A combination of scanning Hall microscopy and scanning ac-susceptibility measurements in superconducting stripes (ribbons) of width w < 10 mu m was used to observe the dimensional phase transitions of the vortex lattice and its stability under alternating fields. At low dc magnetic fields applied perpendicularly to the plane of the stripes, vortices form a one-dimensional chain at the center of the stripes. Above a certain field H*(w), the vortex chain splits in two parallel rows displaced laterally in such a way that a zigzag vortex pattern is observed. By shaking the vortices with an external magnetic ac field and detecting their in-phase motion locally, we can identify the degree of mobility of each individual vortex. This technique allows us (i) to directly visualize the transition from intravalley (Campbell regime) to intervalley vortex motion as the amplitude of the ac modulation is increased and (ii) to accurately determine the temperature at which the vortex lattice freezes in a field-cooling experiment.