Girls in pink! Above Lagazoui on the Alta Via 1

Bespoke Dolomites High Route: Alta Via 1


Hiking holiday in the Italian Dolomites

This is the ultimate Italian Dolomites walking trip! A classic point-to-point journey over six hiking days to complete the 'Alta Via 1' which means the 'high way'. The Alta Via 1 certainly lives up to its name as we trek through a spectacular landscape designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of it's exceptional geological beauty. Join us and enter a world of breath taking views, of rocky spires, and towering cliff faces and be prepared to be impressed on our 'Alta Via' trek.

Highlights

  • World class mountain scenery
  • Visit Cortina - the heart of the Dolomites
  • Fabulous Italian food and coffee
  • Truly spectacular hiking trails
  • Overnights in amazing mountain locations
  • Historic and characterful rifugios
  • Luggage transfers where possible 
  • Professional International Mountain Leader

The uniqueness of the geology in this region is matched by its Austrian-Italian distinctiveness. The area is known as the Sud Tirol in German, and as the Alto Adige in Italian, and presents an eclectic fusion of Austrian and Italian food and folklore.

Our meeting point for this week is Cortina d'Ampezzo, a town with a beautiful landscape and within easy reach of the regions most iconic mountains. Enjoy Italian hospitality whilst exploring the regions jaw dropping scenery. Explore trails that negotiate this dramatic mountain environment offering a unique perspective on this magical place. Be prepared to be impressed!

Try Via Ferrata?

A via ferrata, which in Italian means the 'iron way', is a mountain route with fixed ‘protection’ such as metal ladders, handles and chain that you remain attached to using a climbing harness. This allows access to isolated trail systems, rocky cliff lines and summits normally reserved for climbers. The technique was initially developed by soldiers in the First World War, but has become an established, safe and popular sport. If you would like to try this activity before or after your trip then please ask us for more details. NB: Please note, we only use qualified IFMGA Guides for this activity and it is in addition to the proposed itinerary.

 


Itinerary

  • Today you arrive in the town of Cortina d' Ampezzo in Italy, known as the jewel of the Dolomites. The beauty of the Ampezzo Valley along with it's 1000 year history attracts visitors all year round. Surrounded by majestic peaks Cortina, a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site, can't fail to impress any mountain lover. Our hotel for this trip is within easy walking distance to the bustling pedestrian town centre and numerous musems and galleries. Proud of it's heritage, learn about the local traditions, history and environment at the Ethnograhic Museum or visit the "Rinaldo Zardini" Palaeontological Museum which houses one of the most significant collections of fossils that exists anywhere today.

    Your guide will meet you at the hotel before the evening meal to answer any questions and discuss the days ahead.

  • A short taxi ride takes us to the famous Lago di Braies beauty spot: a turquoise lake set amongst towering cliffs. According to legend, there were local savages who dug in the mountains for gold and precious stones. The local herdsmen were jealous and tried to steal their treasures, but the savages saw them coming and opened up an underground spring and sunk their treasures in the lake the spring created, Lago di Braies! The lake is one of the largest and deepest natural lakes in the Dolomites. After contouring around the lake we begin our climb through the pine trees until we arrive under the striated cliffs of Monte Muro to immense views at the Porta Sora il Forn at 2388m (7832ft). We then have a very short downhill, just 5 minutes, to the Rifugio Biella for a bowl of minestrone, or whatever else takes your fancy. After lunch, we have a lovely descent through flower meadows and farms, until a final steep road under impressive cliffs takes us down to our overnight at the Rifugio Pederu.

    Ascent: 1045m (3427ft) Descent: 984m (3227ft) Distance: 17km (10.6 miles) Duration: 7h00

    Tonight you have access to your luggage

  • A steady climb this morning up through the wild and rocky Vallone di Rudo to Lago Piciodil, and with the reward of excellent Italian coffee at Rifugio Fanes. We continue up the trail to Passo di Limo at 2172m (7124ft), and its lake of the same name, which is framed by high peaks and curious limestone slabs dotted with pine trees. Families enjoying a picnic by the lake are a common site. A rugged traverse then brings us to the Forcetta del Lago at 2486m (8154ft), followed by an improbable descent to the green waters of Lago di Lagazuoi. There is then a little 'sting in the tail' as we have a final 200m (656ft) climb to finish at our Rifugio. We are now walking along what was the frontline during WWI, as evidenced by the gun emplacements and tunnels carved out of the ridge line. A remarkably well preserved reminder of more troubled times, the Rifugio Lagazuoi is in an amazing cliffs edge location high in the mountains. It even boasts a wood-fired sauna to ease tired muscles while you enjoy the stunning mountain view. Despite the day’s big climb, the descent is minimal and our knees will appreciate that!

