The Dolomites with the Santa Lucia Preserve

Join the Preserve community as we trek through the raw majesty of the Italian Dolomites for an expedition that celebrates both the natural world and the sublime grace of Italian hospitality.

Best of the Dolomites

Sweeping vistas, stunning meals and true cultural immersion

September 10 - 17, 2023

One exclusive departure — join us!

8 Days, 7 Nights

San Cassiano, Cortina, the Dolomites

Price from


Per person, based on double occupancy

You’re surrounded by jagged limestone cliffs, looking out over vast untouched country defined by imposing vertical peaks, sparkling mountain lakes, and lush pastures dotted with fairytale villages. You’re in the incredible Italian Dolomites⁠—your playground for the next eight days!—and every moment brings new adventure. By day, you’re hiking from peak to peak on some of the world’s most scenic trails, carrying just a day pack and fully supported, led by experienced local guides; by night, you’re relaxing at luxurious mountain inns and savoring northern Italy’s finest cuisine.

If you want to experience and hike the untamed side of Italy, in style, this trip is for you. We’ll make our way up, down, and around through the heart of the Dolomites, every inch of it mesmerizing, eating well and sleeping in elegant mountain lodges.

A Look at the Details

Who It's For

The outdoor adventurer with refined tastes. The Dolomites offer the most diverse natural beauty in Italy—paired with renowned local cuisine. Full of wonder and a beacon to hikers, cyclists, skiers, climbers, and food connoisseurs, this mountainous shangri-la has a little something for everyone.

Activity Level: Moderate

Our day hikes are accessible for most age levels who maintain good physical fitness. Each day we walk 1.5 to 4 hours, with elevation gains between 400 and 2,700 feet. We stick mostly to established trails, at times making use of off-piste routes.

Our Trip Leader

On this journey reserved exclusively for the Santa Lucia Preserve, you'll be traveling alongside Scott Yeakel. Scott joined our team after working a decade in the golf industry as a professional, and he looks forward to meeting and aiding you on adventures in the Dolomites and around The Preserve!

"Each mountain in the Dolomites is like a piece of art."
Reinhold Messner, Mountaineer

The Dolomites Highlights


Endless Exploration

From the staggering Cinque Torri to the rugged splendor of Tre Cime, we'll trek our way through some of the most pristine landscapes on Earth.


Hospitality Redefined

Trekking through the mountains is a hard day's work. Fortunately for us, we can look forward to our gracious hosts on the ground, and their meticulous attention to every single detail of our stay.


The Best Food in Italy

From homemade no-frills lunches at cozy alpine huts to Michelin-star dining in San Cassiano, we'll savor the region's unique cuisine.

Day by Day

Day 1

Benvenuto in Italia! Upon your arrival in Venice, you’ll be whisked away through the heart of Veneto—past rolling vineyards and Roman ruins—en route to our alpine sanctuary at the foot of the Dolomites. We’ll convene for an aperitif in the early afternoon to celebrate the truly incredible journey that awaits us.

For those of us feeling energized, we’ll organize a short hike to a stunning viewpoint. Think of it as a dazzling appetizer for the week of unbelievable vistas to come. Our welcome dinner this evening is the first of many exceptional dining experiences. Over sumptuous courses like chicken roulade with olives and sautéed artichokes at Al Camin, we’ll toast once more to a transformative week together. 

Day 1: 2.3 miles, 1 hour 30 minutes, 400 ft elevation gain

Day 1 Highlights

  • Transfer from Venice airport
  • Campo di Sopra hike 
  • Welcome dinner at Al Camin
  • Stay at La Grand Hotel Savoia

Day 2

We begin the morning with a breathtaking gondola ride to Mount Faloria. As the panorama
fades to beautiful larch forests, we’ll disembark on solid ground and begin our walk. Soon enough the forests give way to pastures and we’ll find ourselves face-to-face with the shepherds and cheesemakers of one of the area’s most beautiful organic farms.

