In Julian Pre-Alps there are not many mountain huts. But what is nice, are a few shepherds settlements, which are arranged for tourism. If any of them can be recommended, then it's Agriturismo Malga Confin, a beautiful place above Val Venzonassa. It is remote, yet reachable by a narrow and steep mountain road, the familly, running the premises is exceptionally kind and gentle and Mrs. Gabriela indeed cooks very well. Why not trying a few typical simple, but delicious meals from Carnia? She also speaks several languages, so communication in Friulian, Italian, German and English will be no problem.
The settlement lies in a charming saddle on the southern slopes of the main mountain crest, on the place, where below Jôf di Confin a few nice grassy hills rise. I can hardly think of anything more beautiful, than walking up on that grassy hills, fully covered with all kinds of flowers and picturesque trees, waiting for a sunrise, when the world around is flooded by a warm light.
The nearby alpine meadow is Malga Ungarina, some 1500 meters (20 minutes) away, towards the west. There are also shepherds houses and stables, but it seems to be managed also by the family, managing Malga Confin. During our stay the lady went there and back several times a day. Above the pasture there's a shallow pond in which the surrounding mountains are beautifully reflected.
What To Do There?Malga Confin is a starting point for the following tours:
As said, the roads above Val Venzonassa are appropriate for mountain biking and from the steep grassy slopes paragliders can take-off, having their base on Malga Confin. If you arrange it, you can also reach Malga Confin on a horse back.
Exit the A23 highway near Gemona and drive to Venzone/Venč town. Don't forget to have a walk through it! On the northern part you enter the Val Venzonassa. By a narrow mountain road you drive into the valley till the altitude of some 475m, where before the first tunnel there's a parking place. If you want to ascend by the church of San Antonio Abate, you can park on the curve before (some 40 meters higher). At the tunnel the sign stands that the road further into Val Venzonassa is closed for public traffic. But when the agriturismo on Casera Confin is opened, below the sign you will find an inscription (in Italian only), allowing you to drive up on that alpine meadow. The road continues above the Venzonassa valley, above Borgo Prabunello you find a crossroads (towards the east you'd continue on Forca Tacia, 1053m), where you deter left. In many turns the road brings you on the slopes of Jôf di Ungarina, where you take the right branch on Casera Confin, 1331m (the left branch brings you on Casera Ungarina).
To walk-up there you need from the tunnel parking place some 2h 30min. When visiting Malga Confin, we were optimistic and took bikes with us. With heavy rucksacks (tent, sleeping bags, food for 2 days) we mostly walked up, but next day the descent was fast. Only that we had to stop several times to cool down brakes. A well trained mountain biker could of course ride up.