Hike clear through the Alps using nothing but your own two feet. This idea is a true hiker's dream; a challenge that more and more mountain enthusiasts and long-distance hikers undertake every year. To get you through the mountains, there are numerous paths to choose from — although, for us, one of them stands out: The 'Traumpfad', literally 'Dream Path'. This trail, which comprises 28 day-stages, covers over 340 miles (550 kilometers) and ascends over 65,000 feet (20,000 meters), was first hiked back in 1977 by the acclaimed mountaineer and writer, Ludwig Graßler who also gave it its name. And now, it's your turn.
Starting in Munich, a city that is often referred to as "the Northernmost City of Italy", you'll trek through the Bavarian foothills of the Alps, you'll cross the Karwendel, you'll climb the main ridge of the Alps in the Tux Alps, and you'll hike once through the entirety of the Dolomites. All while you meander your way ever onward towards beautiful Venice. On the way, you'll discover landscapes that can only be reached on foot, Alpine huts in breathtakingly picturesque places — and a wild, romantic world that, if you're lucky, you'll have all to yourself.
Even though this hike doesn't cross any technically difficult terrain, you'll still be presented with a fair number of challenges. Firstly, the distance alone is enough to make even the fittest of legs sore, so don't head off on this adventure lightly. Be sure to take plenty of breaks during the day and bring plenty of provisions with you. If you plan properly and prepare accordingly, you'll spend 28 spectacular days enjoying breathtaking panoramas, lonesome nature and creating moments that will last a lifetime.
If the full 28-day hike is a little too long for you, you can also choose to hike only sections. Stage 13 is a recommended endpoint if you choose to truncate the Tour. This way, you'd have already hiked through much of the Alps and you can end your trip in the beautiful Pustertal Valley. You'd also have explored part of the Dolomites by now, so you'll have experienced the three main regions of this epic hike. After such an accomplishment, you can board the train at Niedervintl happy and proud — ready to head on home.
Full of energy, you start your crossing of the Alps in the center of Munich, on the Marienplatz. From here it goes for you to the Isar and along the riverbank out of the city. After the first third you leave the city completely behind you and walk along the idyllic banks of the Isar on comfortable hiking trails to Wolfrathshausen.
Get recommendations on the best single tracks, peaks, & plenty of other exciting outdoor places.
The sixth day is a true mountain tour ready for you. Over a wide gravel field, you will follow marked trails through the Schlauchkar up to the Birkkarspitze, the highest summit of the Karwendel. If you have enough energy, the climb to the summit is definitely worth it. For the way back to the Birkkarspitze you should plan a total of one hour from the Schlauchkarsattel.
On the seventh day, the trail leads you on comfortable paths down to the Inn valley to Wattens. After a short ascent to the Lafatscherjoch, the route continues over a very long and exhausting descent through the Halltal valley. Plan a long rest at the Gasthof St. Magdalena, so that you can reach the stage goal with sufficient energy.
After the exhausting 10th stage, on the eleventh day a lighter hike awaits you. On comfortable trails, it goes with moderate ascents and descents on the Pfitscher yoke. Behind you, the Italian South Tyrol awaits you with lush valleys and great food.From the yoke, it goes down into the Pfitsch valley to Stein or St. Jakob, depending on where your accommodation awaits you.
Stage 15 takes you to the heart of the Dolomites. On each meter, you can expect unique views of the huge rocky landscape, which you can experience only up here.However, the tour is a real challenge. In addition to a stable condition today, sure-footedness and a head for heights are required, as you expect some exposed areas. Assess your skills properly and let it be calm and focused, then you are on the right side.
On day 17 you can take it a little easier again. Although you can expect a descent of over 1,000 meters, but there are only small climbs and the walk extends over a moderate twelve kilometers. Today, you can plan on taking a lot of breaks to enjoy the stunning scenery, because that's what you've earned after the last few days.
On your 18th stage, you will go downhill on comfortable trails along the entire route. At no point will it be steep or difficult and you will have the chance to enjoy the unique Serrai Sottoguda gorge.On your steady descent you will find various huts, restaurants and cafes and in the Alleghe stage destination, you can stock up on your groceries in various grocery stores.
On your 20th stage a hike with fantastic views awaits you. You circle the civetta massif and descend into a valley. Here runs the Torrente Corpassa, a torrent that leads only irregularly with water. On the other side, continue on a narrow but well-marked path to the Carestiato Hut, your current destination.On the hike you pass the Rifugio Vazzoler. If you feel like it, you can take a break here.