Home/Dolomites Hiking Tours/Alta Via N.1 Northern Trek

Alta Via N.1 Northern Trek

Highlights

  • Explore the uncontaminated wilderness of the Fanes-Sennes-Braies Nature Park

  • Choose between several route options varying from 3 to 6 days of hiking

  • Enjoy the magic beauty of Lake Braies at the start of your trek

  • Enjoy the famous view of the Dolomites from atop of the Lagazuoi massif

  • Ascend atop the Croda del Becco summit for a phenomenal 360-degree panorama

  • Sleep in comfortable manned huts with a possibility of private rooms and enjoy good meals

Description

The Northern Trek includes the first part of the classic Alta Via 1 – from Lake Braies to Monte Pelmo, an itinerary with the most fascinating landscapes of the Dolomites. You will trek through the Fanes-Sennes-Braies National Park, one of the largest protected and uncontaminated parks in the South Tyrol. At the southern edge of the park, you will see the Lagazuoi area, a very important location from a historical perspective. In fact, the First World War was waged here. Nowadays, Lagazuoi is most famous for a breathtaking view of the Dolomites from its slopes. Passed Lagazuoi, you will then reach the massif of the Five Towers (Cinque Torri) that is easy to recognize for its unique and particular shape. From Cinque Torri, the route takes you to the Monte Pelmo group. You will be surprised at the majesty of Monte Pelmo which with its trapezoidal shape looks like an enormous throne.

During the trek along Alta Via 1 North you will walk through some of the most intriguing landscapes ranging from pastures, woods, lunar landscapes, majestic mountains to crystal clear waters. You will sleep and dream in cozy alpine huts where you will have the opportunity to taste the typical dishes. On your first and last night you will stay in the elegant and picturesque town of Cortina d’Ampezzo in the heart of the Alps.

Depending on your preferences we can customize your trek. You can choose to walk alone or with a local English-speaking guide. The complete Northern Trek requires 6 days of hiking – it is the 8 Day Tour. The tour can can be shortened to 5, 6 or 7 days. The trek does not include exposed mountain passages. Therefore, it can be undertaken by children with appropriate level of fitness.

This is one of the most requested treks in the Dolomites. We recommend booking it as early as possible.

Trip Overview

StyleHut to Hut Hiking

DifficultyLevel 3

Activity3 - 6 hiking days

Tour Duration5 - 8 days / 4 - 7 nights

Start / FinishCortina d'Ampezzo / Cortina d'Ampezzo or Zoldo

Self Guided Hiking

5 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 560
Jun 05 - Oct 20
6 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 650
Jun 05 - Oct 12
7 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 740
Jun 05 - Oct 12
8 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 840
Jun 05 - Oct 06

Guided Hiking

5 Day Guided Tour
€ 910
Jun 05 - Oct 20
6 Day Guided Tour
€ 1160
Jun 05 - Oct 12
7 Day Guided Tour
€ 1450
Jun 05 - Oct 12
8 Day Guided Tour
€ 1690
Jun 05 - Oct 06

Note

This is a private tour on the dates of your choice.

Validity of prices: Summer 2020.

Self-guided tour: supplement € 80 applies to one-person bookings.

Guided tour: minimum 4 participants.

Photos from this trip

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Primary Itinerary: 8 Day Tour

Day 1: Arrival in Cortina d'Ampezzo

The base camp hotels for this trek are in Cortina d’Ampezzo, a small town that can boast a long tradition in the world of tourism and events. Cortina is surrounded by the world famous Dolomite mountain groups like Monte Cristallo (Mount Crystal), the Cinque Torri (the Five Towers) and the Tofane. On Corso Italia, the main street of Cortina, where culture and entertainment come together, you can admire historic buildings, high-end boutiques and drink a cup of coffee in one of the many elegant cafés in the evening before the trek.

Day 2: Lake Braies

Ascent 960 m. Descent 300 m. Distance 10 km. Walking time 5 hours.