    Ascent: 1685m (5526ft) Descent: 450m (1476ft) Distance: 18km (11.3 miles) Duration: 9h00

    NO access to luggage

  • After our long hike yesterday we enjoy a more relaxing day which will often begin with a short walk, just 10 minutes,  to the summit of Mount Lagazuoi. The early morning light makes for very special photos with views to the distant mountain of the Marmolada.  After breakfast we begin our day in earnest with a descent to the fabled Passo Falzarego which is a favourite with many road cyclists and features in the annual Dolomites Marathon. Here there are a few cafes and gift shops where maps of the local area can be purchased. An easy stroll across the meadows to a local restaurant for morning coffee, and then its up through the larch forests on a really lovely trail. As we climb we have stunning views back to Mount Lagazuoi, the Tofane mountain range, and to the Cinque Torri, the Five Towers. This is an excellent day for photos as we pass the blue green lake of Lago Limedes which offers wonderful panoramic shots of the landscape. We normally have lunch at the beautiful Rifugio Averau which has a great reputation for its cuisine. In the afternoon, or perhaps late morning if we get there early, we then climb to the oldest rifugio in the Dolomites, the Rifugio Nuvolau which is perched right on the cliff edge! It only takes around 20 minutes to do the climb to the Rifugio Nuvolau and it is well worth it. However, if you wish to relax on the terrace at the Rifugio Averau we will not hold it against you! After taking in the views at the Nuvolau we descend back to the pass before an easy afternoon walk to accommodation for the night which depending on availability will be at either Rifugio Averau, Passo Giau. or Rifugio Scoiattoli.

    Ascent: 515m (1689ft) Descent: 974m (3194ft) Distance: 9km (5.6 miles) Duration: 6h00

    Tonight you have access to your luggage

    If accommodation is not available at Passo Giau we will stay at the Rifugio Averau where the views are amazing, however there is no luggage access at Averau.

    Ascent: 515m (1689ft) Descent: 774m (2539ft) Distance: 7km (4.3 miles) Duration: 5h15

  • Before we leave Passo Giau this morning you may wish to reflect on what it would be like climbing to this infamous pass on two wheels. The punishing climb is often completed by road cyclists in the Giro d'Italia, the Italian equivalent of the Tour de France. It's a tough ascent of 9.8km (6 miles) with an average gradient of 9.4 per cent and up to 14 per cent in places. However, our trail begins easily enough as we set off across the mountainside following Monte Formin’s impressive southern cliffs before climbing to the Forcella Ambrizzola at 2277m (7468ft)). As we make our way to our next pass we have views of the glorious Civetta mountain while enjoying a gentle descent through pastures with herds of sheep and dairy cows. Often the iconic edelweiss flower can be found growing by the trail in the heart of the meadows. Our final stretch for today is a traversing trail under the impressive peaks and spires of the wild and rugged Monte Pelmo, one of the famous landmark mountains of the Dolomites. Finally, it's down through the larch forests to another lovely rifugio where we spend the night at the Rifugio Staulanza which is run by Marco Sala, a highly respected mountaineer.

    Ascent: 644m (2112ft) Descent: 973m (3191ft) Distance: 17km (10.6 miles) Duration: 8h00

    Tonight you have access to your luggage

  • A very easy stroll to begin this day as we wander along a farm cart track through the forests. Often we pass cow herds and their dogs working with the cattle in the summer meadows. Our trail eventually brings us to Casera di Pioda dairy farm, which sells cheese in the summer. We then leave this rural scene to climb up a well graded mule track to the shoulder of Cima Coldai, an outlier of the Civetta, until we arrive at the Rifugio Sonino Al Coldai. Yet another great rifugio in another stunning location! We continue across a pass and down to the stony beaches encircling the turquoise waters of Lago Coldai. This really is a very beautiful situation as we drop around the lake and over the Forcella Col Negro at 2203m (7225ft) before losing height and entering Val Civetta. With its slabs, peaks and pinnacles the west face of Monte Civetta towers 1200m (3936ft) overhead, and an impressive 7km (4.4 miles) in length. A hanging icefield - the Cristallo – clings to the cliff at the highest point. This face is known as the ‘wall of walls’ and is unique in the Alps. We now head over the Forcella di Col Rean, and our overnight stop at the remote Rifugio Vazzoler.

