From Karersee we got back on the Great Dolomite Road to drive to Cortina d’Ampezzo about 50 miles away. This is another amazing drive which took us about a couple of hours with photo stops as it is full of hairpins and of course cyclists.
There was a big off-road mountain bike event taking place in Canazei. The village looked lovely but was so busy we didn’t stand a chance of parking. We will need to add it to the list of places to stop at on our next trip here.
The Passo Falzargo was the next challenge, amazing views and a photo stop at every corner. We didn’t realise how popular this particular area would be even at this time of year, particularly the Cinque Torre peaks, so at the time we were passing through the car parks were pretty full and we couldn’t actually stop there. In hindsight we would aim to get there either early in the morning or late and night as it looked like there was no problem staying overnight by the number of campers that were parked there, that way we would be able to do the walk before it got too busy. Another one to add to the list for another day.
There are three campsites almost next door to each other just south of Cortina d’Ampezzo. We looked at them all and chose Camping Dolomiti as it had sunnier pitches than the other two and as it is furthest away from the town and looked the quietest. We definitely made the right choice as they had big sunny pitches. best of all though was free washing machines! I know it is very sad when you get excited about laundry but we needed to wash everything, clothes, bedding and towels so free laundry was worth it’s weight in gold. As it was a lovely sunny afternoon I was on a roll and did 3 loads. I will just add that Andy was more than happy to relax around the campsite as England were playing in the World Cup and he had a signal on the TV.
We did a couple of walks from the campsite while we were there. One up to Lago de Pianozes and the other into Cortina and up into the woods and foothills behind the town and back round to the campsite. Cortina itself was very busy with tourists and had a pedestrian Main Street full of shops and cafes. It is only the church and cemetery that have any history, the rest of the town is a modern tourist area built with in the last 100 years or so and where there are no less than four five star hotels. We had coffee and cake at Lovat Bar which received Andy’s vote for the best Mille-feuille to date on the holiday! Although Cortina was busy all the guide books say it really comes into its own in the winter. There was advertising all over the town gearing up for when they host the FIS Alpine World Ski Championship in 2021. A bit more history about the town is that in 1903 Cortina Ski Club was founded which makes it the oldest in Italy and in 1956 it was the host town when the first Winter Olympics was televised.
Weather – hot & sunny Sunday, overnight rain with a cool & cloudy start to Monday, brightening to a hot & sunny afternoon
Miles Driven – 52
Miles Walked – 13.9
Overnight – Camping Dolomiti for 2 nights. €25 a night with electric and free washing machines! 46.517541 12.135865