Dolomites High Level Traverse

A high level walking holiday through the Dolomite Alps of Italy




From 0 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Trek from Sesto to Sassolungo and the Sella Group
  • The astonishing Tre Cime di Lavaredo
  • Welcoming Italian mountain refuges and traditional hospitality
  • The walkers Haute Route of the Dolomites

This walking holiday takes place close to the border of Italy and Austria where several striking mountain massifs of the Dolomites rise dramatically above peaceful green valleys. Popular with climbers and hikers alike, this playground for the outdoor enthusiast boasts numerous long distance trails, one of the best of which runs east to west from the Innerfeldtal Valley (at the heart of the spectacular Sesto Dolomites) to the Selva di Val Gardina beneath the imposing peaks of Sassolungo and the Sella Group. Traversing a weird and wonderful landscape of rock walls and spires, including the fantastic Tre Cime di Lavaredo, this holiday shows off the great diversity of Dolomites scenery. Pretty villages, forest trails, Alpine meadows and rocky ridges combine to make this an unforgettable experience. Accommodation throughout is at spectacularly located refuges where we can expect to receive the very best of traditional Italian hospitality. Staying in the high mountain huts means we can remain truly immersed in the experience of a high level traverse. With its singular blend of culture and landscape, this is an exceptional hiking holiday. 

Is this holiday for you?

The trek is a high level traverse of the Sesto and Bardia Dolomites staying in mountain huts and involves walking on a variety of trails which take us through forests, across alpine meadows and over rocky passes. The trails used for the most part offer very good underfoot conditions. We average around 6 - 7 hours walking each day with typically 750 - 1000 metres of ascent and/or descent each day. Accommodation is in mountain huts and guest houses. Clients have access to their main bags every other evening and sleeping bags are not required, therefore there is no need to carry a large backpack - only what is necessary for a single overnight. This walking holiday is perfect for the regular hiker with a good level of fitness.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • A single transfer is provided from Venice Marco Polo Airport to the Dreischusterhutte.
  • Walk to the Locatelli Hut (2438m) beneath the spectacular towers of the Tre Cime di Laverado.
  • Traverse the wild valleys of Rientztal and Ladro to the Pratopiazza Hut (1991m).
  • Hike over the Gaiselleite Pass (2260m) to reach the stunningly situated Biella Hut.
  • Walk via the lakes of the Fanes reserve area to the Fanes Refuge (2060m).
  • Ascend to the Medesc Pass, then descend to Villa and continue up to the Gardenacia Hut (2051m).
  • Walk though the Langental Valley to Selva di Val Gardena beneath the imposing Sassolungo.
  • Departure day. A single transfer to Venice Marco Polo Airport is provided.
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Venice Marco Polo Airport. Please refer to Joining Arrangements and Transfers in the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is shown on our website as Guaranteed or Limited Spaces.

If flying from the UK there are a number of low cost airlines offering flights to Venice Marco Polo Airport. These include Easyjet who have flights from London and Manchester, Jet 2 who have flights from Edinburgh, Leeds Bradford, Manchester and Newcastle and Thomas Cook Airlines who have flights from London, Manchester, Glasgow and Birmingham. Other airports may be available. Click on the Flight information link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively, if you would prefer to book a Flight Inclusive package using scheduled airlines from the UK, please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive, you will benefit from full financial protection.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • trip direction
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • A single transfer is provided from Venice Marco Polo Airport to the Dreischusterhutte.

    We meet at Venice’s Marco Polo Airport. KE Land Only package services begin with a single group transfer (3 hours) by private vehicle to the start of the trek. There is a private supply road up to our first night's accommodation at the Dreischusterhutte but this is only open to the public after 6.00 pm so we will stretch our legs with a walk up from the valley on the footpath.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 100m

    • Meals d

    • Time 1

  • Walk to the Locatelli Hut (2438m) beneath the spectacular towers of the Tre Cime di Laverado.

    We begin the traverse with a magnificent day of classic Dolomite trekking, climbing via the Campo di Dentro to the superbly situated Locatelli Hut beside the spectacular towers of the Tre Cime Laverado. This hut is one of the oldest in the entire Dolomites region, having been being built originally in 1883. Thankfully, it has been modernised since that time and now offers very comfortable accommodation and a restaurant with one of the best views anywhere. Sitting with a beer watching the sunset colours on the towers of Tre Cime and nearby Monte Paterno will be an unforgettable experience.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 900m

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 500m

    • Time 6

  • Traverse the wild valleys of Rientztal and Ladro to the Pratopiazza Hut (1991m).

    Another great day of trekking. We drop down into the Rinbon Valley and then climb through the wild valleys of Rientztal and Ladro past blue lakes and through thick forest. At the head of the Lado we climb to cross the Strudelkopfsattell Pass (2200m) and then descend to a plateau area known as Pratopiazza, one of the most beautiful landscapes in the Dolomites with broad flower-strewn meadows framed by woods and overlooked by soaring limestone peaks.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 800m

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1200m

    • Time 7

  • Hike over the Gaiselleite Pass (2260m) to reach the stunningly situated Biella Hut.

    From the Pratopiazza Hut we start out through a charming meadow landscape. As we gain height the atmosphere changes to Alpine and we pass beneath the incredible tower of Croda Rossa (3146m) before ascending to the Gaiselleite Pass (2260m). This is crossed without difficulty and leads to the Col Sora Forno. Directly below this last pass, the Biella Hut, situated at 2327 metres and at the foot of the Croda del Becco, is our overnight stop.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 850m

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 500m

    • Time 7

  • Walk via the lakes of the Fanes reserve area to the Fanes Refuge (2060m).

