Wonderful Lake Sorapis in the Dolomites is undoubtedly the place that you need to visit at least once in life and see the color of the water, with your own eyes. It’s simply a beautiful lake where it’s not hard to understand why it’s famous in a lot of photos posted on social media. The hike to Lake Sorapis goes along a well-trodden path, which ends at the crystal blue lake, above which rises the 3200 m high peak of Sorapis.
It is a glacial lake located at 1923 meters above sea level, surrounded by mighty peaks. Lake Sorapis (Lago di Sorapiss) is famous mainly for its turquoise color of the water. In its immediate vicinity is the Rifugio Alfonso Vandelli hut, which is opened between June and October. You can also sleep in the hut, just make a reservation before, as the beds fill up quickly.
How to get to the lake?
The starting point for a hike to the lake is 10 km from Cortina d’Ampezzo, at the top of the Tre Croci pass. You can get to the starting point in two ways, by car or bus, which can take you from Cortina to the top of the pass (the station is 100 m away from the starting point).
Lake Sorapis can be reached by several routes, which differ in starting point and difficulty of the route. Most hikers choose route 215 for their hike, which has a starting point at the top of the Tre Croci pass. Route 215 is nicely marked and well-trodden. The first part of the trail runs through a dense larch forest, where in the background you can admire the Cristallo mountain range, Lake Misurina and Tre Cime. In this part, the path runs mostly flat, with some intermediate descents and ascents. After a good hour of walking, the path begins to climb a bit, and the path itself becomes more exposed. The last part of the path can be a little difficult for those who have problems overcoming the height, as the path leads along the edge of a steep precipice. Steel ropes and stairs are installed on certain parts for safety.
As we have already mentioned, the hike is not difficult and anyone can cross it. The start of the trail starts at 1800 meters and ends at Lake Sorapis at 1900 m. Due to the ascents and descents on the way, we cross about 200 meters of altitude difference. The lake is about 6 kilometers away, which at a moderate pace takes you less than two hours of walking. For the route, we recommend classic hiking boots (low or high), while poles can be useful but not necessary.
First you will see the Rifugio Alfonso Vandelli hut on the left, and Lake Sorapis is only 150 meters away. When you first see the lake, you will simply be speechless. This color, this natural backdrop … Even more beautiful than in the photos. The whole scenery is a bit spoiled by the promenade of people who do everything in the hunt for a great Instagram photo. And I would rather not lose my words about their clothes and shoes they wear for the high mountains.
The lake is an iconic place for photography in the Dolomites and due to its easier accessibility and popularity on social networks, it can be quite crowded in the summer months, especially on weekends. For a better “experience” of the lake, it is recommended to visit it outside the main season. To avoid overcrowding, go hiking early in the morning or afternoon. This will avoid the crowds of hikers and have the lake (most likely) just for you.
- Starting point: Tre Croci Pass
- Length: 6 km one way
- Walking time: 1.40 – 2 h (total 4 h)
- Altitude difference along the route: 200 m
- Trail: easy marked trail (215)