Tre Cime di Lavaredo
The famous landmark of the Dolomites, the three peaks – Tre Cime di Lavaredo, are an impressive demonstration of design made by Mother Nature.
Nestled in the 3 Zinnen Nature Park, which has been a UNESCO world heritage site since 2009, these prominent peaks will put a spell on you, promise!
During summer season a toll road is leading up to the Tre Cime. Be aware that in high season this road is heavily frequented and there can be waiting times from up to several hours in front of the tollbooth.
The curvy mountain road winds up to the Rifugio Auronzo, a mountain hut style stone building, which also hosts a restaurant. If you just need to relieve yourself, be prepared to wait in line and have your own tissue with you. I've never seen the restrooms stocked with toilet paper and without people queuing.
The Rifugio Auronzo sits right at the foot of the peaks, though they don't show their famous face from this side. The easiest way to get into the papparazzi spot is to take the trail to the right. This path is maintained very well and easy to walk, but expect a lot of people having the same idea.Depending your speed of walking, it takes about 30-60mn to reach the Paternsattel and the other side of the Tre Cime.
Vast panoramic views open up from here, standing right next to those massive rocks. If you would like to enjoy these views in peace, try to not go here during high season and mid day. Tons of people wiggle around just like ants, especially at the popular view points and they won't care about you making a photo or video.
Following the main trail leads to the Rifugio Locatelli, the Three Peak hut, a very popular spot in this area offering the best view on the Three Peaks. If you would like to stay overnight here, make sure to book long in advance (remember wild camping is strictly forbidden in the Dolomites).
Heading back you can choose the same path back, or do a tour around the peaks. The little trails here are beautifully maintained and feel like straight out of a fairytale movie, the peaks always by your side like a bunch of oversize guardians.
When you passed the front of the peaks you'll find another hut, the Langalmhütte, which offers just even more impressive views on the peaks and the surrounding landscapes. Make sure to have Euros with you, as they don't take cards, for their yummy hut food.
Heading back towards Rifugio Auronzo and the parking lot the trails leads through rocky mountains sides. Take a closer look at all the rocks lying around, most of them are square-edged and people build little towers with them along the path.
How to get there
From Toblach and from Cortina follow the road towards Tre Cime di Lavaredo / Rifugio Auronzo.
Road toll 30€ for a car.
Where to stay
If you're looking for a nice homebase as a starting point for some Dolomites adventures, I can recommend the Skyview Chalets / Camping Toblach right at the Lake Toblach, which is about 30mn drive from the Three Peaks.
The camp site is well equipped, including a shop with local products. The staff is very friendly and always happy to help.The Sykview Chalets are a handfull of gorgeous little huts in a gated area, some equipped with private jacuzzi and sauna. The name says it all, all chalets have a glas cube up front hosting a double bed. Falling asleep under the starry sky has never been easier. Breakfast gets delivered every morning in a basket at the chalet door, all you have to do is pick it up, take it to the bed and enjoy breakfast with a panoramic view.