Selva Val Gardena – the crown in the Sella Ronda ski circuit

The Sella Ronda is one of the most famous ski circuits with 24 km of terrain that can be skied in either direction around the vast jagged Sella Massif mountain, and many of the resorts are connected from here. It provides lift-linked access to the valleys of Alta Badia, the Val di Fasse region and the Val Gardena area, including Selva Gardena, home to the annual World Cup Downhill races.

Selva itself is undoubtedly one of the most famous and popular villages in the Alps. The stunning and often dramatic scenery of the Dolomites combined with relatively easy access, has meant this resort should be on the shortlist of anyone wanting a real Italian ski holiday.

Selva is a long roadside village in a spectacular setting of the Val Gardena. Part of the charm of the valley is that is that it is steeped in history; visitors can enjoy a skiing holiday with modern facilities but where traditional life and customs still exist.  For many years, the area was part of Austria, and it still retains its Tirolean charm today as German is more widely spoken than Italian. Expect to see lots of traditional wood crafts and quaint mountain huts!

You won’t feel isolated here as there is a lot to explore; Santa Cristina, the next village down the valley, almost merges with Selva and further down the valley is Ortisei, the main town of Val Gardena, set beneath the distinct Alpe di Siusi area.

Hitting the slopes

In terms of skiing, you are spoilt for choice; Selva is great for snowmaking (when required) and offers excellent slopes with a real mixture of open and wooded areas.

Beginners can expect some seriously good nursery slopes; the blue runs in the Plan de Gralba area are gentle, quiet and perfect for getting up to speed. The village nursery slopes below the Dantercëpies gondola are excellent; spacious and convenient and perfect for adults and children alike.

There is plenty of fast cruising available to intermediates with some great long red runs and some challenging runs for expert skiers. The Val Gardena World Cup piste, the Saslong, is one of several steepish runs from Ciampinoi and one not to miss!

Eating out and having fun

Selva Val Gardena has a wide range of restaurants that offer both Austrian and Italian dishes, the quality is very good and many are great value too. The mountain restaurants are a real treat; think lively and character filled huts with warm, traditional fare.

Although not a real party town, Selva does offer quite a good apres-ski scene. There are some seriously good bars; one with an outdoor DJ, others offering live music and there is a nightclub for those looking to party until late. At the same time, it’s very easy to find a quaint pub and mix with the locals.

An all-rounder

All in all, Selva is a great all-rounder. There is a huge amount of skiing to do, and in several areas. Many come to ski the Sella Ronda but it is equally possible just to stay in Selva and its surrounding resorts without feeling the urge to venture further. There are some wonderful quaint restaurants and a real warm and traditional feel about the place. Those looking for a genuine Italian ski getaway and a blast of nostalgia (but with all the mod cons…), should look no further than Selva this season.

How to get there

Innsbruck airport – 1hr 30
Verona airport – 2hr 20
Bergamo airport – 3hr
Venice airport – 3hr 15


Holiday Homes in Italy offers a great selection of accommodation in Selva Val Gardena from a Residence Hotel to some great self-catering apartments – all within easy reach of the town and ski lifts.

View ski accommodation in Selva Val Gardena