Winter has arrived and with that comes holidays and vacation time. Once I heard from a dog trainer to expose my dogs to as much different situations I could.
After that, I started to plan my sky holidays to dog friendly destinations, a kind of introduction to the snow weather! Below are few tips for your next ski trip to the famous Cortina d´Ampezzo, the “Queen of The Dolomites”. The Dolomites is a UNESCO World Heritage site and the most feted slice of the Alps.
WHERE TO STAY
The 5-star Cristallo Hotel is definitely the most beautiful property in Cortina d`Ampezzo. The hotel pays incredible attention to service and detail to make your stay with your dog as luxurious as possible.
WHERE TO EAT
Cortina d´Ampezzo has many options of mountain restaurants and it is also known for its mountain refuges. Some of these places can be reached by car and on foot so as you can ski in the morning and go back to the hotel to bring your dog with you for lunch. As food is highly recommended at the Cristallo Hotel, we had dinner every night at the hotel to rest of a mix of skiing and then fun with the dogs during the afternoons.
Located right in the Tofana ski area, accessible from the ski slopes, this is a real fine dining option in the mountains. We had an amazing outdoor seating to enjoy the sunny lunch with Max and Louise. Service is impeccable and food really delicious. This is probably one of the top 3 restaurants of Cortina d´Ampezzo. It is always better to make a reservation because this romantic mountain-style lodge is not so big as others options and the outdoor seating is very desirable when it´s a sunny day.
2. Ristorante Refugio Col Drusciè
Best location on the top of the mountain with an amazing terrace offering stunning views of the Dolomites and the Ampezzo valley. After a morning skiing, I came back to the hotel to bring Max and Louise with me to the restaurant. We went by cable car and then we had a seating at the outdoor space where I had a delicious burger after a plate of ham and salami
3. Bar Freccia
This is the kind of place to have a coffee when beginning or finishing your ski day. Located at the base station of the cable car, this place is perfect to relax in the sun while drinking a cocktail or having a simple coffee. We were having a coffee after a ski afternoon with Max and Louise to wait the hotel transfer to go back to the hotel. That’s a real meeting point!
hThe Ristorante Lago Scin is situated in the heart of the Dolomites of Belluno, on the banks of the mountain lake of the same name, housed in a welcoming typical mountain building with elegant wood furnishings that give you a sensation of warmth. The ideal place for candle-lit suppers or lunches in the sun, to sample the typical dishes of Ampezzo and regional cuisine. The starters range from pâté of venison with pan brioche to wild boar ham with apple salad and warm salad with ham and balsamic vinegar; the first courses include canederli (a kind of dumpling) with cheese or speck, potato gnocchi in butter, and pappardelle in a hare coulis; for your main course, there is goulasch with polenta or canederli, grilled beef chop, or venison stew with polenta.
WHAT TO DO
1. Go Skiing In
Winter holidays can be anything but fun at times. Cortina d´Ampezzo is one of the best places in Italy to go skiing and of course you can also ski with dog. To enjoy with Max and Louise, we went three times to Col Druscié because of its easy slopes perfect to enjoy with them. There are cable cars available to get to the top of the mountain or you can even get a dog friendly Uber to access some slopes close to the road. Some hotels like the one and only Cristallo offer you a transfer to go to the ski slopes and to come back, very nice 🙂
2. Play In The Snow
It was not easy to find a place for them to play in the snow in Cortina. We went at end of the season (end of March 17) that’s why you don’t see a lot of snow but even with this amount Max and Louise had a lot of fun. That time of the year the ski resort is not so packed but sometimes only higher elevations get more snow.
3. Just Take In The View
If you love landscapes photographs with your dog like I do, Cortina offers you stunning nature views: that’s the place! I took that photograph at the terrace of our hotel room at the Cristallo. All bedrooms have stunning views and we had this beautiful view of the Tofana mountain with the slopes where we were skiing almost everyday.
4. Selfie On The Top Of The Mountain
Wherever you go, you are surrounded by mountains. Cortina is located in a gorgeous valley where selfies with your dog will look like terrific. That one was on Col Druscié Restaurant on the top of the mountain. That is one of the best views of Cortina. I do recommend you to have lunch at this unforgettable place. Don’t miss this out!
5. Visit Downtown Cortina
You must walk around this beautiful village, that little square is beautiful with a very cute church and a bell tower. From everywhere you are able to make beautiful photographs: those buildings with their balconies, perfect facades teach you about the real Dolomites style. There are many narrow streets with cafés, souvenirs stores and many interesting things to see.
WHERE TO PLAY
1. Neighborhood Gardens Next To Restaurants
I always find a place to play with Max and Louise in the snow before going to a restaurant after a morning skiing. They stay very nice at the hotel room during my ski moment and then I come back to bring them with me to have lunch. They want to play, to run and maybe some fetch and then during lunch time they rest a little bit to play more after coffee and desert 🙂
22. The Amazing Gardens At The Cristallo
There are a lot of gardens in Cortina where you can play with your dog. We found that one with a stunning view of the Tofana mountain next to our hotel. Max and Louise enjoyed also different ones when we were walking exploring the village.
3. Enjoy A Spa Day After A Ski Week (well deserved)
Totally deserved this delicious bath after one week of skiing with dads and playing a lot in Cortina. Ready to fly back home!
If you haven’t read yet our post about Kitzbühel, that’s another option to go skiing with your dog.
Here is the article “Your Next Vacation In The Snow With Your Dog Is In Kitzbühel”