Best Ski Resorts in Italy

The finest skiing in the Italian Alps.

Cortina

Spectacular scenery , Olympic resort , Friendly local...

Great for:

  • Intermediates
  • Off-piste
  • Families

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Sestriere

Relaxed atmosphere, Cuisine & Culture, vast Milky Way

Great for:

  • Families
  • Snow-sure
  • Groups

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Livigno

One of Italy’s highest , Duty free shopping , Authen...

Great for:

  • Late season
  • Après ski
  • Non skiers

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Selva

Access to Sella Ronda , Awesome Dolomite scenery , Ne...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Cross country
  • Foodies

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Cervinia

Great for beginners, Ski 2 countries in 1 day , Glaci...

Great for:

  • Snow sure
  • Families
  • Beginners and intermediates

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Courmayeur

Pretty, car-free village , International ski pass

Great for:

  • Families
  • Off-piste
  • Foodies

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Canazei

Beautiful setting, Cuisine and culture , Great value

Great for:

  • Families
  • Intermediates
  • Sports

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

La Thuile

Ski 2 countries in 1 day, Off piste forest trails , H...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Beginners
  • Heli-skiing

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Sauze d'Oulx

Links to Milky Way, Amazing Italian après , Somethi...

Great for:

  • Après-ski
  • Intermediate skiing
  • Italian Alpine charm

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Madonna di Campiglio

Classic ski village, Linked area , Epic Dolomites sce...

Great for:

  • Families
  • Scenery
  • Snow sure

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

Top 10 Most Popular

Italy’s resorts sit with the best of them when it comes to big ski areas – but the pistes and powder trails tend to be emptier over here, and the prices of passes, guides, lessons and lunches can be quite a lot lower…

Long may it last: Putting staggering sights, world class slopes, pristine powder and fabulous food at your twin tips, the land of the Dolce Vita is a must-ski. And these ten are its best resorts for an 'eccellente' week on the piste.

Italy: Top 10 Ski Resorts

Only in Cortina can you ski like James Bond (‘Eyes Only was filmed here), eat like a king (Gault-Millau points abound) and shop like a Parisian (Corso Italia’s the Dolomite’s Champs Elysées). The three local ski areas total 140km of pistes - and they include some corkers: World Cup and Olympic runs, seriously scenic nursery slopes, speedy powder drops like Bus di Tofana and gentle cruisers like Faloria’s slow-slope. That’s far from your lot – upgrade to the Superski pass and you’ve got 1200km to explore, twice as many runs as the 3 Valleys, for about half the price. There’s oodles to do in town, with some of the cafes, restaurants and shops in the Alps. But however you spend your time, schedule in some landscape ogling: Cortina’s known as the ‘Queen of the Dolomites’ and its crown is encrusted with staggering UNESCO-listed peaks that famously change colour with the setting sun.

While you won’t be waking up to old church steeples or choc box chalets, you will be skiing out onto the highest part of the Milky Way – and Sestriere comes up trumps if the white stuff’s your priority. This was actually the first purpose built resort in Europe (thanks to the owners of Fiat), and they picked a jolly good spot. The pistes are north facing up here, which with the help of high altitudes and excellent snowmaking (which was ramped up for the 2006 Olympics) makes Sestriere’s conditions the best around. Blue and red runs pour down the local Banchetta Mountain, but that’s just the beginning with a whacking great 400km to ski in the Milky Way, leading across the border to French Montgenevre for an all-important lunchtime tartiflette…

Livigno’s snowy – so snowy that the tax man couldn’t reach it back in the day. Which has left the whole place VAT free, with over 250 shops helping you take advantage of the low prices. It also makes for a stonkingly good winter season, with the bulk of the slopes keeping cool above 2000m (and when the town itself sits at a lofty 1816m, even the lowest slopes tend to stay in good nick). An army of lifts serve the ski area from resort, making the white stuff easily reachable wherever you’re based. Handy, as you won’t want to waste time walking to these beauties: From wide blue cruisers to speedy reds and tree-lined powder trails, this place has it all, not to mention the country’s biggest snow park (never done a Tail Grab over a fighter jet? Well now’s your chance…).

Selva has some rather spectacular claims: This is the biggest of the Val Gardena trio, with characterful après and a fine mix of Italian and Austrian restaurants reflecting its Ladin heritage. It’s also right on the Sella Ronda circuit, so you can complete the legendary route of four valleys and three provinces then ski straight back home. The local pass alone covers a weighty 175km, which itself forms a chunk of the Dolomiti Superski – a mammoth 1200km of pistes. What’s really spectacular is the scenery. With the Sassolungo massif one way and the Puez massif the other, you can wake up to Mother Nature’s UNESCO-listed masterpieces every morning, ski alongside them all day, and watch them turn a vivid pink when the sun sets.

