Park of Dolomiti d'Ampezzo


The National Park of the Dolomiti d'Ampezzo (11200 hectares) was founded in 1990, and is situated to the north of the village of Cortina d'Ampezzo, continuing to the confines of Alto Adige, in the heart of the Eastern Dolomites. It borders the Fanes-Sennes-Braises Park, and combined they give an area of around 37000 hectares.

The park's origins can be traced back to the Regole d'Ampezzo, the consortium of noble families created to determine the use of the forests and pastures. This institution goes back in fact to the time of the Celtic and Roman colonisation of the valley. Today the park is noteworthy for its favouring cultural and scientific activity, as well as its inherent natural beauty and its ample cultural span. Cortina d'Ampezzo has been able to conserve its surrounding lands throughout the centuries thanks to a deep-rooted policy of protection concerning its heritage of alpine flora and fauna, and a programme of repopulation of species in danger of extinction. The floral symbol of the park is the 'Dolomites' everliving', a rare succulent plant which is only found on this mountain.

Nature lovers are provided with a vast patrimony which numbers among its attraction various types of optimum natural environments, largely inhabited by a rich variety of plant and animal life: from green valleys to dense woods, lakes and waterfalls to the urban landscape of Cortina. In this truly unique environment one may encounter ibex, hamois, golden eagles and owls, the extremely rare three-toed woodpecker,and foxes and weasels. Recent sightings have been made signalling the presence of brown bears and bearded vultures.

The countryside offers magical scenery imbued with silence and tranquillity, to be explored on foot or by mountain bike. Experienced climbers can literally grasp in their hands the dream made of rock and colour.

Important sights to be seen include: the Tofane, the galleries from the war at Lagazuoi, the Tre Cime di Lavaredo and Lake Misurina.