Best Accommodations & Places to Stay in the Dolomites

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Selva-Wolkenstein village lays deep in the valley below the Sella massif in Val Gardena
Selva-Wolkenstein village lays deep in the valley below the Sella massif in Val Gardena
Arabba has loads of ski-in ski-out accommodation options in the central Dolomites
Arabba has loads of ski-in ski-out accommodation options in the central Dolomites
Put all your eggs in one basket at lovely Ortisei in Val Gardena
Put all your eggs in one basket at lovely Ortisei in Val Gardena
Civetta has easy access rifugio, villages & major towns around the resort
Civetta has easy access rifugio, villages & major towns around the resort
Dolomites rifugi are usually ski-in ski-out & near the lifts, like the Comici hut
Dolomites rifugi are usually ski-in ski-out & near the lifts, like the Comici hut
At Cortina d
At Cortina d'Ampezzo, the town will appeal to some visitors
Others will enjoy a hotel in the hamlet of Pocol above Cortina d
Others will enjoy a hotel in the hamlet of Pocol above Cortina d'Ampezzo
More remote lodgings at Cortina & the Dolomites can include places like Rifugio Scotoni
More remote lodgings at Cortina & the Dolomites can include places like Rifugio Scotoni
Bolzano makes a fine gateway & base to explore the Dolomites if you have your own car
Bolzano makes a fine gateway & base to explore the Dolomites if you have your own car
Staying up high in the Dolomites is a right of passage - Albergo Piz Seteur
Staying up high in the Dolomites is a right of passage - Albergo Piz Seteur
Sesto - Sexten in the northern Dolomites is more Austrian than Italian, but gorgeous regardless!
Sesto - Sexten in the northern Dolomites is more Austrian than Italian, but gorgeous regardless!
The Ciampedie above Vigo di Fassa is small ski resort Dolomites at its best
The Ciampedie above Vigo di Fassa is small ski resort Dolomites at its best
Passo Pordoi is a worthy alpine location for quick Dolomites freeride forays
Passo Pordoi is a worthy alpine location for quick Dolomites freeride forays
Northern Dolomites lodgings near Sesto
Northern Dolomites lodgings near Sesto
Bressanone is the Dolomites most charming city
Bressanone is the Dolomites most charming city
Ski-in ski-out accommodation above Val di Fassa near Passo Pordoi
Ski-in ski-out accommodation above Val di Fassa near Passo Pordoi
Ortisei - St Ulrich is Val Gardena
Ortisei - St Ulrich is Val Gardena's best village
4-Star alpine lodgings near Passo Sella Between Val Gardena & Val di Fassa
4-Star alpine lodgings near Passo Sella Between Val Gardena & Val di Fassa
Quality Austrian style Dolomites lodgings are plentiful throughout South Tyrol
Quality Austrian style Dolomites lodgings are plentiful throughout South Tyrol
Not much beats the vistas from Seceda in the Dolomites above Val Gardena
Not much beats the vistas from Seceda in the Dolomites above Val Gardena

Best Accommodations & Places to Stay in the Dolomites

Where to Stay in the Dolomites?

Unless you are on an organised tour with accommodation already set out for you, the single greatest question when heading to the Dolomites is where to stay? The answer depends on many variables - is ski-in ski-out important; lively, quiet, or in-between; traditional or modern; valley, mid-mountain, or peak; & probably consideration of one’s budget is important. There are hamlets, villages, towns & even cities to suit all purposes but the choices are nearly unlimited. Our advice to first time visitors is to do the following:

  • Start in a central resort village (read on below) near the Sella Ronda for 4 to 5 nights.
  • Spend two nights in an alpine rifugio.
  • Spend two nights in a regional city.
  • Finish with several nights in a quiet, traditional village away from the hustle & bustle.

Such is the quality & diversity of lodgings in the Dolomites, an entire separate website could be dedicated to the best places to stay. On this page we will concentrate on the 10 best villages (in our humble opinions) & their surrounds, plus some comments of rifugi & the three best local cities.

Dolomites Ski Accommodation Dolomites Ski Accommodation  $ - $$$$$
Search & book the full range of ski accommodations located in the Dolomites here. Locations include cities, towns, villages, rural hamlets & remote rifugios. Listings include 2, 3, 4 & 5-star hotels, apartments, holiday homes & chalets, pensions & guesthouses ....

