Italy

Ski & Snowboard Italy

Skiing and snowboarding in Italy is a perennial Powderhounds favourite. Whilst Italy doesn’t necessarily come immediately to mind as one of world’s best known skiing and snowboarding destinations, the ski resorts of Italy are absolute world class in all aspects.

The Italian ski resorts are predominantly located across the mountainous areas of northern Italy that border France, Switzerland and Austria. Being on the southern side of the Alps, the Italian ski resorts boast an 80% chance of beautiful weather during winter. So in true Italian style you can sit outside and not let the snow get in the way of enjoying delicious pasta, grappa, spritzer, espresso or café latte with your new Italian friends.

Skiing in Italy is sometimes like being in two (or three!) different countries. German and Austrian cultural influences are prominent in parts of the Dolomites and French culture insinuates itself into the Aosta Valley.

Generally less expensive than their northern and western neighbours, Italian ski resorts are also known for their relatively uncrowded slopes. The ski resorts are generally not far from numerous airports making transit easy, and another bonus is that the fabulous cities of Rome, Florence, Milan and Venice are never far away.

In Italy you can ski the massive and spectacular Dolomites region in the east, go skiing in the true Alps in the north west, ride the 2006 Olympic resorts of the Via Lattea , or even ski down Mt. Etna in Sicily. Italy offers a diverse array of skiing options across more than 200 resort. It’s favoloso!

The Italian ski resorts can broadly be placed into a number of regions including the Dolomites, Brenta Dolomites, Valle d'Aosta, Ortler Skiarena, Alta Valtellina, Via Lattea , Apennines and others.

Dolomites Ski Resorts

The main Dolomites (Dolomiti Superski) ski area in the north east of italy provides one of the largest ski networks in the world. as the 12 main ski areas in the region are connected by 460 lift systems. The best way to experience this sunny and snowy area is with the “Dolomiti Superski” pass which accesses 1200+ km of ski slopes across the twelve ski areas. The ski resorts have either big reputations or none (!) and include Cortina d’Ampezzo, Alta Badia, Val Gardena, Val di Fassa, Arabba-Marmolada, 3 Peaks (Drei Zinnen a.k.a. Sesto), Plose, Gitschbegr-Jochtal, Kronplatz, Civetta and others. The world famous “Sella Ronda” ski route is in the Dolomites and enables you to visit 4 of the resorts in one day around the Sella massif. The easiest route to the Dolomites is via Milan (Malpensa airport), Innsbruck or Venice and then a train and/or bus to the resorts.

Brenta Dolomites Ski Resorts

The other large ski area in the western Dolomites region is in an area known as the Brenta Dolomites. The Skirama Dolomiti ski area combines 8 ski resorts to access 380 km of piste and 150 lifts. The ski resorts include the popular Madonna di Campiglio, Pinzolo, Folgarida-Marilleva, Pejo 3000, Tonale, Andalo, Monte Bondone, and Folgaria. Access is best via Milan, Venice or Innsbruck to Tirano or Trento.

Via Lattea Ski Resorts

Just west of Turin is “The Milky Way” (Via Lattea) ski area that has 320 km of piste and connected by 70 lifts. The main interlinked ski resorts include the Claviere, Oulx (Sauze d'Oulx) Cesana, Sestriere and Sansicario. Hosting many of the 2006 Winter Olympic events, “The Milky Way” region is easily accessed via train or car from Turin. The TGV fast train from Paris stops at Oulx for quick and easy access to this great ski area. Also nearby is the cracking little resort of Bardonecchia.

Aosta Valley Ski Resorts

In north west Italy bordered by Switzerland to the north and France to the west, the Aosta valley (Valle d’Aosta) has several of Italy’s premier ski resorts and some of its most eye popping scenery. Surrounded by western Europe’s highest mountains, the ski resorts of Cervinia at the base of the Matterhorn (Monte Cervino), Monterosa Ski (Champoluc, Gressoney, Alagna) at the base of Monte Rosa and  Courmayeur at the base of Monte Bianco (Mont Blanc) are all wonderful ski destinations. The smaller but still brilliant La Thuile and Pila ski resorts round out this sensational valley.

Alta Valtellina Ski Resorts

Never heard of the Alta Valtellina? Think Bormio, Livigno and lesser known Sante Caterina, Passo dello Stelvio and Bormio’s close neighbour,  Oga -San Colombano -Valdidentro. Some excellent skiing and snowboarding in the alps north of the Brenta Dolomites. Access is best via Milan.

Ortler Ski Resorts

The Ortler Skiarena is a little known ski region made up of 15 resorts in the Venosta valley, Merano, Bolzano and Eisacktal. Located in north east Italy wedged between the Austrian border, the Dolomites and the Alta Valtellina the Ortler ski resorts include a number of real Powderhound secret treasures. The relatively unknown resorts of Solda, Val Senales, Meran 2000 and Reinswald have some great value skiing at elevations up to 3260m. Access is best from Milan or Innsbruck via Bolzano.

Apennines Ski Resorts

Further south is Italy's longest mountain range called the Apennines. They extend for 1200km south east along the spine of the entire Italian peninsula. A number of small ski resorts are spread along the Apennines, but also some quite extensive ones with over 1000m of vertical and 80km+ of piste trails. The larger resorts include Abetone , Alto Sangro, Cimone and Campo Felice.

Other Italy Ski Resorts

Aside from some outlying Alps ski resorts (outlying = secret stashes that we are going to review!) near Tirano like Aprica, Alpe Palu - Valmalenco and Valchiavenna, one more interesting Italy ski area graces the potentially fiery slopes of Mt Etna. Sicily's famous volcano and the highest point at 3,350m, Mt Etna often gets deep winter snow and has up to 1,400m of vertical skiing at two ski resorts combined with off piste. The Piano Provenzana and Nicolosi ski areas on both the south and north side of Mt Etna are best accessed via Catania.

