cortina dolomites italy hiking tour

Santa Lucia, the Dolomites, Italy

The craggy peaks and spires of the Dolomites rise above classic mountain villages. Our hiking journey offers a daily choice of fantastic hikes in these spectacular mountains.

Photo by Dan Heller

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Hiking in the Cortina Dolomites route-map

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $4395  
Length: 8 days
Arrive: Venice, Italy
Depart: Venice, Italy
Lodging: 6 nights 3- and 4-star hotels and inns, 1 night comfortable alpine lodge with semi-private rooms, shared baths, and hot showers
Meals: All meals included except 1 dinner
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level: 6 hiking days, choice of moderate to steep trails, 3-7 hours a day, altitudes from 5,000-9,100 feet, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day's hike). This is a strenuous hiking trip, read “What the Trip is Like” for more details.


  • Hike through a surreal landscape of splintered spires, huge rock walls, and picturesque villages
  • See the Dolomites at your own pace, with moderate or challenging hiking options most days
  • Enjoy delightful Italian-Austrian alpine culture and hearty cuisine (be sure to try canederli, a bread dumpling unique to the area)

We loved the trip and cannot wait for our next one with Wilderness Travel. The scenery was majestic, we all drank way too much wine, and the accommodations were first rate. Sensational all the way around!Susan K.—McLean, VA

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Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.


We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Nothing quite prepares you for the awesome spectacle of the Dolomites. In this exalted setting, enormous spires, towers, and pinnacles soar dreamlike above an enchanting realm of deep green valleys sheltering storybook villages. Our exhilarating journey brings you on hikes in the Cortina Dolomites, famed for unearthly monoliths including the Tre Cime di Lavaredo and the broad expanse of 10,965-foot Marmolada, the highest peak in the Dolomites. With up to three Trip Leaders and a choice of moderate or challenging options most days, you’ll experience some of Europe’s most incredible mountain scenery and delight in northern Italy’s unique alpine culture and delectable cuisine. Our special overnight in a spectacular hike-in lodge is your perfect perch for watching the sunset paint the massive rock pinnacles an extraordinary palette of ever-changing, luminous hues.

Itinerary at a Glance

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Days 1-3
Venice / Passo Giau / Civetta Massif

From Venice, head to our chalet-style mountain hotel at Passo Giau in the heart of the Dolomites, with its wonderful views of the Tofane, Croda Rossa, Cristallo, and Croda da Lago massifs. Our hikes lead right from the hotel, including one that brings you through beautiful meadows to Ambrizolla Pass, with a descent past waterfalls and stunning views of the Tofane Massif. Other hikes lead into the magnificent Civetta Massif, with its famous six-mile-wide north face known as “the wall of walls,” while a lovely ramble through meadows and woodlands carries you beneath the soaring Tofane peaks to a lakeside restaurant for a cappuccino and fresh pastry.

Day 4
Rifugio Lagazuoi

A challenging hike (with easier options) rewards you with panoramas stretching from Tofane to Marmolada, the “Queen of the Dolomites,” as we head to Rifugio Lagazuoi, an awesome spot to experience one of the world’s finest sunsets.

Days 5-8
Cortina d’Ampezzo / Tre Cime di Lavaredo

Our hikes from stylish Cortina include a challenging option featuring the “secret” valley behind the Tofane Massif that few hikers explore. Walking right from the Lagazuoi, traverse around the peaks of the Tofane via the remote Val d’ Travenanz amid lovely wildflowers, crystal-clear springs, and alpine meadows. Our moderate option leads along a trail below the great spires of the Tofane di Roses and continues along the Alta Via 1, a long-distance footpath traversing the Dolomites from north to south. You’ll also enter the world of the famous Tre Cime di Lavaredo, three yellow-pink spires that offer quintessential Dolomites hiking. No matter which hikes you choose, the views are simply out of this world. Depart on Day 8 via Venice.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

What the Trip is Like

This trip is Level 4 or 5, depending on the hiking options you choose. We have two hiking options to choose from on most days, ranging from moderate to challenging by Alps standards. Each day will include anywhere from three to seven hours of hiking, with options that give us time for visiting small villages and other interesting places en route. Most hiking is between 5,000 and 9,000 feet, with the routes featuring a good bit of up-and-down (although some level walks are available). While the Dolomites are not exceptionally high, they are steep and rugged, and this trip, while not difficult, is aimed for those who have at least some experience of mountain hiking. All participants must be in good physical condition. No climbing or mountaineering experience is necessary. Of course, you are always free to skip a day’s hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle. The support vehicle transports the group’s luggage, so you only need to carry a daypack for items you need for the day (sweater, camera, water bottle).

