A ski safari in the Dolomites is thrilling in and of itself. Add in fashion and gastronomic elements specifically curated by a New York Times travel reporter who has covered the region extensively, and you’ve got a crazy, cool, once-in-a-lifetime Italian ski jaunt. On your ski safari, you’ll enjoy different ski areas featuring kilometers of prepared pistes (all on one ski pass!) that will lead you to discover the beauty of the Dolomites which emerged from primordial marine expanses molded by the glaciers during the ice age. On the tour, you will explore Alta Badia, Val di Fassa and Cortina d’Ampezzo, known for their Ladin culture and cuisine.
Amy Tara Koch is an author and journalist who has the unique pleasure of traveling the world for her job.
She contributes to The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Travel + Leisure, Ski Magazine, Vogue, Food & Wine, Conde Nast Traveler and Bon Appetit.
Trips kick off at a luxury hotel where you will collect ski rentals and hit the spa to sweat off jet lag.
Each day, you’ll ski a different portion of the Dolomiti Superski (12 valleys with approximately 800 miles of terrain) with a guide, through primordial peaks and valleys and enjoy a well-deserved lunch (think fragrant pine nut and gorgonzola stuffed gnocchi and beef tagliata wrapped in speck) at a chic alpine sun deck.
Then, as the sun dips behind the mountains, you’ll arrive by ski at your rifugio in time for aperitivo. The star of the rifugio experience is dinner. These cozy, family-run establishments are celebrated for cuisine that blends robust South Tyrol flavors with the elegance of northern Italy.
Throughout the trip, there will be grappa sampling (Rifugios blend their own elixirs with locally foraged juniper, pine, fir), expert-led tastings of Veneto and Alto Adige wines , and in-the-kitchen experiences with high profile chefs. Fashion enthusiasts may want to bring an extra duffel bag.
ATK will lead afternoon shopping excursions to scoop up leather (oh, the shearling-lined boots!) and cashmere in Cortina and super stylish niche ski garb in Corvara.
Carved in wood and true to the territory, Hotel de Len celebrates nature and tells the tale of the land through its decor.
Surrounded by the Costabella chain and with breathtaking views of the Pale di San Martino and Col Margherita, Fuciade Rifugio has the ideal location.
Immersed in nature, the only luxury Gourmet Hotel in the heart of the Dolomites, with 3 restaurants, a cheese room and chocolate room.
A Dolomite Mountains duffel bag (one 90 liter duffel bag for every two people) will be provided. You can pack the belongings you require for the nights in rifugios.
Arrive in Cortina d'Ampezzo Private group transfer from Venice airport to Cortina (2-hour drive).
Cortina d’Ampezzo is a charming Alpine resort town surrounded by stunning peaks, uniquely sheltered from the cold winds of the north, giving it a pleasantly mild climate that tourists can enjoy year-round. Host to the 1956 Winter Olympics, Cortina enjoys a reputation for great skiing in winter, and in the summer attracts hikers and climbers who challenge the rocky faces of the nearby mountains. This chic Alpine town also caters to the high-society crowd, offering many year-round social activities, shopping, and fine dining.
Aperitif and briefing at the hotel. You will also receive a duffel bag to be packed with your belongings for the two nights spent at rifugios. Dinner at the restaurant of the hotel.
Cortina d'Ampezzo Ski Area: Tofane Begin your ski day in the Tofane area. 30 pistes (6 black runs, 12 red runs, 13 blue runs and 6 green runs) with a total of 47km / 29,2 miles. From the beginners’ slopes of the lower area you can quickly reach the technically very demanding pistes such as the Canalone and the famous Schuss. The Freccia nel Cielo cable car takes you up to a height of 2,500m / 8,202' to the Ra Valles area. If you take the Skitour Olympia route, you can venture onto the unforgettable peaks of the 1956 Olympic races, which today host the Women’s Skiing World Cup. There are 15 mountain refuges and restaurants in the area. Only for expert skiers, the black run Vertigine Bianca. For its beauty and steepness, it’s one of the two slopes in Cortina which are not beaten by the snowmobiles given the possibility for skiers to engage in fresh snow on an eco-friendly and zero impact run. In the afternoon, time for shopping and enjoying the SPA of the hotel. Dinner at San Brite: https://www.sanbrite.it/home
Mount Lagazuoi and Cinque Torri
Today you will enjoy the slopes at Mount Lagazuoi and Cinque Torri (Five Towers) area, whose characteristic profile isn't comprised of just 5 towers, but by a mass of secondary boulders, fractured towers and peaks sprinkled liberally across the entire area. These peaks are located to the west of Cortina on a grassy hillock just above the tree line at circa 2,200m / 7,218'. In the afternoon, ski in the area of Cinque Torri. Thanks to their infinite variety of shapes and sizes, the marvellous Cinque Torri ideally represent the entire Dolomites. The ski slopes of the Lagazuoi 5 Torri Giau area are always perfect, thanks to the favourable exposure and to the use of artificial snow making-facilities when necessary. The slopes are easy or moderate, and all are immensely satisfying. Aperitif before dinner.