    Ascent: 952m (3122ft) Descent: 800m (2624ft) Distance: 14km (8.7 miles) Duration: 6h50

    NO access to luggage

  • Leaving our Rifugio we have good views of the Torre Trieste a very impressive rock face towering above our rifugio, and the Cima della Busazza at 2894m (9492ft). After crossing a stony slope below the cliffs, we then gain the steep little pass of Forcella Col Dell’Orso, sitting at 1823m (5979ft). Our trail takes in a short section with some chains as a hand-rail along a flowered rock face then it rises across boulders and pasture, before dropping before the Moiazza’s great south face. Heading along the Val Framont, we can take in a very short detour to the commanding outcrop that hosts the lovely Rifugio Carestiato for a relaxing lunch in a stunning location. We complete our day with an easy walk through pastures and pine forests to reach the Passo Duran and Rifugio Sebastiano by early afternoon. 

    Notes: As discussed we will aim to have you and your guide collected at Passo Duran, and driven for around 1 hour to the village of Braco il Cadore where you will have hotel accommodation to ensure private rooms. The next morning you can take your taxi to Fruili. This taxi is not included in the trip fees. Please confirm you will organise this yourselves, with our help if required. Your guide will not be with you on this last evening, as the same taxi that collects you at Passo Duran will take them on to Cortina d'Ampezzo so they can collect their car and drive north. 

    Ascent: 740m (2427ft) Descent: 800m (2624ft) Distance: 14km (8.7miles) Duration: 6h00

    Tonight you have access to your luggage

  • Today is your departure day and the package finishes after breakfast.

It is always our aim to complete the proposed itinerary outlined above, however, it may be necessary for our guides/instructors to adjust the daily itinerary based on the weather conditions, group safety and enjoyment.

Accommodation

On the Alta Via route accommodation is limited and we may have to book Rifugios other than those stated in our on-line itinerary. In this respect the itinerary will sometimes vary from that described in terms of the length of days and distance covered. Having guided this trip since 2015 we have an excellent knowledge of the variations and options possible and can assure you that whatever the accommodation your trip will be memorable.

Our trip fees are based on two people sharing a room in Cortina d'Ampezzo . Single rooms may be available in Cortina d'Ampezzo , but will incur a supplement. 

Cortina is a vibrant bustling town and offers a range of hotels. For our trips we aim to book the Park Hotel Victoria, but this does require early booking. All the hotels we use in Cortina d'Ampezzo have en suite facilities, and are welcoming and comfortable. 

On this trip the first and last nights we will be in a hotel, while the rest of the trip we will stay in rifugios. A rifugio is the Italian name given to a mountain lodge/hut.  Once we leave Cortina you may be accommodated in private bedrooms with en suite facilities or in private rooms with shared showers and toilets. Early booking usually means better rooming arrangements as we have more choice available. Read our Blog on staying in a mountain Rifugio, but be assured that in the Dolomites the Rifugio's are above the normal standard expected in the mountains and are more like rustic hotels. 

NB: We understand your desire for private bedrooms rather than dormitories, and we will be aiming to secure these wherever possible. Early booking should mean this is possible, but we cannot be 100 per cent certain until our bookings have been accepted and confirmed. The accommodation has indicated that they expect bookings to open for summer 2023, at around the beginning of October. We will be booking as soon as they open their schedules. 

Park Hotel Victoria, Cortina d'Ampezzo

The Park Hotel Victoria is an historic 4* hotel situated in the heart of Cortina d'Ampezzo, which is known as the jewel of the Dolomites. The hotel is tastefully decorated in traditional Italian style and offers a traditional 3 course evening menu. You can enjoy the magnificent views from the panoramic terrace and from most of the guest rooms. Single rooms are available for an additional fee, please advise us if you would like this option. There is a spa which offers a sauna, jacuzzi, Turkish bath and an emotional shower! Access to the spa is included, but must be booked. Massages are available upon request.

Rifugio Pederu

Refuge

The Rifugio Pederu is a lovely overnight stop. It is very comfortable, and has open meadows around the building. It is more 'guest house' than rifugio, and our accommodation may be in bedrooms rather than dorms, though we cannot make any promises as it depends on early booking. The bedrooms are en suite, and there are also showers available on the floors for the dorms. Dinner is usually very good with great local dishes. 

Rifugio Lagazuoi

Refuge

Situated in the heart of the Dolomites at 2752m (9026ft), the Rifugio offers a magnificent and cosy place to reward our efforts. The rifugio is famed for its stunning views of the mountains. It is perched on the edge of a cliff and the evening and dawn views are worth watching! It has cosy rooms decorated in traditional style with wood featuring extensively. 

