Reflection on a lake of the jagged mountains and a mountain refuge
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6 Of The Best Hikes In The Dolomites, Italy

By on 02/02/2020

The Italian Dolomites is one of the most spectacular mountain regions in Europe and you may even argue the world. And the best way to enjoy the breath taking views this wonder of nature and UNESCO World Heritage Site is by hiking. Whether you enjoy a short walk or multi day trekking, here are a few of the best hikes in the Dolomites, Italy as recommended by expert travel bloggers.

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Best short hikes In The Dolomites

Tovel Lake

By Inma from A World To Travel

Emerald coloured lake with white beach surrounded by alpine forest and mountains. One of the best hikes in the Dolomites, Italy

With an approximate length of 4.2 km and only 180 meters of vertical ascent and descent, the hiking trail that runs along the periphery of Lake Tovel in the always-scenic Adamello-Brenta Nature Park, is recommended for everyone. Particularly, if you appreciate a simple tour with unbeatable views of the colourful waters of this lake in Val di Non, facilities like public toilets, free parking, and restaurant (please make sure to check if they are open before going, just in case), as well as being near water. You will have a particularly great time exploring this beautiful lake.

It’s one of the best gentle walks in the Dolomites, and it’s so stunning that it should top every European day hikes list out there! 

Without hurry or pause, it can be done in about an hour and a half, although I’d advocate for spending a bit more time on the trail. You may feel like resting in one of its bays, taking a few photos or even go for a dip in the summer. Whatever it is, it is possible to spend half a day there without getting bored. Enjoy!

Passo Rolle to Baita Segantini

By Ioana from The World Is My Playground

Reflection on a lake of the jagged mountains and a mountain refuge

One of the most iconic and insta-worthy Dolomites hiking trails, it starts at Passo Rolle (1960 meters above sea level) and ends at the beautiful Baita G. Segantini chalet (2181 m). At just under 2 hours, the 6 km round trip hike is one of the shorter hikes in the area, though you’ll want to stop frequently to photograph the gorgeous scenery!

With an elevation of just over 200 meters, the picturesque hike is considered to be fairly easy. However, the dirt road toward the chalet can be challenging depending on the weather conditions and time of year. 

We went in mid-June and there was still quite a bit of snow, rain-filled potholes and frozen ponds leftover from the winter season. The chalets along the way, including Baita G. Segantini, are closed until the end of June or beginning of July, so it’s best to call ahead, take food and water with you, or plan to stop for lunch at Agritur Malga Rolle on your way back to the parking lot. If you’re planning on just doing the loop, I recommend the latter option – the delicious traditional dishes at Malga Rolle will hit the spot just right after your hike!

The panoramic view of the Pale di San Martino peaks is visible during the entire hike and will keep you in awe. Perhaps the star of the show is the Cimon della Pala peak, the second-highest peak in the group, which dominates the range with its unique characteristics.

Best day hikes in the Dolomites

Campitello di Fassa to Sassopiatto

By Enzo from Inguaribile Viaggatore

Green undulating green fields with dramatic mountains in the background

Sassopiatto is one of the most beautiful Dolomite treks and goes around the mountain overlooking the Alpe di Siusi.

We start from Campitello di Fassa with the cable car that goes up to the Col Rodella and from here we reach the Federico Augusto Refuge (2298 m), from where the path dedicated to the King of Saxony begins. The King was a frequent visitor to these mountains, which connect the Sella Pass with the Alpe di Siusi.

The Sassopiatto hike takes around 4-5 hours, it’s very scenic, and covers many Sassolungo peaks, going through Sandro Pertini (2300 m) and Vicenza (2250 m) Refuges. From the Vicenza Refuge you ascend to fork towards the Sassolungo (2681 m), where the Toni Demetz Refuge is located.

Once you reach the Sella Pass either hiking or by cable car, follow a dirt road to the mountain station of the Col Rodella cable car that descends to Campitello di Fassa.

Sorapis Lake

By Coni from Experiencing the Globe

Blue water lake with a sharp mountain peak and alpine trees on the shore. This is another of the best hikes in the Dolomites

The hike to Lago di Sorapis is one of the most beautiful treks in the Dolomites. Not only does it take you to a breath taking point, where you’re greeted by a turquoise lake guarded by a gorgeous rocky peak, but the whole way there is textbook trekking in the Dolomites. You will go up and down through a lush forest, with ever-changing views of the valleys around it, and you can even spot the landmark of the region, Tre Cime di Lavadero, from the trail.

The easiest way to tackle this trek is to base yourself in Cortina d’Ampezzo. From there you can take a public bus or drive to Passo Tre Croci, where the path starts. The return hike is about 12 km with a bit over 400 meters of altitude change. It should take you about 4 hours, but I’d recommend planning a day trip. The area is beautiful, so you’ll want to spend hours there. There’s also a mountain hut where you can have a bite and a drink, almost next to the lake.

Cammino San Vili

By Cate from Sacred Wanderings

Church on top of a rocky outcrop on a mountain covered with green alpine trees

The San Vili Trek, or Cammino San Vili, is a hiking path that stretches between Madonna di Campiglio in Trentino and the city of Trento. The path, though it wasn’t developed initially as a religious pilgrimage trail, roughly follows the supposed path of San Vigilio of Trent as he carried the gospel into the mountains, and that of his body, carried back to Trento after he was martyred. It is this that makes it one of the most unique Dolomite day hikes.

