reach a small toll both with gates, which marks the entrance to the Tre Cime Toll Road.

You can enter any time the parking lot at Rifugio Auronzo is free.

The automatic toll both is open 24/7 but you can directly pay your toll road fee to a staff member during summer months (6am-8pm).

Outside of the mentioned hours, you will press a button and receive a ticket automatically.

DO NOT lose this ticket as you will need it to pay a toll road fee once you exit the gates again.

The ticket fee is 20 for a motorbike, 30€ for a car and 45€ for a motorhome/campervan. Tickets are valid for 24 hours.

Although the price for a motorhome or campervan is expensive, we did get the chance to legally stay overnight at the Rifugio Auronzo parking lot, which makes it a very popular option to catch the sunrise at Tre Cime Di Lavaredo.

overnight parking at tre cime di lavaredo

(Parking lots located at the backside of Tre Cime)

  • Reaching Tre Cime Di Lavaredo without a car:

– Step 1: Get to Cortina d’Ampezzo From Venice:

Take a train from Venice to Calalzo di Cadore.

Train journeys from Venice to Calalzo di Cadore are relatively frequent.

From Calalzo di Cadore, take a bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo.

The bus ride takes approximately 1 to 1.5 hours.

From Bolzano:

Take a train from Bolzano to Fortezza/Franzensfeste.

Transfer to another train from Fortezza/Franzensfeste to Dobbiaco/Toblach.

From Dobbiaco/Toblach, take a bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo.

Step 2: Reach Misurina:

Once you are in Cortina d’Ampezzo, you’ll need to get to Misurina, a village near Tre Cime di Lavaredo.

Take a bus from Cortina d’Ampezzo to Misurina.

The bus journey is approximately 30 minutes.

lake misurina at sunset

(The town of Misurina with Tre Cime’s backside in the background)

– Step 3: Reach Tre Cime di Lavaredo

From Misurina, you have a couple of options to reach Tre Cime di Lavaredo:

Option 1: Hike

If you enjoy hiking, there are well-marked trails that lead to Tre Cime di Lavaredo from Misurina. The hike is approximately 10 km and takes about 3-4 hours.

Option 2: Shuttle Bus (Seasonal)

During the tourist season, there is a shuttle bus service called “Dolomiti Bus Line 30/31” running from Misurina to the Tre Cime di Lavaredo parking area.

The cost is 9,50€ per person one way.

The bus runs 4 times a day but check the local schedule as this service may not be available year-round.

Option 3: Taxi or Private Transfer

If you prefer a more comfortable and direct option, consider taking a taxi or arranging a private transfer from Misurina to Tre Cime di Lavaredo.

Where to stay near Tre Cime di Lavaredo?

Staying overnight near Tre Cime di Lavaredo provides a unique opportunity to experience the stunning beauty of the Dolomites at different times of the day.

The area around Tre Cime di Lavaredo offers various accommodation options, ranging from mountain huts to hotels.

Here’s an in-depth guide on where to stay overnight near Tre Cime di Lavaredo:

Auronzo di Cadore:

Best hotels:

  • Hotel Auronzo: Located in the town center, offering comfortable rooms and a restaurant.
Hotel Auronzo in winter

(Hotel Auronzo in Winter – photo credit: hotelauronzo.eu)

Book your stay at Hotel Auronzo here

Why Stay Here: Auronzo di Cadore is the gateway to Tre Cime di Lavaredo and offers a range of accommodation options.

It provides a charming setting with easy access to the hiking trails leading to Tre Cime.

Misurina:

Best hotels:

  • Grand Hotel Misurina: Offering lakeside accommodation with beautiful views of the surrounding mountains
Grand Hotel Misurina

(Grand Hotel Misurina with the burning Dolomites in the background)

Book your stay at Grand Hotel Misurina here

  • Hotel Lavaredo: Located near the lake, providing comfortable rooms and a restaurant.
Lavaredo Hotel in Winter

(Lavaredo Hotel in Winter – photo credit: lavaredohotel.it)

Book your stay at Lavaredo Hotel here

  • Rifugio Auronzo: For a more immersive experience, consider staying at Rifugio Auronzo, a mountain hut located at the foot of Tre Cime di Lavaredo.
Rifugio Auronzo

(Rifugio Auronzo in front of Tre Cime – photo credit: Tripadvisor)

Book your stay at Rifugio Auronzo here

Cortina d’Ampezzo:

Best Hotels:

  • Grand Hotel Savoia: A luxury hotel in the heart of Cortina, known for its elegance and amenities.
Grand Hotel Savoia

