Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Itinerary suggestions please: Munich, Ortisei and ???

Itinerary suggestions please: Munich, Ortisei and ???

Apr 30th, 2013, 08:11 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 32
Itinerary suggestions please: Munich, Ortisei and ???

We have eight days at the end of June to visit the Dolomites and surrounding areas.
We will fly roundtrip into Munich. The main focus of this trip is to hike in the Dolomites and Ortisei seems like a great base. I would love suggestions for an itinerary.
We figure on a minimum of four of the eight nights in Ortisei.
Should we spend two nights in Munich? Come back through Salzburg?
If so, what would be a good place to stop between Ortisei and Salzburg?
Driving suggestions appreciated! Thanks, fodorites.
ccubac is offline  
Apr 30th, 2013, 10:33 PM
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 708
An obvious intermediate stop is Innsbruck.
asps is offline  
May 1st, 2013, 05:09 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 32
I was thinking that we would head to Salzburg via Cortina.
Is the drive from Ortisei to Cortina worth the detour?
Thank you.
ccubac is offline  
May 1st, 2013, 02:22 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 4,404

We've flown into/out of Munich for our trips that included the Dolomites also.

If spending a night or two in Munich is part of the plan, I'd suggest doing this as your last night or 2. You can drop the car, as there's no need for the car after arriving in Munich to end your trip.

I'd do this:

Arrive Munich airport and spend a night in the Innsbruck area. This is roughly 2 hours from Munich airport. We love staying in Hall in Tirol (15 min. from Innsbruck) at the Gasthof Badl. Stayed here on 4 different trips.


Drive to the Val Gardena for 4 nights (less than 2 hours from Innsbrcuk). With a car, anywhere in the Val Gardena is good, as the 3 towns/villages (Ortisei, St. Christina and Selva) are just 5 minutes from one another, St. Christina being in the middle.

You asked: "Is the drive from Ortisei to Cortina worth the detour?"

Yes. It's even better if you go further and drive the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse on the way back to Munich or Salzburg.

Leaving Val Gardena, drive over the spectacular Gardena Pass (even if you've done it during your stay) through the Alta Badia and end in Heiligenblut for 1 night. Heiligenblut is at the southern end of the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse.


Next am. drive the amazing Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse to either Salzburg area or to Munich.

You could also do this in reverse. Munich airport to Salzburg area, Over the Grossglockner to Val Gardena. Val Gardena to Innsbruck area (or Mittenwald, Germany for that matter), back to Munich or airport area.

You COULD drive to the Val Gardena, if you're up to it, from Munich airport. This is about a 3.5 to 4 hour drive all on highways via Kufstein and Innsbruck, Austria.

For places to stay, we can recommend:

Gasthof Badl in Hall in Tirol (Innsbruck)

Pension Mayringerlehen or Guesthouse Friedwiese by Salzburg (actually Berchtesgaden area, which is less than 30 min. from Salzburg).

Pension Ederhof in Heiligenblut (actually just outside the village).

In Mittenwald:

In the Dolomites:

In St. Christina, Val Gardena:

In La Villa, Alta Badia:

The Val Gardena and Alta Badia are 2 valleys separated (or joined) by the Gardena Pass.

We have photo's (3 pages) of all these at:


Just some suggestions.

pja1 is offline  
May 1st, 2013, 02:37 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 4,404
Hi again,

I forgot to mention: NEVER drive on Austrian highways without first buying a "Vignette". This is a "toll sticker" that MUST be on the car windshield. You can buy it at rest stops/gas stations in Germany after leaving Munich airport. The cheapest version is a sticker good for 10 consecutive days which costs about 8 Euros. You WILL be stopped and fined if you don't have this.

There's also a toll for the Brenner Pass/Europabruck (bridge) leaving Innsbruck area into Italy. Highways in Italy still have toll booths along them. You'll probably just use the A22 from Val Gardena to Austria or vice versa. The Grossglockner Hochalpenstrsse is also a "pay" road. There's a booth where you'll pay to drive this at either end (north or south end) of the road. Worth the money!

The Passes (Gardena, Sella, etc.) in the Dolomites are free. No cost. Some of the most spectacular roads we've ever driven.

pja1 is offline  
May 2nd, 2013, 07:16 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 32
Thank you so much, Paul. That is great information. I do want to minimize car travel, as five of us (three kids, 13, 17 and 20) will be squeezed into a car and everyone prefers to be hiking than driving. Also, since there are five of us, transition is less desirable. So for eight nights, I want to limit our destinations to three. I'm thinking then that perhaps we just go to Munich then Ortisei then Innsbruck? How many nights each would you give Innsbruck and Munich? Or would you choose different places? Thanks.

On another note, we do need a larger car for the five of us plus luggage to fit. Will we be fine with a wagon, suv or minivan on the mountain roads?
ccubac is offline  
May 2nd, 2013, 07:49 AM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 4,404

We never had anything larger than a compact (VW Golf, etc.) car. Large tour buses drive the alpine passes, so you'll be fine with a wagon, an SUV or Minivan.

For 3 different locations I'd probably go with:

Arrive Munich airport, pick up the car (at the airport) and drive to either Mittenwald, Germany OR Hall in Tirol, Austria (near Innsbruck) for 2 the first nights. For the views and hiking, I'd go with Mittenwald over Hall in Tirol or even Innsbruck.

