I went on a walking holiday in the Dolomite Mountains in South Tirol for a week and was quickly enamoured by it all.
I was captivated by the mountain panoramas, some of the mountain tops still snowcapped, sweeping down to lush green valley to create sensational landscapes. The hearty meals in the mountain huts with my fellow walkers, all experienced walkers and eager to help and give tips.
I stayed in Meransen, a small village 1414 metres high up and where public transport is the cable car – a big novelty for me. A highlight was the “Almabtrieb” this takes place in the fall when the cattle are festively adorned and driven down from the mountain pastures for the winter.
There were different trips organised every day and I eagerly participated in each one. Although we walked only a maximum of 14 kilometres a day, it seemed so much more due to the varying heights and surfaces of the trails. I found it rather nerve wracking when I hiked along the Kleine Gitsch at over 2000 metres which is a narrow trail with a steep drop on one side. But my wonderful group made it so much easier.
A must-see is also the Pordoijoch at 2239 metres, it is one of the 4 mountain passes constructed on the Dolomite Straits to connect major towns and promote tourism in the area. A suspended cable car ascends to the summit Sass Pordoi with an elevation of 2950 metres. The scenery is not only awe-inspiring here, but watching the paragliders and freestyle wingsuit flyers take off is sensational.
The picturesque town of Brixen is well-worth a visit, with narrow cobbled streets and large squares, and the Eisack River flowing through the town. The baroque cathedral in the main square is magnificent and one of the grandest in the Alpine region. There are excellent shopping opportunities and a wide selection of restaurants and cafes to meet every taste, during the summer/autumn seasons, there are often outdoor markets with interesting stalls.
Although I’m just a novice on walking holidays, I recommend you try it. Of course, a prerequisite is you love the outdoors, are steady on your feet and most important, you wear robust footwear. I’m sure you’ll be hooked just like me.