WELCOME TO THE START OF YOUR DOLOMITES STAYCATION

"Each mountain in the Dolomites is like a piece of art." Reinhold Messner

You are embarking on an adventure in a place and among people whose lives might vary from your own. Aspects of life in Europe and in the villages in the Dolomites might seem unusual. Remember that these are often the same aspects that make an area an exotic and attractive destination.

While the advantages of a staycation are that you can choose how hard you want this trip to be, no trek is easy, even those rated “easy or moderate”. In addition to the personal physical challenges you may face, travel conditions can present unexpected obstacles, such as rough and bumpy roads and changeable weather conditions, especially in the mountains.

To prepare for this, “pack” a flexible and relaxed attitude. Bring a spirit of adventure and inquiry, a healthy sense of humour, and a willingness to encounter the unexpected, and you will find walking in the Dolomites the adventure of a lifetime!

Where Dinosaurs Roamed!

A large part of the most imposing mountains in the Dolomites are no more than enormous fossilised barriers. Archaeologists have discovered marine fossils in the rocks that indicate the Dolomite mountains were once underwater.

Worry not! We’re not really sending you back in time.

But the reality is, that these mountains did see dinosaurs roam.

Named after the French mineralogist Déodat Gratet de Dolomieu (1750–1801) the Dolomites have been formerly known as the “Pale Mountains” due to their light carbonate rock formations. Formed over millions of years the characteristic rock of the Dolomites consists of fossilised coral reefs once located at the bottom of the ancient tropical Tethys Ocean dating back to the Triassic Period. The impact of the collission of the African and European tectonic plates forced the rocks to soar skyward and led to the disappearance of the western part of the Tethys Ocean. The Mountain Range of the Dolomites was born.

The various rock formations are striking. Presented in the form of table mountains and elsewhere rugged, fractured massifs soaring in sharp contrast, with extensive high areas of grassy meadows in between. It’s a truly unique and magical site with a new vista presenting itself around every corner.

Located in the now Italian region of the “Alto Adige” German is surprisingly the predominant language in this region originating in the formerly Austrian occupancy.

The region offers the best of a combination of Austrian Italian culture and the typical local culture of the valleys. Also known for its unique cuisine and famous wines the region is one of the preferred holiday spots for serious mountain climbers and families alike.

It is believed that the mountains were once part of an atoll in the ocean, formed via sedimentation during the Permian Period nearly 280 million years ago.

Your Journey

DAY 1 | Arrive in Innsbruck – Austria and transfer to accommodation. Free time. 
DAY 2 | Transfer to the Val Gardena (B,D)
DAY 3 | Trek Viel del Pan (B,D)
DAY 4 | Trek Piz Boe and the Sella (B,D)
Day 5 | Seceda to Puez Rifugio – Hotel (B,D)
DAY 6 | Alpe de Siuse (B,D)
DAY 7 | Morning hike and the free afternoon or Via Ferrata (B,D)
Day 8 | Chairlift to Col Pradat Refugio (B,D)
DAY 9 | Transfer to Verona (B,D)
Day 10 | We bid you farewell (B)

Guest Portal

You can update all your personal information directly in our Guest’s Portal. There, you can add your Insurance, Flight Details, and anything else we need for the trip. When you first click on the link you will be asked to reset your password. Please use the same email address you used for your booking.

The Multi Activity Experience

The Dolomite Mountains were added to the UNESCO World Heritage list for its unique biodiversity in 2009.

As you’re by now hopefully aware, you don’t need to be an Olympic Athlete to relish this experience.

You do require former walking and biking experience and should be comfortable with heights. Walks can be challenging on some days with long ascents and descents involved. 

While the Via Ferrata is optional and the grade will be adapted according to the group’s fitness level No Roads reserves the right to decide on whether group members are eligible to conclude this part. Alternative options are available.

Basically the higher your level of fitness, the greater enjoyment you’ll find, and the ease with which you’ll get through each planned activity of the day.

That said, for anybody that does find the going tough and just wants to take a break or even a day off, there’s no issue with staying back at the hotel enjoying the garden and spa facilities or choosing one of the daily alternatives walks offered and guided through the hotel.

It’s your trip, and we want you to do it your way to gain the most enjoyment!

If you are a little unsure, or just want to discuss your own level of fitness with someone, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Note: Safety regulations do require each trekker to wear a helmet and harness for the Via Ferrata option.

A Day in the Dolomites

Our team is dedicated to breaking days up in a combination of mountain activities, refreshing halts, and free time for relaxation, paired with a bit of local history and gourmet experiences.

Time is spent exploring the lush diversified landscape of this world heritage listed mountain range mostly on foot, and one day on wheels, interrupted by regular stops at the mountain huts for local refreshments and of course taking in the monumental sites.

Mornings start fairly early with a delicious spread of homemade and local sweet and hearty breakfast delicacies. After easing into the day enjoying the vast buffet we get ready for our daily activities exploring the stunning surroundings, stopping for local vistas and lunch and maybe a cappuccino and apple strudel (one of my favourites), along the way.

Returning back to our comfortable staycation hub, the Dolomitenhof, late afternoons are free to enjoy the spa with its indoor and outdoor pool or ease your muscles in one of the saunas or jacuzzi.

