The Best Undiscovered Ski Resorts in Europe: Pragelato, Italy

Where it's more about skiing than the scene

Mar 8, 2013
Outside Magazine

Pragelato.    Photo: Clas80/Wikimedia Commons

Lying on the south side of the Cottian Alps, which separate France and Italy, Pragelato is part of the mega-resort Via Lattea, or “Milky Way,” which links eight different ski areas across Italy and one in France, and accesses over 250 miles of runs on one $44-a-day ticket (this doesn’t include Montgenèvre, France). Sandwiched between Sestrière—the 2006 Olympic alpine skiing venue—and Sauze d’Oulx, Pragelato is a medieval village that boasts six lifts, 30 miles of runs, and tons of secret off-piste stashes. Try the lines off the Prietre de l’Aigle or the perfectly-spaced trees under the cable car linking to Sestrière. Unlike France or Switzerland, heliskiing is permitted in Italy. Spend a day heliskiing with PureSki, an outfit based in neighboring Sestrière, which will cost you $230 for one run or $546 for three. You’ll lap 5,000-vertical-foot bowl runs and ski 10,000-foot-high peaks, all covered in light, dry, Italian powder. Back in town, take advantage of the Piedmont region’s other specialties: food and wine. Al Mulino serves killer pizzas and tasty Barolos. For moderately-priced digs, stay at Casa Grande, which offers self-catered apartments sleeping two for as low as $365 a week.

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