A trip to the Dolomites wouldn’t be complete without seeing the famous view of the Puez Odle Group from the Seceda viewpoint. Learn the best ways to reach it and explore the hiking trails and via ferratas in the Puez Odle Nature Park beyond the Seceda viewpoint.
Where is the Seceda Ridgeline
Seceda is one of the most recognizable landmarks of the Dolomites. It’s a viewpoint towards the jagged peaks of the Odle Geisler Group. The group is surrounded by the Gardena Valley (Val Gardena) to the South and Funes Valley (Val Di Funes) to the North.
The nearest towns from where you can access the Seceda viewpoint are Ortisei (St. Ulrich) and Santa Cristina di Val Gardena. Both are renowned tourist destinations in Italy and two of the top towns to base yourself in to explore the Dolomites.
Accommodation in Val Gardena
Best ways to get to Seceda Ridgeline Viewpoint
Due to the ease of reach the Seceda viewpoint is visited by hundreds of tourists during the summer and autumn seasons. There are a few options to reach it and below I am sharing with you the three most popular ones.
Option 1: Ortisei – Furnes – Seceda Cable Cars
The two-tier gondola & cable car Ortisei – Furnes- Seceda is the most straightforward and fastest option to reach the Seceda viewpoint.
The Cable Car station is located in the town of Ortisei (St. Ulrich) in the Gardena Valley. You can reach the terminal by catching bus no. 356 and get off at the Ortisei Seceda bus stop.
Look for bus connections on the Sued Tirol Mobil website. You can find the bus stops names near your hotel by zooming in on google maps.
You can also drive to the gondola station. There is a parking garage at the lower terminal where you can leave your car. The cost is 12 Euro per day. If you are traveling by a campervan there is also an outdoor parking lot area.
Below are the opening times for the Orisei-Furnes-Seceda gondola and cable car. Please note that the cable car is currently undergoing maintenance and the opening date for 2023 is yet to be set.
|Gondola / Cable Car||Opening Dates (2023)||Opening Times (2023)|
|Ortisei – Furnes||27.05 – 05.11||08:30 – 17:30|
|Furnes – Seceda||Closed||TBA|
Option 2: Col Raiser Gondola + Fermeda Chairlift
The second lift that you can catch to see the Seceda viewpoint is the Col Raiser Gondola. Its lower terminal is in the town of Santa Cristina di Val Gardena in a small subdistrict called Plan Da Tieja. There is a big parking lot behind the gondola station.
Since it is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the area, there are signs all over town pointing to the gondola station.
A return journey for the gondola costs 28 Euro and the tickets are valid for one week. This is valuable information in case you were planning an overnight stay in one of the mountain huts in the Puez-Odle Nature Park.
|Gondola / Chairlift||Opening Dates (2023)||Opening Times (2023)|
|Col Raiser||26.05 – 02.11||08:30 – 17:00 (26.05-17.06)|
08:30 – 17:30 (18.06-16.09)
08:30 – 17:00 (17.09-02.11)
|Fermeda||03.06 – 24.09||09:30 – 16:30|
- Time: 3-4 hours
- Elevation gain: 1000 meters
- Path numbers: 1 then 1A
- Trail color: black
If you don’t want to spend money on the gondola or the cable car, then you can hike from the valley bottom. The hiking trail (path no. 1 then 1A) zigzags underneath the Col Raiser gondola and starts at its lower terminal.
The trail stays mostly in the tree line with a few glimpses southward to the peaks of Sassolungo and Sassopiatto. Once you reach the Col Raiser upper terminal the views open up towards the Puez Odle Altipiano.
From here it is another hour to the viewpoint. It takes around 3-4 hours in total to reach the Seceda viewpoint by hiking from the bottom of the valley.
TIP: You can easily combine the routes. For example, take the Ortisei-Furnes-Seceda cable car up then descend using the Col Raiser gondola or hike down. Consider buying the Val Gardena card for unlimited use of lifts during your stay.
Hikes and via ferrata you can do from the Seceda viewpoint
I highly advise that you take advantage of the gondola or the cable car. By taking the lift you aren’t going to miss anything in terms of views. Save the energy for what’s to come. There are plenty of hikes or via ferratas, which you can do once you reach the Seceda viewpoint.
Hiking in the Dolomites is always easy. With plenty of signs and route markings everywhere, it’s hard to get lost. However, if you want peace of mind or plan on exploring the area around Puez Odle National Park more, then I recommend that you purchase Tabacco Map no. 05.
Map of the hikes, via ferrata, huts, and gondolas
I’ve created a map of the area to give you an overview of the hikes, via ferrata and huts which you can find in the area. Don’t be afraid to venture beyond the Seceda viewpoint and spend a day or two exploring the Puez Odle Nature Park.
TIP: Click on the button in the top left corner to see the map’s legend.
