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One night stopover in Dolomites, where?

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Dec 27th, 2014, 10:17 AM
  #1
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One night stopover in Dolomites, where?

We will be driving from Italy to Seefeld Austria, so we will be going through the Dolomites.

Originally we were going to drive straight through, but we thought it might be nice to stop and stay one night in the Dolomites, have a nice dinner, take a short hike the next day and sightsee a little before heading on to Seefeld where we stay 6 nights.

There will be 6 of us, a family room for 4 for my brother and his family would be great, with scenic walks from the Hotel or very nearby.

Any suggestions as to town, and/or Hotel?
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Dec 27th, 2014, 10:36 AM
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Where in Italy will you be coming from and what time of year is this? Or you okay with driving some real mountain passes?
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Dec 27th, 2014, 11:19 AM
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We will have a long drive from Ravello, last day of June. Would love a place that offers half board, or be able to take a short walk to dinner.

Mountain passes are fine, my husband and I have driven many, and have driven through the Dolomites one other time. However we will have a van for the 6 of us, so as easy of a drive as possible. Staying on a valley floor easy walking, or with cable cars up would be great.
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Dec 27th, 2014, 11:32 AM
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Most people will advice stopping in Ortisei, that is a nice village in the mid of the mountains. But as you will be in Seefeld - another nice village in the mid of the mountains - I would advice a stop in a larger town like Bressanone/Brixen with some nice churches and the bishop palace to visit (for centuries, the Bressanone bishop was the governor of Tyrol as well). Bressanone is wine country and wines from the nearby Novacella/Neustift abbey are excellent.
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Dec 27th, 2014, 12:04 PM
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Bressanone/Brixen is not *in* the Dolomiti, and if you drive up the highways from Ravello to Bressanone and spend the night there, you will need to drive back south again and into the Dolomiti area in order to even glimpse the spectacular peaks. If you want to see the Dolomiti, you need to go to the area where they are.

But on the last day of June, although you will have until about 8.30 pm until the sun sets in the mountains, you are really looking at a VERY long drive. Close to 9 hours -- and that is not counting stopping for lunch or snacks or gas or encountering traffic. Your drive will in reality be closer to 11 hours -- meaning that if you want to reach the mountains before sunset, you will need to leave by 8am.

What might be more enjoyable is to plan to stop for the night much sooner, south of the Dolomiti, and then plan to have lunch and do a bit of hiking in the Dolimiti the next afternoon on your way to Seefeld --- since Seefeld is about 90 minutes from the Dolomiti.

Personally, were it me, I would plan to stop in Valeggio sul Mincio or right near there in an agriturismo with a pool and air con. The next day you can be in the heart of the Dolomiti by noon for sure. Have some lunch, enjoy a hike, and you can reach Seefeld by sundown.

http://www.borghitalia.it/pg.base.ph...go=894&lang=en
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Dec 27th, 2014, 12:09 PM
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Thanks asps, but we really don't want a larger town, just a nice hotel in a very scenic area, so we can chill over dinner, and have walks and scenery in the morning and early afternoon.

We probably wouldn't arrive until late afternoon, leave the next day around 2
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Dec 27th, 2014, 12:28 PM
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Sandralist, that looks like a pretty cool area/village, but I think we would rather drive the extra 2 hours or so to the Dolomites. We are planning on leaving Ravello around 6AM. Then upon arrival in the Dolomites, sit on a terrace or someplace after dinner and watch the sunset, then have a leisurely morning and hike the next day before heading to Seefeld.
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Dec 27th, 2014, 12:49 PM
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Ravello - Bressanone/Brixen is AT LEAST a 10 hrs drive without any intermediate stop or 12 hrs with a lunch stop and another intermediate stop.

Therefore I second the proposal of Sandralist to stop somewhere south of Lake Garda.