Sharing Europe’s highest ski area with Zermatt, Cervinia’s heralded as a cheaper way to experience the iconic Swiss resort. Though even if you stuck to the Italian side you’d have a hoot: The 72 slopes are long, wide and brilliantly groomed - none more than Ventina, an 8km red valley descent. You’ll find cracking facilities for beginners, with lessons for half of what you’d pay in Zermatt. That’s not to say the Swiss mountains aren’t worth exploring, especially when they have some of the finest off piste on the planet. Cervinia itself is a cheerful hodge-podge of old and newer builds, and while it won’t be winning any beauty contests anytime soon, the phenomenal views of the Matterhorn more than make up for it.

Where Milan and Turin’s weekenders shop and schuss, this little spa town has a big name in Italian skiing. The lively centre’s boutiques, restaurants and bars are brimming with character – all under the eye of the mighty Mont Blanc, which looms overhead. But the skiing seems worlds away from the bustle. Beginners and intermediates are best served in the groomed department, though that’s not to say advanced skiers are left at a loose end. Far from it: Courmayeur has some of the finest off piste in the Alps. Skyway Monte Bianco’s your carriage across the border for even more terrain. If you only ski the French side once, it has to be the Vallee Blanche leading into Chamonix. A bucket-list ski for any expert, it’s 20km long, with 2700m of vertical and absolutely unparalleled powder.

With a huge international following for its louder après and cheaper prices, Canazei looks set to rule the Fassa Valley for many years to come. This is the land the Paradis bar calls home, where DJ’s and grappa shots see some of the wildest parties in the Dolomites. But if you’re more spa than bar, there’ll be no twiddling your thumbs: The Eghes Centre have dreamed up every facility and treatment possible. There’s a reason the après and wellness scenes are so good here - after skiing pistes like these, you’ll need to kick back one way or another. The Fassa/Carezza pass unlocks a 230km mix of corduroy that brings you up close and personal with craggy Dolomite peaks. And while that’s often enough for all levels to ski in a week, the Superski pass unlocks over five times as much including the iconic Sella Ronda.

La Thuile has the best of both worlds: Two different bases and two different countries to ski… First there’s the old mining town in all its traditional glory, then there’s purpose built Planibel, plonked right next to the ski lifts for speedy access to the slopes. The ski area – Espace San Bernardo – crams in all types of terrain over the Italian and French Alps. And you’ll find 150km of groomers from rolling cruisers to blood-curdling steeps from the World Cup circuit. There’s tons beyond the piste markers too, with fabulous off piste between the trees in La Suches and an awesome route down the fearsome Rutor glacier with the help of a helicopter. That’s a whole lot of skiing crammed into one fabulous week on the mountains.

No longer the snowy Benidorm the lads once flocked to, Sauze welcomes all sorts of snow lovers these days. If you’re bringing sprogs, short transfer times and cheap (but bellissimo) pizzas keep the whole clan happy. Anyone looking for après will also have a hoot, with the likes of Paddy McGinty’s throwing big parties every evening. The Milky Way ski area’s a massive people pleaser too, linking to Sestriere, Claviere and even France’s Montgenevre with 400km of slopes: Speedsters can tackle Olympic legends like the women’s downhill run (the 2006 games were hosted here), while beginners master the basics at Sportina (ski lessons tend to cost a fraction of what you’d pay in France). But it’s intermediates who can really make the most of the area, with red runs galore from every peak letting you ski until the cows come home.

With class and charisma, Madonna di Campiglio makes for a fabulous week on the snow. They say the groomers here are the nation’s best manicured, and we’re inclined to agree. Lifts from the town whisk you straight up, where 150km of slopes link over to Folgarida, Marilleva and Pinzolo. The longest, Dolomitica, is a must for experts, with a 70% gradient over 5.75km. As is the Canalone Miramonti – a World Cup run that’s floodlit for night-time action. Freestylers could spend all week in the Ursus Snow Park, which is often rated one of the best in the Alps. There’s so much to do in town (cafes, shops, spas and even a ballroom) that some come here without touching a piste at all – making those glorious groomers yours to devour.

This is a list of the top ten best ski resorts in Italy.

The best ski resorts in Italy come in all types and some would say that the top ski resorts in Italy are among the best ski resorts globally... At SNO we love Italian ski resorts!

The best Italian ski resorts are truly superlative.

To find out more about the greatest places to ski worldwide, have a look at our global Top Ten which lists the best all-round resorts across Europe, North America and beyond.


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