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10 Hiking Trails in the Italian Alps

This is our guide to the top 10 hiking trails in the Italian Alps. It’s a must-read for anyone thinking of travelling to this part of the world for the walking trip of a lifetime.

  • Hiking on Alps
  • Pellaud
  • Cime di Lavaredo
  • Valasco
  • Gorge della Reina
  • Sella-Herbetet
  • Sorapis
  • Grand ╔tret
  • Bianco and Rosa
  • Terrazzamenti
  • Tsaplana
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Italy attracts many tourists every year for many different reasons. Some come for the history, some come for the beaches and some come for the food.

But a large proportion of all visitors to the country come for its unbeatable hiking trails. The Italian Alps, in particular, are a huge draw for both novice walkers and experienced ramblers.

The Italian Alps cover a vast region, so people often return to them time and time again, with each trip being totally different to the last.

This is our guide to the top 10 hiking trails in the Italian Alps. It’s a must-read for anyone thinking of travelling to this part of the world for the walking trip of a lifetime.

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Experience the fascination of the mountains in Italy through these amazing alpine itineraries

You can expect some of the best scenery and adventure you’ll ever have on any one of these trails. Some may be more suitable for you than others, depending on your fitness levels, but you’ll be bowled over on each of them by the region’s wildlife and jaw-dropping views. 

Hiking in the Italian Alps - Must-Sees

The Alps offers a wealth of opportunities to go walking and hiking in the summer months. Plus, there are many different options for many different levels of hiker.

When choosing from any of our suggestions, make sure that you choose the right one for your fitness level and that you go well prepared with food, water and any other equipment to keep you safe while out walking.

Lago Pellaud

Lago Pellaud is a real treat of a hike, especially for those that want an easier day on their hiking holiday. It’s short - just under 8 km - and pretty flat with elevation peaks of 263 m, so you can start at breakfast and finish well before lunchtime.

However, despite being easy, it’s no less stunning. You’ll see plenty of waterfalls on this circular trail in the Gran Paradiso National Park.

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Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop

Purists will say that the Dolomites are not really the Italian Alps, though they technically are. Anyway, with a stunner of a hike like this, what’s the real problem? Totalling 10.3 km in all, this trail should take around 3 and a half hours to complete and will be enjoyed by experienced and novice hikers alike.

The total elevation in the entire trail is 400 m and you’ll see three of the iconic peaks that the Italian Dolomites have to offer. The trail is straightforward to follow and boasts some fantastic views of the mountains.

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Giro del Valasco Trail

This is a tough hike and will take an experienced hiker around 10 hours to complete. With a total length of 21.6 km and an elevation of 1,511 m, it’s not for the faint of heart.

However, if you have the fitness and the expertise, this is a truly rewarding trail in the Alpi Marittime Nature Park. You’ll have views of snowy mountaintops and you’ll pass the jaw-droppingly beautiful glacier-fed Claus lake.

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Gorge della Reina Hike

At under 10 km long, this is a good hike for novice ramblers who are just getting started into hiking. While it’s hilly enough with an elevation total of 655 m across the entire hike, you should be able to complete in under 5 hours.

Set behind the picturesque village of Entracque, the trail follows the route to the Gorge della Reina, which is a small canyon.

The plant life here is a real treat as wild orchids can grow here in abundance. If you’re not up to walking here, simply staying in Entracque is great for swimming in the nearby lakes or even some mountain biking.

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The Sella-Herbetet Traverse

This cyclical route starts and ends in Valnontey and is a stunner of a walk. It’s just over 20 km long and boasts some of the most stunning views and landscapes you’re ever likely to see.

It’s pretty steep in parts, but you get to climb Gran Paradiso, which is the highlight of this walk. While on the trail, you’ll see lakes that look like mirrors and if you’re very lucky, you’ll even spot some ibex or marmots.

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Lago di Sorapis

Back in the Dolomites region, one lake that is worth the hike to get to is Lago Di Sorapis.

In fact, the only way to get there at all is by foot. But it’s well worth the effort as the bright blue water, set against the impressive backdrops of mountains is absolutely stunning.

Plus, as it takes little over two hours just to hike to from the closest car park, you are pretty much assured you’ll have the place to yourself when you get there.

There are parts that are quite tricky - like narrow ledges - but, if you’re up for it, the destination is worth the journey.

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Glacier Grand Étret Hike

For those that are just starting hiking, this is a reasonable challenge to build your confidence. It’s a fascinating walk and you’ll be able to see ibex while heading towards the Grand Étret glacier.

It should take about 6-7 hours to complete, so it’s good for those who want to walk all day. And, as it’s part of the Gran Paradiso National Park, you know this valley route is bound to be a beauty. It’s an out-and-back route which may not be for everyone, but we love it.

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Monte Bianco and Monte Rosa

While strictly not a route, this entire region is worth a mention as it’s a destination all in itself. As the home of Monte Bianco - the tallest mountain in the Alps - the number of trails and hikes in the area are vast and all have that impressive mountain behind you!

Its "little" sister, Monte Rosa, is also very striking and offers many places to walk too. If you’re not sure where to start, try the classic White Mountain trail, which begins at Courmayeur at the base of Monte Bianco. Set aside an entire holiday for this route – it’ll take about 10 days to walk!

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Via dei Terrazzamenti

This is a fun route that is easy to navigate for cyclists and hikers alike. Part of the Valtellina region, this particular trail is suitable for the entire family and passes by picturesque villages and fantastic views.

With an elevation ranging between 300 and 700 m above sea level, the entire route travels between Morbegno and Tirano but can be split down into shorter chunks to suit your holiday plans.

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Tsaplana Peak Hike

Lastly, a hike around Mount Tsaplana has made it into our top 10 as it’s a challenging enough trek for many while having enough of the wow factor to keep expert walkers interested too.

With views of Monte Bianco through the Valnontey valley, this trek in the Gran Paradiso National park takes you to the Tsaplana Peak. It’s just over 10 km long with an elevation of 971 m.

Experienced walkers will finish it in under 5 hours, while those still finding their feet will take closer to 6.

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