The Best Dolomites Ski Villages

It may well be a polarising topic (because quite frankly everyone has different tastes, requirements & biases) but we have narrowed down the best Dolomites ski villages to the lovely round figure of 10. In truth, we stopped at eight originally, but 10 allows us to cover all the bases! Each has its strengths & weaknesses, but they all provide the opportunity to have the most enriching Dolomites ski experience & are directly linked into a ski resort (or two ….. or three!). In alphabetical order, the best Dolomites ski villages are:

  • Alleghe
  • Arabba
  • Canazei
  • Cortina
  • Corvara in Badia
  • Pozza di Fassa
  • Ortisei - St Ulrich
  • Pescul
  • Selva - Wolkenstein
  • Sesto - Sexten

Alleghe & Pescul

On opposite sides of the Dolomites best kept open secret, Civetta ski resort, the lakeside town of Alleghe & the mountainside village of Pescul provide contrasting places to stay. Each is connected by ski lifts into Civetta, but both are also connected by bus to other Dolomites resorts. Pescul to Cortina’s Cinque Torri/Lagazuoi sector via Fedare (& hence the Armentarola-Secret Valley trail to Alta -Badia). Alleghe to Malga Ciapela & the Marmolada glacier (& hence Arabba & the Sella Ronda).

Alleghe is perfect for anyone looking to spend time soaking up a true Dolomites vibe, but without the glitz & mass of humanity. The lake & surrounding peaks, in particular Monte Civetta rising up 2000m directly above town, are inspirational & humbling all at once. In Alleghe it is hard to go past the lakeside Europa Mountain Apartments or Sporthotel Europa Sul Lago as the places to stay in the heart of the village. A comfortable gondola will get you up the mountain & also down it if you over-indulge in all the après fun at the many bars in Piani di Pezzè. Otherwise a ski trail goes all the way to the edge of the lake.

In Pescul you will find the Dolomites as they no doubt once were. Slower, quieter, calming. The peaks of Pelmo & Civetta are ever present, but people are comparatively few. Stay here if seeking a village where authenticity & tradition dictate terms, rather than euro disco tunes & five-star resort hotels. A quad chair below town links into the ski resort & opens a whole lot of ski possibilities. The Hotel Orso Grigio is far & away the most comfortable place to stay. A more interesting alternative is Rifugio Aquileia, totally off-grid on the flanks of Pelmo amongst some excellent backcountry terrain, but you will have to ski in! For a rifugio experience that is easy to get to, Rifugio Palafavera is just up the road from Pescul and right on a day car park at Civetta’s Palafavera lift.

Civetta Ski Accommodation Alleghe & Pescul Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$
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Arabba

The snowiest of the Dolomites many villages, Arabba can be quite cold & shady through winter, but that is exactly what makes it special. Awesome snow quality plus superb access to the other major central Dolomites ski areas & Marmolada glacier make it the pick for those harder core skiers seeking the best true winter ski village. A compact authentic centre, the village is eminently ski-in ski-out, and the steep north-aspect terrain above town is amongst the best for advanced riders in the entire Dolomites. There are some cracking restaurants (like Miky’s Grill) & a few fun après ski bars right at the lifts.

Arabba is a small enough village where one should stay in the centre of town. Ski lifts are only a short stroll away from most places, and some are even ski-in ski-out. For beautiful new apartments stay in Residence Aspen or next to the slopes at the Blizzard Apartments. For the best hotel in town, try & get into the Hotel Malita. Failing that the Hotel Alpenrose further up the hill (but ski-in, ski-out) is a perennial crowd pleaser. For a more authentic stay, there are numerous family run guesthouse apartments & rooms (garni , albergo & chalet) throughout the village.

Arabba Ski Accommodation Arabba Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$
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Canazei

The diversity of accommodations in Val di Fassa can be confuzzling, but if you enjoy a bit of lively hustle & bustle plus staying in high-quality lodgings, Canazei is the best place in the valley. Whilst it will not be everyone's 'cup of tea', Canazei does combine the best bits of the Dolomites lifestyle with the sort of village one hopes for in busy modern ski resort. Combined with its 'satellite’ village of Alba, lodgings options will satisfy most. Lift access is good from both parts of town, plus valley trails head into Canazei from the Sella & into Alba from Ciampac. For sheer convenience & proximity to the action, stay in the heart of town. A festival of exceptional hotels, guesthouses & apartments are in a cluster from the main pedestrian zone to the gondola valley station. Some are even ski-in from the valley trail.

The pick of the hotels is the 4-star Hotel La Perla, but if your pockets are not deep enough, the 3-star Albergo Alla Rosa or Hotel Pareda. For apartments, try the convenient Casa Maurivan. Local guesthouses (or BnBs) are often called hotels & whilst the distinction can be vague, most guesthouses (garni) are smaller family run affairs with an intimacy not usually present in hotels. In Canazei try the Garnì Stella Alpina or ski-in ski-out Garni Al Viel.