(Grand Hotel Savoia in Cortina D’Ampezzo – photo credit: Luxury Link)

Book your stay at Grand Hotel Savoia here

  • Cristallo, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa: A five-star resort offering upscale accommodation and spa services
Cristallo Resort and Spa

(Cristallo Resort & Spa at night in winter – photo credit: Tripadvisor)

Book your stay at Cristallo Resort & Spa here

Sesto/Sexten:

Best Hotels:

  • Hotel St. Veit: A family-run hotel in a picturesque setting, known for its hospitality.
Hotel St. Veit Garden area

(Hotel St.Veit in Sexten – photo credit: Tripadvisor)

Book your stay at Cristallo Resort & Spa here

  • Hotel Alpenblick: Located in the heart of Sexten, offering cozy rooms and panoramic views.
Hotel alpenblick

(Hotel Alpenblick in Sexten – photo credit: HRS)

Book your stay at Hotel Alpenblick here

Tips for Choosing Accommodation:

  • Proximity to Trails: If your primary goal is to explore Tre Cime di Lavaredo and the surrounding trails, choose accommodation close to trailheads for easy access.
  • Seasonal Considerations: Some accommodations may be seasonal, so check the availability and opening dates, especially if you plan to visit during the off-season.
  • Book in Advance: The Dolomites are a popular destination, and accommodations can fill up quickly, particularly during peak tourist seasons. It’s advisable to book your stay in advance.
  • Transportation: Consider the availability of public transportation or parking facilities, depending on your mode of travel.
  • Mountain Huts: Staying in a mountain hut can provide a unique experience but may involve more basic amenities. Be prepared for the rustic charm and breathtaking views.

Choosing accommodation near Tre Cime di Lavaredo allows you to fully immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the Dolomites and make the most of your time exploring this iconic mountain landscape.

2. Cadini Di Misurina:

Cadini di Misurina - the most instagrammable spot

(Cadini Di Misurina at sunset – @tropicalpassports)

Once unknown but now stealing the show, the towering peaks of Cadini Di Misurina are a must-see destination in the Dolomites.

It quickly became one of the most famous short hikes in Northern Italy and gained its popularity from Instagram Reels.

The convenient location makes it perfect to visit Tre Cime di Lavaredo and Cadini Di Misurina in one day.

How long does it take to hike to Cadini Di Misurina viewpoint?

The trail is wrapping around the iconic backside hills of Tre Cime and is 2km (approx. 1.25 miles) long and took us 35-45min one way.

It is a fairly short hike but the first kilometer is mainly going uphill, which can add some time if this is your first hike in a while. 

How challenging is the Cadini Di Misurina viewpoint trail?

The Cadini Di Misurina hike is considered easy to moderate and is one of the most accessible hikes in the area (just like Tre Cime Di Laverdo).

The first part of the hike leads over a grassy hill with several gravel paths branching off.

The track is wide and there are no exposed sections for the first part of the hike.

The hike is unfortunately not wheelchair accessible as it is not an “officially registered track”.

Nothing is particular challenging about this hike apart from the burning sensation in your legs for the first 10 minutes.

The last 500m of the track are very exposed and can be slippery in the wrong conditions.

We both have fear of heights and the narrow pathway leading up to the viewpoint did not make us feel uncomfortable but you definitely have to watch your step.

The very last part (the last 20m walking up to the actual viewpoint) are even more narrow and this is where our legs got a little bit shaky.

If you suffer from vertigo, this would not be the place you would like to spend too much time in as the cliff drops off at least 200m.

cadini di misurina viewpoint trail

(last part of the hike – looks easy on the picture but much steeper in real life)

There is nothing to worry about but make sure not to walk to close to the edge and you will be 100% fine.

What is the best time to visit the Cadini Di Misurina viewpoint?

The hiking trail is open all year but we do not recommend to go in winter as the trail will be too dangerous to navigate.

In the summer months, we recommend sunrise and sunset (at least in the high-season from June to September) for the best photography lighting.

If you are just visiting, any time of the day is perfect if you are not after that sunrise lighting.

During the day there are actually less people as all photographers and Instagram creators tend to hike around sunrise and sunset.

As you start the hike from the same car park as Tre Cime Di Lavaredo, it fills very quickly and has sometimes reportedly been closed after 8am due to overflowing.

Therefore, arriving early in the summer months will be key to secure a spot, solely for the car park.

Once the car park is full, the gates at the bottom of the valley will close and the only way is to wait till the evening to drive up or hike up with an elevation gain of nearly 2000m. 

