The Dolomites are an amazing mountain range in the north of Italy. It has so many breathtaking places, that it is hard to choose which places you should include in your planning when your time is limited. From the most impressive mountain faces to the most emerald blue lakes you've ever seen, the Dolomites have it all. Not only the highlights, but even the landscape you drive through from one place to another is just breathtaking. This region is proof that it’s not about the destination but about the journey. If you are planning a trip to the Dolomites, you’ve already made the right decision. To help you determine which places you absolutely must see, we've written this guide about the 6 most beautiful places we've already visited in the Dolomites.
Lake Carezza - Lago di Carezza - Karersee
Lago di Carezza, also known as the Karersee, is a mountain lake in the South Tyrol region of northern Italy. This beautiful mountain lake is known for its wonderful blue, sometimes even emerald green color. Both color and size of Lago di Carezza, depend on the season and differ every year. In spring, when the snow starts to melt, the lakes is at its biggest. The lowest water level is reached in autumn. Then it is usually no deeper than six meters.
Lago di Carezza is surrounded by immense coniferous forests. In the background, you can see the impressive peaks of the Dolomites rise tall behind the treetops, making this beautiful picture complete.
Unfortunately, Lago di Carezza cannot offer you a refreshing dip. Swimming is not allowed, and paddling is also prohibited. The lake is therefore completely fenced to make sure people do not enter the water. This is to prevent the beautiful lake from being affected and losing its beautiful color.
Around the lake there is a path of about 2,5 kilometers and almost completely flat. A walk around the lake will therefore not take longer than half an hour and will show you the lake from all sides. There are several benches on the path, where you can sit and enjoy the view. There is also a platform from which you have this wonderful view over the lake and where you’ll find some background information about the lake. In the surrounding area, there are several other walking routes if you’re up for a longer walk.
A big advantage of this lake is that it is easily accessible: It is located next to the road, so you don’t have to make a long, tough hike to reach this stunning place. There is a big parking lot where you can safely leave your car. Next to the parking lot, there’s a visitor center with a little souvenir shop, a restaurant and bar. But don’t go there for a drink with a view, as you cannot see the lake from there; It’s more for a quick bite. The lake itself is free to visit.
Parking lot: €1 per 1h (first 15min free)
Seiser Alm - Alpe di Suisi
Seiser alm, also known as Alpe di Suisi, is the biggest and highest mountain meadow in Europe.
It has an area of 57 km² and lies at an altitude of 1680m to 2350m. In winter, it is the ideal place for a winter sport vacation. In summer, it is a beautiful area to enjoy numerous walks through this wavy landscape surrounded by those impressive mountain ranges.
There are various cable cars and lifts that’ll take you from one place to another or can you explore the area only by foot along many different hiking trails.
The Seceda is a 2519 meters high mountain in Val Gardena, in the middle of the Dolomites. From the summit of Seceda, you have a marvelous view of the impressive peaks of the Dolomites, the mountains of Trentino and Lombardy, almost the entire South Tyrol and even Austria.
Besides this breathtaking view of peaks and valleys, Seceda is a true paradise for hikers, mountain bikers and climbers. For the hikers, there are both easy hikes, ideal for children, and more difficult hikes. For more adventurous people, there are Via Ferrata’s and a variety of climbing tours for experienced climbers. The real adventure seekers can even go paragliding. Mountainbikers can explore this unique environment along wonderful bike and e-bike tours.
To reach the top of the Seceda, there are different options. The easiest way to reach the summit is by taking the cable car in Ortisei. Two separate cable cars will take you up to the summit on no time.
If you’re up for a challenging hike or you want to enjoy this area before or after the opening hours of the cable car, it’s also possible to hike up and/or down the mountain. Note that hiking up this mountain will take a lot of time, so make sure you leave in time. If you want to make it before sunrise or you want to see sunset, you’ll have to hike in the dark, or you can stay overnight on top of the Seceda in a mountain lodge.
If you’re undecidable whether you should take the cable car or go for the hike, you can always combine both options. You can buy a single way cable car ticket up or down and hike the other way. In this way you’ll have the full experience and you save some time and money. Whatever option you choose, we’re sure you’ll be amazed by the beauty of Seceda.
Adults: Single: €30
Adults double: €39,5
Parking lot: 8 euro
Lake Sorapis - Lago di Sorapis
Lago di Sorapis or Lake Sorapis is a mountain lake at an altitude of 1925 metres above sea level. It’s a beautiful turquoise lake surrounded by those impressive mountain peaks and it can only be reached by foot or by helicopter. The hiking trail is about 7 km one way (so 14 km in total) and it’ll take you around 1,5 to 2 hours to reach the lake. The way back is the same way as you got there. It’s quite a tough hike with some very steep and slippery parts and cables to hold on yourself, but perfectly achievable if you’re not afraid of heights.
Tre cime di lavaredo - Drei zinnen
Tre Cime di Lavaredo, also known as Drei Zinnen, are three impressive mountain peaks and probably the most famous peaks in the Alps. It is such a jaw dropping place and therefore not surprising that they are the symbol of the dolomites UNESCO world heritage site.
To get to the Drei Zinnen you’ll have to take a 7 kilometer long toll road. The toll booth is just past Lago d’Antorno. From here you drive along a scenic route up to Rifugio Auronzo.
Or if you prefer, you can also hike from Lago D’Antorno up to Tre Cime but it’s quite a tough hike and will take you about 1,5 hours.
Make sure you get to the entrance of the Tre Cime National Park early to avoid queuing with a lot of other cars. Once you’ve parked your car at the parking lot, you can start different hikes from this point, both long and short hikes.
Road to Rifugio Auronzo
Cars: 30 euro
Campers: 45 euro
Lake Prags - Lago di Braies - Pragser Wildsee
Lago Di Braies or Pragser Wildsee is probably the most famous place among tourists in the Dolomiti, and we can’t deny that it’s really worth adding to your schedule. It’s one of the most beautiful alpine lakes in the Dolomites and it is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Unfortunately, this also means that it can get very busy during the day, especially in peak season. To fully enjoy this place, we recommend you to come here as early as possible (at sunrise). But even then, there will already be a bunch of other people. Especially around the boat house, it can get very crowded and most of the people stay in this area.
Luckily there is a hike you can do around the lake, where you can escape from the crowd. It’s a very easy hike from approximately 3,6km and it’ll take you around 1 to 1,5 hours to finish the trail.
From mid-May to the end of October, there’s another option to explore this place, and at the same time escape from the crowds. You can ride the waters of the lake in a wooden rowboat. In this way, you’ll also see the lake from another point of view.
The water level of the lake fluctuates throughout the year. Most of the time the water level is at its lowest at the end of summer, making this the least ideal time to see this place at its best.
Win-Win for everyone
Did you know that, if you buy or book something through our links, we receive a small commission?
However, you still pay the same and therefore have no extra costs! So a win-win for everyone. This way, we can continue to add even more travel inspiration and tips to this blog for your next adventure. Thanks a lot!
Thank you for visiting our blog
We hope you find our free travel guides and tips useful.
If you want, you can support us virtually by ‘buying us a coffee’.
Every contribution, no matter how small, is greatly appreciated
and will help us continue to share our passion with you
and grow this blog.