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La Bella Vita: Italy’s best ski resorts and how visiting Venice will change in 2024

Clare Speak
Clare Speak - [email protected]
La Bella Vita: Italy’s best ski resorts and how visiting Venice will change in 2024
A skier is pictured on a slope of the Plan de Corones (Kronplatz) ski resort in the Trentino Alto Adige region. Photo by Marco BERTORELLO / AFP

From finding the ski resorts Italians prefer to making sure your next trip to Venice goes without a hitch, our weekly newsletter La Bella Vita offers you an essential starting point for eating, talking, drinking and living like an Italian.


La Bella Vita is our regular look at the real culture of Italy – from language to cuisine, manners to art. This newsletter is published weekly and you can receive it directly to your inbox: go to newsletter preferences in 'My Account' or follow the instructions in the newsletter box below.

Wintry weather is well and truly on the way in Italy now, even down here in the southern region of Puglia. It's definitely not a part of Italy that many people associate with winter cosiness and snowy scenes - in fact, it almost never snows here on the coast, though it does occasionally inland - but I'm looking forward to spending some time further north this winter, particularly for skiing.

We reported recently how a new rail route will soon make it easier to reach some of the most beautiful slopes in the north-east of the country directly from Rome. But it's not necessary to travel that far - did you know there are also some great skiing holiday destinations in southern Italy? Not in Puglia, which is too flat, but Sicily, Calabria and Abruzzo are among the mountainous regions Italians, more than foreign visitors, head to for winter sports - and costs are usually lower than at the most glamorous hotspots in the Alps and Dolomites.

Here's our roundup of some of the best ski destinations around the country to suit different budgets, preferences and ability levels:

From experts-only to family-friendly: 12 of the best Italian ski resorts

Venice, aerial view

Venice can get very crowded, but there are ways to avoid congestion even in peak season. Photo by Miguel MEDINA / AFP

Looking further ahead to travel plans for spring, regular visitors to Venice have been wondering for a while now what exactly the city council's 'tourist tax' is going to involve and when it will be in force after it was confirmed in September.

Venice authorities last week announced the first details of the scheme's trial phase: day visitors will need to pay five euros to enter the city centre on 29 dates, stating with the first peak tourism period of the year, from April 25th to May 5th.

The fee will also apply for the rest of the weekends in May and June, as well as the first two weekends of July, Venice city council confirmed.


We looked in detail at what else visitors will need to know, including how to pay and who's exempt:

EXPLAINED: How will Venice’s ‘tourist tax’ work?

Whenever you next plan to visit Venice, if you've already seen St Mark's Square, the Rialto Bridge, and the other major sights, you'll likely want to explore off the beaten track.

We've got a quick guide to doing so from our Venetian reporter, who recommends the best ways to get around, some fascinating sights that not everyone else will be visiting at the same time, and the areas where you can stay without being immersed in a bagno di folla (literally ‘crowd bath’) as soon as you step outside the door. Even if you've visited the floating city several times, these are always good tips to keep in mind.


Five essential tips to escape the tourist crowds in Venice

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paul 2023/12/03 17:22
Sicily, Calabria and Abruzzo yes but first you need some snow!!!!!

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