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Best base for Sella Ronda closest to Venice

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi, any recommendations for a good base for skiing in Dolomites/Sella Ronda which would also be a relatively short/safe drive from Venice? As my flight lands in Venice Marco Polo after 5pm, am trying to limit driving in the mountains at night as much as possible (especially as the car won't have winter tires - just chains, which I have never used before). As an alternative, would it be better to stop somewhere en route (e.g., Rocco Pietore?) for the night and then continue to, e.g., La Villa or S. Christina next morning?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Leonila, I don't have the experience of self drive so may not be the best to advise you, but ....
If you want to reach Sella Ronda then realistically with a 5pm flight arrival - if lucky you could depart airport at 6pm but I suppose more likely it will be 6:30 by the time you have done car hire faff - then I'd say it does not sound wise to do it at night in a car where you have not used chains.

One option is to stick to main roads and although a "long way round" head for Bolzano so you are relatively close, overnight there. Say 2.5-3 hrs to get there? Then head on next day would be my view.

But, do you have to go by car? You can get a transfer bus from MP at 6pm to go to Arabba, then in a great place for the morning! Of course that is only on a Sat or Sunday.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Leonila, which week/month are you arriving? If January or February, is it impossible or prohibitively expensive to have winter tyres?
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@SteveM, The 6pm transfer to Arabba is interesting, if rather risky: the flight lands at 5:25pm and I will need to wait for luggage. I was originally looking to stay in Alta Badia (based on recommendations that it is the best location for Sella Ronda) and could not find any public transport there, while private transfers asked for EUR350 one way, hence the idea to rent a car. Plus, I suppose a car might be useful for exploring different ski areas. Obviously, unless the roads are so tricky that one would rather not drive at all...

@ PeakyB, So far the plan is to fly last week of January. The quotes for rental cars with winter tires are in the range of EUR600-700 per week, a bit steep I would say.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Leonila,
Quote:

@ PeakyB, So far the plan is to fly last week of January. The quotes for rental cars with winter tires are in the range of EUR600-700 per week, a bit steep I would say.

Indeed, but I found some much more reasonable than that, from VMP airport, if you want to PM me. Or have you already committed to a car rental booking?

Arabba is a good base I think, with Corvara another good option. Both well placed for exploring Sella Ronda. Accommodation tends to be more expensive in the latter. Car not really needed or very beneficial once in that area IMO.
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check winrent - Renault Captur with winter tyres €143 or a Nissan Qashqai for €183, or a Volvo Xc60/Alfa Giulia €334. That was for arrival 20th or 27th Jan. Think you have to add €40-50 on for out of hours collection. Not the best reviews but not dreadful either. Think you have to get a short transfer bus. Only reason I didn't book with them was I meant to email to ask about the 'grey' vs 'black' winter tyres signs but I think I've now worked out the 'grey' ones are after 1/1/18. Then I got distracted by xmas and when I looked again suddenly it was €300 for a Qashqai for the week I'm going. I thought that was a bit steep. Our flight arrives at 0930 at MP so I'm planning to drive each way in daylight.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Hmm Alta Badia i used to cover accomodation in a big area, most of which is NOT on the Sella.

Corvara is good Arraba is better as it gives easy access to the Marmolada as well as the Sella
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
If you're hiring in Venice then the car will have winter tyres, it's the law in the region.
Head up to Belluno not Bolzano if heading to Corvara or Arabba as it's a much simpler route. You could also do an overnight in belluno is its next to the autoroute if you don't fancy the mountains in the dark
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cameronphillips2000 wrote:
If you're hiring in Venice then the car will have winter tyres, it's the law in the region.


I used to think this but it is not enforced. You may end up with M+S tyres that are kist mince in the snow. Also when having chains make sure they fit BEFORE leaving the airport. Last year I saw a bit of a rant at AVIS by someoen that went to put on the chains and they didnt fit.
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Leonila, given the time of year, forecast of snow and consistently sub zero temperatures, I would certainly recommend winter tyres. Yes it is easy to get snow chains but who wants to fit those, if it can be avoided?

Plenty of snowHeads have stayed in Sella Ronda villages if any accommodation advice wanted. Also restaurants, not to mention the skiing.

You could be on for a spectacular trip!
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Leonila wrote:
@SteveM, The 6pm transfer to Arabba is interesting, if rather risky: the flight lands at 5:25pm and I will need to wait for luggage.

In my experience, Marco Polo is a quick airport to get through from touchdown to out the door - try to be close to front of queue for passport control (or as near as) then v short walk to baggage reclaim and v short walk out of there to bus meeting point. If you tell the bus people what flight you are on they are quite reliable - talk to them and judge how long they will wait for you but in my experience the bus never actually leaves quite on time. Albeit most of the time when I am doing it I am with a large group of sHs and so we can strategically "faff about" to delay things for stragglers if necessary.

Arabba is a good base for direct access to Sella Ronda. But base village choice depends on (1) what kind of skiing you want (2) what kind of partying you want. Arabba is mainly red for (1) but with some nice blacks and easy access to top heights of Marmolada, while it is fairly quiet as far as (2) is concerned.

An alternative is to look at Mountainsun for their Frohsinn place - they do a late evening transfer from Marc Polo I think (collection at 19:30-20:00 last season). San Cassiano - just off the beaten track of Sella Ronda, the place is directly on piste. Blue heaven next door (ie lots of nice blue runs). But note it looks like their website has been hacked at present so if interested maybe call Jude on 01273 257008 - Ext 1 or email "mail at mountainsunltd.com" in the first instance. She sometimes takes a little while to reply.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
[quote="SteveM"]
Arabba is a good base for direct access to Sella Ronda. But base village choice depends on (1) what kind of skiing you want (2) what kind of partying you want. Arabba is mainly red for (1) but with some nice blacks and easy access to top heights of Marmolada, while it is fairly quiet as far as (2) is concerned.

Am mostly into red runs and don't care for partying. My idea of a good base is a big choice of pistes, including links to other resorts, easy logistics to/from the ski lifts and a pleasant village with basic infrastructure such as supermarkets and a couple of restaurants.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@Leonila,
Quote:

Am mostly into red runs and don't care for partying. My idea of a good base is a big choice of pistes, including links to other resorts, easy logistics to/from the ski lifts and a pleasant village with basic infrastructure such as supermarkets and a couple of restaurants.

I think Arabba (Reba) ticks every one of your (and by coincidence my) boxes. Corvara likewise. Selva (Wolkenstein) is good but larger, livelier and IMO a little blighted by a heavily trafficked main road right through the middle. Canazei another possibility, slightly less convenient for Sella Ronda circuit tours, but not much in it.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Leonila, what PeakyB said ref Arabba.

Being right on the Sella Ronda you can go either way round the circuit and thus visit other resorts. A typical week plan might be:
Day 1 - follow the circuit all the way round in one or other direction to get your bearings.
Day 2 - Marmolada, then round to Canazei, down from there to Alba and do the Skitour Panorama, return by retracing steps
Day 3 - Leave in other direction via Corvara, Selva and thence Santa Christina, go up Seceda and return
Day 4 - Consider Hidden Valley / Cinque Torri via San Cassiano area and a pleasant afternoon in Pralongia
Day 5 - A Circuit visiting offshoots you may have missed (eg world cup run to La Villa, Eidelweiss above Colfosco, Pedraces)
Day 6 - take stock and decide what favourite part to revisit

Be aware that many of the above (eg Day 3) are pretty full days to proceed at a reasonable pace Very Happy
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Leonila,
I wrote a few suggestions but internet is not good today here.

Options are.

1) arrive and go to the Annia Park or titanic hotel 400m from airport (walkable). But book your gear into the left luggage at VCE. Then get the first bus up to Arabba.

2) book hire car and go to the same hotels. Then leave early and go to Alleghe or Caprille then head to Arabba early to get on the slopes by 10am. In Alleghe it is easy to sus the weather and it will be chains all the way if there is snow. But only for 40 mins.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Option 2 b) if you go to Alleghe on the 26th Jan (I'm assuming this is the sat transfer day) then you can ski or meet some snowheads in the sport hotel. Admin might even be able to help with accommodation for a night. He did or me 2 years ago.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Option 3) go to belluno then the next morining sprint up to Arabba or Cortina then over to Arabba after a few days in Cortina. Only caveat is most (not all) Arabba accommodation is sat to sat.

Can't remember what option 4 was😡😡😡😡😡
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I get the impression that a lot more UK skiers are heading to the Dollies this year ? Suspect there could be even more next year Laughing
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Based on the above, Arabba does sound ideal! The only problem is that, looking at booking.com, the only accommodation that fits my criteria (self-catered apartments) is in S. Christina, La Villa, and Castelrotto. Except for, perhaps, Mazarei, which seems quite close to Arabba.

Do I get it right that there is some sort of SH get-together end of Jan - early Feb in Arabba?
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Leonila, The Birthday Bash starts on the 3rd February but some of us will be around in Alleghe the week before, so may pay the odd visit the week before.
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Hmm, that's interesting... Hotels for the birthday bash are fully booked, but will see if I can still join somehow...
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@Leonila, you've probably tried the very helpful tourist office...but if not...
http://www.arabba.it/en/home/1-0.html
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@Peter S,
Quote:

I get the impression that a lot more UK skiers are heading to the Dollies this year ?


Guess that'll be a) because it is wonderful...b) the natural snow is excellent this season...c) it's still open and easily accessible, unlike the 'too much snow' resorts like Val D'Isere, Cervinia, etc. and d) it is still relatively good value for the range of skiing and lift system.

That's why it is challenging to find good accommodation. snowHead
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Leonila wrote:
Hmm, that's interesting... Hotels for the birthday bash are fully booked, but will see if I can still join somehow...


There are still vacancies on the Pre Birthday Bash starting 27 January in Alleghe. Have a look at the first page of the thread if you can make that week. snowHead
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SteveM wrote:
@Leonila, what PeakyB said ref Arabba.

Being right on the Sella Ronda you can go either way round the circuit and thus visit other resorts. A typical week plan might be:
Day 1 - follow the circuit all the way round in one or other direction to get your bearings.
Day 2 - Marmolada, then round to Canazei, down from there to Alba and do the Skitour Panorama, return by retracing steps
Day 3 - Leave in other direction via Corvara, Selva and thence Santa Christina, go up Seceda and return
Day 4 - Consider Hidden Valley / Cinque Torri via San Cassiano area and a pleasant afternoon in Pralongia
Day 5 - A Circuit visiting offshoots you may have missed (eg world cup run to La Villa, Eidelweiss above Colfosco, Pedraces)
Day 6 - take stock and decide what favourite part to revisit

Be aware that many of the above (eg Day 3) are pretty full days to proceed at a reasonable pace Very Happy

I think day 2 is a also full day, at my pace we came back in the dark without the Marmolada starter. Mind you we did have coffee and sunbathing, lunch , coffee and strudle stops...
but your plan has us sorted for the BB with a slight variation on day 5 for my annual pilgrimage to Santa Croce
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Quote:

@Leonila, you've probably tried the very helpful tourist office...but if not...
http://www.arabba.it/en/home/1-0.html

Great, thank you! Just realised there is an option to send requests to multiple hotels in one go. Now dreading the time when all the responses start arriving Smile
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Lechbob, I do have to remember sometimes that what I consider a "reasonable day" might be a bit full on for others Madeye-Smiley
But I note that my Day 5 includes your Santa Croce - I just was not explicit about that when I said Pedraces Little Angel Little Angel

@Leonila, always a pleasure to meet more snowHeads while on a bash snowHead snowHead
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@SteveM, I should have realised that for Day 5 you would have taken in Santas Crotch and probably Kronplatz to boot.
The poor shape I'm in means hike up to the Monastery followed by a Kaiserschmarrn will be enough to goose me for the day so I'll omit Colfosco spur bit. Embarassed
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Leonila, im in the hotel Genziana later on in Feb. I've not been there but someone said it was basic but very clean.

Next to the tourist office is one @PaulC1984 stayed in that he said was really nice. Sorry I can't remember the name.

What type of accommodation are you looking at?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@GlasgowCyclops, I think OP prefers apartments. I can only recommend hotels and guest houses. There are some very good value ones in Arabba and very comfortable.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
PeakyB wrote:
@GlasgowCyclops, I think OP prefers apartments. I can only recommend hotels and guest houses. There are some very good value ones in Arabba and very comfortable.


Ah didn't sus that. Apartments depends on how many people and the budget. I think the sporthotel has apartments but they are about £1500 for a week in a room let alone an apartment. Anyway. No need to SC in Arabba and area. It is so cheap to eat and drink.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@GlasgowCyclops, yes I agree. Unless bulk groceries could be bought en route, mostly self catering could work out more expensive than typical 3*** guest house. However sometimes apartments just suit group needs and I don't think any mention of restricted budget for trip.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Quote:

I think OP prefers apartments.

Yep, that's right, but it does not look like there are any left in Arabba for the dates Smile. I just like having the choice of not dragging myself to a restaurant every night and then it can be quite annoying to sit there and wait to be served when all one needs is a quick bite...
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Quote:

Being right on the Sella Ronda you can go either way round the circuit and thus visit other resorts. A typical week plan might be:
Day 1 - follow the circuit all the way round in one or other direction to get your bearings.
Day 2 - Marmolada, then round to Canazei, down from there to Alba and do the Skitour Panorama, return by retracing steps
Day 3 - Leave in other direction via Corvara, Selva and thence Santa Christina, go up Seceda and return
Day 4 - Consider Hidden Valley / Cinque Torri via San Cassiano area and a pleasant afternoon in Pralongia
Day 5 - A Circuit visiting offshoots you may have missed (eg world cup run to La Villa, Eidelweiss above Colfosco, Pedraces)
Day 6 - take stock and decide what favourite part to revisit



@SteveM, Great programme, thank you! Will definitely try to do it!
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Sorry this is no help to the original post, though I agree with any suggestion that Arabba would seem an ideal answer, but thanks for the itinerary suggestions in the thread.....been skiing independently for several years and have always felt i got a handle on a piste map and planned well for the week. For the first time i have some trepidation that i will miss stuff - there is so much to see and do - when I arrive in Arabba next Sunday, that I may have to return next year. Actually, when you put it like that........
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