Welcome to the Ski Italy page, providing a regular round-up of the skiing conditions and current snow reports for the main ski resorts in the Dolomites and Italian Alps. Over recent years some of the most favourable piste conditions throughout the season have been reported at Cervinia, Cortina, Val Senales, La Thuile and Livigno although in any given week or season the best slope conditions may be found at any of the other high Italian resorts or at lower elevation ski stations among the trees in poor weather.
For off-piste powder, resorts such as Selva Gardena, Livigno, Chiesa, Madesimo, Arabba have proven among the most consistent either for fairly regular snowfalls, northerly aspect or for not getting tracked out quickly but check out the reports below for the latest news. Although there is excellent terrain for skiing and snowboarding in Italy, the scope for freeriding is a little limited because going into forbidden areas can land you with a €50 fine plus it is illegal to go off-piste without an avalanche beacon and rescue equipment. This policy means that secret snow spots are very well guarded but check out friendly snowboard shops for some useful advice.
While the snowfalls experienced by most Italian ski resorts are generally no match for those resorts on the northern side of the Alps they feature strongly in the record snowfall events for most seasons. Snowfalls of up to about 1m (3ft+) often occur during single storm events late in the Italian season and resorts including Cervinia, Madonna di Campiglio, La Thuile and the Monterosa ski stations (Gressoney, Alagna) commonly figure in those records. Italy is more temperate than its northern neighbours and the tree line often reaches over 2000m, which is great skiing or boarding in flat light.
Italy has one of the most diverse selections of ski areas of any country in the world with Italian ski resorts ranging from Courmayeur in the country’s North West by the slopes of Western Europe’s highest mountain, to ski areas on the slopes of Mount Etna on the southern island of Sicily in the Mediteranean.
You can ski Italy in almost every part of the country too, with resorts offering cross-border skiing in to Slovenia in the North East, as well as ski areas inland from Rome in the south of the central mainland and in the Apennine mountains further north.
There is a great variety in the types of resorts you’ll find when you’re skiing in Italy too. One of the most famous areas, the Via Lattea, or Milky Way, in the North West of the country, was host to most of the on-snow events for the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics. It includes cross border skiing to Montgenevre in France, is home to Sestrière (Via Lattea), which was one of the world’s first purpose built ski villages, created by the family than ran the Fiat car company in the 1930s, long before the first French purpose-built ski areas were constructed, and only a few decades after the first Italian ski resort started at Claviere (Via Lattea), another part of the Milky Way only a few kilometres away.
In the north eastern side of the country the Dolomiti Superski region contains more than 50 individual ski villages spread between a dozen valleys which together offer more than 1,200km of piste. These resorts are however more like traditional Austrian villages on the whole, as much of the pass, which takes 25% of the entire Italian ski market on its own, is in an area called the South Tyrol which was once part of Austria.
The Dolomiti Superski area is one of the largest passes in the world and remains the biggest to offer a fully inter-changable lift pass from day one (larger coverage areas that have developed recently in Austria have more usage restrictions). It also contains the world’s second largest lift/piste inter-connected ski region after the 3 Valleys – the Sella Ronda. This is a famous 23km circuit around the huge Sella mountain massif from which valleys radiate off, such as the famous Val Gardena, as well as Badia – famous for its gourmet food, and Fassa. Altogether more than 500km of piste is linked, putting it ahead of the Milky Way.
Italian skiing is also famous for its value – typically 10 or 20% below the average price for resorts in each size category, and even more so for dining out and drinking on and off the mountain. The price saving is most marked on the shared ski area of Cervinia in Italy and Zermatt in Switzerland which can be skied for substantiually less if you buy your pass on the Italian rather than the Swiss side. You’ll also pay up to 75% less for a nice handmade espresso on the Italian side than for a self service machine produced beverage in Switzerland.
Mountain scenery is another Italian forte – from the rugged Alpine mountains of the Aosta Valley in the West to the spectacular pink precipices of the Dolomites, now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
And there’s also that famous Italian sense of style epitomised by the country’s more exclusive resorts including Madonna di Campiglio and Cortina d’Ampezzo, but visible almost everywhere. read more...
Italy: latest snow conditions round-up
Summary of forecast snowfall and ski conditions for resorts in Italy. Fresh snow is forecast at 5resorts. Powder is reported at 1 resorts and 1 are reporting good piste conditions.