    We hike past Fosses Lake and through the valley that holds Piccolo Lake. We are now in the National Park of Fanes, one of the largest reserve areas in the region. A day of trekking through splendid Alpine meadows, coloured by a multitude of flowers. We descend to the Scuro Valley and then climb again following the San Vigilio stream to reach our overnight accommodation in the Fanes Hut (2060m) which is more of a mountain hotel than a hut.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 750m

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1040m

    • Time 7

  • Ascend to the Medesc Pass, then descend to Villa and continue up to the Gardenacia Hut (2051m).

    From the hut we climb up to the Medesc Pass where we can view the huge wall of Sass de la Crusc which gives some of the finest rock climbing in the Dolomites. We have an easy walk down now to Villa (1468m) which is also known as Stern. Lying at the heart of the beautiful Bardia Valley, Villa is a typically picturesque Dolomite Alpine village. From here we climb for 1 hour through larch forest to reach our overnight stop in the Gardenacia Hut at an elevation of 2051 metres.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1100m

    • Meals bd

    • Descent 1100m

    • Time 7

  • Walk though the Langental Valley to Selva di Val Gardena beneath the imposing Sassolungo.

    Our final day of trekking. We now head due west towards the Gardenacia Pass (2543m) travelling through a stunning karst landscape on a high plateau containing the peaks of the Puez group. Finally we descend the Langental Valley to Selva di Val Gardena beneath the imposing peaks of Sassolungo and the Sella Group. We check into a hotel here. The evening meal is not included in the holiday price on this day as there is a wide choice of restaurant types for the group to choose from for their final celebratory dinner.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 500m

    • Meals b

    • Descent 980m

    • Time 6

  • Departure day. A single transfer to Venice Marco Polo Airport is provided.

    After breakfast, there is a single group transfer to Venice Marco Polo Airport, where KE Land Only package services end.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A professional English-speaking local mountain leader
  • Group airport transfer on Day 1 and Day 8
  • Accommodation in a variety of gite and refuges in dormitory style rooms
  • Meals as detailed in the meal plan
  • Secure luggage transfer between overnight stops on Days 1 / 3 / 5 and 7.
  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers (other than the single group transfer on Day 1 and Day 8)
  • Some meals as detailed in the meal plan
  • Optional cable car on Day 7
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.
All to be expected in Italy, the food provided in the huts and guest houses is of a high standard. Beer, wine and soft drinks are available every night.
All breakfasts and all dinners except dinner on the last evening, are included in the trip price. Packed lunches can be purchased from your accommodation or it is possible to buy ingredients for self made lunches from supermarkets. You should allow Euro 7 - 15 per lunch.
A single, timed group transfer is provided from Venice, Marco Polo Airport on Day 1 at around 1:30 pm and back to that airport on Day 8, arriving at 10.30 am. Hotel contact details and emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.
On this trip we use a variety of guest houses and mountain huts. Accommodation is dormitory style in non-segregated dormitories with four or more bunk beds in a room.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Local English speaking leader
A total of €150 – 200 should be sufficient to cover all personal expenses, including lunches, drinks and other incidental expenditure. If you are intending to hire or purchase items of equipment, you should budget accordingly.
Your baggage will be transported between overnight stops by our vehicle where this is possible. Practically this means clients will have access to their main baggage on every other night. During the day, you will have to carry only what you need for a single overnight in addition to your normal mountain walking gear. We ask that you limit your luggage to one day pack plus one travel bag (your KE trek bag).

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots
  • Socks
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Waterproof overtrousers / rain pants
  • Underwear
  • Baselayer shirts (1 short sleeve, 1 long sleeve)
  • T-shirts and/or casual shirts
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper
  • Windproof/waterproof jacket
  • Warm fleece gloves or mittens
  • Sunhat
  • Warm hat
  • Eyewear – sunglasses
  • Daypack 30 litres / 1800 cu in
  • Headtorch / headlamp with batteries
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Water bottles 1 litre / 1 quart (x2)
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Antibacterial hand wash
  • Sheet sleeping bag or sleeping bag liner
  • Small padlock to lock trek bag
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: A broad spectrum antibiotic,
  • antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium)
  • painkillers, plasters (band-aids) and blister treatment,
  • insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

The following items are optional:

  • Training shoes / sneakers
  • Gaiters
  • Spare laces
  • Shorts
  • Long johns (thermal underwear)
  • Swimwear (sauna/hot tub may be available)
  • Trekking poles
  • Ear plugs (especially if you are not the one snoring)
  • Insect repellant – (DEET)
  • Camera, media, batteries
  • Change of clothes
  • Pocket-knife (note: always pack sharp objects in hold baggage)
  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Visa Europe

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations. UK residents should obtain a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is still vital when travelling overseas.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Although the best preparation is regular hiking in the mountains, jogging, squash and swimming are all good for developing better stamina. Before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The temperatures that we can expect to encounter during the day will be reasonably warm, at around 20°C / 68°F. The weather is usually stable at this time of year, but mountainous areas do generate their own weather systems and occasional rain and thunderstorms cannot be ruled out. You should be prepared for all eventualities!
  • Walking in the Dolomites. Gillian Price.
  • Cicerone Gillian Price’s Cicerone guide to Walking in the Dolomites is organized into 28 walks using the author’s extensive experience of the region. Detailed route descriptions are accompanied by colour line drawings mapping the route and is illustrated with colour photographs.

Casa Editrice Tabacco. 1:25,000 Series. Parco Naturale Dolomiti di Sesto (Sextner Dolomiten) and Parco Naturale Fanes-Senes-Braies Freytag & Berndt. Walking & Leisure Maps. 1:50,000. Kompass-Karten GmbH. 1:50,000 TCI (Touring Club Italiano) Dolomites Tourist Map and Guide. 1:200,000.

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