Have you ever thought about skiing near Lake Como? I know that many people think about the North Italian Lakes as a destination only for summer trips. However, they are close to Milan, to Switzerland and most of all, they are close to the mountains. This means that they can offer you great experiences even during winter, especially if you like skiing.
Lombardia is one of the best Italian regions when it comes to ski, with many resorts such as the world-famous Bormio, home of the World Ski Championships. Valchiavenna, north of Lake Como, offers places like Madesimo, just 1 hour and half drive from Varenna. And if you don’t mind longer trips, you might even consider to go to the fashionable Saint Moritz, in Switzerland.
In any case, my aim is to suggest you spots closer to Lake Como, so that you can enjoy a holiday that combines the beauty and culture of the Lake with the fun of winter sports.
Valsassina is definitely the ideal place.
Valsassina is located east of Lake Como, between the majestic Grigne Mountains and the Bergamo Alps.
In ancient times it was covered by glaciers. The withdrawal has left many morainic debris which are the origin of its name, the Valley of the Stones.
Like many mountain valleys, Valsassina is perfect for holidays both in summer and in winter, both for families and for young people.
Besides being beautiful, Valsassina is also close to big cities like Lecco and Milan.
This proximitymakes it very popular with citizens who want to enjoy a day of sports andrelax or a weekend in the mountains. It’s not uncommon for the peopleliving in Milan to take a half day off to go skiing in Valsassina and then goback to work, tanned and happy.
Valsassina is therefore the right place to go for winter sports during your holiday at Lake Como. But where exactly you should go? Which are the main ski resorts?
The first and most popular is Piani di Bobbio.
Piani di Bobbio forms a single ski area together with the near Valtorta ski resort, with a total of 35 km of slopes!
The slopes are good for any type of skier, from beginner to expert. In addition to downhill skiing, you can enjoy Nordic skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, telemarking and snowshoeing.
But Piani di Bobbio is also a nice place for families with children, allowing them to enjoy the snow in safety.
Another perfect place for winter sports in Valsassina is the Pian delle Betulle mountain pasture.
Pian di Betulle is the best choice if you are still learning to ski, since there is a ski school where you can find a teacher. The area is also suitable for snowshoeing.
I find the name of this place poetic. It means the Plain of the Birches.
Lastly, I want to mention another place that, in addition to sports facilities, has another strong point that makes it unique. It is called Alpe Giumello.
It is located on the slope of Mount Muggio and it offers a spectacular view of Lake Como and Lake Lugano. For this reason, Alpe Giumello is called “Terrazza Muggiasca”, that is the terrace of Mount Muggio.
As for theactivities that can be done, Alpe Giumello offers a 3 km cross-country skirun, which is also used for sled dog races. By the way, if you love dogsremember that every year, in January, Alpe Giumello hosts the “AlaskanMalamute Sleddog Day”, a show dedicated to this gorgeous breed.
Unfortunately it depends on the weather conditions of the single year.
The presence of the Lake Como guarantees mild temperature throughout the winter and the global climate change has brought some seasons with little snow. However, the ski resorts are equipped with snow-cannons and somehow you can ski for the whole winter.
In any case, the best months to ski in Valsassina are certainly December, January and February.
The ski seasonin Italy usually begins on December 8th, a national holiday.
Piani di Bobbio is just a 25 minute drive from Lecco and 1 hour from Varenna. The ski slopes are reachable by the Barzio gondola lift.
Pian delle Betulle is located 30 km from Lecco. The slopes can be easily reached in 5 minutes by the cable car in Margno, just before Premana.
From Lecco to Alpe Giumello it takes about 55 minutes by car. Once there, a ski-lift takes you to the top of Mount Muggio.
Skiing near Lake Como is an experience that you should try. The snowy peaks of the mountains of northern Italy, the beauty of the Lake and its cities are definitely the right context to gather some beautiful holiday memories.