It has a wood fired sauna which is outside the main building and there is something quite wonderful about taking a sauna while gazing at the Dolomites. The rooms are generally bedrooms for between 2 and 4 people, and there are showers on the floor. Dinner is usually very Italian featuring pastas and sauces.

Rifugio Averau

Refuge

Without a doubt one of our favourites. The Sunday Times included the Rifugio Averau on its list of the ten best mountain restaurants in the Alps. We think it is more like a hotel than a rifugio, with excellent dinners offering a choice of courses. It also has a great wine cellar for those who enjoy 'vino'. It has has won many prestigious Italian and international awards, confirming their reputation.

On August 10, 1874 Santo Siorpaes, one of the most famous mountain guides of the time and author of many first ascents of the most famous peaks of the Dolomites, was the first to climb the peaks of Mount Averau. Today, after more than 140 years his descendants run the Rifugio Averau at the base of the mountain. 

Rooms are dormitory style, but very comfortable and clean. With early booking we always aim to book a small dorm just for our group. There are showers and toilets on the floor. 

 

Berg Hotel, Passo Giau

The Berg Hotel, 'berg' means mountain in German, is in a stunning location beneath the towering spires. It sits at 2236 metres (7330ft) on the Passo Giau which has featured in the famous Giro d'Italia road bike race. It has 10 bedrooms and is one of the highest and remotest hotels in the Dolomites. There are wonderful views of the valley of Cortina d'Ampezzo and the peaks of the Tofane, Croda Rossa, Cristallo and Croda da Lago. A wonderful overnight location.

 

Rifugio Staulanza

Auberge

The Staulanza is definitely more 'hotel' than rifugio. It is run by Marco Sala a respected Italian mountaineer and the walls are adorned with his photographs taken during some impressive expeditions to the Himalaya, and other famous mountain ranges. The accommodation sits right on the high pass of Staulanza, and has a lovely terrace for enjoying a well-earned drink. 

The bar area is very cosy, and the bedrooms are generally all en suite. Dinner is very Italian and features local dishes. 

Rifugio Vazzoler

Refuge

The Rifugio Vazzoler feels rather remote and is situated in the forest below some very impressive cliffs. The rifugio was built by the Club Alpino Italiano in 1929. In 1968 the Club set up a botanical garden in the grounds,  which is now managed by the Belluno Regional Forestry Office. The rifugio is quite basic, but nevertheless characterful in true rifugio style with many artefacts from the two World Wars on display, and with great black and white photos of this era showing the amazing routes taken through the mountains by the troops.

The rooms are all dormitory though we can often secure smaller dorms just for our group. There are shared toilets and showers. 

Rifugio San Sebastiano, Passo Duran

Refuge

The Rifugio San Sebastiano is perched on the high pass of Passo Duran with stunning rocky peaks as a backdrop. In the summer months you can put your feet up on the terrace and enjoy a cool drink. The perfect place to reflect on your day of hiking. It is run by Benjamin who is our very friendly and helpful host. He has managed the rifugio for more years than he can actually remember!  

Benjamin is a real 'character' who speaks German and Italian. He serves really excellent local food, and you can be sure you will get a taste of the 'Dolomites'. Tonight you will have access to your luggage, before we begin our final few days in the mountains. The accommodation is small dormitories, although some twin rooms are available, but these would require very early booking and a supplementary fee. Do let us know if you wish us to request twin rooms. 


  • When booking a trip during the pandemic we ask that you keep an open mind and be willing to adapt and be flexible.

    Any holiday taken during the Covid-19 pandemic may be subject to change and with little or no notice of that change. As the past months have proven no-one can predict the situation from one week to the next, however, we will do our very best to gauge the best response to any new developments. New restrictions or guidelines might affect where we eat out, which accommodation we can stay in, and potentially transport arrangements if the numbers in vehicles are restricted. 

    Itineraries may not be exactly as advertised due to new regulations or restrictions. We are sure there will be various scenarios which we have not even thought about that might lead to a change or adaptation in the itinerary.

    Please read our Covid-19 Cancellation Policy and ensure you have appropriate insurance as per our recommendations. We also ask that you make yourself aware of the entry requirements of any country you are visiting on your trip. We have compiled a Travel Links Advice list to help you source the correct information. 

  • Train and Bus

    Cortina has excellent train and bus links. Rome2Rio is a useful site which gives a map and overall picture of how the local public transport network links up and who to book with. Local trains and buses to reach Cortina can be found at www.sad.it and trains from the UK to Dobbiaco can be sourced here and then a bus taken to Cortina where we meet.

    For further information on travelling by public transport, click here.

    Flights

    The closest airports are Venice in Italy and Innsbruck in Austria.