Far from a rustic shed tossed in the mountains, the Malga El Brite is owned by 1-star Michelin restaurant San Britte, and much of the produce harvested here will feature on their stunning tasting menus. We’ll begin our experiences with a Tomme cheese tasting, and we’ll promptly sit down for an exclusive farm-to-table lunch.

We’ll spend the balance of the afternoon winding down the trodden path to the hotel, and taking some free time to relax and luxuriate. Dinner tonight is pure elegance and just down the hallway. The Ristorante Savoy has invited us down to its elegant dining room for a multi-course meal steeped in heritage ingredients and local flavor.

Day 2: 6.8 miles, 3.5 hours, ‘2700 ft elevation loss

Day 2 Highlights

  • Gondola to Mount Faloria
  • Hike to Malga El Brite
  • Farm-to-table lunch
  • Stay at La Grand Hotel Savoia

Day 3

Today, our hiking route will take us past the iconic Cinque Torri (Five Towers). With ambling trails through beautiful meadows carpeted in verdant grass and brilliant wildflowers, we’ll see jagged massifs. Near the top, we’ll actually walk right into a mesmerizing open-air WWI museum. The Dolomites were contested territory during WWI, and several regiments of Italian soldiers were stationed on these snow-capped peaks throughout the campaign. 

After bearing witness to this important history, we’ll make our way to Rifugio Nuvolau, which means “Hut in the Clouds” in the local Friulian dialect. We’ll make ourselves at home in this modest alpine inn, and sit down for a home-made no frills lunch. Think piquant goulash with an Italian twist or fresh salami and local cheeses. Buoyed by the warmth of alpine hospitality, we’ll float back down—through picturesque meadows and rocky steppes—to Passo Giau where we’ll transfer back to the hotel. 

No matter how cozy your bed looks, now is not the time for risposo. Dinner tonight is at Michelin-starred San Brite where chef Riccardo Gaspari and his sommelier wife, Ludovica Rubbini, will lead us in a culinary journey echoing the marvel of our travels thus far.

Day 3: 4.5 miles, 3 hours, ‘1770 ft elevation gain, ‘1300 ft elevation loss

Day 3 Highlights

  • Hike to Cinque Torri vista
  • WWI open air museum visit
  • Dinner at Michelin-starred San Brite
  • Stay at La Grand Hotel Savoia

Day 4

Today, once again, we embark over towering rock walls, lush meadows and serene alpine lakes. In fact, we’ll circumnavigate the formidable Tre Cime or Three Summits, and we’ll be literally walking through clouds as mountain peaks emerge in and out of our periphery.

Halfway through this epic day of climbing will stop for lunch at a modest family hut. Though you won’t find elegant dining rooms or elaborate tasting menus, you will be greeted with unqualified hospitality and some of the best comfort food in all of the Dolomites. Recharged and feeling invincible, we’ll press onward through narrow defiles only to bask in the vast expanse of the top of the world.   

After an incredible day in the clouds, we’ll descend back to our village and take the afternoon and evening to ourselves. We recommend a hot stone spa treatment followed by an Aperol spritz! 

Day 4: 6.5 miles, 4 hours,  ‘1200 ft elevation gain

Day 4 Highlights

  • Circumnavigate Tri Cime
  • Lunch at alpine hut
  • Evening on your own
  • Stay at La Grand Hotel Savoia

Day 5

This morning we bid arrivederci to Cortina and head to San Cassiano, a storybook hamlet in the heart of the Dolomites. Before settling into our five-star sanctuary, we take a short chair lift ride to discover the Pralongià Plateau, also known as the Amphitheatre of the Dolomites, with spectacular views of the peaks all around the valley. 

After relishing another ethereal view—the sky seems even more magnified in this region—we’ll hike back through meadows dotted with edelweiss and marsh orchids through old-growth and forests, all the way to the entrance to our hotel. Once we settle into our alpine chateau—which truly dwells at the pinnacle of rustic luxury—we’ll split up into two groups. Half of us will join Michelin-star chef Simone Cantafio for an unforgettable cooking experience (the rest of us will join him tomorrow). 

