Val Gardena Selva, Italy
One of the most startling things about Val Gardena Selva is the scenery. This is one of those places you can bring a friend who doesn't board and you'll both end up having an amazing time. The town of Selva is an appealing mix of charm and convenience. Poke around the shops and admire the many local crafts, including hand-carved, life-size wood replicas of great mammoths. Thanks to its cobblestone streets, the town has an old-world feel and the lifts are centrally located. Be sure to look up every now and again at the crumbling spires and craggy cliff tops.
With so much terrain, the snowboarding possibilities are endless. To orient yourself, take the Sella Ronda tour, a 25-km (15.5-mi) ride from Cortina to Selva. There are seven villages to visit en route—just don't stop and drink at every one of them! The trip takes about four hours and is suitable for intermediate to advanced riders. Heliboarding is also available and it is an unforgettable experience.
Snow levels can fluctuate around Selva. The Dolomites often end up with great snow when the snowfall is poor on the north side of the Alps. Generally the best period is February through March.
Insider tip: In Val Gardena the local dialect is Ladino, a cross between Rhaetaina and Latin dating back to 15 B.C.
Val Gardena Selva Essentials
Arabba telephone: 0436 791 430
Cortina telephone: 0436 3231
Cortina fax: 0436 3235
Selva telephone: 0471 792 277
Selvina fax: 0471 792 235
By air: The closest airports are Venice, Munich Innsbruck, Milan, and Verona, from where transfers take about three hours.
By train: The closest station is Bolzona; from there it's a 30-minute bus transfer.
By car: Head toward Bolzona and then to Selva. This route was once used by Marco Polo and the scenery en route is stunning—look out for the castles camouflaged among the rocky outcrops.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication
Best Hotels in Selva di Val Gardena