Home/Dolomites Hiking Tours/Alta Via N.2 Dolomites

Alta Via N.2 of the Dolomites

Highlights

  • No route in the Dolomites compares to Alta Via 2 in terms of diversity of the landscapes

  • Enjoy the comfort of the huts that are among the best in the Dolomites

  • Admire the impressive out-of-this world lunar landscapes of Sella and Pale di San Martino

  • Choose between the classic Alta Via 2 and easier route options

  • Get your route planned by local experts to avoid walking along the roads and via-ferrata

Description

Alta Via 2 is the longest route of the Alta Via series, which links the largest mountain groups of the Dolomite Alps. This trek will take you through unique lunar landscapes of the high mountain regions of the Sella and Pale di San Martino groups. You will photograph the towering peaks of the Puez-Odle group, go past the Marmolada group with the only surviving major glacier of the Dolomites on its northern slope, and enjoy countless other stunning landscapes. The Alta Via 2 itinerary stands to gain from traversing these landmark mountain groups: on your trek you will be accompanied by vast panoramas of the Dolomite Alps, and you will spend the night in exceptionally beautiful locales.

Alta Via 2 is renowned for its rich diversity of landscapes and vistas, owing in part to its length. This trek will successively take you from one mountain group to another. You will regularly ascend to remote high mountain regions and descend to the Alpine meadow belt. That’s why you will first spot the next mountain group from afar and then approach and cross it. You will be overnighting at manned mountain huts mostly in the high-alitude region but occasionally also on approaches to mountain groups in the meadow belt. Right before crossing Pale di San Martino, you will spend the night at the Passo Rolle pass famous for its unmatched sunset vistas when the sun turns the endless chain of peaks of the Pala Group fiery orange.

You can begin your hike from Brixen, which would put you on the historical route, or from Val Gardena. We can customize this adventure to your preferences: you can be accompanied by a local mountain guide or go on a self-guided trek by following the itinerary and hiking schedule prepared by us. The complexity level of this trek is above average: the route includes relatively long treks between mountain huts and comparatively difficult sections of secured trail. The Alta Via 2 itinerary we offer bypasses via ferratas. All route options differ in terms of duration, from 8 to 12 days. We also offer a choice between the classical Alta Via 2 route and a simplified option. The classical Alta Via 2 itinerary includes challenging rocky segments with trails equipped with rope support. Seasoned trekkers are welcome to choose the classical route. Others are advised to stick with the less complicated option that does not include challenging trails but is rather limited to short and simple sections of secured trail.

Coronavirus Covid-19

Currently and until April 13, preventive measures are in place in Italy to identify and isolate patients and to stop human-to-human transmission of Covid-19. Similar measures of varying duration have been applied in other European countires. Travel is limited in this period. MONT Trekking guarantees full refund of the booked trips if the situation is not stabilized by the summer and the travel ban remains in force.

Trip Overview

StyleHut to Hut Hiking

DifficultyLevel 4

Activity6 - 10 hiking days

Tour Duration8 - 12 days / 7 - 11 nights

Start / FinishBrixen or Val Gardena / Fiera di Primero

Self Guided Hiking

8 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 970
Jun 28 - Sep 16
10 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1140
Jun 28 - Sep 16
11 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1230
Jun 28 - Sep 16
12 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1320
Jun 28 - Sep 16

Guided Hiking

8 Day Guided Tour
€ 1610
Jun 28 - Sep 16
10 Day Guided Tour
€ 2150
Jun 28 - Sep 16
11 Day Guided Tour
€ 2390
Jun 28 - Sep 16
12 Day Guided Tour
€ 2610
Jun 28 - Sep 16

Note

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

Validity of prices: Summer 2019.

Self-guided tour: supplement € 190 - € 210 applies to one-person bookings.

Guided tour: minimum 4 participants.

Photos from this trip

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Primary Itinerary: 11 Day Tour

Day 1: Arrival in Val Gardena

You will arrive in Val Gardena, check in at the base camp hotel, and rest up. One of the Ladinian valleys with a clearly distinct identity, Val Gardena is the gateway to the Dolomite Alps. Nestled among magnificent mountains, the valley comes up against the Sella group, guaranteeing breathtaking vistas of the Dolomites already on the day of your arrival. If you have booked a self-guided hike, you will receive a package of materials for the trek, including a map, itinerary and step-by-step hiking schedule, and other relevant paperwork during hotel check-in.

Day 2: Puez-Odle Group

Ascent 1240 m. Descent 200 m. Distance 12 km. Walking time 6 hours.

The hike begins with the crossing of the Puez-Odle group. The Seceda peaks are landmarks of Puez-Odle and a magnet for thousands of shutterbugs. You will reach the peaks via a scenic trail that traverses a gentle slope with a sheer drop-off on the north side. This makes the peaks seem visually taller and affords for some picture-perfect views. The only downside of this part of the route are the hordes of tourists arriving by chairlift from the valley. That’s why we have mapped an alternative itinerary for this leg of the hike. It will take you through a less traveled part of Puez-Odle with idyllic views of the main ridge of this mountain group against the backdrop of a dry channel of a mountain stream filled with boulders, its banks overgrown with creeping pines. This trail also offers a beautiful angle on the Sella group that you will be approaching the following day.

Day 3: Sella Group

Ascent 1260 m. Descent 880 m. Distance 13 km. Walking time 7 hours.

Today’s itinerary will take you through the Sella group. It is the most recognizable mountain group in the Dolomite Alps owing to its unique shapes. Ever since it formed in the ocean 250 million years ago, Sella has retained a perfectly correct shape of a coral island. Two itinerary options are available for this leg of Alta Via 2. The classical Alta Via 2 itinerary crosses Sella in the high-altitude region and is suitable for hikers undaunted by a trail snaking through steep rocks with rungs and metal rope support. If you choose this route, on this day you will reach the central region of the Sella group where you will be overnighting at a mountain hut. The alternative itinerary is less complicated as it bypasses the more challenging parts of Alta Via 2, taking you along a trail at the foot of steep cliffs of Sella. This itinerary ascends into the high-altitude region at the eastern tip of the group. You will spend the night at a mountain hut offering a magnificent panoramic view of the neighboring Dolomite ranges.

Day 4: Ancient Merchant's Path

Ascent 500 m. Descent 1310 m. Distance 13 km. Walking time 6 hours.

Starting off in the high-altitude region of the Sella group, today’s itinerary will bring you to the Marmolada group, ending at Fedaia Lake at its foot. The trail across Sella takes you through its rocky area with a moonlike landscape this group is known for. The trek from the Sella group to Fedaia Lake opens up spine-tingling views of the Marmolada group and the glacier on its northern slope. The trail runs along the slope that directly faces Marmolada, giving you a full view of the glacier. Marmolada is the highest mountain group in the Dolomite Alps, and the glacier on its slope is the only one to have survived in the Dolomites. The glacier feeds Fedaia Lake that sits at a mountain pass of the same name, and you will be overnighting on its shore today.

Day 5: At the Foot of Marmolada

Ascent 520 m. Descent 1190 m. Distance 14 km. Walking time 6 hours.

Marmolada lies ahead on your itinerary. Only rock climbers cross Marmolada in a straight line. This involves scaling the glacier and going down a via ferrata. Two itinerary routes are available for trekking in the Marmolada area. The historical Alta Via 2 itinerary bypasses Marmolada on the east. This trail was truly exciting in the 1960s-70s, while nowadays it follows an asphalt-paved road for the most part. That’s why the western hiking route is now considered the primary choice, although either option is possible and you will receive hiking schedules for both. The trail running along the western itinerary offers stunning views of the Sella group from the hollow of Ciampac, which will most definitely whet the photographer’s appetite. The eastern route skirts the kilometer-long southern cliff of Marmolada at its foot.

