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South Tyrol: Discover the 9 Most Breathtaking Photo Spots in the Dolomites!

The Dolomites in South Tyrol are not only a paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts but also a haven for photographers! We spent several days exploring the Dolomites and have compiled the most stunning photo spots for you in this article!


In our guide, we'll show you where the most beautiful photo spots in the Dolomites are located and how to get there easily. Furthermore, we'll reveal the best times to capture these spots to maximize the beauty of your photos.


Check out our map for all the marked photo locations!



 

Table of Contents

 


1. The Three Peaks


The Three Peaks, also known as Tre Cime di Lavaredo, are a striking group of three steep rock needles in the Dolomites. The highest of the three peaks stands at 2,999 meters.

They are perhaps the most famous landmark of the Dolomites and a popular destination for hikers, climbers, and photographers.


Drei Zinnen in Südtirol mit Hütte im Vordergrund

Getting There and Opening Hours


Just a heads-up, the toll road leading directly to the Three Peaks isn't open all year round. Typically, it's accessible from early June to late October.


Opening hours vary depending on the month: until the end of June, the road is open from 7 am to 7 pm, from July to September from 6 am to 8 pm, and in October from 8 am to 5 pm.


We recommend hitting the road bright and early to avoid long queues forming at the entrance later in the day. Plus, the trails and parking lots are already bustling with activity in the morning. Alternatively, you can try around midday when some visitors start heading back.


By the way, you might come across signs indicating that parking lots are full on the way to the toll road. However, you can still proceed towards the toll road, although you might have to brace yourself for a bit of a wait.


Costs and Parking


Access to the Three Peaks via the toll road requires a fee of €30 per day for cars and €45 per day for campers. Please note that the toll can be paid in cash or by debit card.

After paying the toll, you can park your car for free at the public parking lot in front of the Auronzo Hut and start your hike from there.


We spent a night in our camper there and enjoyed an unbelievably beautiful view.


Junge Frau schaut aus einem Dachzelt in ein Bergpanorama in den Dolomiten

How to Get to the Three Peaks


A circular hiking trail leads to the Three Peaks, which you can easily tackle with sturdy footwear.


Photo Spots and Best Time for Photography


The area around the Three Peaks is stunning, and you'll discover plenty of photo spots here. For example, we recommend heading to a hill behind the hut where you'll find three small caves side by side. From there, you can capture some amazing shots.

Additionally, there's a small ascent to the left of the hut, offering a fantastic vantage point to showcase the Three Peaks.


In our opinion, the ideal time for photographing the Three Peaks is sunset.




2. Cardini di Misurina


In our opinion, no less impressive than the Three Peaks is the Cadini di Misurina mountain group. Cadini di Misurina consists of peaks reaching up to 2,839 meters and conveniently lies not far from the Three Peaks!


Fotospot Cardini di Misurina, Cardini Gruppe in den Dolomiten


Getting there and opening hours


To reach the Cardini Group, we recommend taking the same route as you would for the Three Peaks. It's best to allocate 2 days for both photo spots.


Costs and Parking


Information on parking options and fees can be found in our section on the Three Peaks photo spot.


Finding the Cardini Group Lookout


From the Auronzo Hut, follow trail marker #117 (Rifugio F.lli Fonda Savio). The path initially descends, then ascends until you reach a hill. Here, you have the choice between a left and a right path.


We suggest taking the right path, as the left one runs along a steep rock face. The right path, on the other hand, is easy to traverse.


If you're heading out for sunrise, exercise extra caution – a headlamp is essential.


Best Time for Photography


The ideal time for photography at the lookout is at sunrise. At this hour, there are fewer tourists around, allowing you to witness a breathtaking sunrise.



3. Snake road


The "Snake Road" in South Tyrol, also known as "Strada della Serpente" or "Schlernstraße", is a picturesque road winding through the breathtaking Dolomites.


The Snake Road offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountain landscape and is particularly popular among motorcyclists and enthusiasts of winding routes. The road is known for its serpentine curves, meandering through the impressive mountain scenery.


Snake Road in den Dolomiten von oben


How to get to the Snake Road


The Snake Road is part of the Passo Giao and is located in the Ampezzo Dolomites. The easiest way to reach it is by car or camper van.


Costs and Parking


The Snake Road is a public road that you can drive on as usual. You'll find several pull-offs around the Snake Road where you can briefly stop with your car or camper.


Best Time for Photography


The best time to photograph the Snake Road is at sunset.



4. Passo Giao


Not only is the Snake Road impressive, but the entire Passo Giao is a sight to behold! Passo Giao is a mountain pass located at an elevation of 2,236 meters in the Dolomites.


Passo Giao Drohnenaufnahme von Bergpanorama


Getting to Passo Giao


Passo Giao can be accessed via two main routes: one from Cortina d’Ampezzo to the north and another from Selva di Cadore to the south. The famous "Snake Road" is part of the Passo Giao route, offering stunning views that we've previously highlighted as a photo spot.


Costs and Parking


Passo Giao is a public road, so there are no additional toll fees for driving on it.


Best Time for Photography


For the most picturesque photos of Passo Giao, aim to visit during sunset. The golden hour light casts a magical glow over the landscape, making it an ideal time to capture the beauty of this mountain pass.



