Friuli Venezia Giulia, Ippolito Nievo’s little compendium of the universe
If the aim of an extended Europe is to be united in diversity, then Friuli Venezia Giulia has got there before it. In a place where the Alps and the Adriatic symbolise the two extremes of a multi-faceted and changing landscape, Italian, Slavic and Germanic cultures meet in a sort of melting pot of traditions, languages and religions. Nearly 8,000 square km of unspoilt mountains, gentle hills and deep blue sea form the contours of a nerve centre of European geography at the crossroad of people and history, a land that rewards the visitor with its richness and that never fails to surprise, no matter what the point of view is.
DISCOVER FRIULI VENEZIA GIULIA!
Friuli Venezia Giulia,
An epitome of Italian beauty
Friuli Venezia Giulia is proof that there are still places to explore in Italy. A hidden village to lose yourself in, the last vintage to taste, a mountain path to travel, new stories to listen to: each trip to Friuli Venezia Giulia is as exciting as the first time.
This region encloses all the characteristics that have made Italy a place loved by writers, poets and travellers, from the peaks of the Alps and the Dolomites, to the waves of the Adriatic, the squares of elegant cities, the streets of old villages and the vine-clad hills of the Collio region.
On the border between three countries yet at the heart of Europe, this region has made its geographical position its main strength: in just two hours, you can get to see the Italian, Slavic and Germanic cultures, expressed in some sort of a kaleidoscope of traditions, languages and religions.
Jewels of art
One thousand facets of art at the border between the East and the West
Elegant and discreet, proud of their own beauty and never exhibitionist, the cities of Friuli Venezia Giulia have travelled the world, listening to foreign languages and meeting distant cultures and religions. For centuries Celts, Romans, Huns, Lombards, Venetians and Austro-Hungarians passed through these places, all leaving an indelible mark that mingled with local traditions. Thus Trieste “dressed in Hapsburg clothes”, Udine became the home of Tiepolo, Gorizia was called the “Austrian Nice” and Pordenone, whose frescoed palaces have earned it the title of painted city, alternates between Roman, Baroque and Gothic influences, where one can find Sacile, the “Garden of the Serenissima Republic of Venice”. These indelible marks can also be admired in places that have been recognised by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites: Aquileia, ancient city of the Roman Empire; Cividale del Friuli, the capital of the first Italian Longobard Duchy; Palmanova, a fortress town enclosed in the shape of a nine-pointed star; and Palù di Livenza, a pile-dwelling site whose archaeological remains are partially found in the Archaeological Museum of Western Friuli in Pordenone. The FVGcard is the key to the region’s art and cultural treasures. This pass, valid for 2, 3 or 7 days, includes unlimited access to all the main museums and historical and archaeological sites anywhere in the region. It also accounts for participation in the guided tours organised by PromoTurismoFVG in artistic cities or hiring of multilingual audio guides.
Set in an unrivalled corner of the world, between the white karst landscape and the dazzling blue of the northernmost part of the Adriatic Sea, Trieste, the region’s most international city, nominated Science Capital of 2020, has always been a vital meeting point between the East and the West because of the central role of its’ port. The city that for centuries belonged to everyone and to no one still has the cosmopolitan soul of a place where different cultures, languages, religions and traditions can meet.
Udine, the elegant and convivial city, where the refined architecture is linked to the rustic charm of the osterias, the city in which Giambattista Tiepolo’s (1696-1770) treasures are kept, the Venetian school’s last great painter. This artist left a number of masterpieces, many of which can be seen in the Archiepiscopal Palace but also in the Cathedral and the Gallery of Historic Art in the castle with modern art on offer at Casa Cavazzini with the option of an audio-guide available to rent at the tourist office. If Trieste reflects its ancient role of regional trade emporium, Gorizia has always been the real “melting pot” of Central Europe and it has been nominated the European Capital of Culture 2025 together with the city Nova Gorica in Slovenia. It was here, at the crossroads of three European cultures – Latin, Slav and German – and in a proper Border City, that the last wall of the Cold War between Eastern and Western Europe was torn down in 2004. The Hapsburg bourgeoisie loved Gorizia and its mild climate: not by chance the city was called the “Nice of the Adriatic” and, because of its climate, it was chosen as a residence by the last king of France, Charles X of Bourbon, who moved his sumptuous court to the magnificent noble palace Coronini Cronberg.
Pordenone is an elegant town with a charming historical centre, a true mosaic of 16th century palazzos, Romanesque churches, porticoes, frescoed façades, and Gothic and Baroque buildings. A stroll beneath the prestigious arcades of the Corso or a visit to the museums or to the temporary art exhibits will allow you to discover local history and culture. All through the year the city hosts international art, music
and literature festivals, thus becoming a dynamic and creative node within the area.
In Pordenone comic strips are art with Paff – Palazzo delle arti e del fumetto in Friuli, a space designed to offer comic strips as a form of art as well as a form of communication and a mindset.