The Northern Trek starts at Lake Braies in the extreme north of the Dolomites. Being surrounded by the beautiful Dolomite peaks, Lake Braies is one of the most scenic lakes in the Alps. It was formed by a landslide that blocked the Braies Stream causing it to overflow and to form a natural basin called Lake Braies. Today, you will walk through the tree belt and reach the alpine meadows at the altitude of 2000 – 2300 meters. As one of the optional sidewalks, we suggest the uphill climb to the Croda del Becco, where you can admire a 360-degree view of the Sennes Plateau. Or alternatively, a very interesting hike to Muntejela di Sennes which offers stunning panoramic views of the Fanes-Sennes-Braies National Park.

Day 3: Fanes-Sennes-Braies Natural Park

Ascent 550 m. Descent 650 m. Distance 11 km. Walking time 5 hours.

On your third day’s walk you will be immersed in the 25 thousand hectares of the Fanes-Sennes-Braies National Park, one of the biggest in South Tyrol. Here you will find very varied landscapes ranging from pastures and meadows full of flowers and herbs to waterfalls, colors and life. You will also be impressed by the beauty of the karst landscape which is a defining feature of this area. Caves, grooves, shafts, cavities, basins and other typical karst formations of the Fanes-Sennes-Braies National Park hide numerous fossilized plants, insects and shells of the Jurassic period.

Day 4: Lagazuoi Massif

Ascent 1050 m. Descent 440 m. Distance 13 km. Walking time 6 hours.

From the Fanes-Sennes-Braies National Park you will move to the Lagazuoi area which is remarkable both from a natural and historical point of view. It’s a naturalistic oasis boasting an impressive panorama of the Dolomites – one of the symbols of the Alps. Approaching the Lagazuoi massif, at an altitude of 2182 meters you will find the Lagazuoi Lake nestled between the rocks fed by the underground springs. Its crystal-clear water changes color depending on the light and the mountains reflecting in its waters create a breathtaking landscape. You will see groups of fish of different species splashing in the water. The important historical information of the Lagazuoi massif is linked to the First World War. In fact, it was here that the Italians fought transforming the Lagazuoi into a fortress. The mountain is still a real rock castle, where you can visit the tunnels, trenches, military stations which have been recently renovated.

Day 5: Cinque Torri

Ascent 510 m. Descent 960 m. Distance 12 km. Walking time 6 hours.

You are going to leave Lagazuoi behind you and make your way to the Cinque Torri (Five Towers) group. It gets its name from its shape made up of five towers, formed by a crack in the original mountain. On the way towards the Forcella Averau, we recommend taking a regenerating pause at Lake Limides, a small alpine lake of emerald waters. During the days of summer, the surrounding mountains reflect on the water of the lake creating a beautiful symmetry. As you continue along the path you can see the peak of Monte Nuvolau. The climb to the top of the mountain is optional, but it is from here that you can admire a 360-degree view of the Antelao, Marmolada and Tofane mountains as far as the Austrian glaciers.

Day 6: Croda da Lago

Ascent 450 m. Descent 930 m. Distance 13 km. Walking time 5 hours.

Today you are walking along the trails of the Croda da Lago group and continue towards Monte Pelmo. Its trapezoidal shape made up of 2 peaks, Pelmo and Pelmetto, makes it stand out. It looks like a giant throne and seen from the west side the visual impact is truly impressive. The only way to reach the summit of Mount Pelmo is by climbing up as there are no paths to lead you to the top. If you are still up for a walk at the end of the day you can try the pleasant hike up to Mount Crot from where you can enjoy the view of Civetta, Pelmo, Sella and Marmolada.

Day 7: Around Monte Pelmo

Ascent 300 m. Descent 1140m. Distance 15 km. Walking time 6 hours.

The day begins with a hike of Monte Pelmo from where you can admire all the features of its different sides. You will be able to see the imposing southern side, the green basin on the eastern side, the gravelly gullies in the north east and the difficult north west side. Along the path you will see a variety of landscapes ranging from dense woods and pastures to a rocky area. Just above the main path you can choose the optional visit of the dinosaur footprints on a dolomite boulder that broke off from the mountain. You will descend to the valley and return to Cortina d’Ampezzo in the afternoon.

Day 8: Departure from Cortina d'Ampezzo

Your hike along the High Route No.1 North has come to an end. After you have checked out of the hotel it will be time to leave the Dolomites.

5 Day Tour

Northern Trek from Lake Braies to Passo Falzarego

The 5 Day Tour covers the route from Lake Braies to Lagazuoi and Passo Falzarego. It includes 3 days of hiking and thus 2 nights at huts on the route and 2 nights in the base camp hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo.

