Via Ferrata of World War I: Via Ferrata & Hiking Tour

Self Guided

Guided

Luxury

from €1.230 from €2.110 on request

Hike and climb your way along Via Ferrata of WWI, trekking on the Dolomites Alta Via high routes, exploring fascinating WWI ruins and history, and ascending a different challenging via ferrata each day.

  • Length 7 Nights / 8 Days
  • Trip Type Via Ferrata
  • Activity Level Challenging
  • Start / Finish Cortina D'Ampezzo
  • Dates This trip is available as a custom, private departure on dates of your choosing from July to September

Highlights

  • Climb on via ferrata and hike the tunnels constructed during WWI, taking in breath-taking vistas while imagining the challenges of fighting in this vertical terrain
  • Enjoy the welcoming hospitality of mountain rifugios, experiencing true mountaineer style
  • Explore WWI ruins, transformed into open air museums paying homage to the challenges and loss of life during the conflict
  • Breathe in pure air and experience a variety of spectacular landscapes in a UNESCO World Heritage Site! 

OVERVIEW

Imagine the Dolomites from 1915-1918. World War One raged across the peaks and valleys, with fighting between Austrian and Italian soldiers, oftentimes friends from a neighboring village. During the sad years that saw Italy face the German and Austro-Hungarian armies on the battle fields here, the soldiers, who lived along a war front that touched these high peaks tried to make their lives in the mountains as easy as possible. What the soldiers did in the Dolomites region (and not only here) is incredible and fascinating: long tunnels dug inside the mountains with dynamite and picks, suspension bridges across scary chasms, iron paths, refuges that literally hung on sheer cliffs… just to mention a few of the works that are still standing today. Some are remnants in their original state and some have been renovated and transformed into open air museums, for example the ones present on the following mountains: Lagazuoi, Marmolada, Tofane, and Col di Lana.

We firmly believe that the Vie Ferrate (iron paths) that have been opened just to increase the income of a Rifugio (mountain hut) have nothing to with the true spirit of mountaineering or the passion for the mountains. On the other hand, the ones opened by the soldiers, who needed to move safely in a dangerous environment, and that today are still practicable, often after some renovation, must be considered as silent witnesses of the most tragic and memorable events of World War I. This itinerary can make us stop and consider the horrors of all wars, while admiring a breath-taking panorama; the consciousness of what happened in this incredibly beautiful area can give a small contribution to the cause of Peace.

 

Day by Day

Day 1 ~ Arrive in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Dolomites
Arrive in Cortina d’Ampezzo (1,224m / 4,016') on your own and check into your hotel (private transfer available on request). Cortina d’Ampezzo is a charming alpine resort town surrounded by stunning peaks. Host to the 1956 Winter Olympics, Cortina enjoys a reputation for great skiing in winter, and in the summer attracts hikers and climbers who challenge the rocky faces of the nearby mountains.
In the afternoon, meet your UIAGM/IFMGA Professional Mountain Guide for a trip briefing and orientation, and to check-out the ferrata equipment you will use for your exciting days in the Dolomites.
… Hotel in Cortina D'Ampezzo


Day 2 ~ Via Ferrata Col dei Bos
In the morning, meet your UIAGM/IFMGA Professional Mountain Guide for a trip briefing and orientation, and to check-out the ferrata equipment you will use for your exciting days in the Dolomites.
Transfer to Passo Falzarego from where you’ll begin your trek. Because it is still used for training by the Italian alpine military units, and because it is quite new (it was created by Italian Alpine Troops in 2009), the Col dei Bos via ferrata is not marked on older maps or guide books.

Comprised of an impressive network of steel cables, protective cones and special bolt reinforcements, this via ferrata begins above Col Gallina near the Falzarego pass and ascends along the south face of the Col dai Bos. The first part is the most challenging section, but it gradually gets easier at about 80m / 262', where you reach a wide ledge, a short wall and several manageable slopes. The pleasant climb continues on to another demanding wall and then a nice, easy grassy section.

The final 100m / 328' section of the ferrata contains a few vertical segments, however there are plenty of available holds to assist, making it quite a safe and enjoyable journey.  More spectacular views await you at the 2,559m / 8,396' summit and cross, where you can rest in the scenic meadows and admire the summit of the Ampezzo Basin. (Ascend a moderate 400m / 1,312' via ferrata.)