Groups are invited to catch up for a refreshing beer or Spritz before we settle for our daily 5-course dinner featuring local delights.

Sunsets are late but marvellous with the pink evening sky contrasting against the pale rock formations and can be best watched from the courtyard bar or your balcony before resting your head on your down pillow dreaming of a new day.

Via Ferrata

Via Ferrata Latin for ‘iron way/ road is a way of taming an otherwise inaccessible mountain ridge.

The route is marked by metal rails and rungs bolted into the mountain. Invented in the Dolomites, Via Ferratas originally were frequently used during World War I to move troops across the mountains, giving access to parts of the mountains that are not available to normal hikers. Nowadays Via Ferratas are adding a bit of challenge and fun to the mountain lovers’ activities.

Tackling a Via Ferrata requires very little equipment but a good head for heights. While it’s easy to follow, Via Ferratas have one set route that everyone has to follow. With everyone being clipped onto the same wire overtaking is difficult. To avoid blocking up people by moving on too slowly our guide will choose a suitable Via Ferrata option according to group strength.

The minimum equipment required to encounter a Via Ferrata is a harness, and a helmet. We also suggest wearing padded fingerless gloves (cycling gloves are fine) for comfort. Since most Via Ferratas involve more scrambling than climbing no special shoes are required and wearing your walking boots is fine.

Involving some exposure to high drop-offs and you have a phobia of heights the Via Ferrata may not be an option for you. If you decide not to do this option we will have a guide to escort you on an easier mountain trail with stunning views of the surrounding peaks.

Note: Harness and helmet will be provided.

Getting There and Away

Alpenzoo Innsbruck is situated in the Schloss Weiherburg from the 15th century. The zoo is well known for its collection of mountain animals from the Alpine regions, including mammals, birds, and reptiles. Innsbruck Alpenzoo’s mission is to find endangered species living in the wild, rear them in the zoo, and then set them free again into the Alps. It is Europe's highest Zoo!

Transfers

To offer more flexibility to our guests there are no scheduled city transfers in Innsbruck on your arrival day.

A pre-trek meeting is scheduled at 6 pm on your arrival day in Innsbruck before you head out for your group welcome dinner. Rooms are ready for check-in after 3 pm.

Destination Süd Tyrol

The Dolomites are located in the  Italian northernmost Province of Süd Tyrol, right on the Austrian border.

Our Val Gardena trip starts in Innsbruck, Austria and ends in the historical city of Verona, the capital of the Veneto province. Home of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Verona and its fascinating past dating back to Roman times is the perfect gateway for our trip. 

The best way to get to Innsbruck is via Train. From Verona, there are flights and trains to other parts so Italy.  The closest and most frequented international airport to Verona is located near the city of Milan. Frequent trains are available from Milan to Verona.

If you decide to explore a bit more of “Bella Italia” beforehand Verona airport has a good domestic schedule.

Verona

Best known for its Shakespeare associations, Verona attracts a multinational gaggle of tourists to its pretty piazzas and knot of lanes, most in search of Romeo and Juliet and a bit of their romance. But beyond that, the medieval old town is a bustling center, its heart dominated by a mammoth, remarkably well-preserved, UNESCO heritage-listed 1st-century amphitheater, the venue for the city’s annual summer opera festival. Add to that countless churches, a couple of architecturally fascinating bridges over the Adige, regional wine and food from the Veneto hinterland, and some impressive art, and Verona shapes up as one of northern Italy’s most attractive cities. And all this is just a short hop from the shores of stunning Lake Garda and the beautiful Dolomites.

Weather

Innsbruck

Innsbruck, nestled in the Austrian Alps, experiences mild summers. Temperatures usually range between 15°C to 25°C. While days can be warm and sunny, the proximity to mountains can lead to cool evenings. Occasional rain showers are common, adding to the region’s verdant beauty. Always be prepared for sudden weather changes.

Verona

Verona’s climate is more continental orientated than the Mediterranean. The winters in Verona are much colder than other cities in a Mediterranean climate. In summer the temperature rises to averages of around 30C. 

Val Gardena

Hotel Kolfuschgerhof is situated in the Val Gardena. Temperatures will be warmer than up in the mountains usually between 20-30C.

Mountain weather is very volatile and you may experience several conditions on the same day, so it’s essential you adequately prepare yourself with clothing for different weather conditions. 

TRAVEL DOCUMENTS

Ötzi, the natural iced mummy of a man who lived some time between 3350 and 3105 BC, was discovered in September 1991 in the Ötztal Alps, which are part of the Dolomites.

To ensure that you are adequately prepared we will provide you with further information about COVID 19 procedures on the trek in your joining instructions closer to your departure date.

Our team will do everything it can to support you in this new normality. However, in this fast-moving environment, we do suggest and encourage all guests to monitor relevant COVID 19 Information for your trip on equivalent official websites as part of your preparation process.

Visa

Australian citizens visiting Schengen countries (of which Italy is a part of) do not need to apply for visas if staying for not more than 90 out of 180 days.

For any other nationalities please click here to be referred to the Schengen Visa Info Website.

