Climbing a via ferrata in Italy will let you discover the authentic spirit and traditions of the Dolomites: they have long been the favorite destinations for the most demanding mountain lovers.
Via ferrata are climbing paths equipped with steel cables, steps or ladders, along the natural conformations of the Dolomites walls; they were built and used by Alpine troops during the World War I to reach a strategic outpost or the top of a mountain. Now you can choose among around 600 via ferrata treks in the Dolomites, from easy and short to longer and difficult and you can opt for daily adventures on via ferrata or a multi-day hut to hut hike through via ferrata route.
Prepare the correct equipment and experience a via ferrata trek in Italy: we selected for you 5 famous via ferrata in the Dolomites!
Duration: 4-5 days
Altitude difference: 3770 ft
Location: Trentino Alto Adige, Brenta Dolomites
The Via delle Bocchette trail crosses the Brenta Dolomites mountain group from north to south, passing among pinnacles, vertical walls and narrow cols, the so-called “bocche”. The majority of the route runs just among the 6561 and 9842 meters altitude along the east side of Cima Brenta.
You can experience a multi-day traverse of the Via delle Bocchette as well; after a quiet start in the first days, you will reach the heart of the route by climbing the most famous and scenic Bocchette Centrali which leads you below the majestic Campanil Basso peak. After one of the most vertical via ferrata (via Castiglioni), you will arrive to Dodici Apostoli hut, from there you can descend again to the valley.
Duration: 8-10 hours
Altitude difference: 3937 ft
Location: Veneto, Mount Civetta
After about 3 hours of approach, the long and impressive Via Ferrata degli Alleghesi begins. In 5-6 hours and after around 2952 feet of elevation gain, you will reach the top of the north crest of the Monte Civetta (10564 ft). With an hour of scrambling descent, you will reach the Torrani hut (8533 ft), where you can overnight.
The day after, you can descent through another equipped route or on the demanding Ferrata Tissi up to Carestiato hut. More, expert mountaineers may continue the route towards the adiacent Mojazza mountain to deal with the technically difficult Ferrata Costantini at the Cima Mojazza south, which is known as the “longest via ferrata of the Dolomites”.
Duration: 4 hours
Altitude difference: 2624 ft
Location: Veneto, Tofana di Mezzo
To explore the Tofane group, which overlooks the Ampezzo Valley, Punta Anna could be your alternative as it is the first buttress of the Tofana di Mezzo massif. Known for its steepness, absolute exposure and for its vertical and technical sections, this fixed-rope route is recommended for experts only.
Starting from the Pomedes Hut, a 1-hour ascent, equipped only with fixed ropes, follows the vertical south edge of the Punta Anna up to the top (8959 ft), where you can enjoy a stunning 360-degree panorama of the Dolomite mountains. From here you can continue by the ridge to the third Pomedes tower and then start the descent through the traditional Dolomites’ scree slopes or continue the ascent towards the Tofana di Mezzo.
Duration: 3 hours
Altitude difference: 1312 ft
Location: Trentino Alto-Adige, Passo Sella
Brigata Tridentina Route is one of the most popular and crowded via ferrata in the Dolomites – avoid the week end to better enjoy the route! It climbs along the ridges of the Exner Tower, a panoramic spot in the middle of the Sella Group, which is a mountain plateau located north of the Marmolada.
The route starts after 30 minutes of approach and a first easy and short fixed-rope route up to the famous Pisciadù Waterfall (with an emergency exit hike). The ferrata continues steeply up the east face with a series of ladders and the iconic suspension bridge which spans over the gap to reach the Cavazza hut at the Pisciadù (8487 ft). To extend the tour, you can climb the 9793 ft high peak of the Cima Pisciadù.
Duration: 4,30 hours
Altitude difference: 2155 ft
Location: Trentino Alto-Adige, Fassa Valley
You can reach the second main peak of the Catinaccio mountain group, the Antermoja (9855 ft) from its west face through the Via Ferrata al Catinaccio d’Antermoia and go downhill on the east face. After a 2,30-hours approach you will arrive to the Passo Principe hut (8530 mt), where the via ferrata starts.
After short exposed ledges on the first part of the path, you can find some metal brackets first and then steep ladders and meters of fixed ropes which lead you to the end of the ferrata on the north ridge of the Catinaccio d’Antermoia. The last section to reach the top is not protected by any metal cable: pay attention on this point but in some minutes you will arrive on the top of the summit.