Tip: If you want to catch sunrise or sunset, you will need to book an overnight stay at one of the rifugios

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Hiking the Seceda mountain and exploring the nearby town of Ortisei (St. Ulrich) down below was easily the highlight of my first road trip through the Dolomites, and therefore deserves its own post!

While Seceda is best known for its winter slopes, the mountain is a breathtaking place to hike during the summer months. With gondola access, the views are easily accessible to hikers of any fitness level, with a number of different trail options once you reach the top.

I visited for the first time in 2019, and then loved it so much that I went back in 2022 to explore the area some more.

Before you dive into the article, here are a few of the most popular tours in the Dolomites:

Popular tours in the Dolomites

seceda mountain range in south tyrol italy
Hiking on Seceda, Dolomites

Exploring Seceda 

From the second you step off the gondola on to Seceda mountain, the views are truly spectacular. The rolling green hills and stunning mountain face of the Fermeda Towers looks almost like a painting. It is such a fun experience to visit the ski resorts when they aren’t covered in snow.

Seceda is the perfect destination for all types of travelers, with a range of hikes available. Once at the top you can choose between a 25 minutes walk or a 5 hour hike.

It is never a bad idea to soak up the views with an Aperol Spritz in hand.

Scrolling through these pictures it will quickly become evident why Seceda is one of the spots you can’t miss in the Dolomites.

yellow mountain flowers in south tyrol dolomites
Seceda, Dolomites
Flower in bloom all of the hill
Flowers in bloom all of the hill

Early morning hiking on Seceda
Early morning hiking on Seceda – overnight at a rifugio to be on the mountain for sunrise

Prepare for your trip to Italy

Where is Seceda?

Seceda is located in South Tyrol in the Dolomites region, just above the village of Ortisei in Val Gardena.

Seceda is part of the Dolomites’ Odle mountain range. The Seceda summit station is at an elevation of 2,518 meters, with the mountain peaks reaching 8,264 meters.

map of seceda dolomites
Map of Seceda, Italy

Where to stay

If you’re planning to visit Seceda, then I highly recommend staying in Ortisei. From here you can take a gondola chairlift combo in town right to the top of the mountain.

Here are a few places in Ortisei with great ratings:

If you’re looking for something more affordable than the choices above, then you can either stay in a rifugio or drive to the gondola from another nearby town.

Getting to Seceda

Fortunately, Seceda is super easy to get to from Ortisei, with a gondola and chairlift taking you to the top of the mountain in under 15 minutes.

Begin your journey at the Ortisei-Furnes Gondola station.

The roundtrip ticket for the gondola and chairlift combo costs 39.50 Euro round trip per person (as of August 2023). Tickets can be purchased ahead of time online.

You will find a parking lot directly next to the first lift for those arriving by car, or you can walk from the center of the town in under 10 minutes. The lift only runs from mid-June to early October.

For those traveling in the shoulder season, you can take the Col Raiser Gondola instead. 

Gondola to Seceda, Italy
Gondola to Seceda, Italy
Gondola to Seceda on a road trip in the Dolomites
Gondola to Seceda, Dolomites

The chairlift opens daily at 8:30am, so this mean that if you want to be on the mountain for sunrise you will need to head up the day before and stay at one of the local mountain rifugios.

While Seceda is gorgeous at all hours, I personally really regretted not spending at least one night up on the mountain during my first visit. If you have the time, I definitely recommend staying at a mountain rifugio, but be sure to call ahead to make a reservation as they do book up. You can email info@rifugiofirenze.com for accomodation options at Rifugio Firenze. 

This where we stayed when we went back in 2023. It is about an hour and a half walk from the main Seceda cable car, or a 25 minute walk from the Col Raiser cable car.

Hiking on Seceda

On Seceda you’ll have a number of different paths that you can follow, differing in difficulty and length. For travelers looking for an easy stroll, you can reach the main viewpoint of the Fermeda Towers from the main lift in under 15 minutes.

Follow the trail post for trail no.1. Seceda is worth a visit for this view alone, a view that will truly take your breath away. This is available to any fitness level!

girl in front of seceda moutain dolomites peaks
The incredible views of Seceda mountain in the morning
Views of the valley
Views of the valley


For hikers looking for a more intermediate route, I recommend the loop hike to Rifugio Firenze. After enjoying the picturesque views of the Fermeda Towers, continue on trail no. 2B towards Pieralonga. Here you’ll pass a rifugio to stop for a snack or drink, with views of the Twin Spires of Pieralonga. I recommend stopping at Rifugio Firenze for lunch, for panoramic mountain views. From here it is just another 1.5 hours back to the Seceda summit station. 

cows on roof of rifugio dolomites
You’ll find cows and donkeys along the hiking routes
Signage hiking around Seceda

Where to Eat on Seceda

Although many hikers choose to pack their own picnic, there are a number of dining options on Seceda. My personal favorite, Rifugio Firenze, offers panoramic mountain views and plenty of wildlife. You’ll find horses and cows casually roaming around the premises.

If you choose to eat here you’ll find a range of affordable lunch options. Both credit cards and cash are accepted at Rifugio Firenze. 

beautiful landscapes of seceda, dolomites italy
Beautiful mountain views in Seceda

Another dining option is Pieralongia. Pieralongia is a great option for individuals looking for a shorter hike, as it is located just over a mile from the Seceda lift. The trail is relatively easy, so it is suitable for all fitness levels.

Also, there are often times a number of wild donkeys in this area. I can say from personal experience that baby donkey cuddles were the highlight of my trip. 

Girl with donkey on Seceda mountain
I made a new donkey friend in the mountains
rifugio firenze at lunch time
A great place to overnight, or an option for lunch


🏘️ Book your accommodation

Booking.com will help you to book accommodation in advance and check availability

✈️ Book your flight in advance

To find the cheapest flight options, you can use WayAway and find the most suitable option for you

🧾 Get your tickets and tours

with Viator and GetYourGuide to get the most out of your journey

Here are some other articles that you should check out if you’re traveling in the Dolomites:

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