By Dennis Payne, ed.
Spring & Autumn walking in the Dolomites
Italy, April 2016: There’s no better time to walk in the Dolomites than in spring and autumn, when – outside of the high summer season – the hiking routes are quieter and temperatures are milder. The only decision to make is whether to go in spring to see the wild flower meadows or in autumn when the landscape turns a golden hue. Or to go twice, given that Adler Dolomiti (www.adler-dolomiti.com) has some great walking offers in both seasons.
Hiking in the Dolomites – spring & autumn
Adler Dolomiti in Ortisei, the capital of Val Gardena, provides the perfect base from which to explore the Dolomites, not least because two guided walks are offered every day by the hotel on a complimentary basis. The routes of these hikes changes daily, so one day you could be enjoying a gentle four-and-a-half hour walk across Europe’s highest pastures and the next you could be experiencing wonderful panoramic views on a demanding and varied ascent in the direction of Rasciesa.
Whichever route you take, it will form a part of the 13,000 kilometres of natural, well-marked trails in the region that lead through apple orchards, along irrigation channels, Alpine mountain paths and sweet chestnut groves, and across high meadows, while affording stunning views of the Dolomites’ pinky-grey craggy limestone peaks and virgin forests that pepper the landscape. Wildlife is abundant too – it’s possible to see marmots, eagles, white partridges and chamoix.
Adler Dolomiti & outdoor space; indoor swimming pool with views
It is really not surprising that the Dolomites, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2009, are one of the world’s best-loved walking areas. The dramatic scenery and wide range of routes on offer, from easy hikes to the challenging via ferrata (literally, iron roads, which were created during the First World War to assist troop movement) make this region a perfect destination for a wide range of guests from families through to experienced hikers.
Returning to the Adler Dolomiti after a hard day’s exertions, guests can enjoy complimentary use of the hotel’s 9000 square metres of private parkland and the largest wellness facility in the Dolomites, with three distinct zones: Dolasilla for beauty & vitality, Aguana where the pools, including thermals, are located, and AdlerFit with a full programme of activities – yoga’s always popular for stretching out muscles after a long hike uphill! The Adler Dolomiti’s Spring is in the Air and Autumn Sunshine Walking Specials are valid from 12 May to 18 June and from 18 September to 4 December 2016, respectively.