Heliskiing in Italy

Italy is one of the few European countries to have a number of heliskiing operations on the high alps, particularly around the Aosta valley. Heliski operators are based near La Thuile, Courmayeur, Gressoney (Monterosa) and further away at remote Riale (Val Formazza). More information on heliskiing is coming soon.

Why Ski & Snowboard Italy

There are so many reasons to ski and snowboard Italy. Here are just a few.

Awesome skiing and snowboarding. Several Italian ski resorts are Powderhounds favorites because of the quality of the ski experience. The ski resorts of Monterosa, Courmayeur, La Thuile, Via Lattea and the Dolomites are exceptional by world standards.

Geographic and cultural diversity – from the heights of Monte Bianco and Rosa to the unique Dolomites, the Apennines and even Mt Etna, the mountains in Italy are as diverse as the culture, which can change from one valley to the next.

Value for money. Italy offers some of the cheapest skiing and snowboarding in the world – comparable in many places with Japan.

World’s best snow=making. If it mother nature is being fickle, the Italians will have snow-making down to a fine art. You will be guaranteed of endless skiing, fresh snow or not.

Apres. A few Aperol spritzers on the sunny deck of a high alpine rifugio will be all you need to say, “I love skiing in Italy.” You can then understand why so much in Italy is about la dolce vita!


Ski Tours that include Italy

Safari (Road Trip) Tours
Powder Skiing Safari France-Italy DETAILS
GUIDED OFF-PISTE ADVENTURE
8 Days | 7 Nights | 7 Skiing | 3+ Resorts
From price based on twin/double-share room occupancy.
Base/invoice currency is in EURO inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 1,814
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
Skiing between the French and Italian alps over the southern alpine glaciers, this exceptional tour begins in La Grave, France, passes through Serre Chevalier and ends in Sestriere, Italy. Great off-piste combination of high alpine and tree skiing, plus beautiful villages and accommodation.
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See all Safari (Road Trip) tours that visit Italy here
Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area Tours
Skiare GOLD Packages DETAILS
PRIVATE GUIDED INSTRUCTIONAL PACKAGES
Hotel & Apartment Options
From price based on twin/double-share in a 3-star hotel room during medium season (Dec 1 - 23, Jan 6 - Feb 2, Mar 10 - 24).
Base/invoice currency is in AUD inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 3,787
Ability: Beginner to Expert
Make the most of your Dolomites ski holiday with a private guide / instructor who will show you many of the great sights & ski areas whilst helping you to improve your skiing. Whilst this example package is based on 7 nights, packages are fully CUSTOMISABLE from 3 days plus and can start from any day of the week.
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Skiare SILVER Packages DETAILS
MIXED GROUP GUIDED INSTRUCTIONAL PACKAGES
Hotel & Apartment Options
From price based on twin/double-share in a 3-star hotel room during medium season (Dec 1 - 23, Jan 6 - Feb 2, Mar 10 - 24).
Base/invoice currency is in AUD inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 2,808
Ability: Beginner to Expert
Make the most of your Dolomites ski holiday with a MIXED GROUP guide / instructor who will show you many of the great sights & ski areas whilst helping you to improve your skiing. Whilst this example package is based on 7 nights, packages are fully CUSTOMISABLE from 3 days plus and can start from any day of the week.
More
Monterosa Ski Safari DETAILS
GUIDED OFF-PISTE ADVENTURE
8 Days | 7 Nights | 7 Skiing
From price based on twin/double-share room occupancy.
Base/invoice currency is in EURO inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 1,848
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
This guided tour takes in some of Italy & Switzerland's iconic alpine areas in the upper valleys of the Monta Rosa Massif among 4,000 metre peaks such as the Matterhorn. Join a "fixed date" tour or get your own group of 4+ together for a custom tour.
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See all Single-Base, Multi-Ski-Area tours that visit Italy here
Backcountry Skiing Tours
Chamonix-Zermatt Haute Route Tour DETAILS
GUIDED BACKCOUNTRY TOURING
8 Days | 7 Nights | 6 Days Ski Touring
From price based on twin/double-share room occupancy.
Base/invoice currency is in GBP inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 1,671
Ability: Advanced to Expert
This trip is for serious, fit, expert backcountry skiers. This tour links the best known resorts of Chamonix and Zermatt with 6,000 m of ascents / descents and over 120 km of touring. Join a fixed date tour or wrangle your own group together for a private custom tour.
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Chamonix Ultimate Experience Ski Tour DETAILS
GUIDED SKI TOUR | MIXED GROUP
8 Days | 7 Nights | 6 Ski Days
From price based on twin/double-share room.
Base/invoice currency is in USD ex taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 3,495
Ability: Strong Intermediate to Expert
Ski 3 countries in one week based in the legendary Chamonix. Experience the Grands Montets, Aiguille du Midi, the Valley Blanche, Verbier and Courmayeur in amongst the highest peaks of the Alps.
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Monterosa Ski Touring Safari DETAILS
HOSTED & GUIDED SKI TOURING
8 Days | 7 Nights | 6 Days Skiing
From price based on twin/double-share room occupancy.
Base/invoice currency is in GBP inc taxes.
*Displayed price may vary due to currency fluctuations.
Price p/p
USD 1,864
Ability: Intermediate to Advanced
This is the ultimate ski touring safari passing through two countries, Switzerland and Italy, and four world-class resorts renowned for their off-piste: Zermatt, Cervinia, Alagna and Saas fee.
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See all Backcountry Skiing tours that visit Italy here