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Freccia nel Cielo, Cortina d’Ampezzo

Following the recommendations of our friends at the Rosapetra Spa Resort, we decided to spent the day exploring the mountains. The slow-paced way, of course. That involved long walks, sun, lots of pasta and, of course, thousands of pictures. After an early morning workout at the hotel’s gym followed by a lovely breakfast, our driver was waiting for us. He drove us to the city center where we were about to take the funicular known as Freccia nel cielo. Listening to Adele’s Hello, which turned out to be the song of this trip, we got a glipse of the village, which was looking quiet  and so very beautiful.
Freccia nel cielo is a funicular service that takes you to the highest peak in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Cima della Tofana. It’s fantastic if you want to enjoy the slopes but it’s also a great option if, like us, you just want to admire the views. However, after challenging my fear of hights while enjoying the most wonderful views, we decided to get off at Ra Valles (2470 m). During the ride we saw how Cortina was getting tinier and tinier, we saw alpine lakes, we dive in a sea of ombre pines and we felt nervous and relaxed at the same time.Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_2Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_43Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_41Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_38Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_1Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_5Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_6Unfortunately, there wasn’t much snow. But since the weather was amazing with brilliant sun, crispy breeze and bright skies, there were some corageous skiers who were making the most of the few slopes that were open. Due to the 70’s vibe of the facilities, it all looked like an old action movie. Fun fact: James Bond’s For your eyes only (1981) was filmed in Cortina! Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_8Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_7Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_18Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_35But if you know us, you won’t be surprised to know that we weren’t there to slide down the slopes… we were there to take pictures and visit the highest pizzeria in Europe! Food, always. However, it was too early for a pizza. So we took our places in the panoramic terrace and made ourselves comfortable. Some of us took pictures and worked on their photographic skills while others sunbathed and happily sipped our Diet Coke…
Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_46Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_44Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_45Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_15Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_12Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_40Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_13Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_10Time went by between snaps, chitchat and a fair amount of selfies. The sun was shining and it felt amazing. The cold temperatures, the light and the mountains gave us the energy that we had missed during the last couple of dark months. We felt so good and full of enthusiasm that we even thought about taking ski classes. But then we got hungry and we remembered that the hotel had booked a table for us in Col Drusciè restaurant so we forgot those crazy sporty ideas and hurried back to the funicular. Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_25Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_4Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_9Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_3Col Drusciè is the perfect postcard picture mountain shelter. Located in the first stop of the funicular it has the most charming atmosphere: wood little chairs, checked tablecloths, a gorgeous terrace overlooking the slopes… but it also has a beautiful champagne bar and a chic après ski feeling to it. We had the best table of the terrace (another perk of having the Rospetra staff booking the table for you) and we felt truly welcomed by the friendly staff, who immediately served us a glass of prosecco on the house. All bundled up but still enjoying the warm midday sun on our faces, we drank our aperitivi and went through the menu, a lovely and tempting choice of Tyrolean and Italian dishes. We finally chose pasta with radiccio and ricotta, and grilled vegetables and cheese with polenta. Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_47Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_26Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_24Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_20Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_23Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_19Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_22Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_16We finished our meal wit a couple of strong coffees and a tiramisu to share. It was “we even didn’t had the time to take a picture” good. That good. Honestly, we didn’t want to leave because we were having a great time, just the two of us, talking, laughing, admiring the views… Col Drusciè is rustic but sophisticated, quiet but lively…. Perfect. But the sun was already playing hide-and-seek and we still wanted to take a walk in Cortina, so off again to the funicular we went. I can say that we sure made the most of the one day ticket that we bought!
Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_27Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_28Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_32Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_33Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_31Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_29Cortina_D'Ampezzo_Day1_48Cortina was waiting for us quiet and cold, still half asleep while it waited for the high season to arrive. We walked along its main street, dotted with the best shops that you can imagine, we visited the adorable incense scented Basilica Minore dei Santi Filippo e Giacomo and we decided to go back to the hotel hiking along what used to be the railroad track. By then, the sun was starting to set. We saw the most beautiful houses, fountains and woods. Every now and then we looked behind to see Cortina resting below those impressive moutains. The spa and a scrumptious dinner were waiting for us at the hotel but we couldn’t help but miss those majestic views already.

7 Comments

  1. Such stunning scenery and views!! And the food looks really good too ;) This is taking me back to my one trip to Switzerland to the Alps.

  2. Pingback: Faloria, Cortina d’Ampezzo | theslowpace

  3. Pingback: The slow-paced weekend guide to Cortina d’Ampezzo | The slow pace

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