ETIAS

ETIAS stands for European Travel Information and Authorisation System.

ETIAS will pre-screen travellers from “third-countries”, who are citizens from countries not needing a Schengen Visa. 

ETIAS is not a visa, it is a visa waiver, similar to the U.S. ESTA and Canadian eTA. Travelers currently visiting European Member countries visa-free, will require an ETIAS in 2024 onwards. Passport holders of the EU single market are exempt from ETIAS. 

Schengen Entry Requirements

You will have to present several documents at the Schengen port of entry, in order to be permitted to enter if you are a non-EU/Schengen country national, regardless if you are a visa-exempt or not.

The documents you need to provide when entering the Schengen Area are as follows:

  • Valid Passport: Issued within the previous 10 years and valid for at least 3 months after the date you intend to leave the EU.
  • Schengen Visa: If you are a national of one of the third countries in need of a visa.
  • Covid 19: Depending on your country of origin and port of arrival in Europe requirements are ranging from no requirements, certificate of recovery, and/or proof of a negative PCR to proof of vaccination,
    We recommend carrying a copy of your Government-issued International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate with you if available.
  • Please click here to identify the EU requirements according to your travel plans. Further, you can find the latest information on travel regulations for EU countries on the IATA website.
  • EU/Schengen border officials may also ask for other information and documents such as sufficient funds, proof of accommodation, how long you intend to stay, round-trip airline ticket, the purpose of your entry, travel insurance, invitation letter, etc.

    Please ensure the border officer gives you an entry stamp in your passport when you enter the Schengen area. Without a stamp, you could be fined or detained.

For further information please check out Schengen Visa InformationSchengen Visa News.

COVID 19

All COVID-19-related requirements are fluid and might change for the Dolomite Season 2023. We advise all of our guests to monitor and seek the official travel advisories of their government. Please always seek up-to-date advise prior to your travels as entry conditions can rapidly change in the new COVID world.
No Roads Expeditions is not responsible nor liable for any COVID-19-related travel disruptions.

NRE Regulations

No Roads Expeditions is following the guidelines of the Australian health authorities and therefore our COVID policy has recently changed. Our trekkers are not required to be fully vaccinated anymore to be able to join one of our trips.
However, we are not responsible for any in-country regulations of the country of your destination.
Our guides and trekkers are obliged to follow the COVID regulations of Italy accordingly.

Arrival

What are the rules to enter Italy from an EU Member State or Schengen Associated country?
(Last update: 02-02-2023 – Next update May 2023)

COVID-19 travel restrictions and domestic pandemic measures have been widely lifted in Europe and Italy. 

Please click here for the latest requirements for entry into Italy.

Please click below for further information on COVID-related regulations for:
Italy

Further, you can find more information on the IATA website.

For our Australian guests, we suggest seeking more information on Smartraveller and WHO.

Departure

Please check with your airline and your returning home country or next/ final destination regarding COVID-19 requirements.
Airlines/Authorities/Next Destination/Final Country MAY require a negative PCR Swab Test upon check-in at GVA Airport.

PCR Swab Test can be done at any authorised laboratories and at some dedicated pharmacies in Chamonix/ Argentiere.

Please click here for more information regarding test sites in Chamonix and Argentiere.

We do recommend doing your PCR Swab Test for departure in time, if necessary in the afternoon after arriving in Argentiere. Please contact your hotel in Argentiere for more information regarding the location of dedicated laboratories nearby.

Further, you can find the latest information on travel regulations on the IATA website.

Transit

Please check with your airline and your country of transit regarding COVID-19 requirements.
Entry requirements into Europe might differ depending on the country you are traveling through. 

Please click here for the latest news on the official Schengen Visa Information site including Covide 19 regulations.

Further, you can find the latest information on travel regulations on the IATA website.

For our Australian guests, we suggest seeking more information on Smartraveller and WHO.

Insurance

Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance is a requirement for all guests travelling on our expeditions.

Once you have booked an expedition we suggest booking your travel insurance as soon as possible to protect your investment and other associated costs
. Trip cancellation insurance will reimburse you for any non-recoverable air or land expenses should you have to cancel your trip due to personal or family illness or leave the expedition early due to other reasons.

For our Australian guests, we are offering policies from NIB Travel for adequate cover, and you can contact our office direct, via phone or email, to obtain an insurance quote from us.

For guests travelling with us from outside Australia, please check Travel Insurance options within your Country.

If you should receive an injury 12 months prior to your travel date, you must contact the Insurance Company with details to ensure you are covered for this injury whilst travelling. Should you not do this and require medical assistance for this injury whilst travelling you may not be covered by the insurance company.

In the event that an aircraft evacuation is required, No Roads Expeditions will undertake to arrange the evacuation on the condition that the expenses are reimbursed by the passenger before departing the Country.

Note: Accidents caused by the inappropriate consumption of alcohol or drugs may void your travel insurance.

Get a Quote

While we don’t anticipate any uninvited medical disruptions during your trek, No Roads wants to keep your mind at ease and help you get adequate assistance and cover for your well-earned time away. It is extremely important that we ensure you’re covered during your great alpine experience.