    Venice: Venice has two airports. The main airport is Venice Marco Polo but some airlines such as Ryanair fly to Venice ‘Treviso'. There is a 15 minute drive between these two airports. To transfer from Venice to Cortina choose either the Cortina Express or Flixbus the journey time is between 2h-2h30. We recommend buying tickets in advance which can be done easily and in English. Check the timetables carefully as they vary with stops and times. If arriving into Treviso airport you will need to take an airport bus into Treviso town to pick up the Cortina bus. The bus tickets vary in price depending on how far in advance you book.

    Innsbruck: From Innsbruck the journey time about 4 hours. From the airport you can take a free shuttle bus, it takes 15 mins and leaves every 10 mins, to reach Innsbruck central railway station. From the central rail way travel by train to Brennero (also known as Brenner) then to Fortezza (also known as Franzensfeste) then to Dobbiaco (also called Toblach) and then the local Sud Tirol no. 445 bus to Cortina.

    If you would like to arrange a private transfer from Innsbruck or Venice or any other destination then we can recommend the services of www.taxicortinasci.it

    Upon arrival at the bus station in Cortina you can take the local bus to your hotel. Bus No1 departs at 30 minutes past the hour, eg 1630hrs, 1730hrs and bus No2 departs on the hour eg 1300hrs, 1400hrs. 

    If you choose to walk from Cortina bus station it will take 15 minutes. The route is called the 'Lunga Via delle Dolomiti' and is the long distance cycle path to Dobbiaco. It is mostly flat, is covered in tarmac, has a smooth surface and is a very pleasant walk. When you get off the bus you will see 'yellow' dashed lines painted on the tarmac and you follow these through the car park onto the cycle way. After approximately 1km you will pass under a road bridge, you will then see a sign for Hotel Menardi on a tree on your left, and you follow the tiny tarmac path through the hotel garden. 

    You can also take a taxi from the bus station.

  • When booking a trip we ask you to acquire insurance to cover you for the following:

    Mountain Rescue Insurance

    It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, mountain rescue, cost of repatriation and personal accident risks. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. The maximum altitude for any trip can be checked on the 'At A Glance' box on each trip page. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip, then please ask us for specific details.

    Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance

    You should also have insurance to cover trip cancellation and curtailment. Please note that your deposit and balance payments are non-refundable, unless it is Tracks and Trails who cancel the trip due to a failure to reach the required minimum numbers. In this case we will offer you a refund or the option of transferring to another trip if one is available. We also advise that you should have insurance which covers baggage loss/equipment damage as Tracks and Trails will not be held responsible for loss/damage to baggage/equipment.

    COVID-19 Insurance

    As well as medical cover, we recommend that you have appropriate travel insurance so that if you fall ill and test positive for COVID-19 prior to (or during) your trip, you will be financially covered for cancelling your trip. You should also consider booking a policy that covers you if you have to cancel or curtail your holiday because you have to self-isolate. If you choose to cancel, cancellation charges will be payable, but if the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges. Please read the clauses below detailing trip cancellation and curtailment.

    Travel Insurance covering COVID-19 is now available from a number of suppliers, Campbell Irvine, Trailfinders and Staysure. Please check their websites for the latest information on what is and isn't covered. It is likely that more companies will offer COVID related cover in the future.

    All of the above insurances are detailed in our Terms and Conditions

    If you are joining a trip in the UK helicopter/mountain rescue insurance is not required as this is a free service.

    For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.

  • Summer mountain weather in the European Alps can vary considerably, and in this respect it is no different to any mountain environment where the terrain influences the weather and it can change from valley to valley. 

    However, in the summer months it is generally good in the Alps, but it can deliver everything from glorious sunshine, to rain, fog, high winds and even snow. Temperatures can reach over 30°Celsius (86°F) in July and August, but can drop to 5°Celsius (41°F) on the high passes, or 'Cols' as they are known in the Alps. Essentially, as with all mountain journeys, you should be prepared for any eventuality. The average temperatures range from 15-25°Celsius (59-77°F) in the valleys and 5-15°Celsius (41-59°F) on the passes.

    Even in mid-summer we can be faced with overnight snow especially when we have spent the night in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut at higher altitude. 

