The Aosta Valley
The Aosta Valley: the smallest region in Italy, framed by Europe’s magnificent “4 Four-thousanders”. The region is located in the north-western corner of the Alps, bordering with France to the north-west, Switzerland to the north and the Piedmont region of Italy to the south-east. A breathtaking natural landscape forms the backdrop to a land just waiting to be explored and experienced, which over the years has strengthened its reputation as a popular tourist destination.
It is here, among Europe’s loftiest peaks, that the people of the Aosta Valley have chosen to live, handing down traditions stretching back thousands of years from generation to generation. Culture, history and art co-exist here in the same spectacular landscape, surrounded by breath-taking nature.
A paradise for winters sports and trekking enthusiasts, the Aosta Valley attracts visitors from all over the world to its mountains, thanks to spectacular facilities such as the Mont Blanc “Sky Way” cableway and sports events with a strong echo in the media.
A mountain region par excellence, 40% of the Aosta Valley region sits at an altitude of over 2,000 metres, with the flatter ground never descending below 500 m a.s.l. and the peak of Mont Blanc rising up to an impressive 4,808 metres. Half of the surface area is covered in pastureland and woodland, and just 8.7% of the region is inhabited all year round.
The regional economy is based on both summer and winter tourism. The Aosta Valley offers 1,200 km of ski runs, but in the summer months it is also an ideal destination for lovers of outdoor sports. The region has a high density of protected nature areas, from the Gran Paradiso National Park to the alpine botanic gardens, as well as the Mont Avic Regional Park and the humid areas.
The Aosta Valley is also a replete with historical and archaeological treasures just waiting to be discovered, documenting over 5,000 years of history. The region is home to numerous findings from the prehistoric age and from early history, as well as fascinating, tangible traces of the Middle Ages and of the glorious Renaissance of Giorgio di Challant, through the “secret” treasures of the 17th century right up to a modern age marked by a variety of different artworks.
And there’s more still. Here, at the foot of the Giants of the Alps, visitors can enjoy the pleasant embrace of the spa waters that spring right from deep in the heart of the mountains. Indeed, it was thanks to these spa waters that the undoubted success story of the Aosta Valley as a tourist destination began: from the historic thermal baths of Pré-Saint-Didier to the renowned springs of Saint-Vincent and the brand-new MonterosaTerme wellness centre at Champoluc, in the Val d’Ayas. Cosy, romantic atmospheres, striking settings, unforgettable locations and discreet yet ever-attentive hospitality make these places a veritable oasis in which to recharge your batteries, boost your immune system and refresh the spirit.
And let’s not forget the palate. The little Aosta Valley also has some exceptional food and wine experiences in store for the visitor. The sound rural culture and tradition, together with an almost heroic local agriculture, is able to produce a number of top-quality niche products, with recipes packed with all the genuine flavour of the finest alpine tradition.
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