The Val di Fassa, where you can fall in love with the Dolomites
05 September 2022
The legendary Sellaronda or the Four-Pass Tour
The Sellaronda is one of the most popular tourist resorts in the entire Alpine region: in a single day - and without ever repeating the same slope - it allows you to enjoy the views of four Dolomite passes (Pordoi, Sella, Gardena and Campolongo) and to cross four valleys: in addition to the Fassa valley, you pass through the Gardena and Badia valleys, which are in South Tyrol, and through the Arabba valley, in Veneto.
Of course, one must start early in the morning and ski steadily for at least five or six hours before returning to the starting point, but this can be done by all skiers, not just experts.
It can be covered clockwise or anticlockwise: the routes are well signposted with different coloured signs.
The experience is so thrilling that the next day you will want to do it all over again in the opposite direction: each way offers different scenery and views of the Dolomites.
The Giro della Grande Guerra (Great War Tour)
In total, the Great War ski tour is 82.50 kilometres long, 31 of which can be covered on skis, the rest by bus and cable car. In all, it takes seven to eight hours. You can start from Alleghe, Corvara, Arabba or Malga Ciapela. The itinerary circles the Col di Lana, which was a front line during the First World War, and allows skiing on the slopes of Cortina (Giau and Falzarego Passes), Alta Badia, Marmolada and Campolongo.
Family ski resorts
There are 3 ski resorts in the Val di Fassa that are ideal for families, beginners or those who enjoy less challenging skiing. Alpe Lusia, above Moena, has wide and easy slopes that are always sunny on the side towards Bellamonte, and slightly more difficult and demanding on the side towards Moena.
A few kilometres from Lusia is the San Pellegrino Pass carousel, with easy and very sunny pistes even in the early days of winter.
Above Vigo di Fassa is the Catinaccio, a sunny and panoramic plateau from which some very scenic red slopes descend. For those wishing to learn, there is the Buffaure ski school at Pozza, not far from the night skiing slope.
From Moena to Canazei, along a path
You enter the Fassa Valley from one of the most beautiful places in the Dolomites, Moena, crossed by the Avisio, the stream that forms from the Marmolada glacier. The centre of the town is elegant and provides the setting for pleasant walks among the squares overlooked by ornate wooden buildings, historic hotels, excellent restaurants, and all around impressive peaks.
Once past the village of Soraga, the tip of the church bell tower can already be glimpsed in Vigo di Fassa, a town that lies on a sunny plateau, with its fine museum of Ladin culture and the cableway that departs in the centre for the Catinaccio.
Here the Val di Fassa narrows to meet Campitello di Fassa, where there is the start of a large cableway for the Sellaronda, and then ends in the basin of Canazei, in the shadow of the majestic Marmolada.
The route from Moena to Canazei, 16 kilometres in all on level ground, can be travelled on foot, by bicycle or on cross-country skis, on the path that runs along the Avisio river: in winter it is a cross-country track, the one where the Marcialonga is held. In other seasons it is a pedestrian and cycle path on the edge of the forest, along which several children's playgrounds and picnic areas intersect.
A thermal spring well-known for centuries
In addition to the beauty of its landscape, nature has also endowed the Val di Fassa with a sulphurous water spring, which has been known since the 1500s, and which gushes out in Pozza di Fassa (Aloch spring) and is harnessed by two thermal centres, the Terme Dolomia and the QC Terme Dolomiti.
Bear them in mind, as here you can choose from a wide range of wellness treatments and cures. And after a day's skiing, a massage or a hot bath will be priceless delights.