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Trekking in Val Zemola and Val Cimoliana, 6 days with accommodation in mountain huts in northern Italy

Trekking Val Cimoliana

This 6-days of trekking in Val Zemola and Val Cimoliana in Northern Italy is an absolutely sublime experience, and certified mountain guide Lucia leads the way as she takes you through the regions lovely mountains, valleys, passes and fields, whilst also admiring the gorgeous flora and fauna that inhabit the area.


Dolomite Mountains

6 Days

Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep




  • Trek around the breathtaking Val Zemola and Val Cimoliana!
  • Visit huge mountains, vast valleys, epic plains and jaw-dropping passes
  • See native flora and fauna such as ibex, marmots and countles flower species


I will guide you on this fun and spectacular 6 days of trekking in Val Zemola and Val Cimoliana in Northern Italy, a truly underrated and untouched part of Italy that takes us up in to the mountains and down in to the valleys and fields that make up this section of the Dolomites, all while exploring the native flora and fauna that live here.

Both Val Zemola and Val Cimoliana are nestled within the Friulian Dolomites in Northern Italy, renowned for its untouched, isolated nature and its unique flora and fauna. It is an increasingly popular area for hiking and other outdoor activities, with its very low population density also holding great appeal.

After meeting in Erto on day 1, we then begin our trek in earnest by heading towards Rifugio Cava Buscada, an old quarry that contains fossils, marmots, eagles and more.

Day 2 is when we head to Rifugio Maniago, and along the way we are able to go up to the mighty Duranno Pass, giving us the chance to see the colonies of Ibex that live there, as well as nice views out over the landscape.

Day 3 is our last in Val Zemola, involving walking around a bivouac before going to the mesmerizing and lovely Pissandol Waterfall.

Days 4-6 take us through the magical and inspiring Val Cimoliana, with highlights including climbing up the famous Campanile di Val Montanaia, the Brica Pass, which features some of the most gorgeous flowers in the entire Dolomites, and Leone’s Pass, an absolutely breathtaking section that give us amazing views back over the post-glacier valleys.

After 6 days our journey finishes, hopefully having made you fall in love with this part of Italy and encouraged you to return and explore more.

These 2 parts of the Dolomites are a true natural wonder – book now to experience!

To explore Val Cimoliana more in-depth, check out our 6-day trek from the Rifugio Pordenone in Val Cimoliana, here!

For a more rugged adventure, try our 6-day hut-to-hut trek in Italy’s Friulian Dolomites, near Cortina d’Ampezzo, here!


Day 1: Arrive

We will arrive in Erto and start our hike towards Rifugio Cava Buscada, an old quarry turned into a mountain hut. We will visit the quarry with its amazing fossils and its new
inhabitants, the marmots. We will try to spot the eagles that live up on Mt. Palazza and then enjoy the great local cuisine of Roberta.

Day 2: Duranno Pass

From Rifugio Cava Buscada we will do a great traverse, passing by some old “casere” towards Rifugio Maniago. From Rifugio Maniago we can go up to Duranno Pass to meet the ibexes – one of the greater colonies of the Dolomites lives here – and then go back
down to the hut for the night.

Day 3: Casera Galvana

We will close our round tour of Zemola Valley by going to Casera Galvana, the bivouac much described by the famous Italian writer Mauro Corona in his books, and then
descend down to see the Pissandol waterfall before going back to Erto.

Day 4: Campanile di Val Montanaia

Going up to see the world famous Campanile di Val Montanaia and to the Montanaia Pass, with a great view over the Central Cadore area and the great Marmarole massif
(7km – 1000m d+ – 1000m d-), then coming back the same way.

Day 5: Brica Pass

An amazing round trip will take us up through the val Binon to Brica Pass, seeing some of the most amazing flowers of the Friulian Dolomites, and then down through Brica
Valley, with its enchanting bivouac – the right place to feel lost in the wild.

Day 6: Finish

A magical round trip along the Val Monfalcon di Forni and Val Monfalcon di Cimoliana, crossing the Leone’s Pass (this is actually my favourite hike in the world!), we will
ascend and descend two really different valleys and admire the wonders done by the glaciers that stood until 10,000 years ago, stopping for lunch at the Marchi Granzotto bivouac.




