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Advice here has me zeroing in on Dolomites-Venice combo. Please advise further.

Advice here has me zeroing in on Dolomites-Venice combo. Please advise further.

Old Feb 24th, 2020, 11:49 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 41
Advice here has me zeroing in on Dolomites-Venice combo. Please advise further.

My wife and I are considering a 35th anniversary celebration in Italy during summer 2020. Based on very helpful insights and guidance from posters on my previous thread, I think at last I have some traction on planning choices, but I could use some refinement.

We are in awe of what we are seeing as possibilities to soak in the Dolomites as part of a combo platter with some time in Venice. Here's where the current thinking has us:

1. Fly into Venice
2. Rent a car; drive to Verona for 1-night
3. Proceed to Ortiesi for 3 nights as a home base for a variety of light-moderate hiking from there
4. Return car to Venice airport; take other transport to Venice lodging for 3 nights
5. Considering using 1 day for a day trip from Venice
6. Flying out of Venice home after 7 nights

Ok, what have we botched here? Too much, too quickly? If we do the 1-3 part, do we come back to Venice the same way or do a different route to try take in more/see different along way back to Venice? I am sorry for being such a novice in trying to understand the realities and practicalities--even with a fair amount of research now.

I would be so grateful for your assistance in helping me refine my focus more effectively/precisely.

Many, many thanks to you all who respond to help clueless wonders like myself.

Cheers,

RD
Prestonator is offline  
Old Feb 24th, 2020, 01:37 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 716
We've been to the Ortisei area twice but are by no means experts. We had planned a 3rd trip that never happened. Just a few thoughts:
  1. I don't think you're too rushed. Basically 3 days in Dolomites and 3 days in Venice.
  2. Is there a reason you're staying the first night in Verona? Assuming you're arriving before noon I'd rent a car and drive to Ortisei.
  3. Drive to Ortisei through Verona and Bolzano as you're planning but possibly drive back to Venice on a more easterly route that gets back to Venice via SS51 and A27. I was planning that for the trip that fell thru as a way to see more of the Dolomites w/out going back the way we had come. Others with more experience may have reasons that route isn't the best tho. I tend to "wander" thru google maps to find out of the way routes. Use street view for many of the roads to find routes that are beautiful/cool.
  4. In Ortisei check out one of our favorite hotels...Charme Hotel Uhrerhof Dëur. We stayed there once and found it so incredible that we brought our kids back for a second visit. Not the cheapest place but well worth it in our opinion.
  5. If cost ins't the biggest priority then consider taking a private water taxi to or from the airport into/out of Venice. Definitely worth trying once in your life.
Wekiva is offline  
Old Feb 24th, 2020, 08:08 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 268
The Dolomites are spectacular – we spent a week there in September 2018. With limited time, it makes sense to focus just on the Val Gardena region, based out of Ortisei. I hope you are visiting in June or after, by which time the snow should have cleared and the lifts/rifugios will be operational. Have a look at https://www.valgardena.it/en/summer-.../gardena-card/ - the card itself is great value if you’re planning more than a few walks/hikes (includes lifts and transport) – Alpe de Siusi and the Seceda-Col Raiser loop were our high points (we did a few more).

I’m not sure where you’re arriving into Venice from, but I’d avoid driving immediately after a long-distance flight. You could "optimize" your arrival day (leaving Venice itself for the end) by directly taking a train to Verona and spend your first night there. The next day you could take a train to Bolzano (pop into the museum to see Otzi) and then proceed to Ortisei

Using public transport :
- Take a bus to Ortisei. In Ortisei, your accommodation will likely give you a free mobility card (do check when you book, we stayed here Hotel Garni Planaces - Appartments and rooms in Ortisei and they gave us one) for free use of buses, so you don’t really need a car whilst based there at all. To return to Venice, you retrace the same way you got here – bus to Bolzano, train back to Venice with a change in Verona.

Using a car
- Rent a car to drive to Ortisei. The only reason you’d want a car is to drive through some interesting mountain roads and passes getting to and from Ortisei. While in Ortisei itself, our car was idling in the parking for 3 days. For example, from Bolzano you could drive part of the Great Dolomite Road – see https://www.guidedolomiti.com/en/great-dolomites-road/ turning north at Canazei and heading to Ortisei via Selva instead of heading towards Cortina d’Ampezzo. When heading back to Venice, a scenic route could be : cross the Gardena Pass to the Alta Badia (Corvara, La Villa – very interesting) and then via the SP24 and SR48 to Falzarego (Lagazuoi, Cinque Torri - very interesting) to Cortina D’Ampezzo before joining the SS51 and A27 back to Venice. This would be a long and exhausting day of driving, with little time for meaningful stops – I’d break journey with an overnighter near Cortina if possible.
ANUJ is offline  
Old Feb 24th, 2020, 08:26 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,061
Building on post #2

https://goo.gl/maps/SG2DVure3Xa1HK9M8

dugi_otok is online now  
Old Feb 25th, 2020, 06:19 AM
  #5  
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by ANUJ View Post
The Dolomites are spectacular – we spent a week there in September 2018. With limited time, it makes sense to focus just on the Val Gardena region, based out of Ortisei. I hope you are visiting in June or after, by which time the snow should have cleared and the lifts/rifugios will be operational. Have a look at https://www.valgardena.it/en/summer-.../gardena-card/ - the card itself is great value if you’re planning more than a few walks/hikes (includes lifts and transport) – Alpe de Siusi and the Seceda-Col Raiser loop were our high points (we did a few more).

