Dolomites UNESCO World Heritage
Alta Badia in South Tyrol is the ideal place to experience precious moments of pleasure in the mountains
In summer 2019, Alta Badia will be celebrating the 10th anniversary of the declaration which made the Dolomites a UNESCO World Heritage site. Alta Badia lies in the heart of the mountains, which the famous architect Le Corbusier declared to be “the most beautiful work of architecture in the world”. The Fanes-Senes-Braies Natural Park and the Puez-Odle Natural Park, both of which are situated in Alta Badia, are part of the Dolomites UNESCO World Heritage site.
Roughly 300 to 150 million years ago, all the present day continents formed one super-continent called Pangea.
250 million years ago, the region which we know today as the Alps was one part of Pangea and located further south, in the earth's tropical zone.
Until the ice age, the mountain range we call the Dolomites today, was formed from a giant coral reef located in the prehistoric Tethys Ocean. As this primordial sea subsided, majestic, bizarre, light-coloured rocks, quite unlike the surrounding mountains, rose up from the sea bed.
Scientists discovered at the end of the 18th century that the Dolomites, sometimes referred to as the "pale mountains", consist of magnesium-rich limestone. The Dolomites owe their present name to the geologist Déodat de Dolomieu, who carried out the first mineralogical-chemical analysis of the rocks.
UNESCO World Heritage site since 2009
The Dolomite mountains, located in the south of the main chain of the Alps, between Adige and Piave, between Val de Puster valley and the Bellunese region, are geopolitically divided between three Italian provinces: South Tyrol, Trento and Belluno.
On 26th of June 2009, the Dolomites were put on the UNESCO list of the world's protected natural paradises and since then, officially rank among the most beautiful mountains in the world.
The magic of "Enrosadira"
A particularly spectacular phenomenon which can be experienced to great effect in the Dolomites is the alpenglow or "Enrosadira" in Ladin. At sundown, the Dolomite mountain tops around Alta Badia are illuminated in magnificent shades of red, from pink to orange and magenta. The Santa Croce peak is especially renowned for its blaze of colour.
The natural parks in the UNESCO World Heritage site
The nine mountain ranges of the Dolomites which belong to the UNESCO World Heritage site include the natural parks Puez-Odle and Fanes-Senes-Braies which extend into Alta Badia.