Our Terrain Ratings

Powderhound rating = advanced/expert terrain + powder + freshies + uncrowded

Our Terrain Ratings

Powderhound rating = advanced/expert terrain + powder + freshies + uncrowded

Dolomites Ski Resorts

3 Peaks Dolomites
Alta Badia
Arabba Marmolada
Civetta
Cortina d'Ampezzo
Gitschberg Jochtal
Kronplatz
Madonna di Campiglio
Plose
Val di Fassa

    Val Gardena Ski Trail & Piste Map
  • Val Gardena Ski Trail Map
  • Vertical (m)
    1,230m – 2,518m (1,288m)
  • Average Snow Fall
    5m
  • Lifts (81)
    16 Gondolas / cable cars
    43 Chairs

    Dolomiti Superski
    450 lifts
  • Opening Dates & Times
    Dec to early April
    8:00am to 5:00pm
  • Terrain Summary
    Runs - 175km
    Longest run – 6km+
    Advanced - 8%
    Intermediate - 56%
    Beginner - 36%

    Dolomiti Superski total
    1200km
  • Lift Pass Price
    Day Ticket 19/20
    Val Gardena only
    Adult - €46 to 57
    Child - €32 to 40
    Child u/8yr - Free

    Dolomiti SuperSki
    Adult - €50 to 62
    Child - €35 to 43
    Child u/8yr - Free
    Selva Gardena-Groeden Ski Trail Map
  • Selva Gardena-Groeden Ski Trail Map
  • Alpe di Siusi - Seiser Alm Ski Trail Map
  • Alpe di Siusi - Seiser Alm Ski Trail Map
  • Col Raiser - Seceda Ski Trail Map
  • Col Raiser - Seceda Ski Trail Map
  • Dolomiti Superski Trail Map
  • Dolomiti Superski Map
  • Sella Ronda Ski Trail Map
  • Sella Ronda Trail Map
  • Dolomites Great War Circuit Ski Trail Map
  • Great War Circuit Map

An extraordinarily large ski resort of 81 lifts & 175km of trails, Val Gardena skiing & snowboarding terrain is spread over three separate zones (probably four zones in reality, but three will do!) all within view of the ever present Sassolungo monolith. Skiing Val Gardena is an intermediates dream come true with over 100km of rambling red rated runs (that's the 4RRRR tick of approval!).

Val Gardena Skiing & Snowboarding

Val Gardena’s ski & snowboard terrain is Italy’s largest by piste trail length. The 175km of trails vary markedly in aspect & skiable vertical depending on where one is riding within the resort. Whilst Val Gardena is all about the piste, it is not a powder or advanced off-piste ski destination. Oh well…everywhere has its strengths & weaknesses this place’s strength is the outstanding magical mystery tours one can take exploring every nook & cranny from peak to valley.

By far the most extensive zone in Val Gardena is centred on the town of Selva Gardena - Wolkenstein & extends up the flanks of the Sella massif & Sassolungo from Passo Gardena to Passo Sella, and then via the minor summits of Piz Sella & Ciampinoi down to San Cristina. Access points by road include the towns of Selva & San Cristina, the mountain passes of Passo Sella & Gardena plus the mid mountain basin of Plan de Gralba.

The area’s piste trails are excellent but some high traffic runs (i.e. anything on the Sella Ronda) can become bumped & icy early in the day. Off piste is limited to some gentle alpine terrain. Tree skiing is possible in good snow, but we have only seen it truly reach that point during one of our three visits.

The zone has the most amazing snow park we have seen below Piz Sella & the Comici hut. Après ski at the Piz Seteur hut is wonderful but beware of the ski back down to Selva. It is easy to take a wrong turn with the blurry vision of a few aperol spritzers.

