On January 15th it's going to be celebrated the World Snow Day. What about a holiday? Here are some of our ideas!
World Snow Day: what is it and when's celebrated
World Snow Day is celebrated on the third Sunday in January, an event that promotes sport, respect for the environment and protection of the natural heritage in relation to the mountain landscape.
World Snow Day, also sponsored by the International Ski Federation, aims to promote skiing and other winter sports by making people closer to discover the activities to be practiced on the snow. The goal, therefore, is to bring these recreational activities back to a major role especially among the new generations, teaching children to take care of the environment.
Furthermore, World Snow Day aims to enhance the benefits that winter sports practiced on the snow manifest on our body. Contact with snow is a natural panacea especially for psychophysical wellness, in fact snow-covered landscapes gives a sense of peace and tranquility and are ideal to reduce stress. Activities on the snow help to produce endorphins and improve mood, as well as offering all the advantages relating to the quality of the air to breathe at high altitude. Then, if we add to all of this some spectacular locations and breathtaking views, it is perfection.
In 2023 World Snow Day is celebrated on Sunday January 15th: a perfect opportunity to travel and discover beautiful places in Italy where you can admire wonderful whitewashed landscapes and have fun skiing and practising many other snow-related activities.
Italy, with its immense heritage, boasts unique jewels set in the heart of the mountains between the Alps and the Apennines, perfect places to spend World Snow Day with family or friends. Are you curious to find out which ones? Here are our proposals!
13. Where to spend the World Snow Day: Terminillo, Lazio
At an altitude of between 1,506 and 1,868 metres, the Terminillo ski area - which lies in the province of Rieti - is one of the main places of interest to spend the World Snow Day. Mount Terminillo, a historic ski area, is also known as the "mountain of Rome" due to its short distance from the capital. In fact, as it is only 100 km away, many Romans opt for this ski area.
The district, which stretches between the peaks of Terminilluccio and Terminilletto, offers around 30 km of slopes, 10 of which are for alpine skiing and 4 transport facilities. The historic cable car from the 1930s connects the small village of Pian de' Valli with Terminilluccio. From Terminilluccio, skiers can use a chairlift to reach Terminilletto, which boasts the most technical pistes in the entire area.
At the Campo Stella ski resort, in the municipality of Leonessa, there is a 5 km long slope with a 600-metre difference in altitude. It is the longest in central Italy. Another ski resort in the province of Rieti is Selvarotonda di Cittareale, on the slopes of Monte San Venanzio.
12. Ovindoli, Abruzzo
Ovindoli is a small village in L'Aquila's province in the Abruzzo region, a perfect place to celebrate the World Snow Day. Less than 2 km from the town is the main ski resort of Ovindoli-Monte Magnola (1450-2222 metres above sea level).
Ovindoli offers many opportunities to practice winter sports and, together with the resorts of Campo Felice and Campo Imperatore, forms the Tre Nevi ski area. It is located in the Sirente-Velino Regional Park, in the heart of the Abruzzo Apennines.
Ski slopes at different altitudes and of varying degrees of difficulty make it possible to practice the activity at all levels. Ski-lifts, including gondolas, equipped slopes, and artificial snow systems, make the district a reference point for lovers of skiing and winter sports in general.
11. Roccaraso, Abruzzo
Once an agricultural and pastoral village, Roccaraso is now the main ski resort in central and southern Italy.
The mountains of Roccaraso, in the province of L'Aquila, form a mountain range in the Abruzzo Apennines - one of the best landscapes to spend the World Snow Day. The town lies between Maiella Park and the Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park.
The area's natural heritage is a perennial attraction, both in summer and winter, for lovers of mountains, skiing and winter sports in general. Its 130 km of pistes link the resorts of Rivisondoli, Pescocostanzo and Pescasseroli. Roccaraso has nothing to envy the best-equipped ski resorts in northern Italy. In addition to alpine skiing, it is possible to practice cross-country skiing, snowkiting and heli-skiing.
10. Cervinia, Valle d'Aosta
Known simply as Cervinia, this historic Aosta Valley ski resort should be referred to by its full name of Breuil-Cervinia.
The resort is one of the largest in the Alps and covers three valleys, straddling Italy and Switzerland, and it's surely one of the most interesting locations to visit on World Snow Day. Its slopes of varying difficulty range from the 1,524 metres of Val di Valtournenche to the 3,408 metres of Plateau Rosa, reaching almost 4,000 metres with Piccolo Cervino's peak.
