Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites!

When I started planning my trip to the Italian Dolomites, I became almost instantly overwhelmed: because this region is HUGE.  Enormous.  My friend Kathleen, who’s lived in Europe for years, likens exploring the Dolomites to “exploring the Rocky Mountains” ~ & I was trying to see it ALL in a week!!  Three words on that: Not. Gonna. Happen.  But, the point of this post is to help you hone in on some of the most jaw-droppingly beautiful sights in the Dolomites: & #1 on that list is its lakes.  So let’s tour northern Italy to find the “Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites!” 

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites, Girl Who Travels the World

Lago di Braies is the #1 most popular (& most INSANELY gorgeous) lake in the Italian Dolomites.

Map of Best Lakes in the Dolomites

If you want to visit all (or most) of the lakes on this list, Cortina d’Ampezzo is a great place to base yourself, as it’s close to four of the lakes on this list.  As for getting around: you need to rent a car.  Public transport is basically non-existent, & all the good stuff is high up in the hills here.  Definitely rent a car.

Lago di Braies

Lago Sorapis

Lago di Carezza

Lago Dobbiaco

Lago di Misurina

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites!

#1 = Lago di Braies

Lago di Braies is essentially the #1 tourist attraction in the Dolomites ~ with good reason.  It’s ridiculously STUNNING.  I visited in late October, when the leaves were changing colors, & let me tell you: that parking lot was PACKED!!  Insiders tell me that it’s pretty much always busy here, year-round.  So I’ve got two tips: 1) Bring cash for the parking lot, as they don’t accept credit cards, & 2) If you want shots without a ton of people, stay overnight at the only hotel on the lake: Hotel Lago di Braies.  Waking up to that view at sunrise, with no one else there….SOOO worth it.

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites, 20 Photos to Inspire Your Dolomites Trip, Girl Who Travels the World

It’s virtually impossible to get a bad shot of Lago di Braies.

#2 = Lago di Carezza (also called Karersee)

This lake goes by many names: the “Rainbow Lake,” “Fairytale Lake of the Dolomites,” & Karersee.  If you visit the lake, particularly around sunrise or sunset, you’ll notice layers of color in the water (you can see shades of emerald in the photo below), hence, “Rainbow Lake.”  You can take a short hike around the entire lake here, with stunning mountains as your backdrop.

20 Photos to Inspire Your Dolomites Trip, Girl Who Travels the World, Lago di Carezza

Lago di Carezza. Is this the most turquoise lake in the world??! It’s possible…

#3 = Lago di Sorapis

Lago di Sorapis requires a little more effort to get to than our last two lakes: it’s essentially a 4-6 hour hike to reach this milky-blue lake outside of the gorgeous town, Cortina d’Ampezzo.  And Cortina is the perfect place to base yourself if you wish to visit both Lago di Braies & Lago di Sorapis.

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites, Girl Who Travels the World

Lago di Sorapis is the only lake on this list that requires a long hike to reach…but look at the pay-off!

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites!

#4 = Lago Dabbiaco

Lago Dabbiaco can be visited in the same day as Lago di Braies ~ & it features a lovely, easy walk around the lake with spectacular views in all directions.  The closest town is named after the lake, Dobbiaco Toblach, which has several restaurants & hotels…but I’d stay in the far more spectacular Cortina d’Ampezzo.

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites, Girl Who Travels the World

Lago Dobbiaco is also called “Toblacher See,” & has a lovely walk around the lake.

#5 = Lago di Misurina

Also close to Cortina d’Ampezzo, & just north of Lago di Sorapis (our #3 choice), is the stunning Lago di Misurina.  What makes this lake particularly distinctive is the mountains behind it, which are the most famous range in the Dolomites: the Tre Cime di Lavaredo.

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites, Girl Who Travels the World

Several hotels surround Lago di Misurina, & the scenery is jaw-dropping.

Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites!

Here’s one more bonus lake to add to our “Top 5 Most Gorgeous Lakes in the Dolomites” ~ & this one’s more off-the-beaten path, & far less touristy: Lago di Molveno.  My hotelier told me about it, & though it’s quite a drive from the lakes listed above, it’s a great spot to visit if you’re on the western side of the Dolomites.

Viva Italia!

xoxo Noelia

Read Next: 20 Photos to Inspire Your Italy Travels!

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Top 5 Most Insanely Beautiful Lakes in the Dolomites, Girl Who Travels the World