We are able to provide you with Travel Insurance for your trip, allowing you to tick this off your ‘To-Do Lis”t as soon as possible. We strongly recommend that you take out baggage loss and accident insurance!

Already have a trusted insurance provider?
No problem at all! Our primary concern is that you have adequate cover.

Got a Pre-Existing Condition?
Simply notify us accordingly. After our team initiated your personal quote, simply call the NIB Insurance Team and they’ll complete an assessment on your behalf. In many cases, no additional premium will apply. Many common conditions are automatically covered. 

Please note: Australia has a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement (RHCA) with Italy which may cover some of your medical costs in the Italian public health system. Click here for more information.

For all other nationalities please explore insurance providers in your country.

Again, if you’ve any questions, don’t hesitate to ask info@noroads.com.au.

Immunization

COVID 19 

Depending on your country of origin and port of arrival in Europe requirements are ranging from proof of vaccination, certificate of recovery, and/or proof of a negative PCR. 

Please click here to identify the country-specific requirements according to your travel plans.
You may also find further helpful information in response to Coronavirus here.

No further vaccinations are compulsory for entry to the Schengen Zone. However, you should consider MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) and a combination vaccine TDaP (Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis). We recommend that you ensure your tetanus cover is up to date. Depending on the season and the area of travel you might also consider a flu vaccination and other area-specific recommended vaccinations.

Please consult your doctor on these matters.

MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella) Vaccine– Over the last decade, measles outbreaks have become more common in Europe. Protect yourself with this simple immunization.
TDaP (Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis) Vaccine– Due in part to immigration patterns, some diseases like diphtheria have resurfaced in Europe.
Flu Vaccine– Europe has been hit quite hard by the flu in recent years. If you plan on traveling during a high flu time (September to April) be sure to have the vaccine before you go.

Plan ahead for getting your vaccinations (seriously, vaccinations are one thing that should NEVER be left until the last minute when TIME can truly be your enemy). Some of them require an initial shot followed by a booster, while some vaccinations should not be given together.

Proof of COVID 19 Vaccination

While proof of vaccination is mostly not mandatory anymore, we suggest carrying your international COVID-19 vaccination certificate (issued in your home country) with you while traveling, if you’ve been vaccinated. 

For our Australian guests, please carry the Australian Government-issued International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate (ICVC). Your domestic proof of immunisation is not recognised overseas. Please click here for further information.

Accommodation

Due to the light colour originating in their composition, the Dolomites are often called the Pale Mountains. They provide a great canvas reflecting the striking colouration of the rising and setting sun.

Residing in Innsbruck and Verona in style

No Roads personally sources accommodation for their expeditions. Our aim for this trip is to provide a welcoming and luxurious home away from home, a place to relax and indulge in our daily activities.

Our hotels in Innsbruck and Verona will be boutique-style, in the historical center only within walking distance to shops, bars, and restaurants. 

Val Gardena Staycation Base

Once we are in the Süd Tyrol, we will be accommodated at the Hotel Kolfuschgerhof for 6 nights. This wonderful luxury hotel is situated near Colfosco. 

Wood-panelled walls, alpine furnishing, elegant decor, superb food and views that are breathtaking, the Hotel Kolfuschgerhof is luxury personified. For the next 6 days, unpack your bags and enjoy living here as a manor born.

Please note: Room sizes in hotels and their facilities will vary from one place to the next and sometimes from room to room within one hotel. 

Single Supplements are available for this trip. Please contact our team directly for further information.

Rifugio Col Pradat

While most mountain Rifugios are basic, with open plans, group bedding facilities and delicious mountain food. The Rifugio Col Pradat is quite the opposite (except for the food). With private rooms and private facilities with a superb restaurant attached, the Col Pradat is a superb place to spend the night and to start and end a wonderful mountain hike. You will not be disappointred.

Packing List

Straddled along the border between Austria and Italy, the Dolomites were the site of some of the most atrocious battles of World War I.

Equipment

Trekking Gear

Gone are the moments of rage, scrabbling through your backpack in search of something. On this trip, you should exploit the advantage of staying in “The One Place” for most of the trip. You can bring as much or as little as you like.

Suitcases are recommended for this trip, although many travelers carry their luggage in a backpack. Alternatively, a sports-type / carry-all bag with a shoulder strap would suffice.

You will also need a good day pack when out trekking/cycling to carry a jacket and personal effects such as camera, sunscreen, water, snacks, blister kit.

If you choose to take up the option of experiencing a night in a Refugio with us, you will also need a cotton or silk sleeping bag liner.

Travel Documents

International COVID 19 Vaccination Certificate (just in case)
Travel Insurance
Air ticket
Credit card 
Spending money in Euro

Personal First Aid Kit 

Your personal First Aid kit should contain Band-aids, Paracetamol, Deep Heat or other muscle liniment, Blister pads, Crepe bandage, Antibiotic cream for cuts and scratches, ‘Imodium’ tablets, Strapping tape (for knees and ankles) – optional if you might suffer from any known knee or ankle injuries, Anti-chafing cream, Pawpaw cream, Foot powder if needed, Waterless hand disinfectant, Anti-inflammatory cream, Broad-spectrum antibiotic tablets, Anti-Nausea Tablets.

