If mountain ranges were musical genres then the Dolomites would be opera – like La Traviata or Eugene Onegin. You know the ones that are so beautiful that crying is the only appropriate response. We’ve visited the Dolomites five times and we simply can’t get enough. This corner of Northern Italy is one of the most sensational hiking destinations in the Alps. If milky blue lakes, jagged peaks, and jungles of stone make your heart sing, then you’re going to love hiking in the Dolomites. To help you figure out where to hike, we’ve curated all the best Dolomites day hikes.

Where are the Dolomites

The Dolomites are a mountain range in northern Italy, close to the Austrian border. Forming part of the Southern Limestone Alps (like Slovenia’s Julian Alps), the Dolomites stretch across three Italian regions: Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige (Trentino – Südtirol), and Friuli Venezia Giulia. For a general overview of traveling in the Dolomites, read our Dolomites Travel Guide.

Also check out: Where to stay in the Dolomites in Summer

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Best Dolomites Day Hikes

  1. Seceda Ridgeline to Rifugio Firenze
  2. Resciesa Plateau to Seceda Ridgeline 
  3. Col dala Pieres
  4. Adolf Munkel Trail 
  5. Tre Cime di Lavaredo Circuit 
  6. Lake Sorapiss 
  7. Lake Pisciadù 
  8. Rifugio Puez and Rifugio Gardenacia
  9. Armentara Meadows Trail
  10. Rifugio Fanes and Rifugio Lavarella
  11. Vajolet Towers
  12. Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz
  13. Val Venegia to Rifugio Mulaz
  14. Around Pala di San Martino: Rifugio Rosetta to Rifugio Pradidali 
  15. Cima della Vezzana Summit 
  16. Monte Pic Summit
  17. Alpe di Siusi to Monte Pana 
  18. Sass de Putia Circuit
  19. Rifugio Genova and the Val di Funes Alpine Pastures 
  20. Path of the Larches 

Dolomites Hiking Map

1. Seceda Ridgeline to Regensburger Hütte Day Hike

Easy Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Resciesa to Seceda Hike - Best Hikes in the Dolomites

Seceda Lookout

The Seceda ridgeline is one of the most beloved photography spots in the Dolomites. The ridge can easily be accessed from the town of Ortisei (St. Ulrich) in Val Gardena via the Ortisei-Furnes-Seceda cableways.

This dazzling spot is just the beginning of a wonderful loop trail in the Puez Odle Nature Park. From the mountain summit station Seceda, you’ll follow a level path along the Seceda ridge to the dagger-like Geisler (Odle) peaks. Next, you’ll hike to the rustic alm hut Pieralongia and then ultimately to the mountain hut Regensburger Hütte (Rifugio Firenze). Enjoy lunch at the hut, before following the loop trail back to Seceda.

Learn More: Seceda to Regensburger Hütte Hike

2. Resciesa to Seceda

Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites, Italy: Resciesa to Malga Brogles to Seceda

Rifugio Brogles (Brogles Hütte)

The Seceda ridgeline can be approached in a number of ways. The easiest way is via the Ortisei – Furnes – Seceda cableways (mentioned above). However, a more exciting way to approach Seceda is from the Resciesa plateau.

To reach the plateau, take the Resciesa funicular from Ortisei in Val Gardena. From the top station, the trail crosses the Resciesa alp and descends to Rifugio Malga Brogles. You’ll have fantastic and varied views of the Geisler peaks from both the trail and the hut. From the rifugio, the “hard” part begins. You’ll ascend to the Seceda ridgeline via a steep trail to Panascharte.

Once at the top, you can marvel at the dagger-like Seceda ridgeline. Depending on where you’re staying in Val Gardena, you can either descend to Ortisei via Ortisei – Furnes – Seceda cableways or to Selva di Val Gardena via the Col Raiser gondola.

Update August 2020: The trail from Malga Brogles to Seceda via the Panascharte is closed due to a rockfall. You can hike to Seceda via Furcela De Mesdi (Mittagsscharte), but it’s longer and more difficult.

Learn More: Resciesa to Seceda Day Hike 

3. Col dala Pieres Summit

Difficult Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Rifugio Stevia and Col dala Pieres - Best Day Hike in the Dolomites

This excellent Dolomites hiking trail is for confident hikers who crave intoxicating views of Sella, Langkofel and the Geisler Peaks. This hike begins with a Col Raiser cableway ascent from Selva di Val Gardena.

From the Col Raiser mountain station, follow the easy trail to Rifugio Firenze (Regensburger Hütte). That’s the same hut mentioned in the very first hike on this list. From the rifugio, you’ll ascend to Forcella Piza (2489 m), the mountain saddle between Muntejela and Mont De Stevia. From Piza, the trail continues left to Col dala Pieres summit.

We recommend making a detour to Rifugio Stevia for their hearty South Tyrolean food.