Day 6: Monzoni Group

Ascent 680 m. Descent 790 m. Distance 10 km. Walking time 5 hours.

Today Alta Via 2 takes you through the Monzoni group and crosses its main ridge. It is one of the most seldom-traveled parts of the itinerary. The majority of Monzoni trails are relatively complicated, which is why the local denizens, Alpine ibexes, are seldom disturbed by people and are not fearful of approaching the trails. The Cirelle Pass will be the highest point of today’s trek. As you go up the slope to the mountain pass, the Sassolungo group comes into view. Located to the side of Alta Via 2, it presents itself from a quite opportune angle, resembling an enormous fairy-tail castle. Crossing the Cirelle Pass is almost a walk in the park when the approaches to it are clear of snow, but it will require quite a bit of effort at the start of the season, especially after snowy winters. From the mountain pass the trail charmingly snakes down the talus slope into the Alpine meadow belt and takes you to a mountain hut at the San Pellegrino mountain pass.

Day 7: Passo Rolle

Ascent 850 m. Descent 700 m. Distance 15 km. Walking time 6 hours.

From the San Pellegrino Pass, the Alta Via 2 itinerary takes you to Pale di San Martino, or the Pala group, visible from higher elevations already today. This mountain group is so large that it blocks out the entire horizon to the south of the route. Some of the most beautiful and memorable locations on today’s itinerary are the little-known valley Val Venegia and the Passo Rolle pass. Val Venegia is especially stunning in the latter half of the day when the sun shines on the northwestern slopes of Pale di San Martino. The Passo Rolle pass, where today’s trek ends, sits in a vast region of Alpine meadows. There are several elevated points opportunely positioned in front of the chain of Pale di San Martino peaks. They make great vantage points for watching the sundown, camera in hand. Passo Rolle is famous for affording the view of the Cimon della Pala peak – one of the key landmarks of the Dolomite Mountains.

Day 8: Pale di San Martino Group

Ascent 1050 m. Descent 860 m. Distance 13 km. Walking time 6 hours.

Today’s itinerary will bring you to the Pale di San Martino group, where the trail ascends into the high mountain region and crosses its western part. Pale di San Martino is one of the largest mountain groups in the Dolomites. A unique plateau at the center of the group is a major landmark of Pale. It is an entirely rocky landscape at an elevation of 2,500 - 2,700 meters, entirely devoid of vegetation, with hollows, patches of higher ground, and infrequent lakes. The impressions from walking through this otherworldly landscape are nothing short of spectacular. The plateau is bounded on the north and south by two mountain chains. Several more freestanding peaks stand tall in the middle of the plateau. As soon as you reach the plateau, you will have a chance to scale the Rosetta peak at the western tip of the group, which offers a full view of the plateau below.

Day 9: Fradusta Summit

Ascent 750 m. Descent 1410 m. Distance 11 km. Walking time 6 hours.

After overnighting on the plateau, you will have the option to stray from the “official” Alta Via 2 itinerary and proceed along what we believe to be a more interesting hiking route through the central part of Pale di San Martino. You can still choose the classical route, and you will be able to decide onsite. The hike through the center of the plateau is longer. In addition to crossing the plateau, one of its highlights involves going up Cima Fradusta – the only peak deep inside the plateau. Fradusta is set apart from the other peaks and therefore offers a 360-degree view. In addition to the entire Pale di San Martino, you will also see the nearby Dolomite groups, including Marmolada that you passed three days prior. A small glacier has survived on the northern slope of the Fradusta peak. It feeds a turquoise lake at the foot of the peak. After going down the other side of the mountain, you will again find yourself in the unforgettable lunar landscape of the plateau. On reaching its eastern tip of the group, you will go down to the mountain hut.

Day 10: Eastern Ridge of the Pale Group

Ascent 950 m. Descent 1210 m. Distance 8 km. Walking time 6 hours.

