Cortina d’Ampezzo is known all’estero (abroad) as the upscale resort where glitterati may be spotted shooshing its legendary slopes during winter months. In summer, the Queen of the Dolomites is instead where many locals set up house, in the process abandoning the lowland and lagoon heat. A friend whose family has made this a regular habit for almost thirty years offered me refuge when the latest heat wave assaulted Venice, and as it coincided perfectly with Ferragosto holiday, I threw hiking boots and a hairbrush in a backpack and skedaddled.
I hopped the train to Calalzo (a two to three hour trip). It times out perfectly with the Dolomiti Bus connection, and I rode about an hour more. What I found when I arrived was clear mountain air, breathtaking scenery, flowers bursting from every window box, and a ton of friendly folks who’d been vacationing together for decades.
I think it would take a lifetime to walk, hike, and climb all the trails around Cortina. The good news is there’s something for everyone, from the saunterer to the most expert climber. Adele and I walked and ate for two-and-a-half days, even finding enough funghi to make a marvelous sauce for lunch the last day.
I can show better than explain the results to you however, take a look. If you ever get to Cortina in the summer, here’s only a sample of what you’ll find there: