Cervinia is Italy’s most snow-sure destination and unsurprisingly, is one of Italy’s most popular ski resorts. As well as some wonderful cruisy local runs, Cervinia’s ski area links into Zermatt in Switzerland as well as neighbouring Valtournenche, this offering some of Europe’s highest pistes.
Cervinia, (full name Breuil Cervinia) originally found fame as the best starting point for climbing The Matterhorn. The village is sprinkled with old Italian charm, with cobbled streets and meandering river but it is also blended with with many large modern buildings, housing some of the more luxurious accommodation.
Cervinia is not a party resort, however there is still a buzz to it and it does liven up at weekends as the locals from Turin and Milan make their way here for the weekend.
Cervinia shares its ski area shared with Valtournenche and Zermatt. The ski area is extensive and snowsure. There are 150 different runs, some of which are wonderfully long, offering up over 2000m of vertical.
Cervinia is an intermediate’s paradise and a fantastic place to holiday as a family. Whilst there is a huge amount of skiing on offer, the local slopes however are quite gentle, leaving experts with little in the way of a challenge. For experts, there is always the journey to be made into Zermatt but the most challenging pistes in Zermatt are a fair ski away from Cervinia, and on windy days, there is a real risk of the link being closed (leaving the only option of a very lengthy and spendy taxi ride). As such, Cervinia is perfect for intermediates who love a cruisy blue, multiple coffee stops, and to sample the bars and restaurants on and off the mountain.
150km (360km in linked area with Zermatt)
December – April
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Cervinia is an excellent resort for beginners with gentle, snow-sure resort level nursery slopes and lots of long easy runs to progress above Plan Maison. Quick learners might even be able to tackle the 1200m vertical from Theodulpass (Colle del Teodulo in Italian) on the Swiss border back to resort within a few days.
Cervinia is one of the best ski resorts in the Alps for early intermediates, with mile upon mile of gentle cruising. More adventurous intermediates will enjoy the epic Ventina red run down from Plateau Rosa, as well as the moderate blacks above and below Plan Torrette.
Options for expert skiers in Cervinia are relatively limited, with just a smattering of black runs and very few moguls. The off-piste here can be good, but the nature of the high mountain terrain means that a guide is absolutely essential.
Cervinia is a fine place to board for the intermediate. For an advanced rider it’s a little flat in places however the pistes are very well maintained. Freestylers will find the new Indian Park good for some big hits. There’s usually 2 or 3 lines of kickers!
Swimming, Sauna & Spa Facilities in Cervinia
Leisure facilities in Cervinia include a public swimming pool and sauna, natural ice skating rink and gym. Snow mobiling excursions, heli ski and paragliding are also available, conditions permitting, and there’s a good, centrally located, children’s play area which offers snow tubing, a bouncy castle and other facilities for children. The Sports Centre in Valtournenche, a larger town 9km from Cervinia, includes a 25m swimming pool, Turkish bath, sauna and gym. Tennis, five a side football, volleyball, table tennis and a climbing wall are also available. In addition, the Hotel Hermitage, the Principe delle Nevi and the Chalet Valdotain all have swimming pools, and many of the hotels also have saunas, hot tubs and spa areas.
Shopping in Cervinia
The main street of Cervinia features some small, interesting boutiques and a number of good sportswear and equipment shops. A wider range of shopping is available in Valtournenche.
Cervinia Tourist Information
View the live snow report for Cervinia here
On the Slopes
For expert ski families, there will not be much to challenge you in Cervinia. There is plenty however for novices and intermediates, which generally suits most families as most have differing ski levels. For solid intermediates, swooshing down the 11km Ventina piste all together will certainly bring a smile to everyone’s face.
If any of your family are complete beginners then do not be deterred, as the resort has two well-established ski schools that will see you quickly progress and you should be able to master Ventina by the end of the trip. There are also a few nursery slopes where you can quickly progress and boost your confidence.
If snowboarding is more the kids’ style then they are also well catered for, with Breuil Cervinia boasting one of Italy’s best terrain parks The Indian. Over 1.2km long and 200m wide, the Indian has rails, boxes, kickers and other features, which are designed for all skill levels.
Off the Slopes
Cervinia has many great activities away from the slopes, so you and the kids can always find something to keep you amused. Cervinia boasts a natural ice rink, plus there are plenty of swimming pools which can be ideal for a relaxing swim after a day on the slopes. The kids can burn up their remaining energy playing a range of sports, whilst you can slink off for a well-deserved pampering session at the spa! Retail therapy is also available with plenty of shops around the village. For insta-addicted teens, it is also worth noting that Cervinia has fibre optic and wireless coverage.
Eating as a family on holiday is a real highlight of the day. After some consideration, our family favourite suggestions are:
Cheap and cheerful, Copa Pan is well located in the centre of the village and has a wide menu of comforting food that includes pizza, pasta, steak and fondue. There is also live music in the bar upstairs.
Bontadini is a mountain restaurant on the main Cervinia slopes. Downstairs is a stylish eatery with a menu that includes a number of local specialities, including homemade truffle ravioli and chamois with polenta. Upstairs you will find a self-service buffet.
Lo Baracon dou Tene
Another mountain restaurant found in the Valtournenche area, this eatery serves affordable dishes and has a cosy atmosphere in a small stone hut. It also has a south-facing terrace with brilliant views.
Saint Hubertus Resort
Hotel Puta Maquignaz
Hotel Excelsior Planet
Hotel Mon Reve
Transfers are facilitated by the short distance from the international airports of Turin Caselle (118 km), Milan Malpensa (160 km), Milan Linate (180 km) and Geneva (CH). Transfers to and from the airports can be arranged by coach, taxi or car rental.
Easy to reach, served by the A5 Torino-Aosta motorway. Take the Chatillon/Saint-Vincent exit and head along the regional road to Cervinia for 28 km. Valtournenche is 19 km after Chatillon and 9 km before Breuil-Cervinia
The nearest railway station is at Chatillon/Saint-Vincent (info and timetables www.trenitalia.it).
From Chatillon, and also from Turin and Milan, there is a coach service to and from Breuil-Cervinia Valtournenche (info and timetables www.savda.it).