July 16 - 24, 2020

Trip Leader - Gene Goldberg

Stunning pale mountains rise abruptly from rolling green meadows. Villages dot the steep, narrow valleys. This UNESCO World Heritage Site has awed visitors for millennia. Come hike with us through an area many consider the most beautiful mountains on earth. Smaller than the neighboring Alps, these craggy mountains are readily accessible through a network of roads and ski lifts. Using our hotel in Cortina, Queen of the Dolomites and home to the 1951 Winter Olympics, as a base, our day hikes will enable us to experience some of the variety of the nine groups of mountains that make up the system. Our comfortable three star hotel is situated in the heart of town and convenient to many restaurants.

“What is the fatal charm of Italy? What do we find there that can be found nowhere else? I believe it is a certain permission to be human, which other countries, lost long ago.” Erica Jong

Join Big Round World on this exciting adventure amid the stark, craggy peaks of the Dolomites, some of Earth’s most beautiful mountains. Made up of nine separate groups, each with its own character, most of the chain is designated an UNESCO World Heritage Site. The mountains are steep-sided, but ways up exist, both by foot and cable car. Always one is surrounded by the austere beauty of these hills once known as The Pale Mountains.

“Italy and the spring and the first love all together should suffice to make the gloomiest person happy.” Bertrand Russell

Nature here provides a wealth of flora and fauna not found in America. Prized findings for the observant botanist include star gentian, edelweiss, tamarack, and orchids. If it’s animal life you’re interested in, marmots, ibex, and chamois are common. The sky is filled with Alpine choughs, and there are also goshawk, capercaillie, and lammergeier.

The area has been inhabited since the first humans left Africa for Europe. Ötzi, the Ice Man, died in the mountains near where we will be about 5,300 years ago, leaving behind a treasure trove of artifacts for archaeologists. More recently control of the region has variously fallen to Celts, Rhaetians, Romans, Tyrol, Austria, and today, Italy. The culture is most affected by the 400 year Tyrolean/Austrian rule which only was taken over by Italy at the end of World War I. Today, about 70% of the people here speak German at home. Another 5% speak Ladin, a mix of ancient Rhaetian and Latin, a result of the people here not being fully conquered by Rome.

Suited to regular hikers who like to hike 5-8 miles daily over varied and sometimes challenging terrain, often steep, very rocky, and with occasional exposure to steep drop offs. Group size 10-14.

What’s Included:

  • All hotel lodging (double-occupancy with en suite bath).
  • All on-trip land transportation and luggage transfer.
  • All breakfasts, two lunches and seven dinners.
  • Cinque Torri lift fee.
  • Gratuities for local service providers.
  • All hikes.
  • 4 pre - trip bulletins prior to departure with more detailed and specific information to help you prepare for your adventure.

What’s not included:

  • International airfare and in-country travel, pre- and post- trip.
  • Most lunches, one dinner in Cortina.
  • Beverages with meals.
  • Travel insurance.
  • Tips for trip leaders are at your discretion.

Trip Price: $3,685 per person | Deposit: $921

Price is based on double occupancy of rooms. Same gender roommate will be assigned to participants traveling solo. Single supplements are limited. Your non-refundable deposit will hold your reservation. Either pay on line (credit/ debit cards accepted) using our secure PayPal payment system or write a check, payable to “Big Round World”, and mail it to: PO Box 1337, Lyons, CO 80540.

How to Sign Up

  1. Pay your trip deposit - click on the yellow Buy Now button below.
  2. Send us your trip paperwork.