We’ll all reconvene later for dinner at the hotel, where the menu—traditional dishes from Alta Badia and South Tyrol—is the best kept secret in San Cassiano.

Day 5: 6 miles, 3.5 hours, ‘560 ft elevation gain, ‘2000 ft elevation loss

Day 5 Highlights

  • Transfer to San Cassiano
  • Chairlift to Pralongía Plateau 
  • Cooking experience with Chef Simone Cantafio
  • Stay at Hotel Fanes

Day 6

Today is the epitome of “Choose Your Own Adventure.” If a hike through lunar-like landscapes sounds appealing, we’ll take a gondola to the alpine highline and traverse the Gruppo Stella to Peak Boe, a staggering panorama of the Dolomites and Carnic Alps.
If you’re feeling a little less adventurous, we’ll take a more casual light hike around the Ladin Farmsteads and past the church of Santa Barbara and its iconic tower—that quite literally juts out from the side of a mountain—where we’ll have a farm-to-table lunch, specially curated to highlight the farmers of the region.

In the afternoon, half of us will follow Michelin-star chef Simone Cantafio into his test kitchen, and those who met her yesterday will have the afternoon on their own.

Dinner is down the road at the buzziest new restaurant in the region. Mumant, helmed by the Manuel Mangutsch, awaits with its elegant tasting menu, which features elevated re-imaginings of Val Badia specialties.

Day 6: Peak Boe option: 5.5 miles, 3 hours, ‘550 ft elevation gain, ‘2000 ft elevation loss

Santa Barbara church option: 5 miles, 3 hours, ‘1500 ft elevation loss and gain

Day 6 Highlights

  • Hike to Peak Boe or Santa Barabara
  • Cooking experience with Chef Simone
  • Dinner at Mumant
  • Stay at Hotel Fanes

Day 7

For our last full day, we’ll traverse the Path of the Larches. As the name suggests, we’ll duck in and out of Alpine forests until we emerge at a viewpoint, where we can look across the horizon and actually catalog the peaks we’ve visited in the last week.

For folks looking for a more elaborate and technical experience, we are also offering the option of a guided Via Ferrata climb. This is a route that requires ropes and a bit of mountaineering experience. Trails on this route are narrow, but the views and the experience are exhilarating to say the least.  Regardless of the path we took this morning, we’ll reconvene for lunch at Rifugio Santa Croce, one of the oldest mountain huts in the valley.

We’ll descend into town together and take some leisure time to ourselves in the afternoon. Tonight, we go out in style, with our farewell dinner at Michelin-starred La Stüa de Michil. Over courses that not only pay homage to traditional recipes, but also experiment with new presentations and ingredients, we’ll toast to an amazing week of adventure. 

Day 7: 3.7 miles, 4 hours, ‘1550 ft elevation gain

Day 7 Highlights

  • Path of Larches hike
  • Lunch at Rifugio Santa Croce
  • Dinner at Michelin-starred La Stüa de Michil.
  • Stay at Hotel Fanes

Day 8

One last look at the soaring walls of the Dolomites, the plunging valley slopes and the quaint village views. Our time in this picturesque part of Italy has come to an end, but will stay with us forever. As the Ladin say, A s’udëi! Until next time.

Day 8 Highlights

  • Transfer to Venice's VCE airport

Where We Sleep

The best of Italian hospitality comes with refined mountain resorts and cozy lodges surrounded by towering Dolomite peaks.

Grand Hotel Savoia

Cortina d’Ampezzo

This 5-star resort and spa is a timeless Dolomites landmark, the dramatic topography perfectly complementing the hotel’s contemporary style. Nothing short of a Wes Andersonian mirage, the likes of Charlton Heston, Sophia Loren and FDR have vacationed here—so you’ll be in good company. Cortina d'Ampezzo itself is one of the most renowned destinations for Italian vacationing.

