One of the most iconic backdrops of the Italian Dolomites are the three jagged peaks known as the Tre Cime di Lavaredo. Hugging the border of the South-Tyrol (Alto Adige) and the Veneto regions, these mountains rise into the blue sky and provide picture-postcard scenery year-round.
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Being so close to the Austrian border, the Three Peaks are also referred to as the Drei Zinnen in German. The tallest of the three reaches 2,999 meters (9,839 feet) and is appropriately named Cima Grande. Along with other peaks in the Dolomite group, the Tre Cime were officially recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2009. The famous peaks are located within a larger protected park (Parco naturale Tre Cime) which is headquartered in Bolzano in the South-Tyrol region.
The Most Popular Activity- Hiking
Regardless of your hiking experience and physical ability, what is so wonderful about the Tre Cime is that practically anyone and everyone can enjoy them from close-up! The most popular hikes are trails numbers 101 and 105 which both depart from the Auronzo Refuge and split off in various directions depending on your ability level. The Tre Cime Trek website includes route maps and lots of information in English on all the various routes in the area.
Climbers will also delight with the numerous options available which include free climbing and a grand total of 25 different climbs. Mountain biking is also popular and from the Auronzo Refuge, you can actually follow the panoramic cycling path with a standard bicycle!
When to Visit
For the hikers and cyclists among you, the best months to enjoy the outdoors here are definitely May, June, and early September. July and August are peak season and the area can be extremely crowded. Prices also soar during this time.
Winter at the Tre Cime
If you plan to visit during the winter months and early spring and enjoy winter sports then pay close attention to this part. Monte Agudo (Auronzo) is equipped with two lifts and about 20 km of slopes and is suitable for very young children or beginners to experienced skiers.
Misurina is another option and includes the Loita Ski School and the Col de Varda area (elevation 2,106 m). If you do happen to visit between the months of January and March, be sure to check out the events planned during the full moon. Sledding, skiing, snowshoeing, and ice skating on Lake Antorno with the Three Peaks and the moonlight as your backdrop will be an experience you will never forget! Check out the Tre Cime Dolomiti official website for more details.
Misurina is a tiny hamlet of Auronzo di Cadore. At 1,756 meters above sea level, it is blanketed in snow about six months out of the year. It makes an excellent starting point for hikes all year round and in the warmer months, you can also enjoy its stunning lake. Just north of the lake, you may want to visit the World War I museum which you can reach by shuttle bus.
Auronzo di Cadore
This is a town of several thousand that is equipped with everything a visitor needs from hotel accommodations, restaurants, shopping, and lots of family-friendly activities. There is the Tre Cime Adventure Park as well as the longest fun bob in the world! Its Santa Caterina lake hosts international canoe and dragon boat tournaments.