Of course, there are many ski areas in the Italian Alps, here I will introduce you these two, the well-known and the less well-known in the Alto Adige area

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Bormio is a city in the Italian province of Sondrio, in the Lombardy region, in the heart of the Alta Valtellina valley. It is located in the Italian Alps near the border with Switzerland. 36 km from it in the direction of Switzerland lies the famous ski area of Livigno, which you will most likely pass through if you want to visit Bormio. There are thermal springs and a ski resort, which you can conveniently combine. Hard work during the day, relaxation in the evening. In the city you will find a well-preserved medieval center.

The ski resort of Bormio is quite famous, it also hosts World Cup races (on the Pista Stelvio slope, it is one of the most demanding slopes in the world and the second longest in the World Cup, after the Swiss Lauberhorn in Wengen). The resort has a total of approx. 50 km of slopes. The longest slope is 6 km.

The ski area boasts the highest elevation in Italy. From 1200 m, you will go up to 3000 m to the top of Cima Bianca. You can park directly outside by the cable car, where the parking fee in the 2022/23 season was 8 Euros, or in the huge underground garages directly under the cable car, the parking fee was 5 Euros. You take a ticket and when you top up, you pay in the machine downstairs before entering the garage. It was also possible to pay by card. The all-day ski pass is 52 Euros in high season.

Cable cars are modern, there were more or less rows. I would recommend the resort to more experienced skiers, there are mainly red slopes, which are often on the edge of black (steep) and the sun is at your back most of the day so they were quite frozen. As soon as you take the first cab out of town, you will find yourself at Bormio 2000 - "Wenceslas Square" (that's what I call the areas where most of the slopes are run, there are a lot of restaurants and full of civilians without skis :) Children can also find entertainment here, there are different things for them and ski schools. Pedestrians can go all the way up to 3000 m in a large cabin, there is also a restaurant. Bormio also has a night-lit piste, the aforementioned Stelvio and a snow park.

You can refresh yourself in several restaurants and bars scattered throughout the resort. I recommend the Ciuk ski bar - if you manage to get to it after the steeper slope :) Their motto on the wall is: warm beer, lousy food  and unpleasant service :))) but don't worry, they are joking, the service was excellent, cold beer and the best goulash soup far and wide. They even had a pear in Williams schnapps, as it should be. People mostly sit outside, there are heaters around the tables. The bar is right next to the chair lift, and there are also some accommodations around.

If you want to have a really great pizza, I recommend Al Kiosco Gallo Cedrone at the Bormio 2000 station. It's a bit in a hill, when you're facing the hills, to the left of the slope. Skiers will definitely not want to walk uphill, so go up the chairlift above the ski school and then go down to the restaurant, it is a circular building with a large terrace, you can also sit inside. Hotel Gallo Cedrone and its large dining room is beyond, so don't get me wrong, we weren't there. This Kiosco has really top pizza, straight from the oven. There are also a lot of other dishes, great desserts and, of course, Bombardino and Calimero (bombardino with coffee). Pleasant service, the restaurant is ala carte. When it's warm and you can sit outside, dance music plays here. The only minus is that you have to carefully zigzag through the ski school from the slope, there is no other way in here than through it. But the pizza is worth it.

Cima Piazzi - San Colombano 

These two smaller connected areas are located in Valdidentro, the cable car runs directly from the main road between Bormio and Livigno, from the village of Isolaccia. There is a free parking lot opposite the cable car. The area is smaller, about 25 km of ski slopes, and we thought that we would be bored there for several days, but it was great, because everyone goes to Bormio and Livigno, and it was almost empty here, we met only a few people during the whole day. At the weekend there were a lot of ski alpinists walking either through the forest or the ski area, which I guess makes this area a ski alpinist's paradise. There were no queues for chair lifts or in pubs. It's true, the area's equipment is somewhat older, I would prefer to cancel the one double anchor and one lift, because I prefer chair lifts on the SNB, but you just have to go all the way up them, cross to the other side to San Colombano, and there are only chair lifts there. The pistes are long (the longest is over 3 km), excellently groomed. The three lifts on the ski map no. 5, 6 and 7 did not run at all.

The pistes are mostly blue and red (up to a height of approx. 2000 m above sea level) and are easygoing, you won't struggle like in Bormio. The children's area is located at  the Cima Piazzi area, when you take the cab. There is a ski school, and the price of the ski pass even includes a 600 m long Family Bob bobsleigh track for children from 4 years old (accompanied), the only one in Lombardy. If you don't ski, one ride costs 5.5 Euros. There is also a larger self-service Conca Bianca Mountain Hut restaurant with both outdoor and indoor seating. We had lunch at the top of the San Colombano area, where there are two pubs below one another, we were in the higher one, which is quite large, self-service, and there were a few tables and sunbeds outside. But since it was below zero, only the hardy sat outside. However, the views are great, there are no more trees at the top, so you can enjoy it, you can see all the way to Bormio.

Ski tickets can be bought directly at the bottom of the gondola, it is possible to pay by card. You can buy a 4-hour or full-day pass, for pedestrians you can also buy just the up and down cabin for 13 Euros, children under 6 are free. An all-day ski pass cost 48 Euros in January 2023.

If you want to go to these Italian ski areas and are looking for accommodation, from my own experience I recommend luxurious new 4* apartments directly opposite the cable car. In addition to comfort, they also offer a generous outdoor wellness area and a farm with alpacas, be sure to book a walk with them, it's a great experience. Read full review about Nira Mountain Resort.

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