Canazei Ski Accommodation Canazei Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$
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Cortina d’Ampezzo

Cortina is just one of those places that one must visit when in the Dolomites. Whilst some of the ski lifts are terribly inconveniently placed in relation to the town & there are ski-in ski-out lodgings, the whole experience of wine bars, restaurants, shops, fashion & super Dolomites landscapes makes a stay here memorable. If the snowpack is deep, the terrain in Cortina ski resort is absolutely fist rate. Regardless of natural snow the piste trails are always exceptional. Once there, getting around is easy by bus.

Cortina d’Ampezzo has a host of accommodation options throughout the valley, but why stay out of town, when the whole idea of Cortina is to experience …….. the town! Because you will want to spend the evenings eating out, hotels are the best option in Cortina. Prices are surprisingly affordable. We have stayed in 3, 4 & 5-star hotels in Cortina. Our preference was for the unpretentious, super affordable & centrally located 3-star Hotel Olimpia (but we are tight-arses!). An excellent 4-star is the Hotel Europa. The best 5-star luxury digs are at the Hotel Cristallo. Whist its quiet location & sweeping Dolomites views just outside of town will appeal, anyone looking for a 5-star closer to the centre of Cortina should consider the Grand Hotel Savioa.

Cortina d’Ampezzo Ski Accommodation Cortina d’Ampezzo Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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Corvara in Badia

The choice of hotel, apartment, guesthouse and rifugio accommodation options at Alta Badia can be daunting. Several villages are within the resort and each have merits. From the Powderhounds perspective, Corvara, with its central location, sunny disposition and range of services and facilities is the best place to stay. The villages are summarised below.

The heart of Alta Badia, Corvara has a sunny disposition, major lifts allowing easy access to all points, all major shops and services, the best bars in the region, wide range of lodgings from the high end La Perla to a host of excellent locally owned & run guesthouse accommodations like Garni Gabrieli.

Corvara Ski Accommodation Corvara Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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Pozza di Fassa

The Powderhounds favourite authentic village in Val di Fassa is Pozza di Fassa. Pozza di Fassa has it all, including authenticity, ski-in ski-out lodgings & farm-stays. Well suited to those with their own car, it is situated to take advantage of numerous ski areas. In the heart of Pozza is the wonderful & affordable Hotel Aida. Further up the road at the base of the Buffaure slope & gondola, Hotel Garni San Nicolo & Hotel Valacia are the perfect mix of tradition & locality. Hidden away from view even further up the valley is the ski-in ski-out Vidor Resort Hotel. A plethora of other options are in the village amongst the many restaurants & bars. Away from Pozza, the smaller Vigo di Fassa is also a fantastic place to stay including the 4-star Alpen Hotel Corona & lovely Garni Ladin. For something completely different, anyone with a car & a penchant for some peace & quiet should stay at the exceptional farm stay, Agritur Majon da Mont.

Pozza di Fassa Ski Accommodation Pozza di Fassa Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$
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Ortisei - St Ulrich

If you cannot swing a room in a mountaintop ski-in ski-out rifugio or hotel & feel the need for a bit of village action, our pick as the best place to stay in Val Gardena is Ortisei (a.k.a. Sankt Ulrich). Ortisei's town centre is both pretty & vibrant, is pedestrian friendly, plus has the widest number & variety of restaurants, bars, shops & services in the valley. Ski lift access is good with gondolas toward Seceda & Alpe di Siusi. Its lack of direct access to the slopes towards Passo Sella, lack of a skiable valley trail from Alpe di Siusi plus its relatively low elevation of 1236m (low for Italy!) are its major downfalls. Bus or car transport is required to get from Ortisei to the Ciampinoi & beyond, or of course one can ski from Seceda via the Col Raiser to San Cristina (a delightful, but tiresome journey if your goal is toward Val di Fassa or Alta Badia). The bus links are quick to San Cristina & Selva so simply join the great unwashed in the bus to get to your objective.

For those that want to spoil themselves, look no further than the 5-star Adler Spa Resort Dolomiti located in the heart of town. The excellent Hotel Maria is on the town square, close to everything & easier on the wallet. Higher up the hill near the Seceda gondola is the Garni Irma Bed & Breakfast ticks all the boxes.