The freedom of no stress borderless skiing
90 kilometres of slopes for safe and peaceful skiing
Would you like to combine skiing with the thrill of battling against the wind on a sled pulled by a team of dogs? The mushing schools in Tarvisio will welcome you with open arms. Do you dream of training on the dazzling slopes where the great ski champions exhibit their abilities? Then Sella Nevea is right up your street. Would you like to plunge into a world overflowing with snow activities especially designed for young people? If you choose Piancavallo you’ll be glad you came. Do you like to combine ski and dancing Après Ski? Ravascletto/Zoncolan plays the right music for you. Or would you prefer a sleigh ride? Sauris is your ideal location, even to take your first steps on the snow and experience the Albergo Diffuso hotel. Would you like to see the Dolomites? Forni di Sopra is waiting to greet you with the wonderful views of the ski slopes. Are you a biathlete? Then your go-to destination is Forni Avoltri, which offers one of Italy’s three most prestigious national centres for Nordic-biathlon skiing, as recognised by FISI (the Italian Winter Sports Federation); from there, you can easy reach Sappada, one of Italy’s most beautiful villages, an alpine island rich in history and tradition, surrounded by the peaks of Val Comelico. Wherever your fancy lies, Friuli Venezia Giulia has something to make your dreams come true, an all-round holiday destination with much more than just skiing on offer.
Friuli Venezia Giulia means safe ski without overcrowding in the five regional ski areas of nearly over 90
kilometres of ski areas of its six ski resorts. A large range of choices with something for everyone, no matter how well you ski, and with guaranteed snow. 110 km of Cross-country ski trail loops in magical surroundings, also by night.
With the FVGcard, the regional “pass-partout”, convenience is guaranteed. Card holders can use the ski lift facilities for free: the Tremol chairlift in Piancavallo; the Varmost (1 and 2) chairlifts in Forni di Sopra; the Ravascletto cable way for Mount Zonoclan; Mount Canin’s gondola lift to Sella Nevea; and that of Santuario dei Lussari to Tarvisio. The FVGcard also includes the use of Tarvisio and Piancavallo’s rail bobsleighs, the participation in many extra-ski activities organised in Carnia and Tarvisio area, and a 25% discounted rate when purchasing a multiday ski pass. Finally, for children up to 8 years old, the ski pass is always free.
Seven resorts, a thousand things to do:
✓ Tarvisio – “No borders”: over 25 km of snow-covered ski areas. Make sure you don’t miss out on the Di
Prampero, a 4km outdoor trail with a breath-taking view, which has been stage of several Women’s World Cup Ski and can also be enjoyed at night every Tuesday and Friday evening. Then there is the Arena Paruzzi and Val Saisera’s upper and lower slopes, heaven for cross-country skiers. In Tarvisio, you can also practise ski mountaineering or have a go at the local international dog sledding school. In addition, for the younger ones, there is a playground complete with tobogganing
✓ Sella Nevea-Kanin “Extreme”: the high-altitude slopes, from 1,100m to over 2,100m, makes it an ideal
springtime ski resort. It is also a genuine paradise for freeride skiing, boasting a dedicated area for fans of this discipline with training courses, specific activities on how to deal with fresh snow. The location also hosts many European Cup and FIS (Italian Ski Federation) events, which have a dedicated competitive centre for speed disciplines. In Sella Nevea, thanks to the cross-border link, it is also possible to ski across the border and reach the Slovenian town of Bovec with the same ski pass.
✓ Forni di Sopra “Family”: in a romantic corner of the Friulian Dolomites, part of the famous Dolomite Nordic Ski cross-country circuit, you can ski along the longest track in Friuli Venezia Giulia. A section is opened at night every Wednesday evening for ski mountaineering. As well as the 13km cross-country ski trail, 2km of which are opened at night every Monday and Wednesday evening, the town has a playground for the younger ones, a toboggan run, an ice-skating rink and an area for ice climbing, making it one of the most suitable destinations for families. There is a wellness centre with a Finnish sauna, Turkish baths and a swimming pool with an acrobatic water slide for children. The perfect location for sports lovers too: snow bike excursions out on the snow, photographic snowshoe trekking at altitude and many other activities also organised by the Friulian Dolomites National Park.
✓ Zoncolan “Bike”: set in the wonderland of the Carnic Alps, it is the funniest Ski resort of the region and has 22km of snow-covered ski areas that reach an altitude of 2,000 metres. Among the various attractions, the most outstanding is the Arena Freestyle, a snow park for progress on the snow. Meanwhile, night ski mountaineering adventurers can go up the Zoncolan 4 and Goles trails on a Tuesday evening, and the most difficult CanaloneLavet one on a Thursday evening.
✓ Piancavallo “Sport”: 17 km of ski areas with three crown jewels: a large snow park that offers freestylers the opportunity to put their jumps and rails to the test; a boardercross and skicross track for snowboarders and skiers; and a track dedicated to ski mountaineering. Every Wednesday and Friday, the ski mountaineering trail for the ascent and the Salomon slope for the downhill run into the valley can also be used. The bobsleigh on rails experience is thrilling, descending from an altitude of 1,500 metres and nosediving down a 15-degree slope. You can also practise snowshoeing, skating on the ice rink, and snow tubing. While the kids can have fun in the Nevelandia playground.
✓ Sauris “Nature”: here you can undertake ski mountaineering and take your first steps on the snow, practising cross-country or downhill skiing in a setting where nature reigns supreme. You can go snowshoeing, ride in an evocative sleigh or enjoy the experience of skiing at night on the Sauris di Sotto’s ski run. Finally, those who love to relax can spend their time between hay baths, saunas and hydromassage pools in the town’s “Borgo dello sport e del benessere” wellness area
✓ Sappada“Traditions”: the gem of the Upper Piave Valley is full of fun and entertainment for everyone, with 15 km of alpine ski slopes suitable for beginners and advanced skiers, 25 km of cross-country skiing trails with varying difficulty levels, and numerous ski mountaineering trails. But not only. Sappada is also a paradise for non-skiers, who can enjoy ice climbing, winter walks along the Piave river, surrounded by woods or on white slopes, thrilling trails in the adventures park and horseback or horse-drawn carriage rides.
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