Northern Italy Trip September 2015, Part 4: Dolomites Part 1: Santa Maddalena, Siusi

Northern Italy Travel September 2015
Northern Italy Travel September 2015

Date: September 21, 2015

「Google Timelineによる軌跡」

We entered the Dolomites a day ahead of schedule because of the weather.

Initially, on September 21, we had planned to enter Verona in the afternoon, spend half a day sightseeing, stay overnight, enter the Dolomites on the 22nd, and hike Trecime on the 23rd. However, the weather started to break down in the afternoon of the 22nd and the weather forecast was for rain all day on the 23rd. We were planning to hike for a long time, so rain on the 23rd was a big problem. So we decided to give up Verona and go to Dolomites one day ahead of schedule.

In the morning, I went to Mantova to buy a SIM, and then took the motorway through Verona to the Dolomites. In the meantime, it was cloudy and occasionally rainy in the Veneto region where Verona belongs. The weather forecast said it would be fine in Trentino-Alto Adige, where the Dolomites belong, but I wondered if it was true. Should we give up the Dolomites and go to Verona? We headed to the north with a lot of anxiety.

However, as soon as we entered the Trentino-Alto Adige region from the Veneto, the weather suddenly improved! Wonderful sunny weather! This is very promising.

After entering the province of Trentino-Alto Adige and stopping once to refuel, we drove on to an area close to the Austrian border.

Speaking of the Dolomites…, the best place to take pictures « Santa Maddalena Village ».

まずドロミテエリアで最初に向かったのは、[highlight]「サンタマッダレーナ村(Santa Maddalena)」[/highlight]という小さな村。特段ドロミテ観光で有名でもなく、ガイドブック等には書いていなかったりもするのですが、実はこの村、知る人ぞ知るドロミテの写真撮影スポットなのです。

Such a view to capture!

It is an impressive sight. It was backlit, but I think I was able to take a very good picture.

To be precise, the spot to take this photo is not in the « Santa Maddalena Village ». It is a hill overlooking the village.

To get here, you have to drive from the village next to Santa Maddalena up a road that only one car can pass. If there is an oncoming car, you just have to deal with it. Well, it’s manageable.

The point is this.

We’ve accomplished one of the goals of this trip and are now on to the next.

Easy hiking in Alpe di Siusi

続いて向かったのは、「アルペ・ディ・シウジ」(Alpe di Siusi)。ここは広大な丘陵地帯となっているドロミテ西側のエリアでも特に人気のあるスポットです。このスポットへは、シウジという街からロープウェイで行く方法と、クルマ等で直接向かう方法の2つがあります。


There is a distance of about 8km from this entrance to Compaccio. It is a mountain road, but the road was wide enough and well prepared. The Dolomites had many roads that were easy to drive in general.

And after about 10 minutes, we arrived at Compaccio. We parked the car in the parking lot, changed into the shoes we brought from Japan and started hiking.

This is the view of Compaccio. This is the view from the lift I took from Panorama which I climbed after this.


Since the path was so well maintained, I felt that normal athletic shoes would be enough. However, it’s easier to walk with hiking shoes.

It takes about 40 minutes to reach the panoramic observatory by walking slowly.

And I used the lift on the way back. I’m OK with high places, but I’m not used to riding them, so I was a little scared at first. If you’re afraid of heights, don’t do it. It was fun once I got used to it. Also, be careful of the cold weather.

It seems that we could have gone a little deeper, but I think we could have enjoyed the approximate scenery, so that’s it for sightseeing in Alpe di Siusi. I changed my shoes and headed for the next destination.

Over the pass, Cortina d’Ampezzo, where we will stay today.

We headed to Cortina d’Ampezzo, a town in the eastern area of the Dolomites. I had booked an inn in this town in advance, but it was the next day because I came to Dolomites one day ahead of schedule. However, I decided to head straight to the inn that I had booked because I thought that I might be able to get by with a day ahead of schedule. It is from the experience that there should be no problem if it is a change of the advance in the past experience.

From Alpe di Siusi to Cortina d’Ampezzo via Ortisei on the north side of Siusi and the Valparola Pass. Although it was a mountain pass, the Dolomites are well maintained and driving was comfortable. Google Timeline is very useful to see where we went.

Then we arrived at Cortina d’Ampezzo in about 2 hours and 30 minutes. It seemed that the hotel didn’t have a parking lot, so I parked in a public space nearby (with a parking ticket because it falls under the category of street parking) and went to the hotel with the minimum amount of luggage. I came a day ago, but I asked if it was OK, so I was able to check in without any problems.

The view from the hotel. Do you think the weather will be OK tomorrow?

The Dolomites are German-speaking (Austria) and the food is influenced by


What was even more interesting was the food that night. The restaurant itself wasn’t much, but part of the menu was Austro-Hungarian. I couldn’t resist ordering a goulash.

It’s a feeling that you can never experience in Japan, that the culture and the language are so different even though it’s less than 200km north from Verona. This is the best part of European country trip. But the taste of the food was ordinary (laugh).