The Dolomites are undoubtedly blessed. With countless stunning walks and snowshoeing routes taking in fantastic views, unique culture and remarkable history, it is hard to mention any one place that sums the area up to a new visitor. With that said, Cinque Torri stands out as location that brings together many of the elements that make a trip to the Dolomites so rewarding.
Meaning five towers, the rock formations here jut from the rolling hillside and woodland of the Falzarego pass. Silhouetted against the skyline as you approach, they make for an imposing sight, jagged fingers pointing to the sky. Up close the towers are even more impressive. The paths wind in between the rocks, the scale of the cliffs and towering pinnacles never more apparent as when you are stood at their feet. They stand above the valley like watchtowers, looking down to Cortina way below in the East, and up to the mighty peaks of the Tofana group.
Snowshoeing in the Dolomites with Collett's
It is this commanding view that contributed to the fame of the rock formations here, as they were used by the Italian army as the location for their artillery during the tragic battles of the First World War. As you follow the paths through the towers you come across the ‘open air museum’, reconstructed and preserved trenches, dugouts and gun emplacements leftover from the conflict. Exploring the network of trenches and shelters is especially poignant in the winter. The snow and ice that fill the emplacements reminders of the harsh conditions endured by the soldiers here.
Returning to the rifugio near the towers for a plate of the local delicacy of beetroot and pasta, you can reflect on the mix of features that make this area so special. History, culture, cuisine and outstanding natural beauty all combined into one fantastic walk.