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Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

Central Florida...
Level Contributor
92 posts
59 reviews
Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

We are planning a trip to Italy in September or October. We will spend a few days in Rome (our 2nd trip there), about a week in Venice/area, and would like to spend a week in the Dolomites, and are considering Cortina d'Ampezzo as a home base. We would like to do some hiking (shorter, easier), driving, experiencing the area. I am an amateur photographer also. We are trying to decide when is the best time to come, looking at possible fall colors, cooler weather, less crowds. We love going off the beaten path. Can anyone tell us the best time of the year we could achieve this? The end of September, middle of October? I can't seem to find information on fall/fall colors for northern Italy. Any help/ideas would be appreciated. Also, when do restaurants/stores/hotels/cable lifts shut down? Thank you

Boston
Level Contributor
717 posts
56 reviews
1. Re: Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

Also planning a trip there this year so my advise should be taken as from someone who has never been but has similar interests and researched.

From photos I have seen fall color does not appear to kick in until October, so don't think you are going to see any fall colors in Sept.

Many rifugios close last week of Sept., around the 25th ; so I imagine some lifts will as well making October a little more iffy.

While it could snow in Sept., the chances of snow in October would be much greater.

Big deal for your photography I imagine is being able to see the peaks, clouds are great but not when cloud cover completely obscures the view. This seems to be total luck of the draw as to which days will have less low clouds than others, my total guess is Sept as a whole should be expected to have better weather than October.

There will also be more hours of sunlight in Sept than October.

I think both months are less likely to have afternoon storms than July and August do so seems to be a good time to get nice skies but a cold snap and snow is possible which is going to make packing for me a challenge to be prepared without knowledge of a forecast beforehand.

October will have fewer crowds I am certain, you also may find cheaper lodging and more availability if booking now. Many Cortina hotels and B&B's seem to be shut down for the entire season, so are going to be closed in Sept or October. Don't think any close for October that are open in Sept.

Except for fall color and fewer crowds overall I would think mid to late Sept is a better option than October.

Edited: 27 January 2016, 05:09
Boston
Level Contributor
717 posts
56 reviews
2. Re: Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

The lifts in Cortina do also shut down at some point in Sept.

Don't think they posted their schedule for 2016 but in 2015 it looks like

Faloria closed 20th of Sept.

& Cristallo closed 27th of Sept.

Arrow in the sky Tofana cable car I believe also ends end of Sept though could not find any exact dates posted anywhere

The Lagazoui cable car is open until mid December

Central Florida...
Level Contributor
92 posts
59 reviews
3. Re: Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

Hello Matt - I have been scrounging the forums for information, looking online. I feel better at making decisions now than when I originally posted this on 1/13! We have purchased airline tickets and are planning on being in the Dolomites the beginning of October. We are focusing more on the area between Cortina d'Ampezzo and Bolzano - La Villa/Ortisei. I actually picked 3 apartments in the area that I will consider staying at, and emailed them directly to ask them about weather and villages closing down. According to the 3 replies back, they say weather-wise, Sept. will be similar to the first 2 weeks in Oct. and the villages will still be open (closing the end of Oct - Nov). They all seem to say it's a perfect time to be there! I also contacted a posting on Tripadvisor for direct questions, and was told if we had a car, the lifts would not be horribly important as we would be so close up to the mountains it wouldn't matter too much. Thank you for your input - maybe we'll see you in South Tyrol in October 2016!

Boston
Level Contributor
717 posts
56 reviews
4. Re: Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

Yes, unlike the rest of Italy information on the Dolomites is definitely harder to come by.

I think it is still somewhat undiscovered by US tourists though extremely popular with Italians, Germans, etc..

I only found out about and instantly fell in love from afar by following some of the best photographers in the world. It is most definitely a current hot spot for photography and imagine you will run across a photo workshop being done during your time in the area as they are right now very common.

The smaller lifts are closed, but Lagazoui cable car will be open, there is a rifugio at the top for lunch and looks amazing for photos.

The legendary Tre Cime is open all year and does not have lifts but there seem to be walks with amazing views for all skill levels and is a mecca for photographers.

Also, check out Pordoi Pass / Saas Pordoi ; this is a high point you can reach by car but there is also a cable car there that will be open to take you to the top. If weather is not great you can still get a good view and if weather is nice take the cable car for a great view.

Passo Giau as well, no cable car there but the view from where you can park your car looks glorious and is a very popular stop for professional photographers at sunrise/sunset.

I still looking for more gems in the area that can be reached without too much effort or time but so far have enough to fill an itinerary and camera card.

I will be there a little before you but hope we both are blessed with nice weather conditions.

5. Re: Fall colors and fall travel in Cortina d'Ampezzo area

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