From the simplest to the most demanding routes, it is possible to practice alpine skiing at all levels. An ideal destination for cross-country skiers, fun is guaranteed. In addition, snowboarders and freestyle skiers have at their disposal a freestyle area over 400 metres long and 100 metres wide. Winter sports include snow biking, kite surfing, snowmobiling and heli-skiing. With over 350 km of pistes framed by striking mountains, Breuil-Cervinia is one of Italy's largest and most spectacular ski areas.
9. Alagna Valsesia, Piemonte
Alagna Valsesia, in the province of Vercelli, lies on the slopes of the southern flank of Monte Rosa, the second-highest peak in the Alps. Alagna is part of a great ski area, well equipped and suitable for all needs.
Alpine skiers have 9 pistes with 7 lifts at their disposal. What makes this resort special is that it is the "kingdom" of off-piste skiing, perfect for the World Snow Day. From the Indren glacier (at an altitude of 3,260 metres), you can enjoy the enchanting view of the Sesia River and Gressoney.
When the weather is good, on clear days, you can even see the lakes of the Po Valley and the inner chain of the Alps. Nature characterises the territory as rugged and wild as it is evocative.
8. Canazei, Trentino-Alto Adige
An enchanting resort in the Val di Fassa, Canazei is a gem of the Dolomites to spend an unforgettable World Snow Day. It offers splendid ski slopes and breathtaking views, as does the entire Trentino-Alto Adige region.
At an altitude of 1,450 metres, it is a reference point for skiers of all ages and levels. The ski area, divided into two zones (Col Rodella and Belvedere), is connected to the Sellaronda ski area.
As you can easily guess, the Belvedere is an unparalleled vantage point. The municipality of Canazei is home to the Alba di Canazei ski resort with its famous Ciampac ski area, which is linked to the Buffaure-Pozza di Fassa resort. In addition, the pearl of the Val di Fassa is part of the Sellaronda Skimarathon, a famous night alpine ski race in pairs over a 42 km course.
7. Ponte di Legno, Lombardia
In Alta Val Camonica, Ponte di Legno is a charming and ancient village at an altitude of 1200 metres in the province of Brescia, we suggest you to visit it on World Snow Day. It is one of the leading resorts in Lombardy.
You can ski between 1250 and 2150 metres above sea level, surrounded by lush coniferous forests. The pole is modern and well equipped with chairlifts, including a four-seater and two ski lifts. Night skiing on the slope in Valbione is an absolute must. For cross-country skiers, along the Narcanello stream, there is the Centro Fondo Valsozzine (also in Ponte di Legno).
Three interconnected loops offer 2.5 km for beginners, 3 km for intermediates and 5 km for experts. A further 30 km in the cross-country ski centre in Vermiglio completes a wide and varied offer for every type of requirement. Ponte di Legno is one of the three ski resorts in the Val di Sole-Brenta district.
6. Ortisei, Trentino-Alto Adige
The small village of Ortisei in Val Gardena, together with Santa Cristina and Selva, is one of the pearls of South Tyrol.
Nestled in the mountains, it has been an ideal destination for skiers and hikers since the second half of the 19th century, when expert mountaineers discovered its charm and breathtaking views. Why not visiting this beauty on World Snow Day?
Nowadays, Ortisei is a paradise for lovers of all winter sports. There are pistes of all difficulties and the possibility of downhill or cross-country skiing. Moreover, a fun toboggan run suitable for both adults and children is the absolute icing on the cake.
5. Madonna di Campiglio, Trentino-Alto Adige
In the province of Trento, in Trentino-Alto Adige, Madonna di Campiglio is one of the most famous ski resorts on the Italian scene and it couldn't be missing as one of our suggestions on World Snow Day. A historic destination that stands out for its unrivalled elegance, it is always in vogue and trendy thanks to its ability to renew itself and keep up with the times.
At an altitude of 1550 metres, it lies in the basin between the Brenta Dolomites and the Adamello and Presanella glaciers. It is located in a spectacular setting, to say the least, and is undoubtedly one of the best resorts in the entire Alpine arc. There are numerous pistes, up to an altitude of 2600 metres, which are suitable for all levels for several kilometres.