I’m not sure where you’re arriving into Venice from, but I’d avoid driving immediately after a long-distance flight. You could "optimize" your arrival day (leaving Venice itself for the end) by directly taking a train to Verona and spend your first night there. The next day you could take a train to Bolzano (pop into the museum to see Otzi) and then proceed to Ortisei

Using public transport :
- Take a bus to Ortisei. In Ortisei, your accommodation will likely give you a free mobility card (do check when you book, we stayed here Hotel Garni Planaces - Appartments and rooms in Ortisei and they gave us one) for free use of buses, so you don’t really need a car whilst based there at all. To return to Venice, you retrace the same way you got here – bus to Bolzano, train back to Venice with a change in Verona.

Using a car
- Rent a car to drive to Ortisei. The only reason you’d want a car is to drive through some interesting mountain roads and passes getting to and from Ortisei. While in Ortisei itself, our car was idling in the parking for 3 days. For example, from Bolzano you could drive part of the Great Dolomite Road – see https://www.guidedolomiti.com/en/great-dolomites-road/ turning north at Canazei and heading to Ortisei via Selva instead of heading towards Cortina d’Ampezzo. When heading back to Venice, a scenic route could be : cross the Gardena Pass to the Alta Badia (Corvara, La Villa – very interesting) and then via the SP24 and SR48 to Falzarego (Lagazuoi, Cinque Torri - very interesting) to Cortina D’Ampezzo before joining the SS51 and A27 back to Venice. This would be a long and exhausting day of driving, with little time for meaningful stops – I’d break journey with an overnighter near Cortina if possible.
Wow! This is quite brilliant--thanks for the incredibly simple, yet detailed breakdown of potential paths for us. So very helpful and so much appreciated!!

Thank you!

RD
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Old Feb 25th, 2020, 06:21 AM
  #6  
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by Wekiva View Post
We've been to the Ortisei area twice but are by no means experts. We had planned a 3rd trip that never happened. Just a few thoughts:
  1. I don't think you're too rushed. Basically 3 days in Dolomites and 3 days in Venice.
  2. Is there a reason you're staying the first night in Verona? Assuming you're arriving before noon I'd rent a car and drive to Ortisei.
  3. Drive to Ortisei through Verona and Bolzano as you're planning but possibly drive back to Venice on a more easterly route that gets back to Venice via SS51 and A27. I was planning that for the trip that fell thru as a way to see more of the Dolomites w/out going back the way we had come. Others with more experience may have reasons that route isn't the best tho. I tend to "wander" thru google maps to find out of the way routes. Use street view for many of the roads to find routes that are beautiful/cool.
  4. In Ortisei check out one of our favorite hotels...Charme Hotel Uhrerhof Dëur. We stayed there once and found it so incredible that we brought our kids back for a second visit. Not the cheapest place but well worth it in our opinion.
  5. If cost ins't the biggest priority then consider taking a private water taxi to or from the airport into/out of Venice. Definitely worth trying once in your life.
This is an excellent set of thoughts/advice--thank you! And, yes, we are already eyeing the Charme Hotel Uhrerhof Deur. Looks great! Now we just have to see what this virus is going to do to world travel into the spring/summer?
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Old Feb 26th, 2020, 07:49 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 6,821
Bus Venice airport - Venice Mestre railway station: at least every 30 minutes
Train Venice Mestre - Verona: at least every hr
Train Verona - Bolzano - Ponte Gardena: at least every hr
connecting bus Ponte Gardena - Ortisei: every 30 minutes

Bus Ortisei - Sella Pass - Pordoi Pass - Canazei - Rolle Pass - Venice (form mid June until mid September):
Ortisei dp 11.16 - Canazei ar 12.55, dp 14.30 - Venice ar 19.50
neckervd is offline  
Old Feb 26th, 2020, 08:32 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 9,036
Hello. As mentioned above, unless you want to drive, it is fairly easy to do this trip by public transportation. I took a train from Venice to Bolzano. From Bolzano, I arranged a taxi to take me to my hotel in Ortisei (Hotel Grones, which I can recommend). I found the taxi service on the Val Gardena website and the driver I had was terrific. I could have taken the busy but I was solo, had heavy luggage, and it was very hot, so decided on the taxi as a treat to myself.

Enjoy your trip.
Leely2 is offline  
Old Feb 26th, 2020, 09:18 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 2,939
I'm following for a future trip. Thank you all for the great information!
zoecat is online now  
Old Feb 27th, 2020, 04:09 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by neckervd View Post
Bus Venice airport - Venice Mestre railway station: at least every 30 minutes
Train Venice Mestre - Verona: at least every hr
Train Verona - Bolzano - Ponte Gardena: at least every hr
connecting bus Ponte Gardena - Ortisei: every 30 minutes

Bus Ortisei - Sella Pass - Pordoi Pass - Canazei - Rolle Pass - Venice (form mid June until mid September):
Ortisei dp 11.16 - Canazei ar 12.55, dp 14.30 - Venice ar 19.50
Originally Posted by Leely2 View Post
Hello. As mentioned above, unless you want to drive, it is fairly easy to do this trip by public transportation. I took a train from Venice to Bolzano. From Bolzano, I arranged a taxi to take me to my hotel in Ortisei (Hotel Grones, which I can recommend). I found the taxi service on the Val Gardena website and the driver I had was terrific. I could have taken the busy but I was solo, had heavy luggage, and it was very hot, so decided on the taxi as a treat to myself.

Enjoy your trip.
Thank you, both!! I'm starting to lean more and more toward doing public transportation exclusively. It sounds rather straightforward. I'm sure the crowds and trying to carry our luggage everywhere will add a "hassle" element--but nothing too major. It's all part of the experience, right?

Thank you, again!

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