We also recommend sharing a First Aid Kit if you are travelling in a group.

 *If you have something you are particularly prone to, ear infections or sinus problems, bring what you need with you

Personal Items

  • Comfortable daypack with a rain cover
  • Waterproof bags for gear moisture protection in day pack while walking (garbage bags are fine)
  • Water bottles or Camelbak system ( 2-3 liters recommended. Water is accessible from fountains and hotels along the way.
  • Blister kit (see blister management), rehydration salts, and any personal medication you use
  • Alarm clock and LED head torch/flashlight
  • Sunscreen, hat, and high UV sunglasses with retaining cord

Clothing

  • Well worn in boots with ankle support, no sneakers on the trek – You are trekking in alpine terrain and will require shoes with a good grip especially in wet conditions.
  • 3 pairs of walking socks
  • 3 T-shirts (lightweight quick-drying tech fabric) or long-sleeved Trekking shirts
  • 2 pairs of shorts and at least one lightweight pair of pants (for walking in – avoid wearing Jeans!)
  • Cycling gloves for Via Ferrata (optional)
  • Sleeping gear (lightweight for hotel and thermals for Refugio)
  • Bathers
  • Warm fleece, sweater, hat, gloves (cold mornings)
  • Waterproof jacket & over-trousers
  • Sun hat

Non-Optional For This Trip

  • Walking poles (good for balance & taking the weight off your knees on descents).

Other Suggestions

  • Trekking scarf (buff)
  • Cycling Gloves (can also be used for protection while trekking with poles and on Via Ferrata)
  • Bathers
  • Camera
  • Spare batteries for camera
  • Reading & writing material
  • Pair of flip-flops/trainers for anything
  • Knee brace or strapping tape – not essential but useful for injury
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Personal toiletries
  • Snacks – though these can be purchased locally
  • Book
  • Swiss army knife or similar
  • Mobile & charger

A Note On Your Boots

In the Dolomites, you will encounter alpine trek conditions that vary from well-defined treks to gravel to rocky terrain. Unless you are a very experienced trekker or trail runner we highly recommend wearing walking boots with ankle support on the trek to prevent you from any injuries.

A Note On Your Daypack

Being in high mountains you should prepare for all eventualities with the weather. High altitudes will always be cool and if clouds set in it can be cold & damp. Expect 20-30 degrees Celsius at lower altitudes and at night temperature can fall below 10 degrees Celsius, so mornings can be cold. Better be prepared than sorry. Dress like an onion and take off/put on layers as required and store your gear in your day pack when not needed.

Personal Day Gear

  • Comfortable day pack with a rain cover
  • Water bottle or Camelbak
  • Well worn in trekking boots with ankle support
  • Preferred trekking cloth – shirt, pants, socks, trekking scarf (buff), sun protection hat with cord, sunglasses with retaining cord
  • Walking poles
  • Trekking gloves for blister protection if you use walking poles

Recommended Contents Of Your Day Pack

  • Rain cover for your pack
  • Blister kit (containing dedicated blister band-aids, moleskin if required)
  • Rehydration salts (Hydrolite), and any personal medication you use
  • Rain gear (jacket and pants) according to the weather forecast
  • Preferred snacks, fruit, and nuts, muesli bars, lollies, chocolate
  • Fleece or Vest for extra warmth
  • Beanie
  • Camera (optional)
  • Personal spending money

Supplied Equipment

  • Additional First Aid Kit
  • Helmet, Harness and Rope for Via Ferrata

Blister Management

Walking for extended hours for multiple days may affect your feet. We have put together some helpful advice on how to care for your feet along the trek.

Blister Management

Last-Minute Supplies

There are a few good outdoor stores in Verona and Sexten where you can purchase extras such as walking poles, day packs, etc. We will give you the address on arrival. 

Our Team

Guides

To ensure an authentic experience No Roads is working with a dedicated local guide and in partnership with the local Alpinschule in the Val Gardena. Their local knowledge helps us to discover and immerse into the natural and historical heritage of the area and their expertise enables us to even have a go at a Via Ferrata. 

While you need to ensure to get into an adequate physical shape for the trek your qualified guide will look after all the required preparation for trekking safely in the mountains while you enjoy an unforgettable and rewarding experience.

Your guide will enhance your trip by pointing out those things you might have overlooked, naming the flowers you are admiring, talking about local cultural diversities, and spotting local wildlife along the way.

Without our dedicated, locally-based team, our efforts to deliver for you the most immersive, enjoyable, challenging, and rewarding experience quite simply, would not be possible.

Tipping

In case you would like to show your appreciation to a particular Guide for a job well done, do so at your own discretion.  

You might also consider tipping your Trek Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive, about Euro 50 per person is recommended. Also, remember to mention the good service provided to a member of the tour Operations Management to be used as an example to encourage better staff performance and excellence.  

Local Staff: Service is included in Italian restaurants, although it is polite to tip 10% if the service has been very good. Bar staff and cafe’ waiters expect a small tip or loose change.