The Ski Area has no less than 57 lifts and 150 km of slopes, with a capacity of over 31,000 people per hour. There are also 40 km of cross-country skiing trails and a ski-to-ski connection with Pinzolo and Folgarida-Marilleva.
Madonna di Campiglio, however, is not just about life in society: thanks to its spectacular natural setting, it allows you to plunge into an evocative context made up of valleys, lakes, streams and mountain huts. There is nothing better for a moment of peace.
4. Courmayeur, Valle d'Aosta
Courmayeur is one of Italy's most famous winter resorts. It lies between the slopes of Val Veny and the Chécrouit plateau, at the foot of what is considered the sovereign of the Alps: Mont Blanc.
At an altitude of 1,224 metres, it is the last Italian municipality in the Valle d'Aosta region before arriving in France. It shares a border with Chamonix, sharing the Mont Blanc massif. The Vallée Blanche descent offers a spectacular off-piste itinerary. It starts at Punta Helbronner and winds its way over 20 km through the impressive Mer de Glace glacier to finally reach Chamonix.
The rings in Val Ferret are ideal for cross-country skiing enthusiasts. Courmayeur allows you to practice any winter sport and this makes this location perfect on World Snow Day.
Skiing is declined in every possible and imaginable form. Moreover, we have a wide range of activities that do not disappoint even the most demanding visitors: pleasant walks with snowshoes on their feet, climbing on icefalls, dog sledging, heliskiing, skating, hockey and, last but not least, golf on the snow.
3. Livigno, Lombardia
In the heart of the Alps, Livigno lies in Alta Valtellina, in the province of Sondrio. It is one of the most important ski resorts in the north and in Lombardy.
Skiing and winter sports enthusiasts will have a unique and unforgettable experience thanks to all the possibilities on offer. Alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, freestyle, equipped slopes for all levels, ski lifts, as well as lots of snow and a valley always kissed by the sun.
Sport, pure air and nature are ideal for everyone in a context of peace and pure relaxation, perfect for World Snow Day. Families with children, young and old: you will never be disappointed.
2. Sestriere, Piemonte
In the area that stretches over the vast hill between Val Chisone and Val Susa, in Piedmont, lies the ski resort of Sestriere.
The birth of this municipality, the highest in Italy with its 2035 metres, is due to the Agnelli family. They built a centre of great worldliness from nothing thanks to all the accommodation facilities and relative installations.
Home to the Alpine Ski World Cup competitions, the Sestriere ski resort boasts a wide range of tourist and accommodation facilities, on point for the World Snow Day.
In addition to the 5 black runs for 20 km, there are 10 (42 km) suitable for beginners. For intermediate skiers, there are 20 pistes for 102 km. In all, we are talking about 164 km of skiable slopes, which, added to the other resorts in the Vialattea district, are 400 km. In addition to Sestriere, this area includes Sansicario, Sauze d'Oulx, Claviere, Cesana Torinese and Pragelato.
From heli-skiing to night skiing, you will have endless possibilities to do what you like: snowmobiling, snowshoeing, dog sledging and much more. Finally, we should mention the wellness centres, the golf course, the cinema, clubs and discos for an all-around fun holiday.
1. Cortina d'Ampezzo, Veneto
Cortina d'Ampezzo can be considered the Queen of the Dolomites with its thousand-year history and deep-rooted tourist tradition.
Located in the province of Belluno, in the Veneto region, the town has witnessed numerous historical events, including the First World War. A tourist centre of excellence, extremely interesting on World Snow Day, Cortina is the preferred location for various international sporting events: the Women's Alpine Skiing World Cup, Nordic skiing events, the Snowboarding World Cup, the Freeride World Cup and much more.
The prestigious role of the pearl of the Dolomites was sealed by the 1956 Olympic Games, broadcast for the first time on TV in Italy. In 2026, 70 years later, Cortina will host the 25th edition of the Winter Olympics Games in this wake.
Nature and wellness are the perfect combinations for those who opt for a relaxing holiday in the snow. Skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, mountaineering, freeriding, skating, curling, and Husky sledging are just some of the available activities. Here, nothing is left to chance. At the end of a busy day of snow sports, you can immerse yourself in the local culture. None of the five senses can be left out between social life, entertainment, and excellent food and wine!
I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, «Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again».