5. Seiser Alm


The Seiser Alm, situated at an elevation of 1,800 to 2,200 meters, spans an impressive 56 square kilometers, making it the largest high Alpine pasture in Europe. Dotted with numerous traditional mountain huts, it showcases one of the most stunning natural wonders in the Dolomites. In our opinion, a visit to the Seiser Alm is an absolute must on your photography tour!


Seiser Alm in Südtirol bei Sonnenuntergang mit sitzender Frau im Vordergrund


Getting there and Parking


Access to the Seiser Alm conservation area is restricted for private vehicles between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM. During this time, you can drive to Compatsch, where you can park your vehicle. Before 9:00 AM and after 5:00 PM, the road is open for private vehicles up to Compatsch.


Please note that there is a ticket system for accessing the Seiser Alm to control parking capacity. Upon reaching St. Valentin, you'll need to decide whether to park at P1 (Spitzbühl) or P2 (Compatsch). You'll be issued a parking ticket for either P1 or P2 accordingly.


We recommend heading to P2 as it puts you right in the center, where you can begin all your activities. Parking at P2 in Compatsch is subject to a fee of €24.00 per day for cars.

Especially on weekends and during good weather, the road to the Seiser Alm may close before 9:00 AM if parking lots are fully occupied.


If you have a hotel reservation in the Seiser Alm area, you can access the road at any time of the day.


Photography Spots and Best Time to Photograph


The Seiser Alm offers plenty of photogenic spots. We recommend taking one of the many hiking trails through the area. These trails wind through lush meadows with numerous small huts, surrounded by a magnificent mountain panorama!

For photography, both sunrise and sunset are ideal times.


Seiser Alm: Bergpanorama mit Wiese und Decke im Vordergrund


6. St. Valentin Church


The picturesque church of St. Valentin has a long history and is often considered one of the oldest churches in South Tyrol. Dating back to the 14th century, it is beautifully nestled within the South Tyrolean mountain panorama.


Kirche St. Valentin in Südtirol mit Bergen im Hintergrund und Frau im weißen Kleid im Vordergrund


How to Reach St. Valentin Church


The St. Valentin Church is perched atop a hill overlooking the village of Kastelruth near Seis am Schlern. You can hike to the church via a path in the village, as there is unfortunately no parking available near St. Valentin.


Best Time for Photography


The best time to photograph St. Valentin Church is during sunset. During sunrise, it takes quite a while for the sun to rise over the mountains. Unfortunately, we were there for sunrise this time, but we'll definitely opt for sunset next time.



7. St. Magdalena


The picturesque village of St. Magdalena in South Tyrol, with the characteristic Geisler peaks in the background, forms an absolute picture-perfect scene. It's famous for its breathtaking Alpine landscape and charming cottages.


Aussicht auf St. Magdalena auf Kirche Gebirge und Häuser zum Sonnenuntergang

Getting to St. Magdalena


St. Magdalena is a small village located in the municipality of Villnöß in the rear valley area. You can reach St. Magdalena by car or camper van.


Photo spot and best time for photography


The most beautiful, but also the most popular photo spot in St. Magdalena is the hike along the Magdalena Trail to the Panorama Bench. From there, you have the best view of St. Magdalena.


If you want to photograph St. Magdalena, the best time to do so is during the evening twilight.



8. St. John Chruch


The St. John Church, also known as St. Johann in Ranui, is situated at the end of the Villnöss Valley, surrounded by dense forests and the majestic Geisler Peaks in the background.


St. John Kirche Südtirol bei Sonnenschein


How to Get to St. John Church


You can combine a visit to the St. John Church with a hike to the Geisleralm. For this, you can park at the Restaurant Waldschenke (paid parking) or one of the other nearby visitor parking lots.


Cost and Parking


Near the St. John Church, you'll find various paid parking options. Since the number of parking spaces is limited, it's advisable to arrive early. By midday, the parking lots are often already full.


Best Time for Photography


If you plan to photograph the St. John Church, both morning and evening hours are suitable. However, during sunset, the mountain scenery is beautifully illuminated, making it an ideal time for photography.



9. Geisleralm


The Geisleralm is a stunning mountain hut in the Dolomites. Located in the Geisler Group mountain range, a subgroup of the Dolomites, it offers fantastic dining options. Moreover, the Geisleralm provides breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks and valleys.


Geisleralm in den Dolomiten mit Bergpanorama im Hintergrund


How to get there


To reach the Geisleralm, there are several routes you can take. We opted for the hike from Ranui to the Geisleralm, which takes about 2 hours. The hike is relatively easy and manageable.


Costs and Parking


Parking at Ranui costs €25 per day for a camper van. If you're arriving by car, the cost is significantly lower. The parking lot is located at the Waldschenke restaurant.

By the way, you can enjoy fantastic food at the Waldschenke restaurant if you need a meal before your hike.


Opening Hours and Best Time for Photography


The Geisleralm is open from May to early November, from Tuesday to Sunday. Since opening hours may vary, we recommend checking before your hike.

The best time for photography at the Geisleralm is during sunset.



 

You're looking for more excursion destinations in the Dolomites region? Check out the following articles to learn more about Passo Giao or the Seiser Alm:



These articles will provide you with additional insights and recommendations for exploring these stunning locations in the Dolomites.

 

Looking for more insights into our travels? Check out our Instagram channels tom_rbg_ and anna_mser! If you have any questions about the routes, feel free to contact us through these channels at any time!


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