We strongly urge you to “train up” for your trip. Your enjoyment of the trip will be very dependent on your level of fitness. The best training for a hike is to hike, especially over hills or rough terrain. Next best are running, swimming, bicycling or other sports exercise. Stair-climbing machines are excellent preparation for hiking uphill. Try to incorporate exercise into your daily schedule at least a couple of months before departure. Your feet should also be well prepared—make sure your hiking boots are sturdy and thoroughly broken-in. Altitude is not a problem on these trips. The itineraries are designed to take you gently to higher altitude, giving you plenty of time to acclimatize. However, some people still find they get a few problems when they first reach high altitude. Slight headache and sleeplessness are the most common problems.

On most days, breakfast will be around 7:30 am. You should bring your packed bag to the hotel lobby when you come down for breakfast on days when we will be changing hotels. We usually leave the hotel at around 8 or 8:30 am. The Trip Leader will describe each day’s hiking options including trail conditions, level of challenge, elevation gain or loss, mileage, and duration, so you can choose the one that fits your wishes best for that day. Lunch will usually be either in a small village, mountain lodge, or a picnic amidst the beauty of the surrounding mountains.

Most evening meals will be taken at our hotels and will be hearty, nourishing mountain fare, often with the cuisine the region is noted for. Please note that in Europe, the dinner hour is considerably later than what it is in the US. We do our best to secure early reservations for our groups, but most often the evening meal will be at 7:30 pm.

Our accommodations are in comfortable, small hotels with private bathrooms. Our hotels have been chosen as much as possible for their ambience and history and they are delightful for the local color and dining that they offer. These rustic and well located hotels are clean and comfortable, but rooms are not always of uniform size or amenities. Our Trip Leaders try to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole. Single rooms are offered when possible, but those who pay the Single Supplement may have to share a room for some nights during the trip.

For one night we stay in a fantastic alpine lodge with 2- or 4-person rooms with shared bath and showers. Bunks, mattresses, and blankets are provided; if you want to have a top sheet or sleeping bag liner, please bring your own. The bedding at the lodge is very clean, usually consisting of a down comforter, a bottom sheet, and a pillow. Soap, shampoo, washcloths, and towels are not provided, so please bring your own small supply. There is no vehicle access to this alpine lodge, so you will need to take your overnight items and change of clothes with you on the cable car to the rifugio, while your main luggage will be stored in Cortina for the night. A small plastic bag will provided for you to transport your overnight belongings.

Explanation of Trip Levels


Departures & Leaders

Jun 24-Jul 1, 2016

Jul 17-24, 2016
Aug 7-14, 2016   Stefano Baldi
Sep 9-16, 2016   Sean Morrissey

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2016
$4395 (11-15 members)
$4795 (5-10 members)
Single supplement: $360
more on pricing

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $600
90 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule

Up to 91 days prior to departure: No charge!
61-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
46-60 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of at least two Wilderness Travel Trip Leaders (and sometimes three, depending on group size)
  • Accommodations as noted
  • All meals included except 1 dinner
  • A glass of wine or beer with dinner
  • Land transportation, airport transfers as noted in the Full Trip Brochure
  • Cable cars and uphill / downhill conveyance

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare, any meals not specified after each itinerary day in the Full Trip Brochure, airport departure taxes, optional cultural events, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights that may be necessary due to airline schedule changes or other factors, pre-trip expenses of travel insurance, or passports and visas; and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Arrival & Departure Information

You are responsible for your own transportation to the arrival and from the departure cities listed below. For more detailed information, including transfers, please download the Detailed Itinerary.

Please do not purchase your tickets until you are confirmed on the trip. Once your tickets have been purchased, please send us a copy of your airline schedule.

