The Dolomites UNESCO World Heritage Site

The UNESCO World Heritage Convention establishes that sites of cultural and natural heritage in various parts of the world and of universal importance should be protected as the heritage of all humanity.

On June 26th 2009, the Dolomites were added to the World Heritage List for the beauty and uniqueness of their landscape and their geological and geomorphological importance. Inclusion of the Dolomites in the World Heritage List is an extraordinary recognition, but one that requires great commitment and responsibility for the protection and sustainable development of this splendid alpine region.

The Dolomites are registered as a natural and “serial” Property. This term is used to describe a single World Heritage Site composed of a series of areas that do not directly border one another, yet that form a single entity, despite the complex structure. The various Dolomite Systems together represent an exceptional set of geological features and unique landscapes which are extraordinarily representative and benefit from high levels of protection. They are linked together by a rich network of genetic and aesthetic relationships.

Local institutions and authorities

After inclusion of the Dolomites in the World Heritage List, the Regional and Provincial Authorities that submitted the nomination in conjunction with Ministry for the Environment and Protection of Land and Sea (now MASE) — including the Provinces of Belluno, Pordenone and Udine, the Autonomous Provinces of Bolzano-Alto Adige and Trento, the Autonomous Region of Friuli Venezia Giulia and the Region of Veneto — set up the Fondazione Dolomiti – Dolomiten – Dolomites – Dolomitis UNESCO, formally established on May 13th 2010.


What is UNESCO?

UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, is one of the specialised intergovernmental agencies of the UN.

UNESCO’s mission is to promote world peace, elimination of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, science, culture, communication and information. The Organisation’s programmes also contribute to achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals defined in the 2030 Agenda, adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015.

UNESCO, which is headquartered in Paris, currently has 193 Member States.
UNESCO – United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization


The Italian National Commission (CNI) for UNESCO was set up in 1950 to promote and provide links to UNESCO programmes in Italy, enabling information, consultative and implementation actions. The commission was set up on the basis of a specific international obligation, and equivalent bodies operate in almost all of the UNESCO Member States. The tasks performed by the Italian National Commission (CNI) for UNESCO include protection and regulating the use of the UNESCO name, acronym and emblem and associated Internet domains

Italian National Commission for UNESCO

The Dolomites UNESCO World Heritage Site

The nine Systems of the Dolomites

Pelmo and Croda da Lago

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Pale di San Martino, San Lucano, Dolomiti Bellunesi, Vette Feltrine

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Dolomiti Friulane and d’Oltre Piave

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Northern Dolomites

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Sciliar-Catinaccio, Latemar

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Brenta Dolomites

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Map of the nine Systems of the Dolomites
explore the nine Systems


According to the concept of World Heritage, there exist assets of such exceptional significance as to transcend national boundaries and to be of common importance for future generations the world over. This Outstanding Universal Value has been recognised in the Dolomites due to the beauty of the natural landscapes and the scientific importance of their geological heritage.

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the Property

Management of a geographically and administratively complex UNESCO World Heritage Site such as the Dolomites requires great efforts to harmonise measures for governance and coordination of activities.

The key to overcoming the geographical complexities of the Dolomites lies in the application of the concept of the “serial” nature of the site to all expertise and forms of management present across the area, forging new and original connections between local bodies, services and existing administrative entities. The framework of reference is therefore network management, founded on principles of harmonisation, participation and cooperation.

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