Article: The Dolomites
Endless terrain, excellent food, exceptional views and an unmatched skiing adventure await in Italy's Dolomites. At the heart of that vast terrain lies the world famous Sellaronda ski circuit. Now a destination on the Ikon Pass, you can plan an unforgettable winter season and add this bucket-list ski area to your itinerary.
Skiing the Sellaronda
Covering a distance of 40 km (of which 27 km are ski slopes), the Sellaronda is a ski circuit that circles the Sella group, a plateau-shaped massif in the Dolomites. The route encompasses four mountain passes surrounding the massif: Passo Gardena, Passo Campolongo, Passo Pordoi and Passo Sella. Skiing the Sellaronda brings you past the villages of Arabba, Canazei, Selva Gardena, Corvara and Colfosco.
The Sellaronda consists mainly of groomed carving trails and is recommended for intermediate to advanced skiers with at least a basic level of fitness. You can easily complete the Sellaronda in one day (starting before 10am is highly recommended) and you can ski it in either direction. Follow orange signs for the clockwise route and green signs for the counter-clockwise circuit. Looking out for the colored signs becomes a fun game as you near the end of each run.
A few tips to make the most of your day:
- It is recommended to start the Sellaronda circuit no later than 10am. This will allow approximately 6 hours for skiing, lift rides and rest stops along the way.
- The Sellaronda slopes close at 5pm. Be sure to cross the last mountain pass of the tour by 3:30pm to avoid missing the chair back to your starting point.
- Check weather conditions before you head out. This may force a chair closure along your route.
- There are plenty of excellent food and beverage stops along the way. You're in Italy! Don't forget to stop for mountain top pizza, an Aperol Spritz, or a Bombardino.
- Review a map of the region before starting your day to give you a lay of the land and familiarize yourself with the order of your route.
- The green and orange signs are generally well-posted and easy to follow, but you might miss one along the way. No need to stress - adding an extra run by accident isn't the end of the world. To keep track of where you're going you can also download the MyDolomiti App.
Recommended Detours & Après
While the Sellaronda is not made up of extremely challenging terrain, you will get a great workout and enjoy excellent opportunities to carve along the entire route. For some added adrenaline, you can include a quick detour to ski the Saslong piste in Val Gardena. Home to two annual World Cup races - the Downhill and Super G - the Saslong will fill up your stoke tank and give you plenty to celebrate later at après-ski. Reach the start of the Saslong run by taking the Ciampinoi chair.
Another World Cup detour takes you to ski the Gran Risa in La Villa/Alta Badia. This is the steepest slope of the entire region and hosts two World Cup races every year. This detour will require about 6 lifts so only take it if you have an extra hour to spare. Reach Gran Risa by taking the lift from Corvara to Col Alt (#1), then follow the directions to “Gran Risa”. To return to the Sellaronda route, follow the signs to Corvara and Sellaronda.
Your ski day may end at 3:30 or 4:00pm, but the fun is just beginning in the Dolomites. First, grab an après-ski snack or Aperol Spritz at La Stua in Selva di Val Gardena before heading back to your hotel.
Once you find your way back to your hotel, take advantage of beautiful spas and heated outdoor pools like the one at Granvara Relais & Spa Hotel.
For dinner, consult the Michelin guide for a list of reviewed and starred restaurants in the region. A notable mention is St. Hubertus at the Rosa Alpina hotel in the Alta Badia village of San Cassiano. This outstanding restaurant has 3 Michelin stars, plus a green star for their sustainable practices. The Rosa Alpina is an Aman partner hotel currently undergoing an extensive renovation so save this hotel and restaurant for the 24/25 winter season.
The experience of skiing the Sellaronda is unlike anything most skiers have experienced. It is a true skiing safari with new terrain and vistas on every run. Not your typical day on a ski mountain. Combined with the rich history of the region, incredible hotels, food and vistas, you will not be disappointed.
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