You can follow the path in either direction or both, although the route from Madonna di Campiglio to Trento is more consistently downhill and considered a bit easier. There is a bus that runs between Trento and Madonna di Campiglio in the mornings. The trek can be hiked as a day-hike between two points, or thru-hiked, which would take nearly a week. Parts of the trail are suitable for bikes.

Don’t miss Pinzolo, a gorgeous small town on the route with some beautiful and historic painted churches, like the Church of San Stefano. Also don’t neglect to try a local speciality in this region sure to give you an energy boost for the rest of your hike: Strangolapreti, or Strangled Priest Gnocci! 

Best multi day hikes in the Dolomites

Vajolet Towers

By Margherita from The Crowded Planet

Valley with snow and a mountain hut with rocky towers next to it and more mountains in the background

If you want to truly get to the heart of the Dolomites, immersed in a lunar-looking landscape of rocky spires, the Vajolet Towers are definitely the place for you. These six peaks belong to the Catinaccio group, right on the border between Trentino and South Tyrol, and can be reached by both sides – however, you should be ready for a tough hike!

We recommend dedicating two days to your Vajolet Towers hike, staying at Rifugio Re Alberto overnight, to enjoy the spectacular clear sky and ‘enrosadira’, the phenomenon taking place at sunrise and sunset, when the mountains appear pink. 

If you’re not comfortable with via ferrata, we recommend hiking to the Vajolet Towers from the Trentino side – you can catch cable cars both in Vigo or Pera di Fassa, and then the ascent is approximately 3 hours, climbing 1000 meters. The ascent from Laurin on the South Tyrol side is quicker, approximately 2 hours, but it involves the Santner via ferrata, so we only recommend doing it with a guide.

And if you truly like adventure, you may want to try climbing one of the towers – we recommend the Spigolo Piaz, one of the easiest climbs, and a truly spectacular one!

Planning your trip to the Italian Dolomites

Ready for your Dolomites adventure? Use this travel toolkit

Do you have any questions about the best hikes in the Dolomites Italy?
Let me know in the comments!

Travelling to Italy? Check out my other Italy articles


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16 Comments
  1. Reply

    Vanessa Shields

    08/02/2020

    Wow! All of these hikes look so gorgeous. I haven’t been and never thought of the Dolomites as a hiking destination. Now I really want to go as I love hiking. Great post! 😁

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Thank you! The Dolomites are one of the best hiking destinations I think. Add it to your list! 😀

  2. Reply

    Jessica

    08/02/2020

    Wow what amazing photos and descriptions – the Dolomites weren’t really on my radar but they sure are now!

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Thank you! The Dolomites are a bit of a hidden gem. I hope you get to visit some time 🙂

  3. Reply

    Kiana

    08/02/2020

    This looks absolutely gorgeous! I’d love to visit someday.

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Thank you! I hope you go one day. It’s breath taking!

  4. Reply

    Lisa

    08/02/2020

    You had me at Dolomites and hiking! We desperately want to get back to the Dolomites to do some hiking as we only had a short time there on our last visit. Definitely saving your post for our next trip.

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      I can’t wait to go back either! There are so many spectacular hikes to discover! 🙂

  5. Reply

    Alice | Girl with a saddle bag

    08/02/2020

    Wow, there are some fantastic ideas here. We’ve been considering the Dolomites for a summer hiking trip for a few years now, and this makes me all the more eager to make some firm plans. These routes look exactly like the sort of thing we’d enjoy, possibly with an overnight stay in a refuge squeezed in. Thank you for the inspiration.

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Thank you! Once you go hiking in the summer in the Dolomites you will be pressed to beat it with any other hiking you do. It’s truly mind-blowing. I hope you get to go soon! 🙂

  6. Reply

    Eleanor Green

    08/02/2020

    The dolomites have been on my list for so long, I am really hoping to go this year! Thanks for all the information and also including some places I hadn’t seen before!

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Amazing! I hope I’ll make it back too either this year or next. So much to explore there!

  7. Reply

    Cherene Saradar

    08/02/2020

    This post literally has be drooling over these pristine gorgeous scenes! Thanks for the helpful roundup.

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      It had me drooling too when I was putting it together! It’s an incredible part of the world! 😀

  8. Reply

    Casey

    08/02/2020

    The Dolomites are so high on my list! I love this compilation, I feel like you could easily hike there for weeks and still have so much left to see 🙂

    • Reply

      Teresa

      08/02/2020

      Thank you! I think you could spend sooooo long there and still find new hikes! This is just a small sample 😀

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HI, I'M TERESA!

Hi! I’m Teresa, an award-winning travel blogger based in London. I'm on a mission to explore the world through responsible cultural and adventure travel, and through deeper, more meaningful local experiences. I’m a lover of adventure, the outdoors and everything food related, and I’m always looking for ways to make a positive impact through sustainable travel. I’d love to inspire you to do the same, so come along for the ride!

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