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Dolomites in late April?

My wife and I are taking our 4-yr-old son to northern Italy the last week+ of April, 2024. We're spending the first half of the week in Venice (Venice; lagoon; day trips to Padua and maybe Verona).

We'd love to spend a few days in the Dolomites, but see that this is their low season and many hotels/restaurants/lifts may be closed. With our son in tow, we would only need to do some very light alpine meadow hikes. We'll rent a car after leaving the Veneto.

We'll have April 25-29th for the post-Veneto portion of our trip.

Does anyone know:
a) if a few of the (lower) gondolas/lifts will be open at that time, or if we can take the bus up to Compatsch? And will the #11 bus from Compatsch to Saltria be running that time of year? and,
b) the likelihood that the Sella Pass will be passable?

If we can reasonably expect to do Rick's "Short Dolomite Loop Drive" over Sella Pass (p. 227) and one or two of his "Easy Hikes" (p. 221-222), it will be worth our trip. We can fill the rest of our Dolomite time in the valley poking around Bolzano, Kastelruth, and maybe a day trip through Brenner Pass to Innsbruck.

Plan B is to go from the Veneto to Florence to the Cinque Terre on this spring trip, and then see the Dolomites, the Julian Alps and the Austrian Alps on a future July trip.

Posted by
11173 posts

April is not a great time. The #11 definitely does not run that early and most hotels I am familiar with are shuttered between the end of ski season and June 1 or so. You could settle in Castelrotto or Bolzano and enjoy the spring weather. Merano is another nice option. But if you want cable cars and mountain walks, wait until mid-June so services are fully open.

Posted by
17 posts

Looks like the Dolomites will have to wait. We did the Swiss Alps in July, 2015--pre-kid--and loved it. Just wondering to myself how long we should wait until the little bugger can hike/walk for 2 hours at a time--might have to wait until late 2020's? Until then, we'll do the museum-playground-museum-playground tours.

Still curious if the Sella Pass is usually open by late April . . .

Posted by
17 posts

We have a back pack for him, but haven't used it since he turned three. Unfortunately for him, his parents are getting old. (And unfortunate for us ;-)