I call Lake Braies in Northern Italy “the instagrammer’s dream” – for its photogenicity, colorfulness, somewhat mysteriousness, and, of course, for the fact that many people found out about it precisely thanks to photos on this social network.
This article will not only have pictures of the lake, but also useful information about where this lake is located, how to get there and where to stay nearby if you decide to spend the night here.
Where is Lake Braies
Braies (Lago di Braies in Italian, Pragser Wildsee in German) is located in the northern part of Italy, in the Dolomites. 130 km from Innsbruck (Austria), 100 km from Bolzano (Italy) , 200 km separates the lake from Venice and about 400 km from Milan.
Below I show the location of the lake (as well as the parking and hotel Lago di Braies) on the map:
There is only one entrance to Lake Braies – the road is nice and picturesque.
The lake has parking, or rather, two parking lots. The first (in the direction of travel) is free, there are no barriers there, the second is paid and, most likely, belongs to the hotel, but anyone can call in. There is a barrier. Here are the rates:
Pay before departure here in such a terminal:
There is also a restaurant near the hotel, most likely it is visited mainly by hotel guests.
There is a path along the lake. Most likely, it runs along the entire lake, but we did not reach the mountains, therefore, I can’t say for sure whether it is possible to go there without special shoes.
There are also pointers to a couple of routes:
Also there is a pier, boats for rent (at 5 pm everything was already closed). The approximate rental price is from 12 euros per 30 minutes.
Another small chapel (of course, with a story :)):
Read also the article “The most beautiful places of Northern Italy”
Hotel Lago di Braies
If you want to settle directly on the lake, then the only hotel standing on the shore is Hotel Lago di Braies . You can book through booking, but it does not always show availability. Price – from 140 euros for a standard room with breakfast, from 160 euros with breakfast and dinner. Luxury – from 174 euros. Rating on booking 8.6. Here are my photos of the hotel:
Read also my Italy Travel Guide
Other hotels near Lake Braies
If this hotel did not work out, I recommend choosing another hotel within 10-20 km from the lake. So, we stayed in the town of Valdaora, in Hotel Pörnbacher (102 euros per night with breakfast and dinner). Located 19 km to the lake, by car it is about 20 minutes.
Here is a photo of the hotel:
For dinner, the first (soup or pasta), hot (fish or meat) and dessert (strudel) were offered:
Water is free, other drinks can be ordered separately. Half a liter of homemade wine – 5 euros.
There is a small relaxation room with an old pool table, a sauna and a jacuzzi (not very convenient hours):
The main value, in addition to being close to Braies, is the view from the window (or rather, from the terrace, on which there are even sunbeds):
Check out other booking offers in the area:
How to get to Lake Braies
The easiest way is by car. If you travel around Northern Italy, then without a car it will be quite problematic, and you will not see all the beauty. I usually rent a car through a broker, rentalcars.com or autoeurope.com ( you can read about car rental in Italy and Italian roads in this article ). If you are traveling from Innsbruck, then (if you look at Google maps) you need to go along the A22 Autobahn (by the way, for the section of the road that leads from Austria to Brennero in Italy, you will need to pay an additional 9 euros, even if you have an Austrian vignette).
Next we paid another 2.90 euros on this route.
By the way, it is better to refuel a car in Austria, and a full tank is better; gasoline prices in Italy are among the highest in Europe and at one gas station we managed to refuel at a price of 1.80 per liter. In Austria, the price of gasoline is on average 1.20 euros.
Then turn onto E66 following the signs for Brunico (Brunico, Bruneck). This road is already free.
If you are traveling from other directions, for example, from Verona, Venice or Milan, you can build a route in advance and estimate the fare on the autobahns. You can do this on the website of Italian roads – http://www.autostrade.it/en/home
If there is no choice at all and you want to get by public transport , then the village of Villabassa (Niederdorf in German) should be considered the starting point. There is a railway station of the same name and the easiest way to come here is from Brunico or Bolzano. Getting from Milan is a pleasure for the amateur: 2 transfers, more than 5 hours (at best, because this is trenitalia!) And more than 40 euros:
Verona is a bit more optimistic:
Also from Bolzano:
Once you have reached Villabassa, you need to take the bus number 442. But the tourist bus runs only from June to early October. The timetable and detailed information can be found on the website http://www.sii.bz.it/ Terminus S.Vito (Oberhaus):
We came to Lake Braies twice – in the evening and in the morning. Unfortunately, the weather was cloudy, so we did not notice much difference, it was only more foggy in the morning. In sunny weather, the first rays of the sun should create a beautiful light. Therefore, who loves beauty and knows how to get up early, I definitely recommend arriving early in the morning. But even in the morning there will already be tourists 🙂
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