Refuge mountain hut accommodation every night.

Meeting point

Erto, Italy

About the guide

My love for the mountains grew up with me in the flats of Romagna, thanks to my family that let me spent all my vacations in the Dolomites when I was a child. The Dolomites and the mountains between Romagna and Tuscany are the most vivid memories I have of my childhood.
Then I forgot the outdoors for a few years, and spent some time following the other great passion I have: travelling. When I wasn't at school I spent all my time wandering from one hostel to the other all around Europe with my best friend, always searching for new landscapes and new emotions.
I graduated from high school as Business and Programming Consultant, then I completely changed my core subject as I attended the Undergraduate Courses in Anthropological Sciences at Bologna's University. My thesis project brought me back to the mountains, with a research in Landscape and Disaster Anthropology that took me to Erto for the fieldwork, the town where I spent the last six years!
After that I attended the Graduate Courses in Cultural Anthropology, Ethnology and Ethnolinguistics at Ca'Foscari University in Venice, and this time I wrote a thesis on Alpinism. The subject was again Landscape and Risk Anthropology, but this time fieldwork took me to all the best climbing sites in Europe and beyond: Mont Blanc, Arco, Siurana, Montserrat, Elbsandsteingebirge, Céüse, Osp, the Todra Gorge in Morocco and other more...
Once finished with University I decided to turn my passion into a profession, so I took part in the selection for the courses organized by the UIAGM Mountain Guide's Association, and after a year of hiking and studying I became a Mountain Leader.
Now I take other people with me to discover the wonderful vertical world of our mountains, and enjoy the great times together in the outdoors.


Italian | English

What people are saying about Lucia Montefiori

Faisal Faisal


August, 2019

It was lovely day. It is one of the best day we had in Italy. Lucia was very friendly and professional. We really liked the hike and she adjusted the hike according to our ability. We saw the open air museum for war . It was interesting. At the end , we had our lunch in the hut . The food was very delicious . I highly recommended this experience. Don’t miss it if you are in Dolomites.

Jennifer K.


August, 2019

The traveller did not leave a comment.

Sandra Radice


July, 2019

I approached Gauthier about doing a hike with Lucia at the 11th hour and he was quick to respond. They tailored the hike to suit my 10 year old. While the terrain is something we could have navigated on our own - it was fabulous having Lucia as our guide. She knew all the WW1 history of the area, and the geology around how the Dolomites were formed. It was fascinating

jack rademaker


October, 2018

i cannot say enough good things about lucia! she got me through to the top both physically and mentally. give her 10 stars!!!! the hike itself gets 5 stars...my age limited my enjoyment of it to about 1 star. i simply bit off more than i could chew. at age 65, 5 star experience, but at nearly 87 ....too much for me.



September, 2018

The hike up to the Rifugio was challenging but great. The mountains in the area are wild and spectacular.   We clearly could see the slopes of Sella Nevea where the Alpini were camped during WW1 (there's a famous old photo of these slopes with the encampments.  However, photos never seem to capture the steepness and expanse of the terrain).  We were pooped so we went to bed early.  The couple who manage the Rifugio are wonderful and unique.  And it was great to see all the climbers and the via ferrata people and hear them talk.  The Rifugio is primitive.    The hike up to Forcella Vallone was scary toward the top, because it was on steep terrain with loose ground.  That part of the climb seemed like it lasted a very long time but Lucia said it was only about 10 min.  We didn't do the Austrian tunnel at the top because we were so exhausted and it was a small via ferrata.  However, I later read that once you are in the tunnel it is easy but pitch-black.  The views at the top of the forcella are breathtaking.  our descent back to the Rifugio was easier than going up.  And we came down from the Rifugio on path 629 (I think).  We didn't make our hiking objective on the 3rd day because it was so hot and we were pooped from the previous 2 days.  However, we discovered an area in the woods where during WW1 there was a lot of activity, probably eating.  There was a lot of WW1 debris: shovels, cans, and even a sort of lunch pail with a top modified to grate cheese.  Although we didn't make our hiking objective, I got a clear picture in my mind of the terrain were my grandfather fought. Now back at home, I understand much better descriptions of the postings and also the maps!!

Benyapa Svasti-Xuto


July, 2018

The traveller did not leave a comment.



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