6 Day Tour

Northern Trek from Lake Braies to Passo Giau

The itinerary of the 6 Day Tour runs from Lake Braies to the Passo Giau pass, thus adding the Cinque Torri and Nuvolau groups to the shorter 5 Day Tour. It includes 4 days of hiking.

7 Day Tour

Northern Trek from Lake Braies to Monte Pelmo

The 7 Day Tour lets you reach the northern tip of Monte Pelmo in 5 walking days from where you will descend to the Zoldo valley for the final night of the trip. Your luggage will be transported by us from Cortina to Zoldo. The starting point is Lake Braies as for the other route options.

Dates and Prices 2020

Self Guided

5 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 560
Jun 05 - Oct 20
6 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 650
Jun 05 - Oct 12
7 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 740
Jun 05 - Oct 12
8 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 840
Jun 05 - Oct 06

Guided

5 Day Guided Tour
€ 910
Jun 05 - Oct 20
6 Day Guided Tour
€ 1160
Jun 05 - Oct 12
7 Day Guided Tour
€ 1450
Jun 05 - Oct 12
8 Day Guided Tour
€ 1690
Jun 05 - Oct 06

Note

This is a private tour on the dates of your choice.

The prices are per person and include the VAT tax.

Validity of prices: Summer 2020.

The indicated tour duration includes the days of arrival and departure. Accommodation on the day of arrival and night before departure is included in the price.

Self-guided tour: supplement applies to one-person bookings
   5 Day Self Guided Tour   € 80
   6 Day Self Guided Tour   € 80
   7 Day Self Guided Tour   € 80
   8 Day Self Guided Tour   € 80

Single supplement includes single room accommodation in the basecamp hotel on the first and the final nights of the tour.

Guided tour: minimum 4 participants.

What is included

  • Accommodation in mountain huts: 2 - 5 nights depending on the itinerary, shared room
  • Accommodation in 3-star basecamp hotels or B&Bs: first and last nights of the trip
  • Breakfast and dinner in the mountain huts
  • Breakfast in the basecamp hotel
  • Instructions and assistance with logistics
  • 24-hour on-call support
  • Itinerary and hiking schedule developed by the MONT Trekking guides (self-guided trip)
  • Specialized hiking maps 1:25000: 1 set of maps per booking (self-guided trip)
  • Local English-speaking mountain guide (guided trip)
  • Private transfers: first and last days of the hike (guided trip)
  • Complimentary for the duration of your trip: digital maps for your phone with the satellite navigation and safety service (Android or Apple phone required)

What is not included

  • Traveler's insurance
  • Drinks at dinner
  • Use of hot shower in the mountain huts: € 3 - 5
  • Public bus on the first day of the trek: € 5 - 10 (self-guided trip)
  • Public bus and/or train on the last day of the trek: € 3 (self-guided trip)
  • Tourist tax in the lodging establishments where applicable

Optional Extras

  • Private 2, 3 and 4-bedded rooms are available in all mountain huts with a € 15 supplement per person per night, based on availability
  • 4/5-star basecamp hotel for the first and last nights of the trip
  • Airport transfer is available on request

Travel to the Dolomites

The base camp location for this trip is Cortina d'Ampezzo. Venice is the most convenient airport for travel to Cortina. There are direct busses to Cortina from the Venice Marco Polo airport, and it takes around 2h 30m to arrive in Cortina. The Treviso airport is the second convenient option: the travel time is approximately the same.

Depending on the schedule of your flight you may need to stay overnight in Venice to catch the bus.

We can help you plan the logistics and provide you with train and bus schedules: please contact us before you buy the plane tickets.

Clothing and Gear

Proper hiking boots are a must for the mountains. We recommend high boots because they support the ankle better than any low boots and provide better stability on a rocky terrain. Even in the middle of the summer in the Dolomites you must bring some warm clothes with you: waterproof and windproof jacket, fleece jacket, long trekking pants and a cap. A raincoat, poncho or other type of rainwear is necessary. Other necessary items are the toiletries, light clean footwear to use in the huts, sunglasses and at least 2 one-liter bottles for water. You'll receive a detailed packing list specifically for your trip at the booking. We ask all participants to read it carefully and be well prepared for the hiking trip.

