The pathStart point: "Sant'Uberto" parking Length: 6 km (3.7 mi) Height gain: 300 mt (985 ft) Round trip: About 2 hours and a half Destination: Ra Stua GPX: Download our GPX route
This walk allows you to reach "Malga Ra Stua", a nice mountain lodge in the middle of an amazing pasture, starting from the parking area of "Sant'Uberto". It is an easy hike for everyone with a minimum of training. The difference in altitude is about three hundred metres, one thousand feets, so it takes a little bit of getting used to walking uphill.
This hike can be found in the Tabacco Map 003 - Cortina d'Ampezzo e Dolomiti Ampezzane and goes up along Trail 6.
We believe the hike is more beautiful by taking two different routes for the ascent and descent, so we will narrate it this way. The point of arrival is always the same. The duration of the hike is about two and a half hours, but you should add some time to eat in the mountain lodge or walk in its surroundings. "Malga Ra Stua" stands on a very picturesque valley with pastures, where you will likely want to spend some time relaxing.
How to get there
The parking area of "Sant'Uberto", starting point of the hike, is a large gravel square where you can park your car for 5€ per day. In peak season, it is surely better to arrive early in the morning, otherwise it's likely that all the parking spaces will be occupied. From the center of Cortina, "Sant'Uberto" is approximately a fifteen-minute drive.
If the parking lot is full, you may continue along the state highway in the direction of Dobbiaco, to try to park on one of the few lay-bys along the road, being very careful not to block the roadway, to avoid getting a ticket. Proceeding further you will find a cantonment house on the left, which is also the last reasonable spot where you might park, to not get too far.
If you don't have a car, you may consider taking a Taxi. From Cortina the cost will be approximately 30€, but it may be a good idea to ask the price before. You can find a taxi in Piazza Roma, or at the bus station, or by reaching their website.
If you prefer to use public transportation, the best solution is to take the bus in the direction of Dobbiaco (Toblach). The stop is not too far from the "Sant'Uberto" parking, it is in front of the cantonment house of "Podestagno". Behind the house there is a well marked forest road which, in about fifteen minutes, will take you to the starting point of our hike to Malga Ra Stua. If you would like more information about this road, we have described it on the page about the hike to the ruins of the "Botestagno" Castle.
Unfortunately, there are not many buses going to Dobbiaco (Toblach); approximately there's one every two hours, although in the peak season the number may increase. We recommend that you contact the ticket office of the bus station to know the correct information about bus rides. Warning, it may be closed during lunch break.
The road towards Malga Ra Stua is completely asphalted. In low season the road is open to cars, while in peak season the passage is blocked. When the road is closed there's a shuttle service, so the main road is not ideal for those who want to walk their way up to the mountain lodge. If you want a much nicer road, when you get to the barrier, take the path to the left, marked by the sign "Percorso pedonale per Malga Ra Stua", that means "Footpath to Malga Ra Stua".
Continue along the path into the forest, being careful not to trip over roots and stones. The climb is moderately gentle, a little steep in places, but nothing too extreme.
In some places the trail crosses the paved road. Always check for vehicles or bicycles arriving at high speed. Within a short time you will reach a scenic spot, where you could rest for a moment while enjoying the beautiful view of "Antruiles".
From here the road continues flat, in some places even downhill, to the intersection marked by the sign Ponte de Antruiles 1512, which means "Antruiles Bridge". From there you will be directed to turn right and start climbing again.
For now we walked close to the paved road, but the second part of the hike goes into the forest, along a more scenic route.
Once you cross the wooden bridge you'll find a small fountain with drinking water, then there's a ladder that will take you up a new steep climb. Get ready, because the final piece is mildly challenging: the ascent is constant and, in some places, you will have to climb over a few steps. Be comforted by the thought that you have almost arrived at your destination.
Once you've reached the paved road, continue uphill towards Malga Ra Stua, where you might stop to eat or drink something. As mentioned earlier, the mountain hut is surrounded by wide meadows, where you may see cows grazing or relaxing lying on the grass. It is a wonderful place to spend some time, especially with children.
