Wondering what are the best hikes in Dolomites, Italy?
If you’re traveling through Italy and looking for a hiking paradise rich in nature, look no further than the Dolomites Mountain Range. Situated in northeastern Italy in Belluno province, the Dolomites form part of the Southern Limestone Alps and are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
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The Dolomites are home to huge mountains such as the Three Peaks, Rosengarten, and Schlern, which create a breathtaking landscape all year round. In winter, the Dolomites become a popular skiing destination.
In contrast, hiking and mountain climbing enthusiasts flock here in the summer for a sunny adventure.
Whether you visit for a day or stay one week, the Dolomites are worth visiting. Moreover, you don’t have to be a professional mountain climber to enjoy the enchanting scenery.
Here are six of the best hikes in the Dolomites rated easy or moderate.
Lago Di Braies
- Distance: 2.2 miles (3.5 kilometers)
- Duration: 1.5 hours
The Lago di Braies is undoubtedly one of the best hikes in Dolomites as it is short, easy, and incredibly beautiful. In recent years, Lago di Braies (also known as Pragser Wildsee) has become one of the Dolomites’ most visited and photographed parts.
Lago di Braies is one of the most beautiful lakes in Europe, thanks to its unique location nestled in between the mountains. The best time to do this short hike is early in the morning.
In fact, if you can get here for sunrise, you’ll witness the incredible sight of the sun illuminating the mountain tops in a warm orange/pink tone. Although it’s a short walk, you can easily spend half a day here.
It’s a fab picnic spot, and you can rent boats around the lake too. The water in the lake is swimmable, but it stays freezing all year round, so I only recommend braving it on a warm summer’s day.
If you go from mid-morning onwards, you will likely encounter crowds. However, most people only go to the beginning of the lake and stop there.
So, if you continue walking to the end, you’ll find more peace and quiet.
The Lago di Braies trailhead begins from the parking lot at the end of St. Veit road. There is a hotel and restaurant where you can stop for a post-walk drink or meal.
Tre Cime Di Lavaredo Circuit
- Distance: 6.2 miles (10 kilometers)
- Duration: 3 to 4 hours
The Tre Cime di Lavaredo Circuit is one of the best half-day hikes in the Dolomites as it loops around the iconic Three Peaks without requiring much effort. As a result, you’ll enjoy breathtaking views of Cima Grande, Cima Occidentale, and Cima Piccola.
However, that’s just the start. The trail also gives spectacular vistas of other peaks like Cadini di Misurina and Monte Paterno.
The hike takes 3 to 4 hours to complete, with a total elevation gain of 1,116 feet (340 meters). There are several places to stop along the way, including the famous Drei Zinnen hut.
Tre Cime di Lavaredo is one of the most popular hikes in the Dolomite mountain range, so I recommend arriving early before the crowds. You must pass a toll booth to reach the trailhead, which is open from 7 am to 7 pm.
You’ll find the Tre Cime di Lavaredo starting point just opposite the Rifugio Auronzo parking lot.
There are toilets at the trailhead, which are handy if you’ve had a long drive. You can start the hike clockwise or counter-clockwise, though most people do the latter.
Adolf Munkel Trail
- Distance: 5.6 miles (9 kilometers)
- Duration: 3 to 3.5 hours
The Adolf Munkel Trail is another of the most popular hiking trails in the Dolomites. Still, it is slightly shorter than Tre Cime di Lavaredo.
The circuit trail is located at the foot of Geisler Mountain Group in Val di Funes (Villnösstal).
The route passes through the picturesque Puez-Odle Nature Park and part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The trail, rated easy to moderate, takes around 3 hours to complete, with a total ascent of 1,240 feet (378 meters).
However, you can make it a leisurely walk by stopping at one of the many mountain hut restaurants along the way. Dusler Alm, Geisler Alm, and Gschnagenhardt Alm are the most popular huts with awesome food and views.
I recommend doing this hike in the afternoon, timing it so that you arrive at Geisler Alm for its spectacular sunset. The Adolf Munkel Trailhead is at the Zanser Alm parking lot.
Follow the signs for trail no.6 from the big building at the main entrance.
Rifugio Auronzo To Cadini Di Misurina
- Distance: 2.5 miles (4 kilometers)
- Duration: 1 to 1.5 hours
The Rifugio Auronzo to Cadini di Misurina is one of the best hikes in Dolomites if you’re after an epic viewpoint ending.
It is the fastest and easiest way to reach the magnificent Cadini di Misurina Viewpoint. This small pinnacle sticks out over a ravine and overlooks Lake Misurina.
The elevation gain is minimal as the hike begins at 7,402 feet (2256 meters), and the summit sits at 7,657 feet (2,334 meters). Therefore, it’s a leisurely 30 to 45-minute walk to the viewpoint and the same distance back, covering approximately 2.5 miles (4 kilometers).
Start the hike in Rifugio Auronzo, a high-alpine refuge at the southern foot of Tre Cime di Lavaredo. The Cadini di Misurina trailhead is south of the Rifugio Auronzo parking lot, signposted as Trail 117 (Sentiero Bonacossa Trail).
Seceda Ridgeline To Regensburger Hütte Circuit
- Distance: 5.5 miles (8.9 kilometers)
- Duration: 3 to 3.5 hours
The Seceda Ridgeline to Regensburger Hütte Trail in South Tyrol is a looped hike in Puez Odle Nature Park. It circles the ridgeline of the Seceda summit that sits 8,261 feet (2,518 meters) above sea level.
The mountain is famous for its staggering spear-like peak, which looks impressive from afar and up close.
However, the spectacular mountain is just the start of this 5.5-mile (8.9 kilometers) easy trek. The trail then heads towards the Odle and Geisler peaks before descending to the heavenly Val di Funes, a picture-perfect alpine valley.
As the hike begins at the Seceda summit, you’ll need to take a cable car up the mountain from the village of Ortisei. The Seceda trailhead begins at Seceda cable.
Lago Di Sorapis
- Distance: 6.5 miles (10.5 kilometers)
- Duration: 4 to 5 hours
If you’re looking for the most thrilling hike in the Dolomites with jaw-dropping views, the Lago di Sorapis trail is for you.
Lago di Sorapis is a milky-turquoise-colored glacier lake in Ampezzo Dolomites. The ring of forest and mountains that surround the lake make it a natural amphitheater and an incredibly tranquil place to visit.
The out-and-back trail is not the most leisurely hike on this list, nor is it suitable for those who fear heights. The 6.5-mile (10.5 kilometers) course is not just long but contains some pretty steep sections.
Plus, some parts of the route are somewhat exposed, and at times you’ll find yourself walking up metal staircases on the mountain edge. There are railings and cables for support on the steep and narrow sections.
Even so, you’ll still need high-quality hiking shoes and poles to assist you with the challenging climb. Although it’s pretty strenuous, the hike is well worth it, especially if it’s a sunny day, as you’ll see the lake with its brightest, most spectacular color.
You’ll find this hike at Passo Tre Croci, halfway between Cortina d’Ampezzo and Lake Misurina. The Lago di Sorapis trailhead is to the right of the parking lot, next to the hotel.
Final Thoughts On Hiking The Dolomites
While the Dolomites is an all-year-round destination, we recommend visiting between June and September if you’re heading there to check out the hiking trails. During these months, the skies are blue, and the tracks are free from snow.
Moreover, aside from these best hikes in the Dolomites, there are plenty of other summer activities.
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