  • When packing for a trip in the mountains it is important to have appropriate equipment and clothing. This kit list features items we believe are necessary for the weather you might encounter and accommodation you will be staying in. If you have any questions with regards to what to bring, do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

    Equipment

    • Walking boots - comfortable & waterproof, with a good tread. We have no objection to ‘low cut mountain walking shoes’ if they have a stiff sole for rough terrain. Be aware that early season snow can remain on the high passes and boots may be necessary!
    • Walking Poles – optional, but highly recommended
    • Rucksack – 30-35 litres, ideally with a chest and waist strap, try using it loaded before your trip
    • Rucksack liner or cover - to keep the contents of your rucksack dry
    • Water container - 1 to 1.5 litres, or hydration system
    • Short gaiters – useful, but not essential
    • Umbrella - useful for shade on very hot days/rain showers

    Clothing

    • Waterproof jacket - this MUST be waterproof. We can encounter heavy rain in the mountains and you need to be able to stay dry and warm
    • Waterproof over trousers - we consider these vital items for the reason given above. We reserve the right to ask you to purchase waterproof trousers if we deem them necessary, or to ask you to miss a day of the trip if you are not properly equipped for the weather
    • Trousers - comfortable walking trousers allowing free movement
    • Shorts/skort
    • Sun hat
    • Warm hat
    • Hat - sunhat
    • Gloves x 2 - one thick, one thin
    • Base layer e.g. t-shirt, thermal tops
    • Fleece jacket/shirt
    • Socks - technical walking socks 2/3 pairs
    • Duvet jacket/second warm jacket
    • Thermal leggings - optional

    Comfort

    • Sunscreen
    • Lip salve
    • Sunglasses - eye protection is essential
    • Tissues
    • Antibacterial hand wash - small bottle
    • Swimwear - optional, we sometimes swim in lakes/rivers
    • Supplementary snack bars/chocolate/trail mix
    • Book/Kindle/Music

    Documentation

    • Passport, plus a paper copy
    • Mountain Rescue Insurance - compulsory
    • Travel Insurance
    • Credit Card
    • Cash - Euros 
    • Waterproof bag for documents

    Personal First Aid

    • Personal medication - if required
    • Antiseptic cream/spray
    • Painkillers/anti-inflammatories
    • Glucose tablets
    • 2 x Rehydration sachets – like Dioralyte
    • A few throat lozenges
    • Blister plasters 
    • Blister tape eg. Strappal
    • Bandaid plasters

    Items for the nights in mountain refuges when we do not have luggage access

    • Sheet sleeping bag 'liner' - lightweight ‘silk or cotton liner’ for Rifugio Vazzoler, but you can hire at the Rifugio
    • Ear plugs - optional, but advised if room sharing
    • Head torch - plus batteries
    • Teabags – optional, tea is expensive in the refuges, whereas ordering hot water is less expensive

    Additional Items

    • Slippers for use at accommodation
    • Clothing for use at accommodation
    • Hair dryer if required 
    • Travel Kettle if required 
    • Camera
    • Toiletries – soap/shower gel; not all accommodation supplies these
    • Head torch - plus spare batteries 
    • Padlock - for luggage being transferred
    • 1x Medium size kit bag/holdall/suitcase

    Your luggage will be moved each day by a taxi driver. Please restrict yourself to one bag of approximately 15kg (33lbs) per person. Not all hotels have 'lifts' and you must be able to carry your luggage upstairs. There may be a charge imposed by the taxi company if you have more than 1 bag, and we would ask you to cover this. 

    **Supplementary snacks if you follow a gluten free or coeliac diet**

    Leaders are all first aid trained and will carry their own first aid kit

  • On many of our trips there will be an element of 'group kit' which will be shared amongst our guests. As mountain people you will be used to team work and working together to the mutual benefit and safety of the group.

    The 'group kit' will be minimal and usually just a case of sharing a few lightweight 'survival shelters'. For example on a week-long trip you may carry a small shelter for just one day before passing it on to the next person. 

    If you are booking a trip in winter there will be a few additional safety items. These will be distributed in such a way that no one is over burdened. 

    Other group items necessary for safety and comfort will be carried by your guide/instructor.

  • For each of our trips a minimum number of guests is required before we can confirm that your trip will go-ahead. The minimum and maximum number of guests on your trip is displayed in the 'At a Glance' box on the righthand side of the trip page. 

    We strongly advise you do not book travel until we have confirmed your trip is 'guaranteed' to run. If you book travel before we have confirmed it is 'guaranteed' we cannot be held responsible for any financial loss if the trip does not go ahead.

  • When booking a holiday as a solo traveller a twin bedded room comprising of two single beds, is booked as standard. This will be with someone of the same gender unless you request to pay extra for your own room. On this trip we mainly stay in rifugios single rooms can be offered on the first and last nights for £200, and depending on availability on 3 rifugio nights. A single room supplement for all 5 nights is £350.