2016 Departures

Meeting Place:
Venice, Italy
Date: Day 1

Suggested Arrival Airport:
Venice, Italy (airport code VCE)
Suggested flight arrival time: 11:00 am
Venice, Italy
Date: Day 8

Suggested Airport for Departure:
Venice, Italy (airport code VCE)
Suggested flight departure time: 12:55 pm or later

Albergo Passo Giau

Albergo Passo Giau

Days 1 to 3 (3 nights), Passo Giau, Italy

This 9-room family-run auberge is very special, wonderfully quiet, and set on one of the main mountain passes above Cortina. Diego and Claudia and ...
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Rifugio Lagazuoi

Rifugio Lagazuoi

Day 4 (1 night), Dolomites, Italy

360-degree panoramas of the spires of the Dolomites, including glorious Tofano, Cristallo, and Marmolada, are at our fingertips at Rifugio Lagazuoi, ...
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Hotels in Cortina d'Ampezzo

Days 5 to 7 (3 nights), Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy

In Cortina d'Ampezzo, we stay at one of the following properties:

Note: Listed above are our signature accommodations for this trip. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.

Our Trip Leaders

Here are the Trip Leaders scheduled for this journey (please note that leader assignments are subject to change).

Andrea Angelini

Andrea Angelini, born in Rome, studied to be a mechanical engineer. After working as a flight technician  for Alitalia, he realized he wanted a life of travel and moved to Mexico, where he worked in tourism, traveling around Central America and honing his Spanish skills. Returning to Italy, ...
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Giuseppe Aruta

With an extensive background in geology and deep roots in his Italian heritage, Giuseppe Aruta leads guests through the Medieval Hilltowns, the Dolomites and Italy’s Lake District, paying special attention to how people travel through their sense of taste, experiencing the wondrous world of ...
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Stefano Baldi

Departure Dates: July 17-24, 2016, August 7-14, 2016

Stefano Baldi, of Tuscany, has led hiking trips in Europe for us for nearly 15 years. He has spent most of his life living in the beautiful rural countryside of Tuscany, except for a few years in Florence as a student. His love for nature led him to found an agricultural co-op with friends in the ...
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James Fuss

James Fuss is a trekking guide, photographer, cyclist, and chef extraordinaire. Born and raised in South Australia, James found his wanderlust early on family camping trips across Australia. His love of the culinary arts is deep-rooted as well, and as a young chef, he headed off to Europe to ...
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JoAnn Lantz

Departure Dates: July 17-24, 2016

From hiking the scenic peak of Monte Solare in Capri and staying at the picturesque Lagazuoi lodge in the beautiful Dolomites to ice-breaking (and often hilarious) karaoke nights in Naples, Trip Leader JoAnn Lantz manages to weave together unforgettable highlights from our group adventures and ...
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Sebastiano Leone

Sebastiano Leone knows that traveling through Italy is always better when you’re being led by your senses. From guiding hiking and cultural trips that offer incredible views and insights to Italy’s colorful history, not to mention knowing the local hotspots to sip and savor authentic ...
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Tania Masi

Departure Dates: June 24-July 1, 2016

Born in Florence, Italy, of an American mother and proud Florentine father, Tania Masi was raised with an appreciation for both American and European cultures. With nine languages and a Master of Geography under her belt—not to mention a career as a journalist and documentary film director ...
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Sergio Mastroberardino

Sergio Mastroberardino was born in the town of Avellino in southern Italy. He is a Certified Alpine Ski Instructor and during the winter season works full time with various ski schools and as a professional ski guide. Sergio has lived and taught skiing in Aspen, Colorado, Val D'Isere, France, and ...
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Sean Morrissey

Departure Dates: June 24-July 1, 2016, July 17-24, 2016, September 9-16, 2016

Sean Morrissey was born and raised in London, spent time in Ireland growing up, and now lives in Bend, Oregon, with his wife, Leila, who also guides for Wilderness Travel (he holds USA, UK, and Irish passports). He moved to Australia at age 20, worked there for two years, then heeded the call of ...
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Vicky Sotriffer

Vicky Sotriffer thrives in new places as an adventure-seeking traveler and Trip Leader. She has led trips on nearly every continent for more than 10 years, including safari hikes, city tours, and sea kayaking trips. Originally from South Tyrol, Italy, Vicky now resides in Ibiza, Spain, is fluent ...
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Leila Thompson