We've Got You Covered

General Travel Advice

All No Roads staff and teams consider guest safety and wellbeing an absolute priority and always follow the travel advice and guidelines of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Smartraveller. To further maintain the safety of our travelers, we promote good personal and hand hygiene along with adherence to safe food preparation practices.

Dietary Requirements

We are able to cater to all common special dietary requirements, however, we can not cater to vegans on this trip. The Sud Tyrol and the Dolomites are well known for their excellent and typical cuisine from the regions of Italy and Austria, known as Imperial cuisine. These regional diets include choices of pasta, potatoes, cheeses, cured meats, salads, and fruits. Due to this heavy gluten, cheese, and meat-based diet, the meal choices for special requirements might

be limited depending on your requirements.

Please advise us prior to your departure if you have any food allergies we should be aware of.

Note: The No Roads team will do everything it can to support any allergies which might require a special diet by informing all in-country personnel and ensuring reasonable provisions are made for all meals. We do, however, suggest and encourage all affected guests to assist us by providing this information while traveling, in situations or instances where it may be required to ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience.

If you do have an uncommon dietary requirement please contact our office directly.

COVID 19

Unfortunately, COVID is the “New Normal” and we all have to follow certain guidelines to ensure the safety of ourselves, our fellow guests, our team, and the local communities. 

To ensure that you are adequately prepared we will provide you with further information about COVID 19 procedures on the trek in your joining instructions closer to your departure date.

Our team will do everything it can to support you in this new normality. However, in this fast-moving environment, we do suggest and encourage all guests to monitor relevant COVID 19 Information for your trip on equivalent official websites as part of your preparation process.

Physical Preparation

Clinical studies have proven that the amount of time spent in nature, including activities outdoors, has an impact on their mental wellbeing and can even help improve symptoms of depression. Some clinically proven benefits of spending time in nature include the reduction of stress, blood pressure and improving sleep and energy levels.

Fitness

Exploiting the advantage of the STAYCATION guests may join as many of the daily activities they wish. Groups can travel at their pace and leisure taking frequent breaks set in the beautiful landscape along the way. This makes this unique holiday as hard or as easy as you want it to be. 

However, if you are planning to join all of the daily activities and consider the daily elevation, it is no walk in the park and one should physically prepare for it. You’ll hike for at least 5-6 hours on some of the days carrying a light day pack. The optional“Via Ferrata” requires a bit of technical strength (the required technical knowledge will be explained on the day). Some days descents can be demanding as some of them are in rocky terrain. 

If you are planning on joining this trip, you must make special efforts to get in good physical condition for the trip. The fitter you are the more enjoyable you will find this expedition.

Every participant should have a health check with a medical physician to ensure that they are in good physical health prior to embarking on their trip. No Roads is not a medical adviser and we take no legal responsibility for medical or other emergencies that may arise on the course of a trek.  As the service provider and hosts, we will take all necessary steps needed to evacuate injured or ill clients on the understanding that all costs involved will be paid to us before leaving the country (see Insurance).

To prepare safely and effectively for this trek in the Dolomites you specifically need to train for a period of at least five to six months. We suggest that during your training you should undertake frequent training walks, which you will need to progressively increase in hiking time, distance, and elevation gain.
During your walks, you need to familiarise yourself with walking with a day pack (weight of 5-7 kilos) and your walking poles.

We will share a basic training regime and training walk suggestions in Australia as part of our welcome pack to help build your trekking-specific condition.

Expedition Grading

High Heart Rate Holiday

On our own expedition scale, the Dolomite Explorer is considered a High Heart Rate Holiday. Whether you are pushing up a mountain or doing other physical activities, this expedition is primarily focused on challenging yourself physically. There are sections that will certainly get your heart rate going and other sections that are quite easy on your heart but challenging for your knees. The sweetness of this trip is a good balance of activity and relaxation. The combination of well-maintained trails, excellent accommodation, delicious food, and only carrying a day pack makes this trek the perfect active holiday. The advantage of the staycation also offers the optional additional rest day if needed.

You need to be of average to high fitness for this expedition or willing to commit to training to take part. Contact us if you are unsure of your fitness level and we talk you through how to get trek fit best.

Read more about our Trip Grades here.

We've Been We Know

It’s time for a confession.

It took time to get this good at what we do!

This was never through a lack of trying, but the reality is after 14 years in sending guests across the world, we’ve learned a thing or two…

Here are a few more pointers we thought would be useful before you board your flight (or flights) to Italy!

MONEY

Currency for Exchange

Euros are needed in Italy. Take some in cash to avoid having to change money at the beginning of the trip. 

The exchange rate as of the time of writing, 14th Aug 2023, is:
AUD 1.00 = € 0.59

Where to Exchange

Upon your arrival at one of the international airports or in Verona. 

ATM Availability

There are a large number of ATM cash points that accept Visa and Mastercards in Italy and Verona. There are ATMs available in Bad Moos but the hotel is located a bit outside of town.

Credit Card Acceptance

In major restaurants and shops. Hotel Kolfuschgerhof is accepting credit cards.

Spending

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Breakfast and dinners are included in your trip. You will have to pay for your lunches, any snacks & drinks en route, or evening drinks. Allow 25-50 Euros per day. Some travelers may drink more than others while other travelers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping, and tipping.