  • We go to great lengths to work with first class guides who are passionate about their work. They are all fully qualified, insured, and hold the correct documentation.

    Please note your guide has complete discretion to make a daily decision on whether or not to take the advertised route based on the weather and the ability of the members of the group. They have our authority to make any route changes they believe are necessary in the interests of safety and enjoyment. 

    Your hiking guide will be a fully qualified and experienced International Mountain Leader. International Mountain Leaders are not only qualified to ensure the safe management of the group, but are also a source of knowledge about the local flora and fauna, and traditions of the area which you are visiting. You can learn more about our guides and instructors on the About Us page.

  • On this point-to-point trip you will have luggage support for four of the nights, which means your bags are transferred to the next accommodation and you only need to carry a small/medium sized 'rucksack' for items you might need during the course of the day. Please refer to the kit list for this trip for guidance on the size of rucksack required. On the four nights you are in the more remote mountain huts, where there is no vehicle access, you will need to carry just a few extra items in your rucksack.

    As your luggage will be moved along the route by taxi we ask that you keep the weight to a maximum of 15kgs (33lbs), and ONE bag per person. Many of the taxi companies who move your bags impose a 15kg (33lbs) limit and restrict the number of bags simply because they have to unload and reload the vehicle many times each day. If you take more than one bag you may be asked to pay a supplement. Also with regard to weight be aware that you may have to carry your luggage to your bedroom, which may involve climbing several flights of stairs as not all hotels have elevators. Luggage on wheels is generally a good idea.

  • We do not include lunches in your trip fee for various reasons. We have found our guests have particular tastes and requirements for 'trail' or 'hill' food and it is better you purchase your own snacks. Buying supplies and trying local specialities is a great way to inter-act with the local people and to practise your language skills. 

    Lunches on our trips are 'picnic' style lunches, in other words you take a packed lunch with sufficient snacks, food and fluid to sustain you throughout your day of activity. If there is the possibility of lunch being taken at a restaurant/farm/cafe beside the trail, your guide/instructor will advise you of this. 

    Each evening you can choose to order a picnic or a sandwich from the hotel, or your guide/instructor will advise you of other options such as a local shop or market and whether you need to purchase items in the evening or if the shop/market is open early enough the next morning not to delay your start. In all cases we would always ask you to settle any 'bill' for lunch or drinks in the evening before you depart, and not on the morning of your last day when there may be a queue.

  • On your itinerary you will find an indication of the amount of ascent and descent you can expect each day. This offers a guideline to how much effort might be expended each day and allows you to decide, based on previous experience, if your fitness and stamina are correct for the trip. 

    We make every attempt to ensure these statistics are as accurate as possible, but ask you to note that the most modern of technology used to record these details can show considerable variations in terms of ascent, descent, and in particular distance. In other words no two people using GPS devices on the same route will have exactly the same details recorded at the end of the day. 

    The statistics given should be used as a 'general' indication of the effort required. 

  • Your leader will carry the correct maps and you are not expected to navigate, but if you would like to have maps of the itinerary you could consider those listed below:

    Tabacco Maps 031: Pragser Dolomiten - Enneberg 1:25,000

    Tabacco Maps 03: Cortina d'Ampezzo e Dolomiti Ampezzane 1:25,000

    Tabacco Maps 025: Dolomiti di Zoldo Cadorine e Agordino 1:25,000

    Tabacco Maps 024: Prealpi e Dolomiti Bellunesi 1:25,000

  • It is useful to arrive at your destination with some cash in the local currency, however, on most occasions it is relatively easy to visit a 'cash machine' after arrival and withdraw money on a credit or debit card. Some of our locations are an exception to this in particular Norway, where the accommodation will often have no facilities for withdrawing cash, but they will take a credit card. 

    On many of our trips we will visit remote cafes/farms where it is wonderful to enjoy a drink and a cake, at places such as these they will only accept payment in the local currency in cash.

  • Food

    On our trips we encourage you to experience local tastes and dishes that reflect the culture of the country and for this reason many of our accommodation options will be family run with a reputation for the traditional food of the region. 

    If you have a 'special' diet because of an allergy or intolerance to a certain food type which will make you ill the accommodation will cater for this as best they can, eg gluten free, nut free, lactose free.

    If you are vegetarian then this is not a problem as the hotels/refuges are used to being asked for vegetarian meals. Our accommodation will try to cater for those with vegan diets but in remote refuges in the mountains this is more difficult. If you would like to discuss the suitability of a trip for a vegan diet please contact us. Gluten-free diets will be possible with regard to the evening meals, but we would advise that you bring along some gluten-free snacks for your breakfasts and lunches.