A nameless ridge, part of the Pala Group, extends to the east of the Pale di San Martino plateau. The eastern ridge is a lengthy chain of peaks as high as 2,870 m. Scenic trails along the eastern ridge are seldom-traveled and stunningly beautiful. They take you below the crest through the Alpine meadow belt, occasionally rising into high mountain regions. The crest of the ridge gradually descends in the southern direction, and roughly at its southern tip the Alta Via 2 route goes down to the Passo Cereda pass from where you reach the base camp hotel in Fiera.

Day 11: Departure from the Dolomites

Breakfast in the hotel and departure. The 11-day Alta Via 2 ends in the village of Fiera del Primero south of Pale di San Martino which is best connected to the Venice airport.

8 Day Tour

From Puez-Odle to Passo Rolle

The 8 Day Tour includes 6 days of hiking and takes you from Val Gardena to the Passo Rolle pass, thus covering the mountain groups of Puez-Odle, Sella, Marmolada and Monzoni. It ends in front of Pale di San Martino without entering this group.

10 Day Tour

From Puez-Odle to Pale di San Martino

The 10 Day Tour adds Pale di San Martino to the route. This mountain group is one of the major highlights of Alta Via 2. You will cross the central plateau of Pale di San Martino before descending to Fiera del Primero. This route option includes 8 days of hiking.

12 Day Tour

From Brixen to Passo Cereda

The 12 Day Tour covers the historical Alta Via 2 route starting near the Plose massif and ending on the Passo Cereda pass. The Plose section of Alta Via 2 lost its charm with the development of a ski resort, but this route option is still available if you prefer to walk along the historical route from the beginning till the end. This route requires 10 days of walking. The base camp for it is Brixen where you start the trek.

Dates and Prices 2019

Self Guided

8 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 970
Jun 28 - Sep 16
10 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1140
Jun 28 - Sep 16
11 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1230
Jun 28 - Sep 16
12 Day Self Guided Tour
€ 1320
Jun 28 - Sep 16

Guided

8 Day Guided Tour
€ 1610
Jun 28 - Sep 16
10 Day Guided Tour
€ 2150
Jun 28 - Sep 16
11 Day Guided Tour
€ 2390
Jun 28 - Sep 16
12 Day Guided Tour
€ 2610
Jun 28 - Sep 16

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 2019.

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
   8 Day Self Guided Tour   € 190
   10 Day Self Guided Tour   € 190
   11 Day Self Guided Tour   € 190
   12 Day Self Guided Tour   € 210

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: 5 - 9 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 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)
  • Transfer of luggage between the basecamp hotels
  • 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 - 6
  • Public bus on the first day of the trek: € 3 (self-guided trip)
  • Public bus 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 some mountain huts with a € 15 supplement per person per night, based on availability
  • 4-star base camp hotel for the first and last nights of the trip
  • Airport transfer is available on request

Travel to the Dolomites

The trek starts in Val Gardena or Brixen depending on the route option you choose. Verona and Innsbruck are the closest airports. It takes 3 – 4 hours to arrive by train and bus from either airport to the base camp location. Other airports: Munich, Venice, Bergamo, Bologna, Milan (you may need an extra day to travel from these airports by public transport).

The trek ends in Fiera di Primero, a small town best connected to the Venice airport. There is a daily bus connection with the airport in July and August, while in June and September the direct bus connection is only available in weekends. A trip to the Venice airport takes between 3h 30m and 4h. Travel to other airports is less convenient and takes longer: Verona, Bergamo, Bologna.

We can help you plan the route from the airport and provide you with train and bus schedules: please contact us before you buy 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.

Lunch. It is possible to stop for lunch in the mountain huts on the route on most days of the trek. The lunch menu in the huts is similar to the dinner menu. Typically, there is a choice of pasta for 7 – 10 euros. Second dishes cost 9 – 16 euros.

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.