Being on my way from gorgeous Hong Kong, I am trying my best to conquer the childish excitement and I-still-dont-believe-I-have-experienced-that to catch up with my trips.
Today (or tonight, hard to say while switching between 7 time zones) I am also remembering a totally different but nevertheless incredible place in my favorite country of Italy. Madonna do Campiglio. A beautiful landscape hidden among the Dolomites. My fourth and final spot for snowboarding this winter season.
Getting there is not as easy as to previous Bad Hofgastein but also not as expensive as was to Courmayeur or Crans Montana. There is a choice between airports of Milano, Verona or Bolzano, then a transfer has to be pre-arranged as there is no railway. Buses go from Trento, so I made a train connection there from Vienna and then switched to the bus. Wasn’t that bad; remembering getting to Zermatt still gives me chills, for example. And I also got to see classical dull and full of students and other drunk people city of Trento.
March associates with spring already in my head. So, obviously, I arrived wearing sneakers and ripped jeans. Parents met me and immediately made fun as there was real winter around. Hell yes! Spring doesn’t dare to touch those regions until the most desperate skiers and snowboarders officially claim they are done with the season. Loads of powder! Not only on the slopes as was in my previous trips this year when the town itself was dry. Oh no! Here snow was everywhere! From every porch and sidewalk to my naked knees. On my way back I got stuck for a whole day because the buses couldn’t make it through and I skipped my train and lost a connection. That’s what I call winter vacation!
The town itself is adorable. Typical Italian, cute and light. People greeting each other; smelly prosciutto and cheese laying outside small shops with local specialities; aperitifs starting from the very morning. Like.
The slopes area is huuuuge! I think this was the second biggest resorts chain after neighboring Sella Ronda! I thought of Madonna as of a small town and don’t even expect to be able to snowboard in so many directions with so many impressive views changing. I was lucky, parents had a;ready explored everything by the time I arrived, so I just followed them and indeed enjoyed the real pure perfect snowboarding to its fullest to later enjoy local food and wines. A very very nice short break and the best way to complete the winter sports season.
Having analyzed the four spots I tried this year, I come to the conclusion as follows:
If you want a party, if you are bunch of friends, if limoncello is just as valuable for you as sports; you want constant music around, bunch of hot instructors and constant movement; if you are experienced enough to ride quite difficult slopes and to be hungover constantly – Courmayeur is for you!
If you are a couple/family, you want to enjoy the mountain views while laying in hot springs listening to the perfect silence around; if you want dinner that lasts 3 hours and makes you feel like an aristocrat – chose the Gastein Valley.
Wanna spend a lot of money and be surrounded by posh events, well-dressed people; wanna drink champagne from a crystal glass in the morning and have a real Swiss Alps experience like one of those they promote in movies – then Crans Montana is just right.
If you are just about skiing/snowboarding and that’s the main point why you spend vacation in the Alps at all; well-prepared interesting slopes are more important than party/hot springs/luxury surroundings/whatever else – then you will love Madonna di Campiglio!
I again wanna express how glad I am we have had such a rich vivid experience this season. Thanks to my family and everyone who joined us! Looking forward to the next winter!