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Avant Ski's Complete Guide To Dolomites Skiing

Updated: Jul 9

On the top of the mountin skiing in dolomites

The Dolomites: A Winter Wonderland

The Dolomites are more than just a mountain range in Italy; they are a captivating winter destination boasting multiple ski areas and charming towns offering ski-in, ski-out convenience. This region seamlessly blends Italian, German, and French influences.

Exploring the Dolomites is a journey through a UNESCO World Heritage site that connects various locations amidst the stunning peaks of the Italian Alps. For enthusiasts of skiing, gastronomy, and diverse cultures, the Dolomites is a destination not to be overlooked.

Our Complete Guide to Skiing in the Dolomites

Dolomites Ski Season

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Where Are The Dolomites?

Map pf provinces with dolomites

The Dolomites are located in northeastern Italy and span several provinces, including Belluno, Trento, Verona, Udine, Pordenone, and Bolzano.

Dolomites Geography

Known for their towering vertical walls, sheer cliffs, and extensive valleys, the Dolomites feature numerous peaks reaching heights exceeding 3,000 meters (9,852 feet). Among these peaks are some of the tallest in the European Alps, including Marmolada (3,244 meters/10,642 feet) and Tofana di Mezzo (3,152 meters/10,341 feet).

Dolomites Snow

Despite not receiving as much snow as some other Alps, the Dolomites still enjoy plenty of powder days. Mountain temperatures tend to be milder, and the drier environment promotes powdery snow. The Dolomiti Superski area typically receives an average annual snowfall of 219 cm (7 feet). The highest resort, Arabba/Marmolada averages 400 cm (13 feet) of average annual snowfall. Meanwhile, nearly all of the slopes at Dolomiti Superski are equipped with state-of-the-art snowmaking equipment.

Dolomites Ski Season


The ski season in the Dolomites typically begins in late November or early December, depending on snow conditions, and extends through April. The peak season is usually between late December and February. During this period, the region is blanketed in a thick layer of snow, creating ideal conditions for downhill and cross-country skiing.

Dolomites Ski Resorts

There are two primary regions for skiing in the Dolomites: the Dolomiti Superski Region and the Skirama Dolomiti Ski Region.

Not all areas of the Dolomites are suitable for skiing. Some areas, such as the Adamello-Brento Nature Park and Pale di San Martino, are great for hiking or taking in mesmerizing views of the peaks. The ski resorts in the Dolomites feature some of the best lift infrastructure around. You might even say that they are superior to the lifts stateside, but for more on that, check our Top Lifts in the East and West of the U.S.

The Dolomiti Superski Region

The Dolomites Superski region (Dolomiti Superski Area) is more of a skiing conglomerate than a ski resort. It combines endless slopes of all difficulties and terrain, encompassing 12 main resorts. The Dolomites Superski region is like something out of a fairytale: interconnected ski resorts and towns that offer quintessential European charm with intense skiing. Below are highlights from the 12 resorts in the Dolomites Superski Region.

The IKON Pass includes 7-days of access to the 12 major resorts of Dolomites Superski.

Map of Dolomiti Ski Resort

How Dolomiti Superski Works

A significant portion of the Dolomiti Superski area is interconnected, allowing skiers and snowboarders to traverse between multiple ski resorts using a vast network of slopes and lifts. However, it’s important to note that while many of the ski areas within Dolomiti Superski are directly connected, not all of them are.

The Sella Ronda

The Sella Ronda is one of the most famous ski circuits in the world. This 40km (25 mile) route encircles the Sella Mountain range, connecting the four valleys of Val Gardena, Alta Badia, Val di Fassa, and Arabba. This circuit allows skiers to experience multiple ski areas in a single day without taking off their skis. Arabba is home to the Arabba Ski Resort, the Marmalada, which is the highest mountain in the Dolomites. Val Gardena is famous for hosting one of the most complex World Cup skiing races. Corvara in Alta Badia is a charming alpine village with fine dining and is a key access point for the Sella Ronda. Skiers are able to access the Sella Ronda from any of the interconnected villages. The Sella Ronda can easily be completed within a day. However, many travelers like to explore the area over the course of a week or more, with many stops along the way. Avant Ski is here to plan your highly customized tour of the Sella Ronda.

sella ronda map
Courtesy of Dolomiti Superski.

The Dolomites Ski Safari

Experience the unparalleled diversity of the Dolomites with a bespoke Ski Safari, designed to immerse you in the best of this alpine region, including the renowned Sella Ronda. Leveraging our extensive network of experienced guides, premium lodging, and traditional Rifugio partners, we tailor a Ski Safari that meets your exact desires and skiing abilities.

A Ski Safari with us is a fully lift-serviced adventure, offering the flexibility to glide down perfectly groomed pistes or venture into off-piste terrain. We partner with professional guides who will accompany you across multiple ski areas and resorts. Each day, you’ll move seamlessly from one stunning location to the next, exploring diverse regions and discovering new slopes.