After you've enjoyed the vistas, descend from here along the normal path and traverse under the Tofana massif, where a final ascent will bring you to your rifugio for the night.
(3-4 hours hiking ~6 km / 3,6 miles, and ascending a moderate 400m / 1,312' via ferrata. Total 1,090m / 3,571' ascent, 660m / 2,166' descent.)
B,D… Rifugio


Day 3 ~ Via della Pace – Path of Peace (Hiking & Via Ferrata)
Today is the hardest day of the trip. The Via della Pace, or Peace Way, is a long excursion that crosses the southwest face of the Furcia Rossa. The fascinating alpine route in wild surroundings follows the front held by the Austrian troops in the First World War. A short ferrata with ladders and cables leads up to Furcia Rossa III, one of the peaks in the Furcia Rossa chain which, separated by the deep Valle Travenanzes, “looks out” onto Tofane, defended by the Italians.
Take some time to enjoy the views, and then descend from here towards the Alpe di Fanes, and rejoin the Alta Via 1 on a grassy plain in order to reach the rifugio for the night (2,050m / 6,726').
A long itinerary in an isolated environment which requires experience and good mountaineering skills. Its length also makes it physically tough. Particular care is also required as in some parts the fixed cables are poorly maintained. There are some very exposed sections which are mostly climbed using ladders.
(7-8 hours hiking ~17 km / 11 miles, ascending several 100-400m / 328'-1,312' challenging grade 1C & 2C via ferrata. Total 707m / 2,320' ascent, 1,237m / 4,058' descent.)
B,D… Rifugio


Day 4 ~ Lagazuoi Massif (Hiking)
After yesterday’s challenges, you’ll indulge a more relaxing itinerary hiking along the classic Alta Via 1 trail through the Alpe di Fanes Grande (no via ferrata today!). The high point is crossing over the saddle Forcella del Lago (2,486m / 8,156') to reach the Alpe di Lagazuoi, and on to the peak of the Lagazuoi Piccolo at 2,752m (9,029'). Tonight you’ll enjoy staying at one of the highest rifugio in the Dolomites. Set atop Mount Lagazuoi (2,778m / 9,114'), a veritable castle of rock with spires and turrets, it holds the secrets of WWI in hidden military forts deep within.
(5-6 hours hiking 12 km / 7 miles, 1,150m / 3,773' ascent,  450m / 1,476' descent.)
B,D… Rifugio


Day 5 ~ Sentiero D. Kaiserjager & Col di Lana (Hiking)
From the peak of Lagazuoi Piccolo, descend on the Cengia Martini “Sentiero D. Kaiserjager” on a well-equipped path, which arrives at Passo Valparola (2,168m / 7,113') in about an hour’s hiking. From here, continue towards Passo Sief (2,209m / 7,247'), and climb the peak of this not very high mountain (2,424m / 7,953). Cima Sief is connected to the peak of Col di Lana (2,452m / 8,045') through a wire-protected ridge. These two mountains were the scene of heavy fighting during WWI – Italian troops attempted to storm the peak a number of times, resulting in heavy losses, and the Italians later dubbed it “Col di Sangue” or “Blood Mountain.” From Col di Lana, descend to Livinallongo (1,470m / 4,823'), where you will spend the night at a hotel in town. 
(6-7 hours hiking ~13 km / 8 miles, 284m / 932' ascent , 1,576m / 5,171' descent.)
B,D… Hotel in Arabba


Day 6 ~ Via Ferrata delle Trincee
From Arabba, take the cable car to Porta Vescovo (2,478m / 8,130') where you will find the start point of the Via Ferrata delle Trincee. You will definitely need a head lamp for this one! The ferrata ends near Passo Padon (2,369m / 7,772'), where you will have a splendid view of the Marmolada Glacier, weather permitting. Descend to Passo Fedaia, (2,050m / 6,756'), and take the old cable car to your rifugio for the night (2,626m / 8,615'), at the foot of the Marmolada Glacier. 
(4-5 hours hiking ~7 km / 4 miles and ascending a difficult 300m / 984' grade 4B via ferrata. 109m / 358' hiking descent.)
B,D… Rifugio