Any tip that you wish to give your local guides or leader in recognition of excellent service is always appreciated.

Emergency Funds

Please ensure you have access to an additional Euro 200 cash, to 

be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (e.g. a natural disaster) necessitate a change to our planned route. 
This is a rare occurrence but it is well worth being prepared.

COMMUNICATION

On this trek, you might be out of contact for some periods when up in the mountains but when we are in the towns, there will be phone and email access, WIFI is usually provided at your accommodation in Verona, and the Dolomitenhof. Global roaming charges are very expensive and prepaid cards such as Travel Sim are a good idea.

ELECTRICAL OUTLETS

Generally three-pin round, 230V in Italy.  

OTHER SIGHTSEEING & ACTIVITIES

Part of your trip cost includes an off-the-beaten-track tour of Verona. Further, we have worked into the itinerary a Via Ferrata option, so if you want to try your hand at this, you will have a chance.

YOUR FELLOW TREKKERS

We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group – patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone’s travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don’t keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well. This takes just a little effort on your part.

WELCOME MEETING & SAFETY BRIEFING 

More information and guidelines will be given to you prior to the start of your expedition, either at your Welcome Meeting with our Local Manager in Innsbruck or at the safety briefing with your local guide at the Hotel Kolfuschgerhof. Topics discussed then will include the following subjects.

  • Scheduled treks for the week
  • Mountain Weather Conditions
  • Equipment
  • Via Ferrata Option
  • Alternative Options to Via Ferrata 
  • Meals, and other conditions while on expedition (Lunches at local huts, etc).
  • Safety procedures.
  • Evacuation Procedures.
  • Cultural and Environmental Considerations.
  • COVID-19 Procedures on Expedition
  • Other relevant information.

Note: You will be provided with a complete trip joining document with relevant contact details of hotels, guides, and more, approximately two weeks prior to the departure of your trip.

You might all have your very own Dolomites at home. Used in horticulture, dolomite and dolomitic limestone are added to soils and potting mixes as a pH buffer and as a magnesium source. Home gardening is a common example of this use.

Sustainable Travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather a positive impact from tourism. Broadly speaking, this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please see our online policy for more details on our social and environmental approach and commitment.

The Environment

Many of the places you will visit are pristine. As travelers, we should try to have as little impact on these natural environments as possible. As such we recommend the following:

  • Please do not dispose of plastic bags and wrappers in the countryside along the way. These may be put in your backpack and disposed of at your local hotel at the end of the day.
  • Follow the well-marked walking tracks and avoid walking through grassland and regrowth areas. 
  •  Do not touch or feed any wildlife spotted on the way as you might cause severe harm to the animal.

By abiding by these simple guidelines, you will be protecting the local environment for the people who live there and for their children’s children.

The Local Community

Our philosophy and aim are to pay back to the local communities.

No Roads are dedicated to supporting local environmental projects in the places we visit. A $20.00 donation of each expedition booking is going towards a local charity project. For more information please visit our charity tab on the top of each expedition page.

Expedition Extensions

The friendly and professional No Roads Team is dedicated to ensuring your pre-and on-trip experience is as enjoyable as possible. We will be here to provide support for all aspects of your expedition!

Having handpicked all of our trips we are happy to dip into our pool of knowledge to help you with any extension bookings, adventurous or relaxing alike. Our local guides might also have some insider tips to share.

Please contact us for more information.

Simply specify your extension preferences and time period. We will then get back to you with some exciting options.

Tongue Teasers

Imperial Cuisine

The cuisine in the regions of the Dolomites is famous for its Austrian, Italian influence also known as Imperial cuisine. 

Ladin cuisine, typified by Tyrolean dumplings with ham, strudel, and dishes from the Venetian area are also well presented on the local menus.

Meals at the Hotel Kolfuschgerhof and Lunches on Trek

No matter where we take you, food is an important component of any No Roads Expeditions trip. Europe is no exception with its variety of cuisines spiked by local influence.

Waking up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee, freshly baked croissants, and eggs you just have to make your way down to graze the buffet-style breakfast spread consisting of various fresh breads, pastries, local dairy products, homemade jams, regional honey, cold meats, fruit, freshly pressed juices of the season, and homemade mueslis.

Following the advice of our former trekkers, lunches are at your own expense on most days, allowing each trekker the option of their preferred choice from the copious menus of the various local huts. Some like it opulent, some like it light. This way all options are yours.

Each evening we will be treated to a fanciful and delightful 5-course menu of various local dishes, including an antipasti buffet and salad corner, finishing off with a variety of local cheeses and fruits.

Using local and fresh produce is the philosophy of Hotel Kolfuschgerhof. Local farm eggs, butter from their Alpine pastures, herbs, and berries from their fields and forests, used fresh or preserved, dried for the winter, and meat from local organic farmers whose cattle graze right there in the Val Gardena in the autumn. They cook without the use of any flavour enhancers. Respecting their products and cooking with as little waste as possible.

For this reason, they are only able to take into account special dietary habits and intolerances to a limited extent. They do not do Vegan.