During sunrise and sunset, the peaks of the Cadini Group will be glowing red.

This creates an epic photo opportunity which is why people call it the most instagrammable spot in the Dolomites or Italy.

We personally visited for sunrise & sunset and can highly recommend sunset.

The light shines from the backside onto the viewpoint, creating almost a halo like feeling in the photos.

How do I get to Cadini Di Misurina viewpoint in the Dolomites?

Cadini di Misurina hiking trail

There are different options depending on the mode of transportation you prefer.

All options mentioned below will end at Rifugio Auronzo and you will then have to follow these instructions:

Starting at Rifugio Auronzo, instead of walking the 101 trail towards Tre Cime, turn your back to the rifugio start walking straight ahead to the Cadini Peaks you are seeing.

You will cross path 117, which winds to Rifugio Col de Varda via Rifugio Fratelli Fonda Savio and is part of the Alta Via 4 Trail.

Your path is not marked, and once you have completed a few minutes uphill you will see two forking paths.

We accidentally, took the left fork for the first time and let’s say if you are scared of heights you will have to wash your pants afterwards.

The better option and also the one we took the second time is the right fork.

You will make your way around and uphill to grass plateau where you can easily spot the jagged peaks of Cadini di Misurina.

From there on, you keep following the path and take in the view.

How do I reach the Cadini Di Misurina viewpoint in the Dolomites with a car?

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to reach the viewpoint with a car:

To get to Cadini Di Misurina you will follow the exact same route as if you would visit Tre Cime Di Lavaredo. Search for a town called“Misurina” in your Google Maps and follow the SS49 road towards Misurina. Just north of the town, take the toll road towards Rifugio Auronzo.

After a kilometer, you’ll reach a small toll both with gates, which marks the entrance to the Tre Cime Toll Road.

You can enter any time the parking lot at Rifugio Auronzo is free.

The automatic toll both is open 24/7 but you can directly pay your toll road fee to a staff member during summer months (6am-8pm).

Outside of the mentioned hours, you will press a button and receive a ticket automatically.

DO NOT lose this ticket as you will need it to pay a toll road fee once you exit the gates again.

The ticket fee is 20€ for a motorbike, 30€ for a car and 45€ for a motorhome/campervan. Tickets are valid for 24 hours.

If you overstay, it results in an automatic extension of your ticket for another 24 hours. You will have to pay double depending on your mode of transportation.

Although the price for a motorhome or campervan is expensive, we did get the chance to legally stay overnight at the Rifugio Auronzo parking lot, which makes it a very popular option to catch the sunrise at Tre Cime Di Lavaredo and then finish for sunset at Cadini di Misurina or vice versa.

Reaching Cadini di Misurina without a car

  • Step 1: Get to Cortina d’Ampezzo

From Venice:

Take a train from Venice to Calalzo di Cadore. Train journeys from Venice to Calalzo di Cadore are relatively frequent.

From Calalzo di Cadore, take a bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo. The bus ride takes approximately 1 to 1.5 hours.

From Bolzano:

Take a train from Bolzano to Fortezza/Franzensfeste.

Transfer to another train from Fortezza/Franzensfeste to Dobbiaco/Toblach.

From Dobbiaco/Toblach, take a bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo.

  • Step 2: Reach Misurina

Once you are in Cortina d’Ampezzo, you’ll need to get to Misurina, a village near Tre Cime di Lavaredo.

Take a bus from Cortina d’Ampezzo to Misurina. The bus journey is approximately 30 minutes.

  • Step 3: Reach Cadini Di Misurina

From Misurina, you have a couple of options:

Option 1: Hike

If you enjoy hiking, there are well-marked trails that lead to Tre Cime di Lavaredo (next to Cadini Di Misurina) from Misurina.  

The hike is approximately 10 km and takes about 3-4 hours.

Once you finished hiking up the valley, you will then have to hike to Cadini di Misurina from Rifugio Aurozo for another 2km to reach the viewpoint.

Option 2: Shuttle Bus (Seasonal)

During the tourist season, there is a shuttle bus service called “Dolomiti Bus Line 30/31” running from Misurina to the Tre Cime di Lavaredo parking area.

The cost is 9,50€ per person one way.

The bus runs 4 times a day but check the local schedule as this service may not be available year-round.

Option 3: Taxi or Private Transfer

If you prefer a more comfortable and direct option, consider taking a taxi or arranging a private transfer from Misurina to Cadini Di Misurina.

Where to stay near Cadini di Misurina?

Staying overnight near Cadini Di Misurina involves the same steps as booking accommodation near Tre Cime Di Laverdo.

Click here to: scroll further up, you will find the options for Tre Cime di Lavaredo, however, for convenience I will shortlist all hotels in the area again:

  • Hotel Auronzo
  • Grand Hotel Misurina
  • Hotel Lavaredo
  • Rifugio Auronzo
  • Grand Hotel Savoia
  • Cristallo, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa
  • Hotel St. Veit
  • Hotel Alpenblick

3. Lago Di Sorapis

Lago Di sorapis at sunrise

(Lago Di Sorapis at sunrise – no crowds guaranteed)

Lago di Sorapis, also known as Lake Sorapis, is a stunning alpine lake situated in the Dolomite Mountains of northern Italy.

The Dolomites, a UNESCO World Heritage site, are known for their distinctive limestone peaks, dramatic landscapes, and picturesque alpine lakes.

Lago di Sorapis is specifically located in the Cadore region of the Dolomites, within the province of Belluno, Veneto.

It is part of the Sorapiss group, a mountain range in the Dolomites.

The lake is nestled at an altitude of approximately 1,925 meters (6,317 feet) above sea level, surrounded by towering peaks and lush alpine meadows.

Where to start and how to hike Lago Di Sorapis?

Hiking to Lago di Sorapis is an adventure in its own and it was actually one of our favorite hikes in the Dolomites.

There are 3 main trails leading to Lago Di Sorapis, each one coming with its own difficulty.

Let’s start with the most used path: path 215.

Lago Di sorapis hiking map

(Hiking Map by FullSuitcase.com)

Starting at Passo Tre Croci, the trailhead is on the side of the road where you will park your car.

It is very easy to spot and you cannot miss it.

The first part of the hike is going through a beautiful alpine forest with creeks running through the valley and tall pine trees providing plenty of shade.

You will gradually work your way uphill until you will reach the last section of the hike where you will clear the tree line and will be hiking next to a massive rock wall with incredible panoramic views.

This is where things will get tricky for people with fear of heights.

Leading up to this hike we heard several horror stories about the 215 for having insanely exposed sections.

We almost picked a different route but opted for the 215 path anyway.

Let’s say the stories were more a lie than anything close to the truth.

The exposed section people refer to is secured with metal ropes to hold on to and is even wide enough to have two people walking next to each other.

The views are out of this world and we were more surprised of how beautiful this hiking trail is than fighting with our fear of heights.

Beware: we started hiking at 4am in September, therefore, we did not encounter a single person on our hike.

On the way back at 9am we encountered hundreds of tourists blocking the pathway with the metal ropes as they were scared to cross.

Therefore, hiking as early as possible is important to take your time if you are scared of heights.

Exposed section at Lago Di sorapis

(Exposed hiking section on the 215 path to Lago Di Sorapis – photo credit: pustertal.org)

Literally 10 steps after you clear the short and exposed section, you have made it!

No more exposed sections and you are only 15minutes away from seeing one of the best alpine lakes in the Dolomites.

The two other paths available are path 216 & 217.

Path 216 can only be tackled with via ferrata climbing, therefore, we do not recommend it to get to Lago Di Sorapis.

Although we did not use Path 217, we met several people who travelled on it and they all recommended it for people with severe fear of heights.

There are no exposed sections on this path but it is more strenuous on the body as you will have to push yourself over large boulders and the elevation gain is supposedly more drastic.

How long does it take to hike to Lago di Sorapis?

The trail 215 is leading through a beautiful alpine forest and then wrapping a beautiful mountain face with views out of this world.

It is 5.8km (approx. 3.6 miles) long and takes the average person roughly 1.5-2 hours of hiking time (one-way) to complete.

The earlier you start hiking, the less time you will have to spend at the narrow-exposed section.

As the day goes on, hundreds of tourists venture on this path.

Please do calculate more time for your journey if you plan to hike in the middle of the day.

How challenging is the Lago Di Sorapis hike?

The Lago Di Sorapis hike is considered easy to moderate and is a favorite amongst tourists.

The path is very wide in the beginning and only starts to narrow once you arrive at the exposed section (secured with a metal-rope to hold on to).

In fact, on our way back we encountered many families with small kids or dogs.

However, please keep in mind to not let your kids or dogs roam around freely as the drop offs are very steep.

Nothing is particular challenging about this hike and it was easily one of the best hikes in the Dolomites.

What is the best time of the year to visit Lago Di Sorapis?

The best time to visit Lago di Sorapis depends on your preferences and the type of experience you are looking for.