Drive to the Dolomites via Innsbruck/Brenner for 4 nights.

Drive from Dolomites to Munich for last 2 nights.

Just my 2 cents.

What time does your flight leave Munich for home? We've had a 3:20pm flight home our last few trips. This allows us to stay in the Alps, up to 3 hours from the airport, on our last night before flying home.

pja1 is offline  
May 21st, 2013, 03:35 AM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 34
I'd like to ask pja1 (Paul) who has travelled there about walking in Ortisei. I have tremendous endurance for walking flat or downhill but can't climb (medication keeps me short of breath). Is it possible to tak a lift and then walk the mountain medows or areas with low grades and take lifts down? I may be taking this trip alone so don't like the idea of being deep in a forest. The Tirol is my favorite part of the world, have been to Ortisei off season so know the towns.
Tessie2 is offline  
May 21st, 2013, 02:40 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 4,404
Hi Tessie2,

I'll say up front that I'm not a hiker, but love the Dolomites. Easy walks can be done in the beautiful Alpe di Siusi/Seiser Alm. We took the Mont Seuc (Seiser Alm) cable car from Ortiei twice. At the top is a restaurant/cafe with indoor/outdoor seating looking onto the Dolomites. Here you'll find paved walking paths that are easy to walk. There are some grades, but nothing strenuous. I'm sure you could spend a day or more walking in the Seiser Alm.

There are other ways to access the Seiser Alm. Here's a map and an interactive map with lifts and hikes:





I hope this helps.

pja1 is offline  
May 21st, 2013, 03:27 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,048
Tessie2, in addition to the hikes Paul mentions in the Alpe di Siusi, one very nice hike that you can do from Ortisei without climbing is from the top of the Seceda lift. From the lift, you can walk on various paths downhill to a second lift, Col Raiser, which will take you back to Santa Cristina and the bus route (or walking path) back to Ortisei. View from the top looks like this:

I recall getting off the lift, walking out and seeing that view and feeling like I was on top of the world.

From the lift, there is a flat path over toward the Odle peaks, or you can start gradually walking downhill right from the lift. We walked to the Odle and then happened to pick a path that was a little steep (but not treacherous; I recall it was down some steps) near the very top but became much more gradual from there.

This walk is all in the meadow area--no deep forests!

All photos from that day's hike:

ms_go is online now  
May 22nd, 2013, 04:31 AM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 34
Thank you Paul and Ms_go you've helped me make my decision. Paul the websites and your information is great - I can do this, Ms_go your pictures are beautiful, thank you both. I'm sure I'll have more questions as it gets closer (probably last week of July, I know most expensive week but I'm in Europe for another reason). Any suggestions on where to stay, I'd like to be in town so I can walk around in the evening (if I'm still able to walk at the end of the day).
Tessie2 is offline  
May 22nd, 2013, 02:50 PM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 34
ms_go - I've just looked at all your photos of that trip -- amazing and you are a wonderful photographer. Were you part of a group or just on your own for the hiking. I'm wondering how you decided on your routes.
Tessie2 is offline  
May 22nd, 2013, 04:33 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 855
I'll jump in as well. There are an infinite number of hikes and routes you can take from the top of the many lifts which service the high country in the summer as well as the ski season. The real beauty is everywhere and the "huttes" are really restaurants planted among the mountains--some remote and many, many are along easy trails of various difficulty. Our last trip to Ortisei included a 3 day pass on these lifts and exploration on both sides of the valley and beyond--spectacular!

You are not alone in trying to figure out routes. Once you get the websites, it takes a lot of research and checking with locals, most likely where you end up staying. But rest assured, at the top of each lift is a service area and the many options are shown on maps (like a ski area would have) and the signs point the way and give an estimated time.

You are in for a treat and memories which will last forever. Enjoy--(another) Paul
macanimals is offline  
May 22nd, 2013, 06:06 PM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 34
Thanks macanimals - you are very encouraging and I'm getting excited. I will spend some time with the websites and maps and do some serious planning prior to the trip but these posts have really made me commit to doing it.
Tessie2 is offline  
May 22nd, 2013, 06:48 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,048
Tessie2, thanks I'm glad you enjoyed the photos.

We were on our own--no group. We did a lot of research in advance on hiking routes, both from some books that we acquired and from various sites, including the valgardena.it site that pja1 references above. That site has a wealth of information.

Our trip was also last week of July (but a few years ago). We have a full trip report here in case it is helpful:

Our most amazing hike was day seven, but that one did involve a substantial amount of climbing.

I think the two books we used for planning are referenced somewhere in the trip report.

Re: places to stay, we rented an apartment for a week in Selva. But the three towns in the Val Gardena are well connected by bus and if you choose a place near the center of any of them, you should have plenty of options for evenings.
ms_go is online now  
Feb 17th, 2014, 09:52 AM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 34
To MsGo. Have meant to tell you how much I enjoyed my trip which included the 3 days in the Dolomites in July 2013. My plan is to get back there and include a few days in the mountains with every trip I'm able to take. Thanks for all your help in making my plans
Tessie2 is offline  
Related Topics
Original Poster
Last Post
Jan 11th, 2013 09:29 AM
Apr 1st, 2008 06:54 PM
Jan 15th, 2007 09:54 AM
Apr 22nd, 2004 11:11 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:43 PM.