Hotel Fanes

San Cassiano

The most elegant base camp in all of the Dolomites. From the gorgeous spa and its outdoor pool that reflects the mountains like a glacial lake to the stunning architecture of the chateau itself, every detail here is a love letter to hospitality and the region itself.

I loved warmth, kindness, knowledge, generosity, depth, presence, and overall good souls of the Modern Adventure team.
Jane B.
It was evident that everyone who had a hand in the planning truly wanted the trip to be special and memorable.
Debra B.
The integration of traveling with the tastemaker was interesting and trip-enhancing.
Jeffrey B.

Book Dolomites with the Santa Lucia Preserve

Number of Travelers


Reserve your spot today with a $1,500 per-person deposit plus room supplements (if relevant). Full payment is due 180 days prior to your trip departure date. We’ll email you a reminder. If your trip departs in less than 180 days, we’ll collect full payment either 30 days from when we receive your deposit, or 60 days prior to your trip departure date, whichever is sooner. See our Terms of Service below for full details.


Per person, based on double occupancy

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Read our FAQs below. Or text or call us at +1 (855) 219-8018 to speak with a Modern Adventure Trip Specialist.

  1. What does the price include?

    Seven nights at unique mountain village accommodations; private transportation for luggage transfers between all hotels; certified trekking guides to accompany all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfer; entrance fees; all breakfasts, lunches and most dinners; local beverages with meals.

  2. What does the price not include?

    Roundtrip airfare to/from Italy; travel insurance; transportation to the trip’s meeting point; activities not included in the trip itinerary; lodge incidentals including room service, laundry, etc; personal gear; gratuities for local guide and Modern Adventure trip leader.

  3. How difficult is this?

    This is considered a moderate hiking adventure. You will be carrying a day pack each day, with your own water and daily supplies, while the rest of our luggage is transferred by vehicle between hotels and lodges. We’ll follow well-maintained paths but sometimes go off-trail, and sleep in hotels and lodges every night. Each day we hike 1.5 to 4 hours, with elevation gains between 400 and 2,700 feet. We stick mostly to established trails, at times making use of off-piste routes. While this trip is ideal for all skill levels, some hiking experience would also be of benefit.

  4. What are the arrival and departure details?

    Our trip starts in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy. A complementary transfer from Venice's VCE airport is included to Cortina d’Ampezzo for guests, departing at 1pm. On our last day, Modern Adventure will organize a complimentary group transfer to Venice Airport (VCE). Your flight should depart VCE no earlier than 1pm.

  5. What are the accommodations like?

    We will be sleeping and dining at five-star hotels and luxurious mountain lodges each night.

  6. What if I am a solo traveler?

    Prices are based on double occupancy. Please note that due to the nature of our mountain-lodge accommodations, we unfortunately cannot support single travelers on this trip.

  7. Who is going on this adventure?

    This adventure is recommended for travelers aged 18 and above who are in good health and have some experience with hiking. You will be expected to load and unload your own backpacks and manage your own physical comfort and well-being. This adventure will be limited to no more than 12 adventurers and your Modern Adventure team. We will be joined for this adventure by expert hiking guides, highly qualified in all necessary skills to safely travel through the Italian Alps.

  8. What travel documents are needed?

    US citizens do not require a visa to visit Italy, however are required to show a valid US passport. It is recommended that your passport is valid for six months after your travels are over. For citizens of other countries, please check with the Italian Embassy or Consulate for information and requirements.

  9. What is the cancellation policy?

    You may cancel on or before May 13 2023 and receive a full refund minus a $500 per-person service fee. If you cancel on or after May 14, 2023 there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after July 12, 2023 there is a 100% cancellation fee. We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details).

  10. Do I need Travel Insurance?

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most 'Cancel For Any Reason' policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.