However, the most popular time to visit is during European holidays in summer.

Here are some considerations for different seasons:

  • Late Spring (May to June):

Late spring is a beautiful time to visit when the landscape is lush and green.

The weather is generally mild, and the trail is likely to be less crowded compared to peak summer months.

The ice in the mountains melts early spring and therefore, the vibrant blue lake color will be visible.

  • Summer (July to August):

Summer is the high tourist season, and Lago di Sorapis can be busy during these months.

The weather is usually warm and conducive to hiking, and the lake is at its most stunning with clear blue skies.

  • Early Autumn (September to October):

Early autumn is another excellent time to visit.

The weather is still pleasant, and the fall colors begin to appear, adding a different charm to the landscape.

The crowds start to thin out compared to the peak summer months which was pleasant for us.

Note: At the end of October, the lake can be dried out if there was no rain over the summer period.

We do not recommend the winter months for hiking to Lago Di Sorapis.

The lake will be frozen and the trail will be dangerous due ice and the rapidly changing conditions.

How do I reach Lago Di Sorapis with a car?

Lago di Sorapis, or Lake Sorapis, is a stunning mountain lake located in the Dolomites of northern Italy.

While it is not directly accessible by car, you can drive to the trailhead and then hike to the lake.

Here are the general steps to reach Lago di Sorapis:

  • Choose a Base Location:

Identify a nearby town or village where you can base yourself. Cortina d’Ampezzo is a popular town in the Dolomites and is often used as a starting point for hikes, including the one to Lago di Sorapis.

Cortina D'ampezzo

(The town of Cortina D’Ampezzo nestled amongst the impressive Dolomite Mountains – photo credit: Wikipedia.com)

  • Drive to Passo Tre Croci:

From Cortina d’Ampezzo, drive towards Passo Tre Croci. This is the starting point for the hike to Lago di Sorapis.

Passo Tre Croci is accessible by car and is located on the SP638 road.

Passo Tre Croci

(The town of passo Tre Croci, the gateway to the Lago di Sorapis Hike – photo credit: Tripadvisor)

  • Park Your Car and start hiking:

Once you reach Passo Tre Croci, find a suitable parking area. There are parking lots available, but they can get crowded during peak times. The best option is to park your car on the verge right where the trailhead is and start hiking on the well-marked 215 trail.

Reaching Lago Di Sorapis without a car

  • Take a Train or Bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo:

Cortina d’Ampezzo is a popular town in the Dolomites and serves as a good base for visiting Lago di Sorapis. You can take a train or bus to Cortina d’Ampezzo from major cities in Italy.

  • Use Local Transportation to Passo Tre Croci:

From Cortina d’Ampezzo, use local buses like Dolomiti Bus 30/31 or taxis to get to Passo Tre Croci. Passo Tre Croci is the starting point for the hike to Lago di Sorapis.

Where to stay near Lago Di Sorapis?

The lake itself is not surrounded by hotels. Instead, accommodation options are typically found in nearby towns, with Cortina d’Ampezzo being a popular base for visitors to the region.

 Here are a few well-regarded hotels in the general area:

  1. Cristallo, a Luxury Collection Resort:

(Cristallo Resort at night in Cortina D’Ampezzo – photo credit: Tripadvisor)

A luxury resort known for its elegance and scenic views.

Book your stay at Cristallo Resort here

  • Rosapetra Spa Resort:
Rosapetra Spa

(Rosapetra Spa Resort in Winter – photo credit: booking.com)

A spa resort offering a tranquil setting in the Dolomites.

Book your stay at Rosapetra Spa Resort here

  • Hotel de la Poste:
Hotel de la Poste

(Perfect location for exploring Cortina D’Ampezzo – booking.com)

A centrally located hotel with a long history in Cortina.

Book your stay at Hotel de la Poste here

  • Grand Hotel Savoia:

(photo credit: Luxury link)

A historic hotel with a blend of classic and modern amenities.

Book your stay at Grand Hotel Savoia here

  • Hotel Ambra Cortina:
Hotel Ambra Cortina

Gorgeous views from the hotel – photo credit: booking.com)

A boutique hotel offering a stylish and comfortable stay.

Book your stay at Hotel Ambra here

4. Alpe Di Siusi:

Alpe di Siusi

(The secret viewpoint at Alpe Di Siusi/Seiser Alm for sunrise)

Alpe di Siusi, also known as Seiser Alm, is a picturesque alpine plateau nestled in the heart of the Dolomites in northern Italy.

