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Italy - Camping in Dolomites - surviving Tre Cime di Lavaredo on strudel and cappuccino!

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

The traverse from Lago di Braies to Lago di Misurina is quite enjoyable, the road winds through mountains and lakes, and every few kilometers there's a chance to grab an excellent coffee and a bite to eat (for me, it's their incredible strudel, not to mention all those amazing prosciuttos and parmigianas...), Italy is simply amazing.

Camping in Italy

I'm bit of neat freak, and at least once per trip, I don't want to “take care of business” (read poop, eh) in the forest, I want a shower and other conveniences of the 21st century... Honestly, I'm not particularly drawn to camping, but my wife keeps telling me how sleeping in tents is wonderful, romantic, and very, very cheap... So, with the idea of trying to do it low-cost, occasionally freshening up and maybe even scoring some points with my wife, I opt for a campsite - Camping Alla Baita (here).

Drone aerial view of the Tre Cime di Lavaredo massif in the Dolomites.

Well, my dear wife, it wasn't exactly budget accommodation! But it's beautiful here, and the receptionist is accommodating (they have everything well-organised, they even give you advice on the best trekking routes) and assures me they have plenty of hot water...

Full of anticipation of what a 21st-century camp can offer an "adventurer", I rush to the washing facility with my electric toothbrush (I'm already running late again, so a shower will have to wait until evening)... and... well... an Italian camp in the 21st century is pretty much the same as the camp at Czech’s Rozkos Reservoir in the 20th century (and maybe even the one before that), where I was with my parents about 30 years ago... I actually don't even know what I was expecting... eh eh…

However, water was flowing, and I didn't have to "visit the forest" that day, so in retrospect, I rate it quite positively, ha ha...

Green meadow with a small wooden hayloft in the foreground, with the Dolomites as a backdrop.

Hiking around Tre Cime di Lavaredo

I don't dwell much on it and set off on the road, grabing a quick coffee (and a strudel, of course) at the pub above the campsite (Italy is fascinating… among other things it doesn't matter where, or who makes you coffee, but it's always absolutely fantastic) and head off towards Sentiero Dario Favretto. Having learned from my previous trip, I pull out the app and it turns out the path is marked with either red or blue touristic signs... Fantastic, the same marking style like at home!

Green meadow with horses in the foreground, with the Tre Cime as a backdrop.

It's such a beautiful day, with only a few tourists around, and I am enjoying one incredible view after another. Grabbing a quick snack at Rifugio Fonda-Savio and choosing the route to Tre Cime on the "tourist blue"...

View of the Italian Dolomites from Rifugio Fonda-Savio mountain hut.

I'm just not the type who reads manuals... magnificent peaks all around, but suddenly the path becomes quite challenging (stone stairs, ropes...), especially with a 16kg backpack on my back. Trying my luck for a while, but when a group of people in helmets comes towards me, securely fastened to ropes, it dawns on me that this probably isn't a "tourist blue" route, but a ferrata. That's where the adventure ends for me, and I humbly turn around and return to the Rifugio Fonda-Savio hut.

View into the Val Campedelle valley from the Rifugio Fonda-Savio hut in the Dolomites.

For a moment, I’m playing with the idea that going back down to the camp, having a meal, finally taking a shower, and going to sleep is also a trip, right? =) But the weather is beautiful and "you can break the wall with your head"… so I rush back down to the valley and through cow pastures I head to majestic Tre Cime. Well, it wasn't entirely “for free”, but the euphoria that comes with the view of those majestic peaks reliably erases the fatigue. Well, for a moment... at Rifugio Auronzo, I have a coffee, panini and strudel, then start shivering, and falling asleep while sitting for a moment...

he imposing Tre Cime di Lavaredo massif reflecting in a puddle on a mountain pasture.

Well, my body obviously said enough... I have no idea how long I slept, but people here are kind, nobody wakes me by force, even though I wake up over a rather cold cappuccino... I'm knocked out, it's blowing like mad outside, and it's getting dark soon. I quickly swallow the last pieces of strudel and rush outside again... I scramble up to Torre Lavaredo with the last of my strength.

Climbing is slightly risky sometimes here, the wall is almost vertical, limestone is crumbling under my feet, the wind doesn't help either, but the view, man it's unbelievable... I enjoy the feeling of insignificance, the unbelievable panoramas, snaping a few photos, and rather disappear, as going down will be even more fun than going up and it's starting to get dark...

Arriving back at the camp at half past eleven, frozen, dirty and incredibly happy...

Finally, taking a shower! And they indeed have plenty of hot water... only it's so boiling hot that you can't shower under it (cold does not flow of course xD)… oh well… happy life in campsites! =)

Until next time!



Camera: Sony A7 IV

Drone: Mavic Air 2s


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