1. From Seceda Around Puez Odle Altiplano to Col Raiser Gondola via Rifugio Firenze
- Path numbers: 1, 2B, 13B, 13, 4
- Difficulty: easy
- Trail color: green
- Walking time: 2-3 hours
Once you’ve admired the views of the Seceda Ridgeline it’s time to explore the area more. Head directly towards the famous spires on path no 1. This will take you past some incredible huts and viewpoints of the cliffs to your left and Sassolungo to your right.
After around 30 minutes on path no. 1, you will switch to path no. 2B towards Malga Pieralongia – a local high alpine backcountry restaurant, where you can stop for lunch or a quick drink. Nearby you can find the incredible “Lion King Rock” – a small, shark-tooth-looking spire. It’s a name I’ve given it myself. You can guess the reference.
From here follow the signs for via ferrata Sass Rigais, then turn right onto path no 13B then 13, and descend to Rifugio Firenze (Regensburgerhuette).
This is a great place for a cold beer on their huge patio area, overlooking the Odle Geisler Group. From Rifugio Firenze, it’s only a 15-minute walk back to the upper Col Raiser Terminal along path no. 4 or a 1.5-hour hike back to the Col Raiser bottom terminal along the access road behind the hut (Path no. 1).
2. The circuit around the Odle Geisler Group to the Ortisei-Furnes middle station
- Path numbers: 1, 2B, 13, 3, 6, 35, 5
- Difficulty: challenging
- Trail color: red + yellow
- Walking time: 7-8 hours
This is a full-day hiking excursion that will take around 7-8 hours of walking (not including breaks). The trail loops around the entire Odle Geisler ridgeline which you can view from Seceda. It’s best to follow it counterclockwise.
The circuit crosses a few mountain passes including Forcella Mont Dal’Ega Forcella de Furcia. The second part of the loop follows the popular Adolf Munkel Trail which runs along the north face of the Odle Geisler group. For best views make sure to stop for a photo at Rifugio Odle.
TIP: If you would like to break down the circuit you can extend the hike slightly (yellow route on the map) and stay overnight in Rifugio Genova. If you plan on doing the circuit in a day, then make sure you take the first gondola up to the Seceda viewpoint and keep up a good tempo throughout the day.
3. Hike to Rifugio Puez and return via Vallunga
- Path numbers: 1, 2B, 2, 3B, 14
- Difficulty: challenging
- Trail color: blue
- Walking time: 6-7 hours
This full-day hiking excursion takes between 6-7 hours to complete. The trail will take you across the Puez Odle Altiplano to Forces de Sieles Saddle and Rifugio Puez.
Part of this trail follows Alta Via 2 – the famous multiday trek across the Dolomites. Once at the hut, you can descend back to the Gardena Valley via Vallunga.
4. Via ferrata Sass Rigais
- Path numbers: 1, 2B, 29
- Via Ferrata difficulty: beginner
- Trail color: purple
- Time: 5-6 hours
Don’t miss a chance to summit one of the peaks in the Puez Geisler Group, which you saw from the Seceda viewpoint.
Via ferrata Sass Rigais is a great beginner route that will take you to the summit of Sass Rigais. The whole trip takes around 5-6 hours to complete. You will need to carry a via ferrata equipment which you can rent in one of the rental (noleggio) shops down in the valley.
Mountain Huts / Rifugios close to Seceda Viewpoint
The closest accommodation option to the Seceda viewpoint. Rifugio Fermeda is a traditional alpine-style hut with access to great hikes right at its doorstep. Seceda can be reached within 45 minutes of an uphill walk from the hut.
Rifugio Fermeda also includes a hot tub, sauna, and sun terrace. If you are looking for a place to stay away from the crowds, this should be your top choice
Rifugio Firenze (Regensburgerhuette)
The most budget-friendly option. Rifugio Firenze is a great place to base yourself if you want to explore more of Puez Odle Nature Park. Particularly if you want to tackle the previously mentioned via ferrata Sass Rigais or photograph the Seceda viewpoint at sunrise or sunset.
The hut is only a 15-minute walk from the upper Col Raiser Terminal or a 1-hour hike from the Seceda viewpoint. It typically stays open from the beginning of June until mid-October.
Other activities to do near Val Gardena
- Sassolungo Circuit Day Hike
- Vallunga Hike
- Via Ferrata Oskar Schuster
- Via Ferrata Pössnecker
- Via Ferrata Gran Cir
- Piz Boé Summit
More travel and hiking resources in the Dolomites
- Photography spots in the Italian Dolomites
- Via ferratas in the Italian Dolomites
- Day hikes in the Italian Dolomites
- Hut-to-hut treks in the Italian Dolomites
Support my website!
Hi Reader! If you found any of my articles about the Dolomites useful please consider using the affiliate links below (at no extra cost to you) when booking your holiday, or “buy me a coffee” using the widget in the sidebar. Thank you
If you have any questions, leave them in the comments below!