Renowned for its breathtaking landscapes and diverse recreational offerings, Alpe di Siusi stands as Europe’s largest high-altitude alpine meadow.

How do I get to Alpe Di Siusi/Seiser Alm?

Alpe di Siusi is well-connected by road, and the journey involves driving through picturesque mountain roads.

Here are general directions on how to get there by car:

Choose Your Base:

Select a town as your base, with Castelrotto (Kastelruth in German) being a common starting point for accessing Alpe di Siusi

  • Travel to Castelrotto:
Castelrotto town

(The picture perfect town of Castelrotto – photo credit: Seiser Alm Dolomites)

Depending on your starting location, navigate to Castelrotto.

Major nearby cities include Bolzano and Innsbruck.

  • Drive to Alpe di Siusi:
    • From Castelrotto, follow the signs for Alpe di Siusi or Seiser Alm. The road will take you through scenic landscapes, including winding mountain roads.

NOTE: When exiting Castelrotto, you will leave the SP64 and turn off onto a road called “Via S.Valentino” with a sign saying “Alpe Di Siusi”.

This road will eventually lead you to a sign and booth which is the starting point of the Alpe Di Siusi road.

You will find a sign on your left saying “no private traffic from 9am – 5pm”.

This means private traffic is prohibited in between 9am and 5pm unless you have a valid booking for one of the hotels on Alpe di Siusi nature reserve (hotel must provide permit first, booking only is not enough).

If you are travelling in your own car, you will have to arrive before 9am to enter this road or arrive after 5pm.

There are no barriers stopping you from entering.

However, there are multiple cameras along the road and fines can be as high as 1000$ if you are caught driving up this particular road in-between the mentioned hours.

DON’T WORRY: once you are finished with your hike or biking tour, you can then leave anytime you want. Just DRIVING UP this road is prohibited in the mentioned hours.

  • Parking at Alpe di Siusi:

Once you reach the base of Alpe di Siusi, a place called “Compatsch”, there are 2 main parking areas available.

The first and most popular parking lot “P2” is in the town of Compatsch and with 24 Euros per day expensive but closest to Alpe Di Siusi.  

The second parking lot is below the town of Compatsch and approximately 2km away from “P2”.

As of 2023, it is free but spots fill up very quickly in the high season.

Both parking lots are open from 6am – 10pm to prevent campervans from staying overnight.

How to get to Alpe Di Siusi without a car?

Getting to Alpe di Siusi without a car is still feasible, as public transportation and alternative modes of transportation are available.

Here’s a guide on how to reach Alpe di Siusi without a car:

  • Reach Bolzano (Bozen) or Castelrotto: Bolzano is a major city in South Tyrol and is well-connected by train and bus. Alternatively, you can travel directly to the town of Castelrotto, which is closer to Alpe di Siusi.
  • Take a Train: Bolzano has a train station with good rail connections. You can take a train to Bolzano and then proceed to Alpe di Siusi by bus or other means.
  • Bus to Seiser Alm Cable car station: From Bolzano, you can take bus 170 (4€) to Seiser Alm Cable car station and purchase a two-way cable car ticket for 18€ which will take you to the beautiful Alpe Di Siusi nature reserve.
  • Hiking or Walking: If you enjoy hiking, there are trails that lead from Castelrotto to Alpe di Siusi. The hiking routes vary in difficulty, so choose one that suits your preferences and fitness level.
  • Accommodations with Shuttle Services: Some accommodations in Castelrotto and the surrounding area may offer shuttle services to Alpe di Siusi. Check with your hotel or guesthouse to see if they provide transportation

How to get to the secret photo spot at Seiser Alm

Private Cars are not allowed to drive on the roads after Compatsch. Hence, after arriving at “P2” you will then have to hike to the secret photo spot.

We highly recommend this spot as it will give you the best view out of all spots on the Seiser Alm.

Alpe di Sisui sunrise fog

(Beautiful alpine meadow with a picturesque hut)

NOTE: the only legal way to arrive for sunrise with a car is in September.

The sun rises at 7:30 am, therefore, you can park your car at 6am and start hiking towards the photo spot.

In June the sun rises at 5:20am but the car parks are only open from 6am.

Therefore, you would technically be parking illegally before 6am and there are signs stating that.

The only legal way would be to book a hotel on Seiser Alm and wake up for sunrise.

We arrived 15 minutes before 6am in September on the free parking lot and got fined a whopping 113€ without questions asked.

The hike itself is fairly simple but mainly going uphill.

The hike is 4.6km (2.85 miles) long and will take you 1hr 10min one-way.