Meals in Innsbruck and Verona

Both Innsbruck and Verona have choices plenty of restaurants of various international cuisines and the local Italian cuisine is taking you much further than the common Pizza and Pasta.

Breakfast is included and is served at your accommodation.

Lunches are open to your choices and preferences at your own expense.

In Innsbruck, we will dine at a local restaurant specializing in Austrian fare. We have sourced a special local dinner experience for your farewell dinner scheduled for your last night in Verona after your trip (more information will be supplied in your individual joining instructions closer to your departure date).

All meals are outlined within the itinerary.

Special Dietary Requirements

While we are able to cater to all common special dietary requirements, we can not cater to vegans. The Sud Tyrol and the Dolomites are well known for its excellent food culture from the regions of Italy and Austria, known as Imperial cuisine. These regional diets include choices of pasta, potatoes, cheeses, cured meats, salads, fruits, etc. Due to this heavy gluten, cheese, and meat-based diet, the meal choices for special requirements might be limited depending on your requirements.

If you do have an uncommon dietary requirement please contact our office directly.

Parli Italiano, Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

Due to the evoloving path of history German and Italian are both official languages of South Tyrol. In the Sexten region all traffic signs are bilingual and schools are separated for each language group. Even in court every citizen has the right to use their own mother tongue.

A little effort to speak like a local can be a great icebreaker (as you stumble over the few words you remember) and is always appreciated by those whose homeland you are visiting.

SOME USEFUL (AND INTERESTING) words to impress the locals along the trek

English

Good morning
Good Day
Good evening
Good Night
Goodbye
How are you?
I am fine
What is your name?
My name is…
Nice to meet you/ Nice meeting you
See you later
I do not understand
I do not speak French, Italian, German
Yes
O.K.
No/ not
Thank you
You’re welcome
Please
Please help me
Excuse me
What time is it?
This
That
Where have you just come from?
What country are you from?
Where are you going?
Be careful / attention

Italiano

Buongiorno
Buona giornata
Buonasera
Buona notte
Addio
Come stai?
Sto bene
Come ti chiami?
Mi chiamo…
Piacere di conoscerti
Arrivederci
Non capisco
Non parlo italiano

OK
No/ non
Grazie
Prego
Per favore
Mi aiuti per favore
Mi scusi
Che ore sono?
Questa (feminine) , questo (masculine)
Quella (feminine), quello (masculine)
Da dove vieni?
Da che paese vieni?
Dove stai andando?
Stai attento / attenzione

English

Good morning
Good Day
Good evening
Good Night
Goodbye
How are you?
I am fine
What is your name?
My name is…
Nice to meet you/ Nice meeting you
See you later
I do not understand
I do not speak French, Italian, German
Yes
O.K.
No/ not
Thank you
You’re welcome
Please
Please help me
Excuse me
What time is it?
This
That
Where have you just come from?
What country are you from?
Where are you going?
Be careful / attention

Deutsch

Guten Morgen
Guten Tag
Guten Abend
Gute Nacht
Auf Wiedersehen
Wie geht es Dir/ Wie geht es Ihnen?/ Wie gehts?
Es geht mir gut
Wie heißt Du/ Wie heißen Sie?
Mein Name ist…
Freut mich, Dich/ Sie kennenzulernen
Bis später
Ich verstehe nicht
Ich spreche kein deutsch
Ja
OK
Nein/ nicht
Danke
Bitte schön
Bitte
Bitte hilf mir/ Bitte helfen Sie mir
Entschuldigung/ Entschuldigen Sie
Wie spät ist es?
Dies
Das
Woher kommst du gerade?
Aus welchem ​​Land kommst du?
Wohin gehst du?
Sei vorsichtig / Achtung

Checklist

Please make sure you have the following items before you travel to the airport for your flight to Italy.

1. Luggage – On this trip, it is all up to you whether you prefer to take a suitcase, a backpack, or a duffel bag for your personal clothing and equipment
2. Day pack (backpack) 
3. Valid passport.
4. Proof of Grant of your Schengen Visa if required. 
5. Photocopy of the main page of your passport.
6. Photocopy of your COVID 19 Vaccination Status in addition to any proof on your mobile device.
7. Return Airfares and other travel documents.
8. Medical/travel insurance papers/certificates plus 2 copies of your policy.
9. Credit cards, cash dollars (or travellers cheques) for expenses while travelling.
10. Personal First Aid Kit
11. Personal Medication

Give Us A Shout

NO ROADS EXPEDITIONS

Office: (03) 95988581
24 hrs Access:
Irene Miller + 61 430 705 222
Peter Miller + 61 425 726 623
Email: info@noroads.com.au  

IN-COUNTRY

Verona

Local Representative

Ms Silvia Baschirotto
Phone: +39 (0)349 5053457

Hotel Contact Details

Innsbruck

Altstadt Hotel Weisses Kreuze

Verona

Hotel Accademia
Phone: +39 045 596222

Val Gardena – Dolomites

Hotel Contact Details

Hotel Kolfuschgerhof

Via Rönn 7, I-39030 Colfosco
Alta Badia – Italy

We sincerely hope that you have the most wonderful Dolomite Explorer trip!