Ski Italy – The Picture Perfect Place for Winter Fun
Northern Italy, along the border with Switzerland, is dotted with ski resorts and is the best place to Ski Italy. There are some which are well-known for being extremely challenging, offering intriguing and tricky runs for expert skiers all through the winter.
But there are also resorts with much more open slopes perfect for families and beginners. I have yet to come across one which perfectly encompasses these two elements, they all seem to be blend well towards one or the other.
Ski Italy – Arabba
Arabba is a small village located in the Dolomites. It is surrounded by ridges which provide access to other ski areas so there is no shortage of pistes and slopes. There is guaranteed snow throughout the winter months and plenty of challenges for experienced skiers.
The village itself is very small but you really get the sense of being immersed in the mountain environment. There are a variety of black runs which are tricky and exhilarating. It’s not the best resort for beginners, so perhaps not a great choice for a family vacation. A great choice for a couple’s vacation if you are expert skiers, or a boys’ trip away.
The Ornella run which goes down to Pescoi. It is one of the biggest sources of entertainment for locals and is extremely tricky even for the most expert of skiers. It’s totally worth it as the ultimate adrenaline rush and is a local challenge for visiting skiers.
Ski Italy – Passo Tonale
Passo Tonale is where the Italian national ski team goes to train. There is guaranteed snow from October all the way through to May and so is a favorite amongst ski addicts.
There are two ski schools and the nursery slopes are perfect for learning to ski from scratch.
The marked pistes are not very challenging at all so are much more suited to beginner and intermediate skiers. There are numerous bars, cafés and restaurants for après-ski fun and relaxation.
There is a supermarket should you prefer to cook in-house and plenty of leisure facilities. The resort is really geared up for families and has a lot of deals offering free ski passes for kids and really great value family accommodation.
It is typically not as attractive to young people or couples as there is not a huge amount of exciting nightlife.
Ski Italy – Cervinia
Cervinia is a resort located at the base of the Matterhorn with very open slopes. It is high up and there is little protection from the bright sun so sunscreen is an absolute must. On a clear day it is a beautiful place to ski. The pistes are well-marked and relatively well-maintained.
But, when the weather turns bad, there is no protection from the elements and the slopes can become pretty dangerous. Most of the lifts in Cervinia are fast, they have replaced most of the old, slow lifts so very few of these remain.
Cervinia is a family resort really, making it one of the best places to Ski Italy.
There is also plenty exciting for expert skiers. The few black runs may be a little easy for the most advanced skiers, but they’re tough in their own right.
The off-piste skiing would be more attractive to experienced skiers and heli-skiing is an option.
Cervinia has over 50 restaurants, so you will never be stuck for somewhere to eat. There is a natural ice rink which is pretty cool and a fitness center. Some of the hotels have pools but there is little entertainment for non-skiers. It’s a great resort for a first-time family skiing vacation, as long as all of you plan on hitting the slopes.
Cervinia was the first place I took my wife, whom was my girlfriend, Katy to Ski Italy.
We were living in Israel at the time and it was quite an experience to get there. I’ll be writing about the entire story in another article. But the place is really beautiful, great teachers, awesome food, sights that take your breath away, and perfect places to stay.
And the other cool thing of Cervinia, you can ski down the backside to Switzerland! But be careful, the lifts do close at a certain time and it may not be the best thing to be stranded for the night!
Oh, and depending upon when you come to Northern Italy, The Dolomites are an incredible place to see.