For detailed information on the gear and clothing please read Hiking Gear.

Accommodation

The first and last nights of your trip are in one of our basecamp hotels. While hiking, you will stay overnight in the mountain huts. You can count on the following services in the mountain huts: a bed in a shared room or in a private room (must be booked in advance), shower with hot water, toilets, meals, and a possibility to buy take away water and snacks such as sandwiches and chocolate. Shared rooms are equipped with bunk beds with mattresses, pillows and blankets. Bed linen is not provided in shared bedrooms: you must have a sleeping bag liner with you. Typically, it is a light cotton bag. Warm sleeping bag is unnecessary, since there are blankets in the bedrooms. In private rooms you are often offered bed linen, thus a sleeping bag liner is not required. If you book private rooms, we inform you on whether you need to bring a sleeping bag liner. Most huts have a heating system, but it is normally not required in the summer months. You will need clean footwear for the huts: light slides are an ideal solution. For detailed information on the huts please read Mountain Huts in the Alps.

Meals

In hut-to-hut hiking tours you are served a breakfast and a dinner in the huts and mountain hotels on the route.

Normally, the breakfast is served from 7am to 9am. It usually includes an unlimited quantity of coffee and tea, bread, butter, jam, honey and chocolate spread. In addition, some huts offer ham, cheese and muesli for breakfast. After breakfast we recommend filling your thermos with hot water or tea: ask the staff, and it will be for free in most huts.

The dinner time in the mountain huts is 7pm or 7:30pm for all guests. A typical dinner in a hut is very rich and includes a starter, the first course (such as pasta, risotto, dumplings), the second course (meat with a side dish) and a dessert. Any drinks at dinner (water, wine, beer, tea, coffee) are not free and should be ordered and paid separately.

Safety Considerations

Our guided hiking tours are led by professional guides, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience and with passion for mountains. They permanently work in the region of the exact hiking tour, have professional licenses, are experts in emergency situations, regularly upgrade their qualifications and work in accordance with national regulations.

For self-guided hiking, it is necessary to be properly dressed, follow the safety rules and make realistic time calculation for day crossings – preferably according to the hiking schedule that we provide. Our self-guided hiking trips are planned so that they do not require specific skills or gear, unless it is clearly specified in the tour description. You can expect well-maintained trails equipped with direction signs. Exposed sections of the trail are secured on the self-guided routes: it makes them safe provided that you follow the basic safety rules for hiking in the mountains.

Mountains are a natural environment with a high level of risk, so we insistently ask all participants to read the safety rules and emergency procedures: Safety Considerations. If you have questions about the safety rules, please contact us +39 0463 63 60 80.

Insurance and Visa

Insurance. It is important to have an appropriate insurance that covers the hiking activity. You don't need to include the climbing activity in your insurance, unless you are planning to climb during the hike.

Visa. We will provide you with a booking confirmation for all days of your trip. If you need the Italian visa, you can enclose this document with your visa application.

Weather in the Dolomites

The most stable weather conditions in the Dolomites are statistically from the second week of July till the middle of September. This period in the Dolomites is characterized by warm sunny weather and modest rainfall. Earlier in June, the weather is normally favorable, but it is less reliable, and the mountain passes may be blocked by snow remaining from the winter. In June we may have to change the route depending on the snow situation on the passes. The second half of September in Dolomites is a beautiful period, but the weather is again less predictable: the probability of incessant rain increases, and it may snow at the altitude above 2,000 meters.

It is never hot in the Dolomites at the elevation of 2,000 m (6,560 ft) and above where most of the hiking routes pass. In a sunny day in August the temperature at 2,000 m can reach 20° C (68° F) suring the warmest hours of the day. It is comfortable for hiking. In a cold cloudy day, the temperature can stay at around 10° C (34° F) during the entire the day. It is always chilly at night and early in the morning. Thunderstorms, often with hail, are typical for the warmest months (July and August). In the Dolomites valleys at the altitudes of 1,000 – 1,500 m (3,280 – 4,920 ft) the day temperature can reach 27° C (80° F). It is fresh in the valleys in the morning and evening, and it is not stuffy at night even in the hottest weeks of the summer.