To get there you have to type in “Adler Lodge Alpe di Siusi” and follow the navigation almost to the end.

100m away from the Hotel Adler Lodge you will find the secret photo spot on the right side of the road. 

Alpe di Siusi photography spot

(The secret photo spot for sunrise)

What is the best time of the year to visit Alpe Di Siusi?

  • Summer season: Early June – August

The high alpine meadows are greener than ever.

That tasty low hanging fog is present for sunrise which offers awesome photo opportunities.

The weather is pleasant and warm which goes hand in hand with experiencing the various outdoor activities like biking, hiking and climbing.

All cable cars are open and public transport is running non-stop.

  • Autumn: September – October

The high-alpine pastures are slowly turning orange, however, tourist numbers are now decreasing.

Low hanging fog is still present and the weather is much cooler which is very pleasant for hiking.

Enjoy the various activities on Seiser Alm such as E-Biking the alpine meadows or hut-to-hut hiking.

All restaurants and rifugios are still open.

Cable cars are running.

  • Winter (skiing season): December – early April

Perfect for staying at one of the resorts on Seiser Alm and witnessing the 3-5m of snow this region gets every year.

Skiing, snowboarding, ice climbing, you name it.

Where to stay near Seiser Alm/Alpe Di Siusi

Hotels on Seiser Alm:

  • Adler Mountain Lodge:
Hotel Adler Lodge at Alpe di Sisui

(One of the best hotels in the Dolomites – photo credit: @AlexFitz)

A luxurious mountain lodge offering stunning views, spa facilities, and high-quality service.

Book your stay at Adler Mountain Lodge here

  • Alpina Dolomites:
Como Alpina Hotel

(Como Alpina Hotel situated on alpine meadows – photo credit: booking.com)

A 5-star hotel with modern amenities, wellness facilities, and a prime location for accessing the Alpe di Siusi ski area.

Book your stay at Alpina Dolomites here

  • Romantik Hotel Turm:
Romantik Hotel turm

(Historical building structure meets modern style – photo credit: booking.com)

A historic hotel with a unique tower structure, offering a blend of tradition and modern comforts.

Book your stay at Romantik Hotel Turm here

  • Hotel Saltria – Dolomiti:
Hotel saltria

(One of the many views you can get at Hotel Saltria – photo credit: booking.com)

A wellness hotel with a focus on relaxation, featuring a spa, fitness facilities, and access to outdoor activities.

Book your stay at Hotel Saltria here

  • Hotel Rosa:
Hotel Rosa in the Dolomites

(Hotel Rosa views are something to experience – photo credit: tripadvisor)

A family-friendly hotel with a welcoming atmosphere and convenient access to ski slopes and hiking trails.

Book your stay at Hotel Rosa here

  • Sporthotel Sonne:
Sport Hotel Sonne Alpe di Siusi

(The pool views from Sport Hotel Sonne – photo credit: Fabian Dalpiaz)

A well-established hotel offering comfortable accommodations and a range of sports and leisure facilities.

Book your stay at Sport Hotel Sonne here

Hotels in Castelrotto:

Castelrotto (Kastelruth in German) is a charming town near Alpe Di Siusi, and there are several accommodation options in and around the area.

Here are some suggestions for places to stay near Castelrotto:

  • Hotel Zum Wolf:
Hotel zum Wolf

(Hotel zum Wolf in Castelrotto – photo credit: Castelrotto City)

A family-run hotel offering comfortable accommodations and a central location in Castelrotto.

Book your stay at Hotel zum Wolf here

  • Hotel Cavallino D’Oro:
Hotel Cavallino

(Cavallino D’oro with mesmerizing views – photo credit: suedtirolerland.it)

A traditional Alpine hotel with a spa, wellness facilities, and a restaurant serving local cuisine.

Book your stay at Cavallino D’oro here

  • Hotel Castel Oswald von Wolkenstein:
Hotel Castel Oswald von Wolkenstein

(Relaxing vibes and beautiful sunshine – photo credit: tripadvisor)

A stylish hotel with modern amenities, wellness facilities, and a restaurant.

Book your stay at Castel Oswald von Wolkenstein here

  • Gasthof Zum Riesen:
Gasthof zum Riesen Bergblick

(Green scenery and gorgeous views – photo credit: welcome beyond)

A historic guesthouse with a traditional Alpine ambiance, located in the heart of Castelrotto.