Departure Dates: June 24-July 1, 2016

With a solid repertoire of outdoor skills including rock climbing, river guiding, and mountaineering, Leila Thompson surely lives the life of an adventurer. Since the early 1990s, she has led trips for us in Nepal, India, Tibet, Republic of Georgia, Canada, and Europe, and shows no sign of ...
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Stewart Wheelhouse

Stewart Wheelhouse, a Welshman by birth, has spent the past 23 years leading adventures and expeditions throughout the world. He has traveled the length of Africa, written guidebooks on cycling through Europe, and led expeditions in Asia and Australia. A wonderful storyteller and traveling ...
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Client Comments

We loved the trip and cannot wait for our next one with Wilderness Travel. The scenery was majestic, we all drank way too much wine, and the accommodations were first rate. Sensational all the way around! Susan K., McLean, VA There was beautiful scenery on well maintained trails, and the food and wine were excellent. We had a great time and look forward to our next trip with you. Ken R., New City, NY The overall knowledge, organization, and demeanor of our three trip leaders was extremely impressive. They clearly respect and enjoy working with each other. They have such a nice rapport with so many of the local people that we came in contact with throughout the trip. Seeing their mutual respect and fondness for each other time and time again was a pleasure. Lori W., Charlottesville, VA This was our first Wilderness trip. It won't be the last. We loved the quality of the guides, the food and drink, and the many little ‘surprises’ that Wilderness includes. Randy and Sarah L., Denver, CO Wilderness Travel constantly demonstrates high standards and a caring attitude. I had a fabulous time. Cile C., Littleton, CO Great, challenging hiking and amazing food! Tom R., Manhattan Beach, CA This was my first trip with WT and it was a spectacular adventure from start to finish! The hikes, itinerary, lodgings, leaders, and meals were superb! Wayne D., Mahwah, NJ This was a wonderful trip. Very well organized, all went smoothly. The scenery was breathtaking, accommodations were great, and the food was...well, I will be on a diet for the next 6 months! Ana C., Snohomish, WA It was a wonderful trip! Wilderness Travel is seasoned and smart. We were lucky, but the planning was great. Thank you forever. Anne K., Sun Valley, ID This is a fun, diverse, and well organized trip. We had a little bit of everything—great mountain scenery, beautiful refugios, a charming town, challenging and exciting hikes, and great food! Janet R., Encinitas, CA The trip guides, Stefano and JoAnn, planned an amazing trip that gave us a great sampling of the variety of these amazing mountains. Their knowledge of the geography and history of the area really enhanced our experience too. Anyone who is an avid hiker should put the Dolomites on their bucket list! Lisa S., Sacramento, CA
This was my first adventure travel trip, and I had an amazingly wonderful time! I am sure I will do more trips with WT! Very challenging hiking, great food, great guides, and great people to hike with! It was a trip of a lifetime! Karen F., Auburn, WA Loved it—who could not love days spent hiking through beautiful areas and great food and wine at night? Julia R., Topanga, CA It was the best vacation I've ever had! Lili T., Charlotte, NC This was the most incredible hiking trip I have experienced. Credit to the three trip leaders...they were fabulous! Jane C., Pacific Grove, CA This was my first WT trip and I would absolutely go on another one! I definitely enjoyed everything about the week. Elaine D., Toronto, Ontario This was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed the fact that we had three tour guides that were well versed in their subject area. Christine P., Moraga, CA Well designed, a good balance of hiking and social experiences, with flexibility for individual preferences. Allan C., Chapel Hill, NC Wilderness Travel has this trip down pat! Chuck T., Alexandria, VA Without a doubt, one of the best organized trips we have been on. All three leaders were truly outstanding, the arrangements were far beyond expectation. David D. and Judy M., Vienna, VA The scenery, activities, and the WT Trip Leader team made for an outstanding trip. Neil K., Columbia, MD Cannot imagine that there is a better trip to the Dolomites out there anywhere! Mike J., Crested Butte, CO This was a wonderful hiking trip. Great day hikes, comfortable accommodations, and excellent food and wine. We couldn’t have asked for more! Linda and Ira G., West Hartford, CT Beautiful, challenging, fun, and full of culture and nature. I highly recommend it! Kathy L., Des Moines, IA