ortlergruppe duesseldorfer huette
ortlergruppe duesseldorfer huette


In the centre of the Stelvio National Park and in the heart of the Ortles area lie the mythical mountain villages of Solda and Trafoi

King Ortles is the highest elevation in Tyrol - together with the Ortles Alps and their almost 4,000 m high peaks, it forms a gigantic natural paradise. Almost a century ago, the Italian king declared the area the Stelvio National Park. This protected area, which stretches from South Tyrol to Lombardy, can also be experienced in the valley in five visitor centres. One of them is located in Trafoi and is dedicated to life in the high alpine area. There, where the extreme climatic conditions of the high mountains force animals and plants to develop creative strategies that ensure their survival, ibex, ermine, snow hare and bearded vulture live, and edelweiss and arnica grow.

In the midst of this protected area, the houses of Stelvio village stretch up the slope. Like an eagle's nest, they are enthroned on the sunny mountain from which miners once started out to dig for iron ore on the Ortles. The few houses down in the valley are known as Ponte Stelvio, the farms above it as Stelvio Masi. The journey then continues into the valley to Gomagoi, where the road splits: One leads along the Trafoi stream to Trafoi, and then in numerous hairpin bends up to the highest mountain pass in Italy and the second highest in the Alps: the mighty Stelvio Pass. Once at the top, the rocky landscape spreads out to almost 3,000 m a.s.l. The other route leads from Gomagoi into the Solda Valley, which ends after the idyllic village of Solda at the cable cars.

The landscape is a revelation for every mountain lover and has therefore been a popular destination for alpinists for centuries. In recent years, more and more pleasure hikers and mountain bikers have populated the trails and paths between these legendary mountains. In between, Reinhold Messner's yaks graze and there are places like the pilgrimage site of the Sacred Three Fountains. In winter, you can witness the "Pflugziehen" (Plough Pulling) in Stelvio, one of the ancient carnival customs, while the ski slopes open in the mountains. The ski area on the Stelvio Glacier is the largest summer ski area in the Alps, and the slopes of Solda and Trafoi became famous long ago thanks to skiing legend Gustav Thöni, who learned to ski here. These three ski areas in the municipality of Stelvio form the heart of the Ortler Skiarena.

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