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 dolomiti UNESCO world heritage site. This unique place has so much to offer from stunning views over those impressive limestone peaks and reflective lakes to great rifugios and a lot of awesome photo opportunities. It’s the perfect scenery for a day full of hiking.
Tre Cime di Lavaredo loop hike
To have the full experience of everyting the Tre Cime area has to offer, you can do the Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop hike. It is a long but easy hike with breath-taking views the entire way. The whole loop is about 10,3 kilometers with an elevation of approximately 400 meters and it’ll take you around 3 to 4 hours to finish the hike. There are a few short and steep inclines but in general it is quite an easy walk and it will give you some of the most beautiful views in the Tre Cime national park. You can do this hike in both directions as it is a loop hike but we recommend you going counter clockwise as it will give you the best views.
This trail begins at Rifugio Auronzo. From here you take the wide gravel (path 101) on the right, facing the three peaks, and keep the three peaks on your left. Keep following this path until you reach Rifugio Lavaredo. Here you’ll find a junction with different paths coming together. Take the left track to remain on path 101. Pass over the Forcella Lavaredo ridge and continue your way until you arrive at Rifugio Locatelli or the Dreizinnenhütte. Only a few hundred meters away from this rifugio you’ll find the famous Tre Cime caves, which are remains of the Wold War I.
From this rifugio you take path 102 to start the toughest part of the hike, but still perfectly achievable.
When you reach the next junction, turn left to path 105. Keep on following this track, walking directly under the three peaks of Tre Cime and passing the Forcella la Col di Mezzo, where it turns left to head back to Rifugio Auronzo.
Cadini di Misurina Hike
There’s another, shorter, hike that will reward you with one of the most beautiful views in the dolomiti. On this hike you won’t have views on the Tre Cime but on another mountain range called Cadini di Misurina. This hike is about 4 kilometers in total with an elevation of around 110 meter and it’ll take you around 1,5 to 2 hours. This hike is a little more tricky than the loop hike as you’ll go over some slippery gravel roads and along some small ridge lines next to a ravine. Especially to reach the little summit you see in the picture, you’ll have to cross a really small ridge. We do not recommend you going there on foggy or rainy days when the trail is slippery. The ridge goes along a deep ravine and it’s not worth taking the risk to slip and slide all the way down, so please be careful!
To start this hike you also start at the Rifugio Auronzo but instead of taking the left path along the Drei Zinnen, you turn your back to Rifugio Auronzo and take a small path (path 117) going over a hill. In this way you walk away from the Drei Zinnen. The start of the walk is easy, but closer to the end there are some narrow and steep parts. The path is indicated with red-white marks, but it is not always very clear. Just keep on walking into the direction of the rigged peaks of Cadini Di Misurina. After a while you’ll see the little summit in the distance and a little ridge line going towards it. It’s not the best hike for people who are afraid of heights but, believe us, the view you’ll get is absolutely epic. And again: don’t go all to way to the summit when it is slippery. You’ll get this view any way, wether you’re standing on the summit. Don’t risk it all for a picture.
When to visit Tre Cime di Lavaredo?
Looking at the weather conditions the beste time to visit and hike at Tre Cime is from the end of May to October. During the summer months you’ll get the best weather, but unfortunately also a lot of other hikers, as it is one of the most popular hikes in the Dolomites.
In addition to the weather, you should also keep in mind that most rifugios are only open from mid-June to the end of September. The toll road is open from end of May until the end of October.
Therefore we recommend you to visit the Tre Cime in June or September as it will be less crowded and rifugios will still be open. Unless you don’t mind the rifugios being closed, you can also go in October if the snow doesn’t come too early. As the hike only gains popularity over the years, we recommend start hiking as early as possible.
How to reach Tre Cime di Lavaredo
By car – To get to Rifugio Auronzo at Tre Cime you’ll have to take a 7-kilometer long toll road. (€30 for cars, €45 for campers). The toll booth is open from 7am to 7pm. From here you drive along a scenic route up to Rifugio Auronzo.
Tip for campers: Stay the night on the parking lot at Rifugio Auronzo and wake up in this breathtaking landscape.
By foot – 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 1,5hours.
By bus – During the summer months there are different shuttle busses from Cortina, Dobbiaco or Missurina to Tre Cime di Lavaredo. A round-trip costs you €15.
I liked your view
I wonder weather is it reasonable to do it on 07 APRIL?
If not do you have any other recommendations on APRIL?
At the beginning of April there can still be snow on the hiking trails and the toll road to the beginning of the hike is closed during the winter months. Usually the hiking season in the Dolomites runs from late May to early October, depending on weather and snow conditions. When the toll road is closed, you can only get to the beginning of the hike by foot and probably only with snowshoes. The road opens at the end of May, depending on the snow and weather conditions. You find more information about this road on this website https://www.south-tirol.com/useful-information/toll-road-auronzo-hut
So we recommend you to go there early June, to be sure the toll road is open and that there is no or not too much snow left.
Enjoy your trip!