Ortisei Ski Accommodation Ortisei Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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Selva - Wolkenstein

At a height of 1563m, the highest major village in Val Gardena is Selva di Val Gardena (a.k.a. Wolkenstein in Gröden). Selva is well placed for quick access to ski slopes for all abilities in both Sella Ronda directions. Aside from its superb ski access, the village’s major strength is its splendid surrounds hemmed in by the Sassolungo, Sella massif & other precipitous peaks. Accommodation options are huge, but expensive & often difficult to find a vacancy. The shopping precinct is ok & restaurant/bar selections many & varied. It has a nice main street but suffers from too much through traffic on too small a road. Selva also lacks a large pedestrian only area, dramatically decreasing amenity.

Our ski-in ski-out pick in Selva is the brilliant Hotel Bel Vert which is way better than its 3-stars might indicate. Other great Selva hotels include the Hotel Stella, right out front of the Costabella chairlift, the swanky Hotel Aaritz opposite the Ciampinoi gondola & the wonderful Savoy Dolomites Luxury Spa Hotel. For those on a budget the many guesthouses in town are worth a look, like the well-priced Garni Sayonara.

On the quiet sunny side of the village, the Hotel Tyrol has ski-in ski-out access at the bottom of the beginner tows away from the hustle & bustle of the main road. At the top end of the Selva beginner tows near the Dantercepies gondola base, Residence Antares has self-contained studios & apartments at a good price.

Selva - Wolkenstein Ski Accommodation Selva - Wolkenstein Ski Accommodation  $$$ - $$$$$
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Sesto - Sexten

The fantastic 3-Peaks Dolomites ski resort is centred on delightful Sesto - Sexten. It has a thriving compact town centre with shops, services, bars, historic church & grounds plus numerous accommodation options. Whilst the town centre is away from the cable car base, a short walk or free bus ride will see you there in no time. The best central accommodation is the Zur Post Hotel & Apartments. Further out toward the Helm gondola, the Hotel Waldheim provides the perfect traditional lodgings with ski-in convenience to the back of the building!

In the nearby hamlet of Bad Moos, the area’s best pool & spa hotel, Sport & Kurhotel Bad Moos, is located at the base of the Croda Rossa gondola. Between Bad Moos & the Waldheim ski lifts, the Hotel Lanterna Verde provides wonderful rooms & restaurant.

High-altitude accommodation is limited near Sesto, but the new Rotwandwiesen Chalets at 1900m elevation will change all that. Another non-village lodging option located in a spectacular Dolomites setting is the Hotel Dolomitenhof. Stopping & drinking in the views is an everyday ritual here.

Sesto - Sexten Ski Accommodation Sesto - Sexten Ski Accommodation  $$ - $$$$
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Best Places to Stay in the Mountains

Beyond the Dolomites villages, the number & locations of smaller hamlets & alpine rifugi is vast & worthy of an entire page itself (another day perhaps!). Go to a specific ski resort page to get detailed info on them. From a perspective of best access to stunning terrain combined with views & great local food, some of the better locations include:

Best Dolomites Cities

There are three Dolomites cities worth exploring on any visit to the region. Each is unique except for the fact they are all fabulous & located in largely snowless valleys.

Bressanone – Brixen

Our favourite Dolomites city has a stunning old town. Small enough to feel cosy, large enough to be a city. Close to Plose & Gitschberg-Jochtal, but with train connections to loads of other locations. Our fondest memories of our first Dolomites ski trip are of walking to the ski bus in Bressanone from our accommodation in the old town. Via ancient Klosters with vaulted fresco -draped corridors & huge oak doors, then exiting across a gorgeous town square to the sound of the morning bells before ducking through a 15th century walled ‘Bishops’ garden. What a wonderful journey just to get to a bus! And then to be able to ski. Can it get better? Sure. The cities Christmas Night Markets are amongst the region’s best.

Bressanone-Brixen Ski Accommodation Bressanone - Brixen Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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Bolzano – Bozen

Gorgeous old town centre with ooodles or history, culture , food & drink to enjoy. The home of Ötzi the Iceman (in a local museum) plus several note-worthy castles, Bolzano is a sprawling mass, but the centre of the city is a world away from the suburbs. Beautiful apartments, daily food markets & several micro-brew pubs are other wonderful features. Close to Val di Fassa, Val Gardena, Obereggen, & Reinswald plus is a major train & bus transport hub. Trains connect with Innsbruck in Austria, as well as the val Venosta ski resorts beyond Merano like Solda-Sulden.

Bolzano - Bozen Ski Accommodation Bolzano-Bozen Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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Brunico – Brunick

Lovely city with a compact old town overlooked by a stunning castle. The highest elevation & hence snowiest of the three cities, Brunico has world-class train & bus connections to Kronplatz, 3-Peaks & Alta-Badia ski resorts.

Brunico - Brunick Ski Accommodation Brunico-Brunick Accommodation  $$ - $$$$$
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