The Val Badia
The heart of the Ladin Dolomites in South Tyrol
Laying at the feet of the most beautiful Dolomites peaks, the Val Badia is undoubtedly considered the “heart of the Dolomites”, due to its geographical position. The Valley is part of the Province of Bolzano, in South Tyrol, and originates in the South from two ramifications at the feet of the Sella Group and Falzarego, which reconnect to La Villa. Other minor valleys, where small villages are located, stand from Pederoa towards La Valle, from San Martino di Badia in the direction of Longiarù and from Longega to St. Vigil. This valley, as its main river, Rio Gadera, ends at St. Lorenz of Sebato in Pusteria. Val Badia is made of five municipalities: Corvara, Badia, La Valle, St. Martino in Badia, St. Vigil in Marebbe and presents two touristic areas: Alta Badia in the South and “Low Badia” with the Plan de Corones in the North.
The mother tongue of the native population is Ladin. It is part of the population of the Ladinia, characterized by the Ladin language and culture.
The central position of Badia valley allows the landscape to benefit of the most well-known resorts of the Dolomites located among the two natural parks surrounding it: the Puez-Odle and the Fanes-Senes-Braies. Its flagship is, as well as the rest of the Ladinia, the natural landscape named by UNESCO as a world natural heritage.
Among the symbol-peaks of the Dolomites the Sas dla Crusc, Piz Lavarela, Piz Conturines, Pùtia, Sassongher, Piz Boè and Pisciadù are to be noted. An exceptional landscape variety allows visitors to practice every kind of sports. Excursions, mountain-climbing, trekking, rock-climbing, but also mountain bike, golf, horseback riding are just a few of the multiple activities to be practiced in the Val Badia.
For those who do not wish to struggle, there are various possibilities to explore bites of this natural paradise, i.e. using ski lifts or enjoying the multiple pathways starting from the villages on.
During the winter season the Val Badia offers high-standard facilities with its two skiing districts Alta Badia and Plan de Corones, both part of the Dolomiti Superski. The many kilometers of ski slopes offer a great variety and are well-finished to assure fun to ski- and snowboard-lovers.
Also to be remembered is the easily accessible Sella Ronda, the presence of many typical mountain dews, rent&go services and high-level ski schools.
The Val Badia also offers alternatives to the skiing facilities with well-equipped infrastructures on the whole territory in order to practice cross-country skiing, ice-skating and sledding. Also to be remembered are the enormous possibilities offered by ski mountaineering and excursions with snowshoes.
Apart from sports the Ladin valley presents typical stores, craftsman shops, restaurants with typical dishes and wellness centers.
The Val Badia preserves in its mountain villages ancient customs and traditions, which go along with tradition and religious celebrations, where you can see traditional costumes and taste typical Ladin dishes such as “les tutres” or “crafuns mori”. Alongside with the tradition and cultural and architectural heritage, accurately kept by the ladin population, a strong tourism-oriented environment was born and is nowadays the strongest economic resource for the Valley.
The harmony between ancient and modern represents the small towns and the structure of the Valley, where the natural landscape is kept as a precious heritage, as much for the population, as for tourists. The farmers with their work are no-doubt among the main characters for the attention and preservation of the landscapes and the environment.
In the Val Badia you can find well-equipped villages for touristic purposes, but at the same time little town where peace and silence are sovereign. These peace oasis preserve the real treasures of the Ladin culture and still present strong rural culture features and the balance the relationship used to have with nature.
The Ladin culture and its curiosities are shown at the “Ladin dl Ciastel de Tor” Museum in St. Martin in Badia, that greatly enhances the Ladinia and its population. The Valley of Mills and the Viles in Longiarù” are rural lifestyle examples of conservation and represent two incredibly valuable open-air museums. The Valley offers to its natural environment, in St. Vigil of Marebbe, the Natural Parc site of Fanes-Senes-Braies and in St. Cassian, a museum dedicated to the Badia-bear, the Ursus Ladinicus. Churches and aristocratic residences are spread all over the valley and many are pathways where you can discover some more aspects of the Ladin culture.
Spending your holidays in the Val Badia is the perfect occasion to be closely linked to incomparable nature, to taste Ladin flavours and get spoiled by its hospitality. You will fall in love with this land and remarkable memories will be impressed in the hearts of those who visit it.