5 ski resorts reachable by train for an eco-friendly, stress-free holiday.
Italy offers fantastic landscapes and many locations for beautiful mountain holidays in the snow. Without a doubt, when we talk about ski resorts, the means of transport we immediately think of is the car, but have you ever thought of going skiing by train? Several Italian ski resorts have taken advantage of their location along the international lines to France, Switzerland and Austria. Others improved their accessibility by taking advantage of local train lines, improving connections with national lines and even building new stations dedicated to ski resorts. We take you to 5 eco-friendly ski resorts, perfect for skiers and snow lovers who want to enjoy the journey while reading a good book or admiring the view from the window!
5. Bardonecchia – region Piedmont
Bardonecchia, a popular resort for tourists and skiers, is located in Val di Susa, one of the most important winter sports centres in Italy. The railway station, located in the centre of town, is the last stop on the international Turin-Lyon line. A convenient free shuttle bus takes you to the ski slopes from the village centre. There are 2 ski areas, Colomion-Les Arnauds-Melezet and Jafferau, with 100 km of alpine ski slopes, served by 23 ski lifts. The Colomion-Les Arnauds-Melezet ski area is the largest and has several ski-connected hamlets. Jafferau, on the other hand, is smaller but offers slopes at a higher average altitude (2800 m). The pistes are laid out in the woods, starting from Campo Smith at 1330 metres and reaching the Vallon Cros area at 2400 metres, where there is a beautiful black run. There are also 4 green runs for children, a snowpark for snowboarders, sometimes open at night, and a 1200m long Olympic half-pipe, divided into beginner and medium areas. In 2006, Bardonecchia was the venue for the Olympic snowboarding competitions of the Winter Olympics, Turin 2006.
As well as the ski slopes, Bardonecchia offers many alternative leisure activities. Borgo Vecchio and Borgo Nuovo are the town's two main villages. Walking through Borgo Vecchio, you will come across the ancient church of Sant'Ippolito, around which the old town centre is gathered. Not far from here, you can visit the Tur d'Amun, one of the most significant early medieval archaeological complexes in the Susa Valley. On the other hand, Borgo Nuovo is the centre of tourist life, with shops, boutiques, and restaurants. Among the cultural attractions to be visited, we also mention the Bramafam fort. This ancient castle that defended the town is now a museum. For those who love the woods, there are 9 snowshoeing routes, all signposted. For food lovers, we recommend visiting a local mountain pasture and a taste of the local cheeses.
4. Val di Sole – region Trentino Alto Adige
Val di Sole can be reached from Trento via the Trento-Malè-Mezzana railway (Dolomiti Express). Marilleva 900 and Daolasa stations are integrated with the ski lifts leading to the Folgarida and Marrileva ski slopes. Marilleva consists of Marilleva 900 and Marilleva 1400. From Marilleva 900, a cable car takes you to Marilleva 1400. Once you arrive in Daolasa, you can directly access the 8-person cable car that takes you to an altitude of 2040 m! In just 12 minutes, you can reach the slopes from Val Mastellina, halfway between Mount Vigo and Mount Spolverino, to the centre of the Folgarida and Marilleva ski area. The Dolomiti Express is a train with unforgettable views, and it's worth it! If at the time of issuing your ski pass you present a return ticket for Marilleva 900 or Daolasa, the cost of the ticket will be discounted on the price of the daily ski pass, valid for the Folgarida Marilleva ski area.
The Folgarida and Marilleva ski area offers 25 lifts and 36 ski runs of different levels and is ideal for alpine skiing and snowboarding/freestyle enthusiasts. In addition, the ski area is also connected to Madonna di Campiglio and Pinzolo for a total of 150km of slopes! After skiing in Val di Sole, you will be spoilt for choice: ice-skating, snowshoeing, horse-drawn sleigh rides, spas, beauty farms and places to spend a pleasant evening with friends.
3. Plan de Corones/Kronplatz – region Trentino Alto Adige
Plan de Corones, located in the northernmost province of Italy, stretches from Val Pusteria in the north to Val Badia in the south and fascinates with its endless breathtaking landscapes. It is a ski area with modern, comfortable facilities and 119 km of pistes of varying difficulty, including 5 black runs and 4 night runs. From the Perca train station, located on the Fortezza-San Candido line, it is possible to go directly into the Ried cable car cabin to Plan de Corones. Furthermore, from December 2014, with the Ski Pustertal Express, from Plan de Corones in just 30 minutes, you can also reach the 3 Cime/3 Zinnen Dolomites ski area, part of the Unesco World Heritage, for a total of 200 km of slopes! At Plan de Corones, you can also enjoy sledging on the "Korer" and "Cianross" slopes. If you want to admire the spectacular Dolomites from above, you can try paragliding! The Plan de Corones area boasts a wide range of ice skating rinks, including natural ones. You will find an ice-skating rink in every municipality in the area. There are natural beauty, sports activities, and exciting places, such as Brunico, Monguelfo and many other small villages.
2. Limone - region Piedmont
Limone, also known as the pearl of the Maritime Alps, is located in Cuneo's province. Thanks to the Cuneo-Ventimiglia railway line was one of the first ski resorts in the Alps at the beginning of the 20th century. Once you arrive at your destination by train, outside the station, you can use the free electric shuttle service or hop on the ski shuttle. In a few minutes, you will be at the ski lifts of the Riserva Bianca ski area. Travelling by train is advantageous because by presenting your train ticket you will have a discount on the price of the daily ski pass. Riserva Bianca offers 41 ski slopes for a total of 80 km, a snow park with facilities for young and old, a Nordic skiing loop, and off-piste descents reserved for experienced skiers with appropriate equipment. In addition to skiing, there is a wide choice of alternative activities: snowshoeing, ice skating, snowmobile rides, and more daring ice climbing and snowkiting! Limone's historic centre offers all kinds of shops, restaurants, cafés and meeting places. In less than 1 hour by train or car, you can reach the Côte d'Azur and the Ligurian Riviera. In the surrounding area, there are many other exciting places to discover: Cuneo, the small towns of the Vermenagna and Roya valleys and then the Langhe, the UNESCO World Heritage hills, with their excellent wines!
1. Pila - region Val D'aosta
Pila, a ski resort close to the city of Aosta, offers splendid views of the prominent Aosta Valley peaks, from Monte Rosa to Monte Bianco. Once you arrive at the Aosta station, just a few metres away, you will find a modern cable car to take you to Pila. You will get to an altitude of 1800 metres in 18 minutes. The ski area is vast, with 70 km of pistes that wind from 1800 m to 2750 m. In addition to the alpine ski slopes, at an altitude of 2700m, the Platta De Grevon track is dedicated to free-riders. At 2200m, surrounded by woods, there is the well-equipped AREAEFFE snowpark, a reference point for snowboarders and freestyle skiers. Finally, the Fun Park Chacard for adults and children with snow tubing, bobsleigh and sledge run. Alternative activities include organised snowshoe outings and hot air balloon flights. If you want to take care of yourself, you can spend some time in a wellness centre or spa, which several hotels in Pila have! Pila is located in a strategic position to discover the best of the Aosta Valley. In addition to the marvellous mountains, you can easily reach the city of Aosta, the "Rome of the Alps". Aosta surprises with its ancient history readable in its monuments such as the perfectly preserved walls, the monumental complex of Sant'Orso, the cathedral and the small churches scattered among the period houses.