Alpe de Siusi

Alpe de Siusi

Route: Alpe de Siusi

Area: Val Gardena, Dolomites, Italy

Date of walk: 19th June 2018

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly 

Distance: 11.2 miles

Ascent: 500 feet

Weather: Sunny 

The Alpe di Siusi is a huge area of rolling meadows ranging from 5,000-6,000 feet above sea level, and is the largest cultivated plateau in Central Europe. The area is famed for its incredible display of wild flowers which thrive in the pasture, fed by the natural springs and streams which drain off the surrounding mountains. We’d timed our visit in order to appreciate the display at its peak – if we’d left it much later the meadows would have been harvested for haymaking for the village of Siusi, lower down the valley

We drove to the village of Ortisei and after parking near the top station bought two one-way tickets for the chair lift, which took us up to 6,000 feet. From here we followed a series of easy undulating paths through idyllic countryside, and a long gentle descent through the meadows brought us down to the low-lying area of Saltria

Just beyond Saltria we took the Florian chair lift which whisked us up the mountain side and saved us having to make a long climb in very hot weather. The views from the top of the lift were superb and far ranging. (Note that route shown on the Maps Page includes the Florian lift section, and that I’ve adjusted the mileage and ascent to account for this)

We climbed up a short distance to reach the Berghaus Zallinger, marking the high point of the walk at 6,740 feet and then began the long but easy descent, initially through pastures bedecked with wild flowers. Our original plan had been to descend to St Christina and take the bus back to Ortisei, but we noticed a path which was waymarked to Ortisei and decided to follow that instead. The narrow path took us down through woodland beside a cascading stream, before eventually emerging onto a track and then a quiet tarmac road which took us back to the start

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