Civetta and Passo San Pellegrino Ski Areas
In the morning take a private transfer to the Civetta ski area. Surrounded by plenty of uncontaminated views and majestic peaks, the valleys of Alleghe, Selva di Cadore, Zoldo, and Palafavera of Monte Civetta are rich in history and tradition. This area became famous during the 19th century, during the final century of the Venetian Doges, when the first winter guests discovered the imposing beauty and timeless charm of Monte Civetta and in particular Monte Pelmo – known as “God’s Throne.” On the slopes of these two giants surrounded by the Sella Group, the Tofane Massifs and the imposing Marmolada, you will find the largest ski district in the Veneto region. The Ski Civetta area offers a wide range of slopes and attracts skiers of all levels, for a total of 80km / 49,7 miles and 23 lifts.
In the afternoon, for the second part of your day, take a private transfer to Falcade and ski the area of Passo San Pellegrino: more than 60 kilometers (37 miles) of slopes spread out at altitudes between 1,918 and 2,513 meters (6,293-8,245'), all equipped with 26 cutting edge lift systems.
At the end of your skiing day, a snow-cat will pick you up from the main road and take you to your rifugio (1,980m / 6,496') for the night. Set in a magnificent group of isolated old huts, this rifugio is immersed in the complete silence of a wide valley with a view of the Pale di San Martino peaks. Get ready to taste delicious dishes at the Rifugio’s renowned and traditional restaurant, mentioned in several culinary guides, appreciated not only for the quality of the food, but also for its warmth and welcoming hospitality.
Aperitif and cheese tasting, followed by dinner at the wine cellar of the rifugio.
Ski in the Val di Fassa – Alta Badia Areas
The time has come to ski a portion of the Sellaronda circuit, one of the most spectacular circuits of the world, circumnavigating the Sella Massif. Considered somewhat of a “merry-go-round” for intermediate level skiers, this unique circular connection of lifts and runs was once the only way the ancient inhabitants of the Ladin villages could maintain a connection with each other. Nowadays it’s a modern day carousel that connects four Dolomite passes, four Ladin valleys (Val Gardena, Alta Badia, Val di Fassa, and Livinallongo), and three districts – you’ll have the opportunity to see more of the Dolomites in one day than many see on an entire trip! Although the Sellaronda is a relatively short tour that can be easily done in one day, with a length of just under 40 kilometers (25 miles), 26 of which are ski slopes (16 miles), but requiring approximately 2 hours of ski lift travel time and high elevations, you will begin the tour in the morning to ensure ample time for completion before lift service closes for the day.
Located in a large valley surrounded all around by the gorgeous peaks of the Dolomites, Alta Badia is truly the “heart of the Dolomites.” Geographically in the South Tyrol (Südtirol), this area was part of Austria prior to the First World War. Here you’ll find unique mountain scenery with villages rich in natural beauties and ancient traditions, witness the simple everyday life of the local people (the “Ladini”), as well as the customs and traditions of the ancient Ladin culture. In the afternoon check-in into your Hotel followed by dinner at the hotel’s restaurant.
Dinner at the 1-star Michelin restaurant "Stüa de Michil" at the 5-star Hotel La Perla.
Kronplatz/Plan de Corones Ski Area
Kronplatz is a popular destination for skiers, with its majestic 2,275-meter (7,464') peak standing out from the surrounding mountains. On the top of a wooded area, along the south side of the Pusteria Valley, it offers a 360-degree panorama of the entire surroundings. In fact, the view from Kronplatz is one of the most beautiful in the Alps, and offers vistas across all points of the compass: from Austria’s Lienz Dolomites to the east, to Italy and Switzerland’s Ortler Group to the west, from the Dolomite’s Marmolada Massif to the south, and across the Puster Valley to the Zillertal Alps in the north. With 105 kilometers (65 miles) of pistes and more than 30 modern lifts, its slopes will take you towards Riscone (Brunico), San Vigilio di Marebbe, Valdaora, and Perca.
In addition to the vistas, you can admire the Concordial 2000 Peace Bell located at the top of Kronplatz. The bell was cast by the foundry Oberascher in Salzburg and installed in 2003. The inscription translates ‘God gives peace to the people,’ and the bell can be heard every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 12 o’clock. At the Concordial Bell there is a panoramic relief that shows the names of the peaks which make this area one of the most breath-taking in the whole world.
Private transfer to Piccolino and then the cable car “Piz de Plaies” to the Kronplatz /Plan de Corones ski resort.
Lunch at Norbert Niederkofler's restaurant "AlpiNN", 3-star Michelin chef of the 5-star Hotel St. Hubertus.
Wine tasting at the Hotel Ciasa Salares, followed by fondue dinner at their Cocoon restaurant at the wine cellar.
Breakfast and private group transfer to Venice airport
Number of participants: Minimum: 2 people; Maximum: 10 people
6 Nights, 7 Days in the Dolomites