Book your stay at Gasthof zum Riesen here

5. Lago Di Braies / Pragser Wildsee

Lago Di Braies Pragser Wildsee

Lago di Braies, also known as Pragser Wildsee, is an enchanting alpine lake nestled in the heart of the Dolomite Mountains.

Surrounded by towering peaks, dense forests, and pristine meadows, Lago di Braies is celebrated as one of the most famous and breathtaking natural landscapes in the Dolomite region.

How to get to Lago Di Braies?

Getting to Lago Di Braies/Pragser Wildsee with a car:

Begin your journey in the city of Bolzano (Bozen), the capital of South Tyrol and navigate to Lago di Braies.  

Follow the signs and directions to the town of Dobbiaco (Toblach).

From Dobbiaco, you’ll continue towards the lake.

Dobbiaco Town center

(Dobbiaco town views with its romantic church – photo credit: KAYAK)

Once you are in the vicinity of Dobbiaco, follow the road signs directing you to Lago di Braies.

The lake is well-marked, and close-by there is a parking area available.

Between July 10th and September 10th, the road to Lago di Braies is restricted for private traffic between 9 am and 4 pm.

You can still enter before those times and leave anytime with a private car. In-between 9am-4pm, you have to use public transport, ride your bike or hike to the lake.

Please note that during peak tourist season, the parking lot can become crowded, so it is advisable to arrive early, especially if you want to ensure a parking spot close to the lake.

The closest affordable car park is P3 (200m away):

  1. The first 15 minutes are free
  2. 6€ for 3 hours, 12€/day maximum
  3. Campervans 25€/day

Best parking lot for campervans P2 (400m away):

  • 6€ for cars all day
  • 12€ overnight fee RVs and campervans

Getting to Pragser Wildsee/Lago Di Braies with public transport

Getting to Lago di Braies (Pragser Wildsee) using public transport typically involves taking a combination of trains and buses.

Here’s a general guide:

From Bolzano (Bozen):

  1. Train to Dobbiaco (Toblach):
    1. Start by taking a train from Bolzano to Dobbiaco. There are regular train services connecting these two locations. The train journey offers scenic views of the Dolomites.
  2. Bus to Lago di Braies:
    1. From Dobbiaco, you can take a bus to Lago di Braies. The bus ride is relatively short, and buses are scheduled to accommodate visitors to the lake.
  3. Arrival at Lago di Braies:
    1. The bus will drop you off at the designated area for Lago di Braies.

The best things to do at Lago Di Braies

Boat rental at Lago di Braies

(The famous rowing boats on Lago Di braies)

  • Sunrise photography capturing the reflection of the mountains in the vibrant blue lakes
  • Hike around the lake and enjoy the beautiful flora and fauna (1hr)
  • Paddle on Lago di Braies: Rent a classic wooden-row boat for 18€/hr and get to see the lake from a different angle

What is the best time to visit Lago Di Braies?

Pragser wildsee at sunrise

Lago Di Braies is one of the most famous attractions in the region, therefore, there are thousands of tourists visiting the lake during the summer season.

If you enjoy the calmness before the storm, then we would recommend to visit for sunrise or at least before 8am.

In regards for the best time of the year, we would recommend to visit from early June – mid-October.

The weather is the most stable during that time while the lake is vibrant blue.

Walks around the lakes are beautiful, especially with autumn colors.

Note: There is no time of the year where the lake is “free of tourists”.

Where to stay near Lago Di Braies/ Pragser Wildsee

  • Hotel Lago di Braies:
Lago di braies hotel

(Lago Di Braies at the doorstep of Hotel Lago Di Braies – photo credit: booking.com)

A lakeside hotel offering stunning views of Lago di Braies. It’s known for its comfortable rooms, friendly staff, and convenient location.

Book your stay at Hotel Lago Di Braies here

  • Romantik Hotel Santer:
Romantik Hotel Santer

(An outdoor spa area to die for – photo credit: booking.com)

Book your stay at Hotel Santer here

A family-run hotel with a warm and welcoming atmosphere. It provides a blend of traditional Alpine charm and modern amenities.

  • Hotel Trenker:
Hotel Trenker

(Relax in the pool while having amazing views – photo credit: booking.com)

Situated right by the lake, Hotel Trenker offers a peaceful retreat with beautiful views. It is known for its excellent restaurant and comfortable accommodations.

Book your stay at Hotel Trenker here

  • Hotel Bellevue:
Hotel Bellevue

(Thick snow and a cozy vibe at Hotel Bellevue – photo credit: booking.com)

Nestled in the Dolomites, Hotel Bellevue offers cozy accommodations and is well-regarded for its hospitality and panoramic views.

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