Day 7 ~ Via Ferrata della Cresta Ovest Marmolada
Today’s route begins with a slight descent across glacial moraine. From here, climb onto the Marmolada Glacier and hike to just below Forcella Marmolada (2,896m / 9,501'), where the Via Ferrata della Cresta Ovest (west ridge) begins. After an hour and a half of climbing on this well protected but exposed route, you reach the summit of Marmolada – Punta Penìa (3,343m / 10,968') – the highest peak of the Dolomites. Crampons and ice axes are essential for today’s route – especially for the descent. You will be able to rent them at the rifugio in order to not have to carry them throughout the entire itinerary. 
(6 hours hiking 5 km / 3 miles and ascending a challenging 400m / 1,312' grade 4C via ferrata. Total 850m / 2,789' ascent and descent.)

In the afternoon, transfer to Cortina d’Ampezzo for your final night in the Dolomites!
B… Hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo


Day 8 ~ Departure
Breakfast and departure on your own (private transfer available on request).

B…


EXTEND YOUR ADVENTURE!
You've come all this way, why not stay a little longer? Dolomite Mountains offers fantastic extensions that you can enjoy before or after your trip in the Dolomites. Explore Venice, Verona, Lake Garda, Florence, or Milan, or any of the many other magical places found throughout Italy. There's no more perfect way to recover from jet lag upon arrival, or delay your return to reality at the end of your trip!


Trip itinerary may vary based on weather conditions, fitness levels and abilities of participants, and/or the recommendations of your guide.

 

Cost

Guided Trip:
From €3.260 per person (minimum 2 members)
From €2.110 per person (minimum 4 members)

Self-Guided Trip:
From €1.620 per person (minimum 2 members)
From €1.230 per person (minimum 4 members)
First and last days are guided

The cost is based on 3-star hotels, it can be upgraded to 5-star, please contact us for a quotation.

Private room supplement in rifugios: €15 per rifugio, per person (based on availability)
High season supplement from July 20th to August 31st: surcharge of 5%

Cost includes

  • Briefing, logistics and maps of the area
  • 2 night accommodation in 3-star hotel in Cortina D'Ampezzo
  • 1 night accommodation in 3-star hotel in Arabba
  • 4 night accommodation in charming Rifugios
  • All breakfasts
  • Dinners at Rifugios
  • Local English speaking UIAGM/IFMGA Professional Mountain Guide for 6 days
  • Via Ferrata equipment
  • Lifts and cable cars as per itinerary
  • Luggage transfer on day 4
  • 22% VAT Italian tax

Helicopter Sightseeing & Airport Transfers – There's Nothing Else Like It!
Take to the skies for an aerial look at the spectacular Dolomite Mountains, and make memories to last a lifetime! Whether on a panoramic sightseeing ride or an airport transfer, you'll appreciate a bird's eye view of the stunning scenery aboard state-of-the-art single engine helicopters. With over 30 years in operation, our experienced pilots and ground crew employ the utmost safety standards, quality, and service. Contact us for a quotation.
Rides are weather dependent. Heli-transfers from/to airports require advanced reservation. In-resort rides can be reserved with shorter notice

Accommodation

Want to learn more about our Hotels and B&Bs?
The Dolomites has a multi-faceted culture and history that is reflected in each village we visit, and we make sure to provide you with the most authentic experience of the region possible through the hotels and B&Bs we offer. Hotels and chalets are available in the larger villages, while agriturismos (working farms with accommodations similar to B&Bs) are more common in rural areas. And we always make sure you have access to inspired regional cuisine, and the best panoramas you can get in the Dolomites!

Prefer luxury accommodations?
You can also book a custom departure of this trip using our Luxury Hotels. For details, please contact us

Want to learn more about our Mountain Inns & Rifugi?            
Rifugi – or mountain huts in English – are the classic accommodation for hikers, climbers, mountaineers, and ski mountaineers in the Alps. Set in spectacular locations high in the Dolomites, rifugi are accessible only on foot (with a few exceptions that are reachable by car). These marvelous establishments are open primarily in the summer, with a select few in winter, and offer meals and sleeping facilities.