    If you have a 'special' diet which is NOT because of an allergy or intolerance, and is not 'veggie' then we apologise, but we cannot cater for this. The accommodation on the popular routes will be catering for many people each evening, in some cases up to 70/80 meals per night, 7 days a week, and realistically they cannot produce many different meal options unless the food will result in illness.

    Water

    The countries we visit all have tap water which is drinkable. If for any reason a particular hotel is having a problem with a remote mountain water supply they will normally post a sign over the tap indicating that you must not drink the water. At all times you are welcome to ask your guide/instructor if the water can be drunk. We would ask, for environmental reasons, that you avoid using single-use plastic bottles, and bring a water bottle that can be used repeatedly. 

  • A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required for visits to countries outside the EU, such as Norway. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice.  

  • We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

    http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

    Note that if your trip involves staying in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut that electric sockets may be in short supply and for that night you may not be able to charge any items. Although the accommodation will have electricity this will often be supplied by solar panels or a generator and limited to use by the staff. For this reason we advise that carrying a small slimline and lightweight 'battery pack' can be very useful for recharging phones which many of you will also use as your camera. 

  • A via ferrata, which in Italian means the 'iron way', is a mountain route with fixed ‘protection’ such as metal ladders, handles and chain that you remain attached to using a climbing harness. This allows access to isolated trail systems, rocky cliff lines and summits normally reserved for climbers. The technique was initially developed by soldiers in the First World War, but has become an established, safe and popular sport. If you would like to try this activity before or after your trip then please ask us for more details. NB: Please note, we only use qualified IFMGA Guides for this activity and it is in addition to the proposed itinerary.

  • Before booking consider whether you expect to be in the appropriate physical condition on the date of your  departure to allow you to fully participate in and enjoy your holiday. If you have any doubts because of an illness or injury it would be advisable to check with your doctor.

    For UK residents travelling to an EU country you should obtain and bring with you a free Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment in certain European countries, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance.

    If you have a UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) it will be valid until the expiry date on the card. Once it expires, you’ll need to apply for a GHIC to replace it. The UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) lets you get state healthcare in Europe at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. Please check this before departing. We advise that you always carry your insurance documents with details of the Emergency Medical telephone number for your insurance provider, and your policy number. 

  • We feel strongly about protecting the environment and do not encourage the use of single-use plastic items. We would ask that you arrive with a ‘water bottle’ or ‘hydration system’ that can be used repeatedly. We would point out that we operate a ‘zero tolerance’ for rubbish, and would ask you to remove all your rubbish items from the mountain even those you consider to be bio-degradable. In particular we ask that you remove any toilet tissue.

    You can read our full policy here.

  • Working across international boundaries, and with various currencies means that the price of our trips can change overnight. We have, however, undertaken to guarantee that once you have paid your deposit the price of your trip is fixed. In this respect we urge you to book early to ensure that you receive the price advertised on our website. The website price may increase due to currency fluctuations, but we guarantee that the price advertised on the date of your booking will be maintained in your individual case. 


Prices may vary depending on date.

2023

Guaranteed Book

What's Included

  • Half board accommodation in a 3* hotel or similar for one night based on a twin room in Cortina
  • Half board accommodation for 6 nights in mountain 'rifugios' and hotels based on double or twin bedrooms, some will be en suite
  • The services of a fully qualified International Mountain Leader
  • Transport to the start of the route at Lago di Braies from Cortina
  • Taxi transfer from Passo Duran to Borca di Cadore or similar
  • Luggage transfers between accommodations except on 2 or 3 nights (depending on accommodation availability) when we stay in remote mountain 'rifugios'
  • Tracks and Trails memento - a gift to take home

What's Not Included

  • Lunches 
  • Flights
  • Insurance
  • Drinks and snacks 
  • Luggage transfers on 3 nights
  • Transfers to the meeting point in Cortina
  • Transfers from Braco di Cadore onwards
Return to Search Print Trip Notes

Grade: Advanced

READ GRADE DESCRIPTION

At a Glance

From Price £2395
Holiday Type Walking
Duration 8 Days
Group Size 4-10
Minimum Age 18
Maximum Altitude 2507m (8222ft)
Countries Visited Italy
Meet In Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy
View all Walking Holidays

Italian Dolomites; Hiking the Alta Via 1

The Dolomites seen from the sky!

Giro rides the Giau!

Why book with T&T?

  • Highly professional guides
  • Personal service guaranteed 
  • Attention to detail throughout
  • Explore off the beaten track
  • Single rooms on request
  • No surcharge guaranteed
Read More

Related Articles