hiking

Sunset at Passo di Giau

The Landscapes of the Dolomites (I)

Exploring the Dolomites / Dolomiti, an Italian part of the majestic Alps, is a unique experience and offers countless possibilities to worship mother nature.

The Dolomites, an UNESCO world heritage site

The landscape can be visited during the entire year. This tour leads us to awesome lakes and mountain passes during the beginning of winter. Autumn colors are still visible, but the harsh contrast between the snow whites and the mountains’ blacks, the colored fog during sunset – all those monochromatic tones change the way you perceive the mountains significantly. I always reminds me of those stunning views in Norway.
The winding roads of Passo (di) Giau lead us to the summit around the mountains Monte Nuvolau and Monte Averau. Sunset is the best time to enjoy the colors.  The surrounding municipalities of Selva di Cadore and Cortina d’Ampezzo are worth visiting as well.
Also, don’t miss the stunning lakes of Lago di Braies (Pragser Wildsee, an instagram famous) and Lago di Dobbiaco (Toblacher See). Another highlight is the remote valley of the comune di Villnoess (Villnöß / Valle di Funes) near Bozen/Bozano. Especially the views around St. Magdalena / Santa Maddalena Alda  are worth freezing like a maniac.

Part 2 (ongoing) will be published soon.


Sunrise over Bled, Slovenia

The Landscapes of Slovenia (I) - Bled and the Julian Alps

Recently, the streets led us to Slovenia and the landscape around Bled and the Julian Alps. A country I have never really thought about. How foolish of me.

In the heart of Europe: Start feeling Slovenia.

Indeed you can feel Slovenia. After a couple of days and endless hikes, you finally do understand why the country’s marketing department chose that slogan. Countless ways to discover such a beautiful country. Especially the famous sights around Lake Bled with its church on the island Blejski otok. Every single step offers stunning sceneries. Leave the more crowded area and discover stunning waterfalls in valleys like Vintgar Gorge or Tolmin Gorge. Drive winding roads towards the overwhelming Lake Bohinj. Curse the clouds to allow a peak and the stunningly pittoresque chappel of St.Primoz near Jamník. Explore the mountains around the summit of Mount Triglav in the National Park. Drive Vršič Pass. Fall in love.
Slovenia, I do get it now. I will return.

While we are here: Lago di Fusine.

On your way to Slovenia, be sure to visit the Italian part of the Julian Alps. Some miles before the border, there are two beautiful lakes hiding in front of the majestic mountains of Mt. Mangart. It perfectly prepares yourself about what lies behind the summit. (Or in the Carribean. Depens on where to go.)

To see a more detailed route of the trip around Slovenia, feel free to visit my trips description over at polarsteps.com


Sunrise at Gatklettur near Arnarstapi, Iceland

The peninsula of Snæfellsnes, Iceland

Snæfellsnes – Iceland en Miniature

Snaefellsnes, the peninsula in the western part of Iceland: Some of the island’s most beautiful landmarks create a stunning landscape.
Because of the remote location of Snaefellsnes, travelling on road 54 and 574 is the best way to get around. The Snæfellsjökull, a volcano whose summit is covered by a huge glacier, dominates the entire peninsula. Due to its almost mystic aura, this place is well known: According to Jules Verne, descending into the jökull of Snaefell marks the beginning of the Journey of the Center of the Earth.

 

Búðir, Arnarstapi and Gatklettur

We do breath some fresh air at the tiny village of Búðir with its few houses and one of the oldest (wooden) churches of Iceland: Búðakirkja.
In Arnarstapi, Jules Vernes last stop before the caves of Snaefellsjökull, the ocean created stunning views at the cliff of Gatklettur and its stone archs. Again, the sunrise paints a wonderful pink into the sky. But you probably want to continue: A couple of miles ahead, the basalt rock pinnacles of Lóndranger arise.

 

Be aware though: During all the hiking around the area of Snaefell, one should keep an eye on attacking birds – in the Alfred Hitchcock way. You constantly seem to come way to close to their breeding grounds. Better don’t be surprised if you see people carrying posts above their head. Or even tripods. It really helps.

Kirkjufell – how mother nature shows off at Snæfellsnes

Our tour continues to the famous mountain Kirkjufell and its attendant waterfalls: Kirkjufellfoss. It somehow feels like it is nature’s way to show mankind how to pause for a moment and simply accept its sheer beauty. The mountain constantly changes its significant shape. The light of those ridiculous short nights during the summer of July offers hours of magical moments.

 

For a moment, we need to rest here.

 


Sunset at Skagsanden Beach, Lofoten

The Beaches of Lofoten, Norway (I)

Travelling the winter beaches of Lofoten, Norway.

Lofoten, an archipelago in the county of Nordland, Norway, is well known among photographers for its incredible landscape. During winter, the contrast between steep mountains, sandy beaches all covered with a gentle cover of snow becomes even more fascinating. And intimidating.

The photographs were taken during sunset at the famous Uttakleiv Beach, Haukland Beach and its adjacent Vik Beach (north of Leknes, Vestvågøy). During winter (February/March), those beaches a perfect for a stunning sunset and sometimes perfect to see the aurora borealis. Skagsanden Beach, right next to Flakstad, offeres the same experience: an endless beach bordered by mountains.

Over the next couple of weeks, I will constantly post the photographs taken during a trip in March, 2016. In case you want to experience this part of the world as well, prepare yourself with the help of Cody Duncan’s amazing 68north.com.


Lago di Garda, Italy

Easter at Lago di Garda, Italy.

Lake Garda is the largest lake it Italy, making it one of the most popular destinations in that area. Rightly, obviously. Shaped by the glaciers of the last Ice Age, populated by a lot of adorable villages, occupied and made alive by thousands of people.

More silent parts of the lake are rare, but exist in the more rural part of the Province of Brescia, the western part of the lake.

There are countless places to find your special part of Lake Garda. Shots were made during sunrise above Gargnano at the western part of the lake. Less touristic, less hectic. Endless cliffs make it more difficult to find the perfect spot though.

The eastern and more popular part of the lake makes it perfect for astonishing sunsets, such as at Malcesine and the sensational village of Sirmione.


The Landscape around Schrecksee, Allgäu

The Landscape around Schrecksee, Allgäu

Photographic impressions of the landscape around Schrecksee, located near the village of Hinterstein, in the Allgäu Alps of Bavaria, Germany.

Every single step towards the mountain lake of Schrecksee, located at 1813m above sea level in the beautiful landscape around Hinterstein, Allgäu, is worth the pain. The deep blue lake is hiding between the astonishing mountains of the Allgäu Alps, making it a breathtaking target of any hike around this incredible landscape.