Our guides will meticulously handle the logistics, ensuring your equipment and luggage seamlessly transfer amongst your accommodations. Whether you desire a specific type of pasta that is exclusive to a particular mountain hut, steep, challenging terrain, or breathtaking views, we have you covered. Start crafting your Dolomites Adventure.

Top Dolomiti Superski Resorts

Cortina d'Ampezzo Ski Region (Cortina Ski Resort)

Often referred to as the heart of the Dolomites, or the Queen of the Dolomites, Cortina d'Ampezzo is a town (commonly referred to as Cortina Ski Resort or Cortina) and ski region that hosts multiple ski areas in the Dolomites Superski area. Cortina is only about 2 hours from Venice and an excellent starting point for any visit to the Dolomites.

Looking at the dolomites from above

Tofane, Cinque Torri, Lagauzuoi, and Faloria-Cristallo Ski Areas

Tofane, Cinque Torri, Lagauzuoi-5 Torri, and Faloria-Cristallo are the main ski areas in the Cortina 'Ampezzo area of Dolomiti Superski. The mountains surrounding Cortina are some of the highest and most dramatic in the region. Tofana is famous for hosting World Cup Races and features the legendary Olympia delle Tofane and Vertigine slopes. Cinque Torri is named after the iconic "five towers" rock formations that are visible here. The terrain is mostly wide and easy for those just starting out. Faloria-Cristallo is easily accessible from town via the Faloria Cable Car from the town center. The slopes here are a mix of black and red and are great for intermediates and more advanced skiers.

These ski areas, accessible from Cortina, are all interconnected. We partner with guides to seamlessly lead you from one area to the next. For those looking for a unique and authentic experience, consider staying at Rifugios overnight. The Dolomites are best experienced with guides and we can organize all!

Dolomiti Superski Hotels: Cortina d’Ampezzo

The Rosapetra Spa Resort and Faloria Mountain Spa Resort stand out with their state-of-the-art spa facilities, offering guests a rejuvenating retreat amidst breathtaking mountain vistas. Roseapetra offers a modern approach with all-wood furnishing and wide open spaces. Most rooms have balconies, and it's just a short shuttle to the town center. For those seeking a boutique experience, Ambra Cortina provides a blend of sophistication and traditional charm right in the heart of the town. Not to be overlooked, Rosa Alpina, now under the prestigious Aman Resorts banner, offers an exclusive escape in the picturesque village of San Cassiano, combining world-class amenities with the serenity of the region.

Alta Badia Ski Region (Alta Badia Ski Resort)

Shredding the dolomites on skis

The Alta Badia Ski Region is a massive ski area that’s made up of 6 villages. Alta Badia is a premier ski destination in the Dolomites, known for its gourmet skiing experience, featuring mountain huts with Michelin-starred chefs. The ancient, Ladin language and culture have been well preserved here. The local culture is a unique blend of Ladin, Italian, and Austrian influences. Alta Badia is also a key part of the Sella Ronda Circuit.

Covara and San Cassiano Ski Areas

Corvara, situated at an altitude of about 1,568 meters (5,145 feet), is a hub for skiing and boasts a rich blend of traditional Ladin architecture and modern amenities. Not far from Corvara, San Cassiano, perched at around 1,537 meters (5,042 feet), offers serene ski slopes and is celebrated for its cultural heritage and gourmet dining experiences.

Dolomiti Superski Hotels: Alta Badia

Corvara boasts several luxurious accommodations, including the opulent La Perla Hotel, which is known for its refined elegance. Not far from La Perla, the Hotel Sassonger stands out as a family-friendly haven, offering a blend of comfort and tradition. While "Marmolada" is renowned as the highest peak in the Dolomites, its name also graces various establishments in the region, reflecting its iconic status.

A short distance away, San Cassiano exudes a unique cultural charm with boutique hotels. We stayed at Hotel Ciasa Salares, and highly recommend it. The 50 rooms are modern, alpine style, with verandas and breathtaking views. The hotel is a refuge for gourmets featuring three restaurants, including La Terrazza & Salari restaurants, a wine bar, and

an incredible wine cellar, along with a dedicated Cheese room and a delicious chocolate room.

Dolomiti Superski Hotels: Val Gardena

The town of Ortisei is home to The Gardena Grödnerhof Hotel & Spa, an exquisite establishment that offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere, perfect for unwinding after a day of skiing. This prestigious 5-star hotel boasts award-winning spa and pool facilities, top-notch service, and an exceptional wine cellar. Families will appreciate the generous suite accommodations and dedicated kids club, making it an ideal choice for a relaxing and memorable stay.

For VIP treatment at all of these hotels and more, book your trip with Avant Ski.