Learn More: Col dala Pieres Day Hike

4. Adolf Munkel Trail

Easy-Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Best Dolomites Hikes - Adolf Munkel Trail

The Adolf Munkel Trail is an easy loop trail that takes you to the foot of the Geisler (Odle) Peaks. The trail begins at Zanser Alm (Malga Zannes) in Val di Funes in South Tyrol. You can either base yourself in Val di Funes, or continue staying in Val Gardena. It’s a 50-minute drive from Ortisei (Val Gardena) to Malga Zannes (Val di Funes).

One of the highlights of this Dolomites hike is stopping for a leisurely lunch at Gschnagenhardt Alm (Malga Casnago).

Learn More: Adolf Munkel Trail 

5. Tre Cime di Lavaredo Circuit

Easy-Moderate Day Hike in the Sexten Dolomites

Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites - Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop

The loop trail around the iconic Three Peaks, Tre Cime di Lavaredo, is the best day hike in the Dolomites. It starts at the mountain hut Rifugio Auronzo, which is accessible by a toll road (30 EUR for private cars). From Rifugio Auronzo, you can either hike on Trail 101 (right) towards Rifugio Lavaredo, or on Trail 105 (left) towards Langealm. Both ways are beautiful.

Though most people venture here to see the Three Peaks, they soon realize that Tre Cime is just the beginning of an unending visual feast that extends in every possible direction. Remember the bit about opera? Well, we’re in the Wagnerian realm now. For a tasty lunch and the most impressive view of Tre Cime di Lavaredo, head to Dreizinnenhütte (Rifugio Locatelli).

Learn More: Hiking Tre Cime di Lavaredo 

6. Lago di Sorapiss

Moderate Hike in Dolomiti d’Ampezzo

Best Dolomites Hiking Trails - Lago di Sorapis

Lago di Sorapiss is a glacial lake within the region Veneto. The lake takes its name from the mountain Sorapiss. Framed by a ring of trees, Lago di Sorapiss is one of the most stunning lakes and day hikes in the Dolomites. Apart from the mountain backdrop, the most spectacular feature of the lake is its unique turquoise color. The water also has a milky quality due to suspended powdered rock. You might think you’re looking at an enchantress’ pool filled with a magic potion.

To get to the lake, start at Passo Tre Croci near Cortina d’Ampeszzo. The hike takes 2 hours one-way. Follow Trail no. 215 towards Rifugio Vandelli. The first half of the trail is flat, but the second half is steep. Part of the path is secured. We saw people of all ages on this trail.

Update: This trail is overpopulated. We recommend hiking here only off-season, or early.

7. Lake Pisciadù

Difficult Hike in the Sella Group

Lake Pisciadù Day Hike - Best Dolomites Hiking Trails

Ascent to Cima Pisciadù

This is one of the best hikes in the Dolomites for experienced hikers. This loop trail begins at Passo Gardena, the mountain pass between Alta Badia and Val Gardena. From the pass, you’ll follow a lovely balcony trail to Val Setus, a steep sloping “valley” characterized by crumbling rocks and scree. The ascent up Val Setus to Lake Pisciadù is steep and partially secured (no equipment necessary).

At Lake Pisciadù, there’s a mountain hut you can stop in for food and refreshments. If you feel energized, you can hike all the way to Cima Pisciadù (1 hour one-way) for more thrilling views.

From the lake, This Dolomites hike continues steeply down to Val de Mezdi and ultimately back to Passo Gardena, or to Colfosco / Corvara (two villages in Alta Badia).

Learn More: Lake Pisciadù Day Hike

8. Rifugio Puez and Rifugio Gardenacia

Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Rifugio Gardenacia and Puez Day Hike - best Dolomites hiking trails

Rifugio Gardenacia

This moderate day hike in Puez-Odle is best approached from Alta Badia. You can either start the hike in the village of La Villa or in Corvara.

From La Villa, take the Gardenaccia chairlift up and follow the trail to Gardenacia mountain hut. Gardenacia is one of our absolute favorite rifugios in the Italian Alps. From the hut, cross the Gherdenacia alpine plateau and hike to Rifugio Puez. As you approach Rifugio Puez, take in the impressive views of Vallunga (Langental) Valley.

Learn More: Rifugio Puez Day Hike

9. Armentara Meadows Trail

Easy Day Hike in Fanes-Senes-Braies Nature Park

Armentara Meadows - Best Day Hikes in the Italian Dolomites

Some of the most beautiful Dolomites hiking trails are blissfully easy. If you’re in the mood for a gentle saunter across sloping meadows, this is for you.

Walking across Armentara meadows is like listening to a Rossini, or Donizetti opera. It’s light, happy and effortless. That’s my last opera reference, promise!

The Armentara plateau is accessible from the village of Badia in Alta Badia.

Learn More: Armentara Meadows Day Hike

10. Rifugio Fanes and Rifugio Lavarella

Moderate Hike in Fanes-Senes-Braies Nature Park

Rifugio Lavarella and Fanes Day Hike - Best Dolomites hiking trails

Approaching Lavarella Hütte

This Dolomites day hike starts in Capanna Alpina (Alta Badia) and ends at Rifugio Fanes (Fanes Hütte) and Rifugio Lavarella. The trail follows the Alta Via 1 route in Fanes Nature Park. These two rifugios are located directly across from each other and make for a scenic lunch destination. Rifugio Fanes is one of the most luxurious huts in the Italian Alps and Rifugio Lavarella is home to the highest brewery in Europe.

Most hikers will do a return-hike (out and back), starting and ending in Capanna Alpina. For a more challenging variation, you can do a point-to-point hike ending in La Villa.

Learn More: Rifugio Fanes Day Hike

11. Vajolet Towers

 Difficult Hike in Sciliar – Catinaccio Nature Park

Gartlhütte and the Vajolet Towers - Best Dolomites hiking trails

  • Hiking Region Val d’Ega/Eggental, South Tyrol
  • Trailhead: Kölnerhütte
  • Cableway Ascent / Descent: Laurin II Chairlift in Nova Levante (Welschnofen), or the Paolina Chairlift in Carezza (Karersee).
  • Distance: 8 km out-and-back 
  • Difficulty: Difficult
  • Time Needed: 6 hours
  • Where to Stay: Carezza (Karersee), or Nova Levante (Welschnofen)

The Vajolet Towers are six summits in the Rosengarten – Catinaccio Dolomites. These majestic towers are a worthy day hiking destination in the Dolomites if you’re staying in Val di Fassa, or in Val d’Ega (Eggental).

From Kölnerhütte (accessible by chairlift from Nova Levante), there are two ways to get to the towers. You can either take the hiking path via Tschagerjoch (Passo delle Coronelle) or the Santner Via Ferrata route.

If you take the via ferrata route up, you’ll plateau at Santnerpass. The view of Gartlhütte, the mountain hut at the foot of the towers, is glorious. We hiked here as part of our 3-day hut-to-hut hike across the Rosengarten. You can find out more details about the Santner via ferrata ascent and the trek in our guide.

Update 2020: The Laurin II Chairlift is under construction. Take the Paolina Chairlift from Carezza (Karersee) instead. From the Paolina Hütte, follow the trail to Kölnerhütte (45 min – 1 hour), to begin the hike to the Vajolet Towers.

12. Baita Segantini and Monte Castellaz

Easy Hike in Pale di San Martino 

Baita Segantini Loop Trail - Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites

Learn More: Baita Segantini Trail Guide

13. Val Venegia to Rifugio Mulaz

Moderately Difficult Hike in Pale di San Martino 

Trail 720, Val Venegia to Passo Mulaz Hike, Pale di San Martino

Learn More: Val Venegia to Rifugio Mulaz Trail Guide

14. Around Pala di San Martino: Rifugio Rosetta to Rifugio Pradidali

Moderately Difficult Hike in Pale di San Martino 

Around Pala di San Martino - Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites

Learn More: Rifugio Rosetta to Rifugio Pradidali Circuit Hike

15. Cima della Vezzana

Very Challenging Hike in Pale di San Martino 

Hiking to Cima della Vezzana, Dolomites Day Hikes

Learn More: Cima della Vezzana Summit Hike

16. Monte Pic

Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Monte Pic Day Hike, Best Day Hikes in the Dolomites

Learn More: Monte Pic Summit Hike

17. Alpe di Siusi to Monte Pana

Easy Hike in Val Gardena

Hike across Alpe di Siusi, Best Dolomites Day Hikes

Learn More: Alpe di Siusi to Monte Pana Trail Guide

18. Sass de Putia Circuit

Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Sass de Putia Circuit, Hiking in the Dolomites

Learn More: Sass de Putia Circuit Trail Guide

19. Rifugio Genova and the Val di Funes Alpine Pastures

Moderate Hike in Puez-Odle Nature Park

Hike to Furcella de Furcia / Kreuzjoch, Val di Funes - Day Hikes in the Dolomites

Learn More: Rifugio Genova Trail Guide

20. Path of the Larches

Easy Hike in Alta Badia

Path of the Larches: Winter Hike in San Cassiano, Alta Badia

Learn More: Path of the Larches Trail Guide

The Dolomites Hiking Season

The best time to hike in the Dolomites is from late June until the end of September. During that timeframe, Dolomites hiking trails are mostly clear of snow, Rifugios (mountain huts) are open, and cableways are operating.

We tried hiking in the Dolomites in May and were shit out of luck. Too much snowfall and rain prevented us from exploring the Dolomites in Spring. October may still be promising, but many rifugios (mountain huts) and chairlifts will already be closed. Our favorite month to hike in the Dolomites is September. You can read about September in the Dolomites here.

Plan Your Trip to the Dolomites:

Hut to Hut Hikes in the Dolomites:

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