porch with a view of the Dolomites

Luxury Walking & Hiking Tour around Cortina

The town of Cortina is known as either the “Queen” or the “Pearl” of the Dolomites, and rightly so.  Located in a lush valley surrounded by mountain peaks, Cortina offers fantastic views in every direction, while the center of town offers a lively pedestrian walkway with some of the best people-watching in Italy.  Splendid mountain hikes with wide, spectacular vistas are the focus of this walking and hiking tour in the Dolomites, with your choice of accommodation: a 4-star hotel in the center of town or a luxurious 5-star hotel with a spa, both with mountain views.

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Trip Length 5 days
Walking Level Fitness
Trip Cost $4480 in 4-star hotel, $4980 in 5-star hotel with spa

Walking Levels

Our walks are rated for their level of difficulty as follows:

  • Stroll – Daily distance of 2-5 km (1-3 miles) through archeological sites and in towns with stone stairways. Footwear: Lightweight walking shoes.
  • Easy – Daily distance of 8-10 km (5-7 miles) on dirt paths and gravel roads, with short ascents & descents. Good van access for assistance along the route. Footwear: Sturdy walking shoes.
  • Moderate – Daily distance of 12-16 km (8-10 miles) with longer ascents & descents. May include cobblestone paths and steps, or narrow paths along terraced hillsides. Some van access or options for shorter walks. Footwear: Sturdy walking shoes or lightweight boots.
  • Fitness – Daily distance of 12-16 km (8-10 miles) with steep ascents & descents. Walks are at altitudes of 1200-2450 meters (3500-8000 feet) on trails and forest service roads, some rocky or exposed sections. Limited van access, options for shorter or longer routes. Footwear: Lightweight boots.
Man standing with Dolomites in the background

Trip Highlights

  • Spot chamois and playful marmots on a beautiful walk, then relax with a catered picnic in an alpine meadow
  • Zigzag up steep log steps to an alpine dairy farm and drink sinfully-rich hot chocolate topped with cream from the morning’s milk
  • Ride a cable car with views reaching to the Austrian Alps, and walk through the lonely World War I trenches
  • Unpack once at one of Cortina’s historic hotels, the delightful 4-star Ancora in downtown Cortina with our favorite bar, or the 5-star Cristallo hotel with a spa and indoor pool – both offer mountain views.

Trip Details

Dates
July 16-20, 2019

Meet
Bressanone, Venice, or Cortina

End
Venice Airport

Single Supplement
From $650 USD

Meals
Daily breakfast / 4 lunches with beer or wine / 3 dinners with wine

Maximum Participants
12

Accommodations
Choice of Signature or Signature with Spa

Itinerary
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Day-by-Day Itinerary

Cortina Hike Placeholder
Cortina Hike

Day One

Rendezvous in Bressanone* and travel through the splendid green hills that soon give way to the spectacular Dolomite mountains. We take a 2-hour walk above Cortina, where remnants of WWI trenches are in sharp contrast to the blissfully tranquil mountains. Over a welcome lunch, our experienced guides will share their knowledge of the trails with you. Most days our walks are at an altitude of 2000-2400 meters (6500-8000 feet) with alternate lower level walks in case of uncertain weather conditions. Transfer to our historic 5-star hotel in a stunning position, our home for all four nights, so we unpack just once and settle in. Encircled by mountains, Cortina is in a perfect position for exploring the best hiking trails as well as practicing the great sport of people watching. After an aperitivo on the terrace, a superb multi-course dinner awaits us in town. (*If continuing from the Wildflowers tour, you don’t go to Bressanone, but have a leisurely morning in Cortina and meet at our hotel at 11:30.)

Day Two

We rise early to get the first van transfer into a national park where we may be lucky enough to spot sure-footed ibex with their great curved horns, dashing along the steep cliffs. This tranquil area is dotted with small lakes and dewy meadows and you may find an isolated malga – alpine dairy farm – offering cheese or milk for sale. After a long, beautiful climb we arrive at a creaky wooden rifugio precisely at lunchtime, and make a steaming bowl of minestrone disappear in record time. Continue along a wide trail with several options for returning to our starting point (4-6 hours). Free evening for dinner.

Day Three

We begin in a high alpine pasture dotted with bright blue gentians and follow a fascinating trail that alternates from stark, rocky outcrops to lush green pasture, with wide-open views throughout the day. Stop for a picnic lunch in a cool meadow before continuing our walk along a bucolic trail. Tonight we enjoy farm-to-table cuisine at a rustic restaurant known for its organic cheeses and sublime desserts.

Day Four

Catch a morning cablecar up to a high rifugio, and walk 3 hours along a trail lined with wild rhododendron and revel in the stunning views of the surrounding peaks. Descend along a shady path where orchids bloom, until we reach Passo Tre Croci. Enjoy a casual lunch of delicate homemade pasta before returning to Cortina for some last-minute cashmere shopping . This evening a spectacular drive brings us to a welcoming restaurant with sweeping views where we celebrate with a delicious dinner as the sun sets.

Day Five

Transfer to the Venice Airport by noon. Arrivederci!

Take both Wildflowers in the Dolomites and Cortina Dolomites Hike and save $400 per person!

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