Skirama Dolomiti Ski Region

Skirama Dolomiti is located in the Trentino area of Northern Italy and is a fantastic, less well-traveled area of the Dolomites. The Skirama Dolomiti ski region covers eight, unique resorts as listed below. All of Skirama's resorts and ski areas are available on the Epic Pass.

skirama map

How Skirama Dolomiti Ski Region Works

Although Skirama Dolomiti represents 8 resorts on one pass, not all of them are interconnected. Madonna di Campiglio, Pinzolo, and Folgarida-Marilleva are interconnected for a total of 150km of slopes. These 3 also have the most advanced terrain of the Skirama Dolimiti ski resorts. The other 5 resorts are not interconnected, with the exception of Alp Cimbra and Folgaria-Lavarone, which are usually paired together.

Some skiers will choose to plan their routes based on the interconnected nature of some resorts, and others will focus on skill level. For instance, Monte Bondone and Alpe Cimbra-Folgaria/ Lavarone have much easier terrain than the rest.

Skirama Dolimiti Ski Resort Highlights

Madonna di Campiglio Ski Area

The Madonna di Campiglio Ski Resort and Area consists of 3 interconnected resorts which are Madonna di Campiglio, Pinzolo, and Folgarida-Marilleva. These are the 3 resorts in the region that feature the most difficult terrain. For those skiers who like to ski bumps and trees, you can’t get better than this trio.

Discover the best accommodations and connect with Expert Guides for your Dolomites adventure. Take the next step and inquire about booking your trip today.

Skirama Dolomiti Hotels and Accommodations

Madonna di Campiglio boasts a diverse and vibrant hotel landscape that caters to a range of travelers seeking both luxury and comfort amidst stunning Alpine scenery. Hotel Cristal Palace, in the heart of Madonna di Campiglio, known for its alpine charm and modern amenities, is close to the ski lifts and vibrant town center. The rooms are comfortable and stylish. The wellness center features indoor swimming pools, saunas, steam baths, and massage rooms.

Lefay Resort & Spa Dolomiti offers the pinnacle of luxury and wellness, just 15km from the Madonna di Campiglio Ski Area. The resort is renowned for its spa facilities, amazing service, and sustainable ethos. The hotel opened in 2019 and blends modern luxury with its natural surroundings.

The Dolomite Skiing Experience

Dolimite Ski Huts (Rifigious)

Rifugio Lagazuoi in the Dolomites
Spend the night at a rifugio for an Italian meal with fresh tracks in the morning.

Rifugios are mountain huts or lodges strategically located throughout the most beautiful ski resorts and hiking trails of the Dolomites. They offer skiers, snowboarders, and hikers a place to rest, warm up, and enjoy traditional Alpine cuisine while ski touring. The Dolomites are particularly famous for their cozy atmosphere and family-owned rifigious, where you can devour a hot meal, replenish your electro lights, and even spend the night.

Dolomite Ski Boots, Skis, and Rentals

Picking up your boots and skis int he dolomites

Most of the ski rental shops in the Dolomites are locally owned. The Dolomites offers rentals of everything from all the major brands and even specialized rentals as well. The Intersport Val Gardena and Equipment Rental JGOR SKI & MORE in Cortina offer a full range of rental equipment. Our partners at Ski Butlers also deliver skis directly to you in the Dolomites. Reserve Ski Butlers here and receive a 10% discount.

Dolomites Après Ski

Perhaps the best part of skiing the Dolomites is the fabulous aprés ski culture. It's kind of like being in a movie: old European towns with unbelievable morsels of delicious goodness washed down with a perfectly noted red wine.

Dolomites Restaurants, Bars and Clubs

A spread of italian goodness in the dolomites

Cortina is renowned in the Dolomites for those who appreciate the "gastro" lifestyle. The town boasts numerous Michelin-starred restaurants, such as Baita Fraina and El Camiento, the latter offering a unique blend of Ladin, Tyrolean, and Italian cuisines. Beyond Cortina's Michelin-starred restaurants, the region is renowned for its culinary diversity, blending traditional Alpine flavors with Italian influences. Many restaurants in the Dolomites emphasize locally sourced ingredients, offering dishes that highlight the region's agricultural bounty. In Ortisei, for example, you can find cozy trattorias serving hearty Tyrolean specialties like canederli (bread dumplings) and speck (smoked ham), alongside elegant dining options that showcase creative interpretations of Italian cuisine. 

Val Gardena provides a more relaxed yet vibrant night-life scene. In Selva di Val Gardena, an après-ski spots seamlessly transition into nighttime hotspots where live music, DJ sets, and themed parties keep the atmosphere lively well into the early hours. 