Cows are peaceful animals, but don't bother them, don't get too close, and always keep your dog on a leash. If there are calves with them, it is definitely a good idea to keep a safe distance.
There are many roads to go back to the car parking. You might walk along the main paved road, or you may go back from the same road you took to ascend or you may also take Path 5, but we want to recommend the equipped path "Boite river waterfalls".
This is a new path, it's a little technical, but it allows you to admire the beautiful "Ra Stua" waterfalls from a new point of view. The trail is not for everyone because, in some passages close to the river, it may be slippery because of the humidity. We do not recommend this path to those who are hiking with small children or have mobility difficulties.
To take the equipped path "Boite river waterfalls", walk along the paved road from the mountain lodge to Cortina. After a few meters you will see a small iron bridge, indicated by the sign "Souto de Ra Stua" 1662 and an indication towards Cascate del Boite, that means "Boite river waterfalls". Cross the bridge and continue in the direction indicated by the markers.
The path goes along the paved road and is very well marked. The descent time is about fifty minutes, after which you'll arrive at the parking lot where you left your car. You can relax, it's virtually impossible to get lost, as you'll be walking through a narrow valley bounded by the asphalt road and the river, where all paths lead to the parking lot of Sant'Uberto.
In this chapter we would like to give you some additional information about "Ra Stua". The name comes from the Ampezzo dialect, where Stuà means to stop a watercourse. At this location, in the past, there was a temporary dam, which was used to transport the lumber down the "Boite" River. Some of those logs continued their trip till the Piave River, from which they were shipped to Venice.
The Boite river is the main of the valley, it runs through Cortina and Cadore, until it flows into the Piave River. It originates very close to the pastures of "Ra Stua", in the locality of "Cianpo de Crósc". There is a beautiful hike, that crosses "Cianpo de Crósc", and takes you to the "Fodara Vedla" mountain lodge in about an hour. If you still have some energy and want to lengthen your hike a bit, we have talked about it on the next page:
Malga Ra Stua is the starting point of many hikes, so the road to the mountain lodge is quite busy. To avoid congestion, during the months of July and August, it is closed to traffic. During these periods it is possible to take a shuttle service, at an approximate cost of 8€ each.
Ra Stua is located inside the Ampezzo Dolomites Park and is a natural pasture for cows, horses and goats. In addition to the farmed species, the pasture is also frequented by some wild animals, typical of this area, such as marmots, roe deer and chamois.
The newly managed farmhouse has about 40 seats inside and 60 outside. The menu consists of typical Ampezzo and traditional homemade dishes. In addition to the restaurant, the mountain lodge also offers bedrooms, with shared or private bathrooms. You can find more information on their official website.
This hike is practicable only in summer, as the trail is not beaten in winter. With snow, it is possible to ascend along the main road, but we have discussed this winter bike better in the next page:
Usually, the best months for this hike are between May and November. Unfortunately, it is not possible to know in advance how much it will snow and when the snow will melt.
If you decide to eat at the mountain lodge, the facility may be closed from mid-April to mid-May and from mid-October to mid-December. If you plan a visit in low season you should check on the website or by phone to see if they are actually open.
Even though this hike is considered simple, you should always use sturdy shoes and carry a backpack with some water, a snack and a jacket for the rain. If you want more information, we recommend you read our tips for first-time hikers:
We want to emphasize that, in the Dolomites, there are rules to be followed. The main ones are:
- It is strictly forbidden to light fires.
- It is strictly forbidden to pick plants and flowers.
- Free camping is prohibited.
- It is prohibited to abandon garbage.
- It is mandatory to keep pets on a leash.
We hope you liked this page on the hike from "Sant'Uberto" to "Malga Ra Stua". Before saying goodbye, we would suggest you read all the articles we wrote about Cortina d'Ampezzo by clicking here.
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