Ortisei is the main town of the Gardena valley. It stands in the North-Western area of the Dolomites in the Alto Adige region, exactly in the high Gardena valley, finishing at East with the Sella group, where the Gardena and the Sella pass puts in contact the Badia and the Fassa valleys. The town extends its self from the bottom of the valley up to the beginning of the Rasciesa mountain. The buildings and the near by environment makes a perfect mix, making of it a charming little town.
This place is a quiet town where the pedestrian centre is typical for it’s liveliness and the many workshops, becoming so, a meeting point other than shopping. In the ancient times the town was known for it’s rich hand-craft work, of proof to this there is the Museum of the Gardena Valley that has woodcraft work like many types of sculptures, toys, and work from the prehistory. Has to be said that Ortisei is of ladin culture, the speech is one of the three most common languages of the Dolomites.
From the beginning of the 19th century tourists began arriving in the town. In the Summer there are many walks, with paths that lead to mountain huts. In this time of year (summer) the information office organises trips with mountain guides. Many are the chances of doing mountain and rock climbing, in the town there is a mountain climbing school. Some of the most known “vie ferrate” are: the Tridentina ferrata, the Shuster ferrata and the trincee ferrata. You can also go paragliding and horse riding other than swimming.
Certainly winter is the best time of the year to visit the town, it is part of the Dolomiti Superski Area.
In all the Gardena valley there are 83 ski lifts and 175 kilometres of
downhill slopes, 98 kilometres are the cross-country tracks. When you
are skiing in the Gardena valley it will be most likely to see lots of
well known skiing champions like Kostner, Runggaldier or Perathoner.
Many are the connections between the slopes, a cable car will take you
up to the Siusi plateau and other lifts will bring you to the Seceda and
to the Rasciesa mountain. The Siusi plateau is one of the largest in
Europe, as well as giving a 360° view on the Gardena valley, on the
Schilar mountain and on the Sassolungo, there’s also a connection to the
Sella Ronda route.
An odd thing done here is the ski Dinner, where the guests can have a delicious dinner inside the cableways that goes up to the slopes.