Dolomites Health and Wellness

Outdoor Hot Tubs with Stunning Views of Ortisei
Views of Ortisei from the hot tub at Hotel Gardena

There are plenty of health and wellness options to resuscitate your tired body after a day on the slopes. Alta Badia, is probably the most well-known area of the Dolomites when it comes to health and wellness. Alta Badia has many spa resorts, natural thermal springs, and yoga/meditation centers. There are several options for Turkish Baths, and Finnish Saunas. Many of these are located in the hotels in Alta Badia.

How to Get to the Dolomites

Getting to the Dolomites by Air

Multiple airports are located in close proximity to the Dolomites. The airports you can choose from depend on your departure location and the specific area of the Dolomites you plan to visit.

Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE), Italy to the Dolomites (Cortina)

  • Distance: Offers the quickest access by car, roughly 156 kilometers. (Venice to Cortina)

  • Travel Time: Enjoy a relatively quick drive of around 2 hours.

  • Transfers: Many companies offer direct transfers to various resorts, but buses and trains with connections can take over 3 hours.

Innsbruck Airport (INN), Austria to the Dolomites (Val Gardena)

  • Distance: Relatively close, around 120 kilometers. (Innsbruck to Ortisei/Val Gardena)

  • Travel Time: Expect a drive time of ~1.5 -2 hours. (Innsbruck to St. Ulrich

  • Transfers: Pre-booked transfers are quickest, while buses and trains with connections can take several hours longer.

Treviso Airport (TSF), Italy to the Dolomites (Cortina)

  • Distance: Another good option for proximity is about 145 kilometers. (Treviso to Cortina)

  • Travel Time: Expect a drive time of approximately 2 hours.

  • Transfers: A convenient option with companies offering transfers, but buses and trains with connections can take over 2.5 hours.

Verona Airport (VRN), Italy to the Dolomites (Val di Fassa)

  • Distance: Slightly farther than Venice or Treviso, approximately 194 kilometers. (Verona to Canazei/Val di Fassa)

  • Travel Time: Plan for a drive time of roughly 3 hours.

  • Transfers: Transfers are available, or you can take buses and trains with connections, although these may take longer.

Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP), Italy to the Dolomites (Madonna Di Campiglio)

  • Distance: About 170 kilometers. (Milan to Madonna di Campiglio)

  • Travel Time: Prepare for a drive of approximately 2.5 to hours.

  • Transfers: Road transfers are less common due to the distance, but still available. Buses and trains with connections can take significantly longer, potentially exceeding 6 hours.

Munich Airport (MUC), Germany to the Dolomites (Val Gardena)

  • Distance:  The longest on the list, roughly 250 kilometers. (Munich to Ortisei/Val Gardena)

  • Travel Time: Expect a long drive of ~3.5 hours- 4 hours.

  • Transfers: Road transfers are less common due to the distance, but still available. Buses and trains with connections can take significantly longer, potentially exceeding 6 hours.

Getting to the Dolomites by Train

There are a few different ways to take the train to the Dolomites; the main routes are below.

Venezia S. Lucia to Calalzo di Cadore

Route: The Venezia S. Lucia to Calalzo di Cadore line is a popular route for those heading to the Dolomites. This train journey takes you through jaw-dropping landscapes and directly to Calalzo di Cadore, a gateway to the Dolomites.

Travel Time: The direct train from Venezia S. Lucia to Calalzo di Cadore takes approximately 3.5 hours.

Once you arrive at Calalzo di Cadore, you can easily find local buses or taxis to transport you to various destinations within the Dolomites.

Venice Mestre to Belluno

Route: Another convenient route is from Venice Mestre to Belluno, a city close to the Dolomites.

Travel Time: The direct train journey from Venice Mestre to Belluno takes about 2 hours.

Upon arriving in Belluno, local buses and taxis are available to take you to your specific destination in the Dolomites.

Venice Santa Lucia to Bolzano

Route: For those heading towards the western Dolomites, the Venice Santa Lucia to Bolzano route is ideal. Bolzano serves as a major access point to the western parts of the Dolomites.

Travel Time: This direct train journey takes around 3.5 hours.

From Bolzano, you can access numerous local buses and taxi services to various destinations in the Dolomites. Bolzano also connects to smaller train lines and bus routes that reach deeper into the mountain regions.

Getting to the Dolomites by Car

The Dolomites are accessible by car, and cars offer the flexibility to explore the region at your own leisure. The area is best explored by car, and it can be reached from various major cities.


What is the best ski resort in the Dolomites?

Everyone will have a different opinion regarding Dolomites ski resorts and Dolomites ski areas. For us, Cortina d’Ampezzo is a fantastic place to begin your Dolomites adventure. It offers some of the most diverse terrain combined with an awesome skiing experience and a great après ski culture.

Cortina is part of the Dolomites, so there is no either or comparison. That being said, we highly recommend Cortina as a great Village from which to explore the Dolomites.


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