The Dolomite rifugi are considered the best in the Alps. While some are dormitory style with bunk beds, many meet the standard of a simple guest house with private rooms and en-suite bathrooms, and each has its own unique character and charm. Bedding and linens are provided, hot showers are available, and meals are served in common dining areas – like a small mountain inn set high in the mountains with the most incredible vistas in the Dolomites. Whether you’re hiking in summer or skiing in winter, an overnight rifugio stay is not to miss on a Dolomite holiday.

To learn even more about rifugi in the Dolomites, check out our Rifugios in the Dolomites article, and learn about one of the best ways to experience these incredible mountains!

More info

LEARN MORE: Want to learn more about via ferrata? Check out our who, what, where, and when of climbing via ferrata resource!

Check out the high definition videos in our SUMMER VIDEO GALLERY!

 

Still want more? Why not extend your adventure!
Dolomite Mountains offers fantastic extensions that you can enjoy before or after your trip in the Dolomites. Explore VeniceVeronaLake GardaFlorence, or Milan, or any of the many other magical places found throughout Italy. There's no more perfect way to recover from jet lag upon arrival, or delay your return to reality at the end of your trip!

Group Trip Dates

Trip name   Trip dates   Min persons   Trip status   Price    
25-30 Jul
2017
4
Available
€ 1.040
27 Jul - 3 Aug
2017
4
Limited space
€ 1.310
8-14 Aug
2017
4
Sold out
€ 1640
15-21 Aug
2017
4
Sold out
€ 2860
16-20 Aug
2017
4
Limited space
€ 930
16-21 Aug
2017
4
Sold out
€ 1.040
26 Sep - 1 Oct
2017
4
Limited space
€ 1640
26 Sep - 1 Oct
2017
4
Limited space
€ 2860
2-8 Oct
2017
4
Available
€ 2860
3-10 Oct
2017
4
Available
€ 1640
3-7 Oct
2017
4
Sold out
€ 930
10-15 Oct
2017
4
Available
€ 1.040
21-27 Feb
2018
4
Available
€ 2390
26-31 Feb
2018
4
Limited space
€ 1.320
25 Mar - 2 Apr
2018
4
Available
€ 2480
25 Mar - 2 Apr
2018
4
Available
€ 1600
4-9 Apr
2018
4
Available
€ 1350
11-17 Apr
2018
4
Available
€ 2390
18-23 Apr
2018
4
Sold out
€ 1.320
18-23 Apr
2018
4
Available
€ 2480
17-22 Jul
2018
4
Sold out
€ 1.040
1-5 Aug
2018
4
Sold out
€ 930
7-13 Aug
2018
4
Available
€ 1640
7-13 Aug
2018
4
Available
€ 2860
8-12 Aug
2018
4
Limited space
€ 930
15-22 Aug
2018
4
Available
€ 1640
25-31 Sep
2018
4
Sold out
€ 2860
8-12 Oct
2018
4
Limited space
€ 930
16-21 Oct
2018
4
Limited space
€ 1.040
13-19 Feb
2019
4
Sold out
€ 2390
27 Feb - 2 Mar
2019
4
Limited space
€ 2390
10-16 Mar
2019
4
Sold out
€ 2390
17-22 Apr
2019
4
Sold out
€ 2480
18-23 Apr
2019
4
Limited space
€ 1.320
24-30 Apr
2019
4
Limited space
€ 2390
16-21 Jul
2019
4
Sold out
€ 1.040
21-28 Jul
2019
4
Available
€ 1.890
7-11 Aug
2019
4
Limited space
€ 930
4-10 Sep
2019
4
Available
€ 1.310
7-11 Oct
2019
4
Available
€ 930
7-14 Oct
2019
4
Available
€ 1.890
15-20 Oct
2019
4
Available
€ 1.040
12-18 Feb
2020
4
Available
€ 2390
19-25 Feb
2020
4
Available
€ 2390
19-24 Feb
2020
4
Available
€ 2480
29 Feb - 4 Mar
2020
4
Limited space
€ 2390
15-20 Apr
2020
4
Available
€ 2480
15-20 Apr
2020
4
Available
€ 1.320
21-27 Apr
2020
4
Available
€ 2390