The drive from there to Seefeld will be another 3 hrs if you don't leave the motorway. But if you do so, you can't visit the Dolommites.
May be you check some detour like
Bolzano - Costalunga Pass - Canazei - Sella Pass - Ortisei - Chiusa
Ponte Gardena - Ortisei - Groeden Pass - San Martino - San Lorenzo - Fortezza
Bolzano - Alpe di Siusi - Castelrotto - Ortisei - Chiusa
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Dec 27th, 2014, 11:41 PM
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There is an infinity of alternatives but Ortisei is special. A really lovely small town in an ideal Dolomites setting. If you can make the extra effort to get there I really advise you to go for it.
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Dec 27th, 2014, 11:56 PM
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I can also recommend a nice 3*+ hotel at Ortisei: Hotel Villa Park.It's in the centre but easy to reach from the main road (without the risk of entering limited traffic zones). It has an ample car park and the breakfasts are some of the best in Ortisei (and I've stayed at various hotels there over the years).
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Dec 29th, 2014, 10:45 AM
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Appia ~ Thanks, Hotel Villa Park asks for a 7 day minimum on their website for winter, I can't tell if it's a requirement for summer also, I emailed them.

Which village has the most dramatic view of the Dolomites?

On Google Images, Corvara in Badia looks pretty awesome. Ortisei looks like the biggest, rockiest mountains are behind other mountains?
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Dec 29th, 2014, 12:29 PM
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Corvara is spectacular, but you add driving time to your day. Worse, if you get hung up along way and you end up arriving into the mountains as darkness begins to descend, then you are stuck with driving some challenging passes in fading light.

Is there any chance you could leave Ravello the day before and knock some hours off the next day's drive? Or arrive in Seefeld a day later?

From Ravello to Corvara in Badia you would be spending an absolute minimum of 10 hours behind the wheel -- excluding food and gas stops, and not factoring in any time for traffic or wrong turns. That is longer than most plane flights. At and the end of all this, you will be facing some fairly demanding driving.

If you have a team of drivers, it is somewhat less problematic -- but your passengers are going to need to get out and stretch their legs. Yes?
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Dec 29th, 2014, 12:55 PM
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sandralist

Yes, both my husband and I will take turns driving. We don't plan to "stop" for lunch, just keep stopping along the motorway to stretch legs, bathroom stop, get gas and pick up something to eat in the car.

No chance to leave Ravello a day earlier, or arrive Seefeld apartment a day later, all accommodation (apartments) booked, and I don't want to take anymore days off Rome/Ravello/Seefeld.

I was planning on 12 hrs, leaving Ravello at 6AM. I know it will be a long day, but we think we would rather do one really long day, sleep in a little the next day, cable car or walk, and leave for Seefeld around 2-2:30. Both my husband and I, and my brother and his family have often driven from our homes on the east coast to relatives in Indiana which is 8 1/2 to 11 hours.

That said, should we stay in Castelrotto or Ortisei and just drive to Seefeld via Corvara?
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Dec 29th, 2014, 02:33 PM
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I will forebear from saying -- since I am sure you already know -- that driving from the east coast to Indiana for 11 hours is not the same as leaving Ravello to drive hairpin curve roads to the urban periphery of Napoli at morning rush hour, then 4 hours of driving on the truck-filled A1 until you cross the mountain range between Florence and Bologna, where you are stuck on yet more truck arteries until you are clear of Verona.

Well, I guess forbearing is really not my style and I'm not thinking I'll be changing your mind, but other people look at these threads long into the future, and need to know that a drive from southern Italy to the Alps is no way resembles a drive from the east coast of the US to Indiana.

But to respond to your question: You will absolutely need to book a hotel in advance, and I don't think it is wise to book anything further than Castelrotto, but Ortisei is only 20 minutes further.

I don't know how late you are hoping to sleep the following morning, but Corvara in Badia is about one hour from Castelrotto and 45 minutes from Ortisei, and Corvara has fewer cable cars than Ortisei. Since you want to be on your way to Seefeld by 2 or 2.30pm, it might make more sense to spend the morning in Ortisei. Leaving from Ortisei for Seefeld is also shorter trip. If you feel ahead of schedule, you can always spontaneously choose to drive the extra miles from Ortisei through Corvara and take the scenic route north to Brunico (Bruneck), and then from there go west to hook up with the Brenner pass, and on to Seefeld. But you will add something close to 2 hours to your trip to Seefeld if you go via Corvara rather than go immediately east from Ortisei to the major highways.
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Dec 29th, 2014, 02:35 PM
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Sorry -- last line should read "rather than go immediately west from Ortisei to the major highways."
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Dec 29th, 2014, 02:48 PM
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We spent 3 days in Bolzano and really enjoyed the town. Lovely historical downtown, great cable car with fantastic views of the Dolomiti and easy highway access.
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Dec 29th, 2014, 02:51 PM
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I'll make one more suggestion:

Seefeld is less than 2 hours from Ortisei. I don't know how many days you will be staying in Seefeld, but maybe you would have time to do a day trip from Seefeld to the Dolomiti. So instead of overnighting in the Dolomiti on your way from Ravello to Seefeld, you could overnight someplace else that is less than a 7 hour drive from Ravello, then go the next morning to Seefeld -- but return to the Dolomiti some days later to do a scenic loop and have a hike.
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Dec 30th, 2014, 05:56 AM
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Sorry, I did not mean to compare the drive in Italy to driving to Indiana in any way other than time ~ that we are all quite used to long drives.

We figured if we flew it would be 3 1/2 hrs from Ravello to FCO ~ another 3 1/2 hrs returning the van checking in, waiting etc for the flight ~ 1 1/2 hrs for flight to Munich ~ get luggage, new rental van and drive to Seefeld, another 3 hrs. ~ *11.5 hrs ~ so driving seems a decent option. Depending upon if I use Google or Via Michelin, Ravello to Ortisei is 9-10 hrs, so allowing 12 hrs should be sufficient.

I think that it seems that if we stay in the Dolomites Ortisei makes the most sense. If a nice day the following morning we can choose a cable car in Ortisei, or a longer scenic route, depending upon our mood and the weather.

I just haven't found a place further south yet that I am enthralled with.
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Dec 30th, 2014, 06:31 AM
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Just can't calibrate for somebody else, but having driven many of those Italian highways you will be taking, I would be weary of the drive by about the 5th hour -- and knowing I was facing 7 more hours of driving after that would be a very grim prospect for me.

All the time estimates given by Google, Michelin, etc, don't factor in traffic. If you are lucky you won't encounter much, but that would be pretty unusual, given that you need to ring around Naples, Rome, Florence, Bologna and Verona.

I am crushed to think that you cannot find a town in Italy between Ravello and the Austrian border that enthralls you. Were I forced to drive that route, I would probably overnight in an agriturismo in the Mugello area of Tuscany, just north of Firenze but just short of crossing the Apennines into Bologna. ( I would not want to have just driven 6 hours on Italian autostrade and then next need to drive over the Apennines.) That would be about 7 hours from Ravello. I'd go to a resort with a pool in the wine country. I'd complete the drive to Seefeld the next day.

But if I had my choice, I would drop off the car at the Naples airport and take the train from Napoli to Trento (about 6 hours, with a switch in Bologna). I would enjoy lovely, small Trento for dinner (Hotel America is a nice place to stay) and the next morning see the Castello Buonconsiglio (be sure to include the Eagle's tower), and then take the 4 hour train ride to Munich, rent a car and drive to Seefeld.

One of the reasons I would make that train choice is because there is no guarantee their can't be summer thunderstorms someplace between Ravello and the Dolomiti, and the idea of adding bad weather to an already difficult one-day-only drive would make me bail on that idea.

But if you begin to think that maybe Ravello-to-Ortisei is too much to bite off, given all the unknowns, then I assure you there are hundreds of towns of charm and thrills along that route where you could enjoy something special.
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Dec 30th, 2014, 08:55 AM
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For me, the wonder of the Dolomites is the enormity and variety of the mountain scenery, not one charming town or the views from one pass or cable car lift. You'll see some nice views from SS12/E45 north of Verona, but mostly you'll be surrounded by big semi trucks until you make the short exit to Ortisei. Ortisei is a nice town, but the views are not nearly as dramatic as from other towns and passes. I would save the Dolomites for a trip when you have time to explore the truly amazing areas off the main roads...

...like Passo Giau:

https://c1.staticflickr.com/7/6149/5...8080d7b1_z.jpg

and Passo Pordoi:

http://thumbs.dreamstime.com/x/passo...i-10693533.jpg

and Marmolada:

http://www.allegheresort.com/Content...=384&mode=crop
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