Italian Alps & Dolomites Cycling Climbs
|Climb||Town||Altitude (m)||Length (km)||Gradient (%)||Difficulty||Rating|
|Tre Cime di Lavaredo||Misurina||2360||18||6.9||1240||*****|
|Passo dello Stelvio||Prato||2758||24||7.4||1421||*****|
|Passo dello Stelvio||Bormio||2758||21.9||6.7||1244||****|
|Passo Sella||Plan de Gralba||2244||6||7.1||275||*****|
|Sella di Razzo||Comeglians||1790||26||4.5||580||****|
|Sella Ciampigotto||Pelos di Cadore||1790||17||5.6||620||****|
|Passo delle Erbe||San Martino||2004||15||5.3||918||****|
|Passo delle Erbe||Piccolino||2004||15||5.1||855||****|
|Passo delle Erbe||Pardell||2004||26||5.3||1197||***|
|Passo delle Erbe||Luson||2004||27||4.8||1201||*****|
|Passo delle Erbe||Longega||2004||14||5.5||1069||****|
|Passo delle Erbe||Eores di Sopra||2004||30||4.7||941||****|
|Passo Costalunga||Vigo di Fassa||1752||9||3.3||150||***|
|Passo Nigra||Prato Isarco||1688||26||4.9||940||***|
|Passo Nigra||Prato Isarco (Brie)||1688||19||6.6||1310||*****|
|Muro di Sormano||Sormano||1128||1.7||14.1||310||*****|
|Monte Grappa||Romano d'Ezzelino||1722||26||5.6||1255||*****|
|Madonna del Ghisallo||Bellagio||758||9.4||4.5||410||****|
|Passo di Giau||Cortina d'Ampezzo||2238||16||5.9||690||****|
|Passo di Giau||Caprile||2238||16||7.4||1080||****|
|Passo di Gavia||Ponte di Legno||2621||16||7.5||1340||*****|
|Passo di Gavia||Bormio||2621||25||5.2||785||****|
|Passo Gardena||Ponte Gardena||2121||31||5.1||620||***|
MountainsThe Italian Alps and Dolomites are some of the most iconic climbs in the world for cycling. This section does not attempt to include everything (maybe in time!), but rather to go into more detail about the best and most enjoyable climbs that we have ridden in the region.
The climbs included in this section stretch from the Carnic Alps in the east, near to the border with Slovenia, through the Dolomites, to the High Alps, situated on the border with Switzerland. Throughout this range there is great diversity, both in terms of scenery and in terms of the culture of the regions that are crossed.
SceneryThe scenery in this part of Northern Italy is spectacular. The Dolomites are well known for their spectacular limestone rock formations - somewhat similar to the Picos de Europa mountains in North-Western Spain.
The Alps are equally rugged in places, with snow present on most of the higher slopes (above 3,000m) throughout the year.
In addition, the area is filled with delightful green pastures and valleys carved by mountain streams and glaciers. The downside to all this spectacular green scenery is that the region does get more than its fair share of rain, but don't let that put you off!
RoadsThe road surfaces are generally of good quality; they are mostly smooth and enjoyable to ride. There are some exceptions though; some climbs have surfaces that are badly cracked or damaged and require care both when climbing and descending.
Traffic is mixed, with the more popular passes (e.g. Stelvio, Sella Ronda) becoming quite busy with cars in the summer. Many of the other climbs though are very quiet, and so it's worth doing some research and looking at the climb pages, if you are keen to avoid the traffic.
Getting ThereThe Dolomites and Italian Alps are easily accessible. The tour we run to the region begins in Venice and ends in Milan - home to two of the larges airports in southern Europe. It is also easy to drive to from Austria, Switzerland, France and Germany - with regular train connections also a good option.
In some ways, the area is too easy to get to! And this results in quite a lot of traffic on some of the climbs in the main summer season.
WeatherThese are high mountains and the weather is predictably unpredictable! Summer is the best time to ride here, but rain is not uncommon even in July and August; and you should be prepared to wrap up warm on the descents at any time of year.
Most of the higher roads are closed from November until May, although the lower slopes and those further south can still be open during the winter.
Cycling HolidaysWe run a cycling holiday in Italy that tackles many of the greatest climbs and is designed for groups or cycling clubs. Starting with Zoncolan and finishing with Mortirolo, it is a challenging tour that really explores the best of the region.
You can find out more details about this and some of our other mountainous tours in the links below.