The second zone is Alpe di Siusi - Seiser Alm. A plateau to the south of Ortisei, Alpe di Siusi has short, low angle beginner & intermediate terrain served by over 20 lifts. Access is by road or gondola from the villages of Ortisei – St Ulrich & Siusi. Alpe di Siusi is let down by the lack of return valley trails & a generally short skiable vertical. A great area for families; skiers & snowboarders seeking challenges should apply elsewhere! An interesting over-snow 'jeep' does link the area to S. Cristina & is a fun direct way to get back down to the valley

On the northern side of the valley above the towns of San Cristina & Ortisei, the third skiing zone rises nearly 1300m vertical to Col Raiser-Seceda-Resciesa; located at a healthy 2518m elevation. In addition to numerous rifugios, two long sledding trails plus splendid views across to the Sella massif & Sassolungo, the sunny south facing slopes have some of the longest & best intermediate runs in the resort (6km+).

Val Gardena Skiing Highlights

The Val Gardena skiing highlights are a rite of passage according to Powderhounds. They are only to be undertaken when there is no powder because skiing powder ALWAYS takes priority. Tick off the following when at Val Gardena.

  • Complete a ‘Giro di Val Gardena’ orientation tour. With some many lifts & trails, spending a day trundling around to them all is a worthy task for anyone. Being fit will help a great deal, this is not a short day. Start early in Selva & take the gondola up to Ciampinoi. Journey across the many lifts & pistes to Passo Sella returning to Selva via the long meandering valley trail via Plan di Gralba. Take the Costabella chair & join up then the Dantercepies gondola to Passo Gardena. Return down to Selva & your starting point. Back up to Ciampinoi, ski down to San Cristina. At Sochers, take the intermediate trail down through the trees to ski past the Castel Gardena (Fischburg) - an amazing sight from a ski trail. Take the bus to Ortisei & then the gondola up to Alpe di Siusi. Check out this area, but also check the time. Lots more still. Download on the same gondola & walk across Ortisei (there are escalators and a long tunnel with a travelator as well making for an interesting meander!) to the Furnes gondola & cable car up to Seceda. The sun should be dipping behind the Sella massif now. One long run back winding down the valley back to San Cristina via a funicular. Bus back to Selva or lifts & ski if you have time & leg strength.
  • Catch the first gondola car from Selva or Santa Cristina up to Ciampinoi & ski the best steep trail in the resort, the Saslong, down to San Cristina. Head back up & rip another early line back into Selva. Should get the blood pumping!
  • Head to the summit of Seceda early & watch the sunrise over Sassolungo & ski the full 1288m vertical down to Ortisei as the first rays hit the slope. Then head back up & do the full downhill past Col Raiser toward Santa Cristina. Head back up the gondola/chair combination for a coffee or brunch at the magnificent Baita Troier Hütte.
  • Spend a day with the family on the rolling terrain of Alpe di Siusi. Take the Jeep back down to the valley from Saltria to Monte Pana & ski the quiet Alpha, Bravo, Charlie trails from the summit of Mont Sëura.
  • Drive or take a taxi up to Passo Falzarego (past Arabba towards Cortina d’Ampezzo) & take the cable car up the Lagazuoi to ski the glorious hidden valley of the Armentarola. The run is 8km long, passing spectacular frozen waterfalls & an isolated rifugio. For a small fee, get towed by a horse drawn sleigh back to Armentarola – a highlight of any Dolomites ski trip. Off piste variants are possible with a little bit of recon! Ski back to Val Gardena via San Cassiano, Corvara & Colfosco in Alta Badia.
  • Complete the world famous Sella Ronda. The 40km long Sella Ronda links Val Gardena to three other ski resorts around the Sella massif. Best done early & in an anti-clockwise direction, the journey visits  Val di Fassa & Arabba Marmolada before returning via Alta Badia for a last run down Dantercepies & seemingly winding through the local’s backyards in Selva Wolkenstein. Dolomiti Superski lift pass required.
  • Après ski Piz Seteur &/or Passo Sella Dolomiti Mountain Resort Hotel then do a blurry, super schoom back down to Selva.

Val Gardena Ski Lifts

Val Gardena has invested heavily in maintaining & improving its lift infrastructure, however the sheer size of the resort means that infrastructure quality does vary. From the valleys, high capacity gondolas move the masses efficiently to the upper mountain. Throughout the resort chairlifts do most of the work, with surface tows generally restricted to novice/learn-to-ski areas. One funicular provides an important link between Lifts involved in the Sella Ronda circuit should be avoided from mid-morning.

The amount of lifts & trails below the Sassolungo is dizzying and getting geographically confused is a real possibility. Don't be embarrassed, just locate where you are & start again. Adding to the confusion, to this day we don’t know whether the set of lifts on Des Alpes above Passo Sella is in Val Gardena or Val di Fassa (important depending on your lift ticket!).

Alpe di Siusi has a large amount of slow lift infrastructure but that probably won’t fuss the sorts of people skiing there unless it’s a cold day.

Lift Passes & Tickets

As with most Dolomites ski resorts, two ticketing options exist. The Val Gardena lift pass is around €5 cheaper per day than the second option, a Dolomiti Superski pass. A Val Gardena lift ticket is valid for all the disconnected local ski areas including Alpe di Siusi-Seiser Alm & Col Raiser-Seceda.

A Dolomiti Superski pass allows unfettered access to the interlinked ski areas that make up the Sella Ronda, Armentarola & Great War Tour ski trails. Val Gardena is piste trail & lift connected to Alta Badia via Passo Gardena, Val di Fassa via Passo Sella. A host of other Dolomites ski resorts are also valid with a Dolomiti Superski pass.

Val Gardena Trail Map

The Val Gardena ski trail map provides a reasonable representation of what is quite a complex ski area. In poor visibility, those new to the resort will undoubtedly find navigation a challenge. It’s not unusual to find oneself skiing down to the wrong lift or returning to same lift unintentionally, particularly when navigating the area between Passo Sella & Ciampinoi. Never mind though, its all part of the experience!

Snowboarding Val Gardena

Val Gardena is not the most snowboard friendly destination. Can’t say that we have seen too many there! Some long flattish traverses & a lack of challenging terrain makes it a piste skiers heaven & a snowboarder’s hell. Go to Arabba Marmolada instead.

Novice & Beginner Ski Areas

The Dolomites most discreet & sheltered learn to ski (nursery) area for children is above the town of San Cristina at Monte Pana. Sadly, it is only accessible by an old chairlift which is not great for children or beginners. One can drive up , but the road may scare the hoopla out of some visitors.

Another (possibly better) option is the broad area behind Selva township opposite the excellent Hotel Bel Vert, below the base of the Dantercepies gondola. Cow pastures in the summer; the slopes are gentle with numerous surface lifts to move the masses. Easy access for non-skiing spectators too.

All of the villages have learn-to-ski tows & slopes close to good facilities. Plan de Gralba has great beginner slopes. The tow behind the village is particularly quiet. For progression, the broad areas around Piz Setaur up toward Passo Sella are perfect to start quicker turns. The run from Passo Sella down to Plan de Gralba is a magnificent way to finish for a beginner.

Val Gardena for Intermediates

We have said it before & we will say it again. Val Gardena is intermediate skier paradise. There is a reason why the resort is so popular with skiers. Its broad appeal is simply due to the length & breadth of its intermediate terrain. Think Breckenridge in the USA, but way more impressive!

Several intermediate trails can become quite difficult to ski on busy and/or warm days. The run from Seceda into Ortisei becomes a fantastic mogul field in a couple of sections after Furnes below the Costamula Hut. One intermediate trail to avoid completely after 10am is part of the Sella Ronda route & runs from the top of the Ciampinoi to the Vallongia Hut. An alternative exists via the Ciadinat Hut. On the shaded faces heading down to Santa Cristina or Selva all runs can become icy down low as the day progresses- take care.

Advanced Terrain

The few advanced pistes, particularly from the Ciampinoi are fast & fun, but the reality is you have come to the wrong resort if you are after difficulty. Enjoy the company of others racking up the miles on piste.

Off Piste & Freeride Skiing at Val Gardena

The general rule for Val Gardena is "apply elsewhere”. However, there are places at the top of Seceda, the trees above Monte Pana on Mont de Sëura the steeper pitches off the Ciampinoi & loads of rolling terrain near Passo Sella that can provide a few freshies. On a powder day local knowledge is everything at Val Gardena. For a good blood pumping uphill & ego filled downhill, climb the broad chute up the line of the Sassolungo lift (only runs in summer) to the Federico Augusto Hut. The signature you leave on the slope coming down will be there for all to see.