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Selva Gardena

During winter a fairy-tale scenery in white.
In the summer, a unique variety of nature's beauty.

In every season, the world of the Dolomites demonstrates its particular charm in an impressive beauty. The towns of Ortisei, S. Cristina and Selva Gardena (in all only 6 miles distance) not only offer beautiful nature, but also a wide variety of art and culture. Ortisei 1236 m, S. Cristina 1428 m and Selva Gardena 1563 m, is situated at a height of 1200 to 1700 meters above sea level. The alpine meadows and ski pistes rise up to 2518 m and the mountain peaks up to 3181 m.

Selva Gardena (1.563 m) set in the suggestive landscape of the Dolomites, among the mountains Sassolungo, Puez and the Sella massif, it is one of the most popular vacancy destinations in winter and summer. Placed in the heart of the skiing carousel of the “Sella Ronda”, Selva offers kilometres of runs for exciting ski descents and a lot of fun and
enjoyment thanks to ice-skating, sledding, snow-shoeing, ski mountaineering, ice-climbing and so much more. During summer Selva is mainly known for its infinitive mountain paths in the middle of the nature: sunny walks and exciting hikes, breathtaking climbing routes,
adventurous Nordic Walking and mountain bike tracks. Welcome to Selva!

Val Gardena, the heartland of the Ladin cultures, is about thirteen miles long and runs more or less from west to east from the narrow entrance to the valley at Ponte Gardena to Selva Gardena at the end of the valley and up to Passo Gardena and Passo Sella, the border with other Ladin valleys. The lowest point is located at 470 m above sea level, while the highest is Sassolungo (3,181 m). The tourist territory begins in Pontives, the linguistic border between
German and Ladin. From there the valley opens out and rises gradually to Ortisei (Lad. Urtijëi), and continues to gain in height as far as Santa Cristina and Selva Gardena (Lad. Sëlva).

Roncadizza and Bulla have been part of the community of Castelrotto since the Middle Ages, but
geographically and from the point of view of the language they belong to Val Gardena.
Concerning the history we don’t know a lot about the area of the Dolomites if we think of prehistoric times and it is merely based on suppositions. Some reminds found at ”Plan de Frea” at the foot of the Sella massif years ago testifies the presence of live around the year 6.000 before Christ. Arrowheads, needles an other tools make think on hunters, who were looking for a temporary stay in our area during the summer months. Other reminds (bronze buckles, iron jewels, axes, sabres and primitive rural tools) at ”Col de Flam” (Ortisei) are dated at the age around 400 b. Ch. In 15 before Christ the Roman general Druso conquests the alpine regions, which where inhabited by the Rhaetians. No-one knows much about the origin of this folk. We just know they were fugitives looking for some peace oasis to settle down and this difficult accessible valleys seemed to be the perfect place for it.

The name ”Val Gardena” is first recorded in a deed of gift from the year 999, when Duke Otto von Andechs made the Bishop of Freising a present of an area of woodland called ”Forestum ad Gredine”. Val Gardena – in Ladin ”Gherdëina” - means ”fence”.
Through the fusion between the Celtic culture of the Rhaetians and the one of the Roman folk in the first century after Christ the Ladin language is born.
When the German tribes of the Bavarians and Alemanni moved south, the area of the Rheatian language was spoilt up, and the Ladin survived only in some lateral valleys, where it has been conserved pretty well right down to the present.

In fact in Val Gardena most of the population still speaks Ladin and still nowadays it is taught at school as an obligatory school subject. Furthermore books and magazines are published in this language, there are an own Ladin radio station and daily Ladin news and programmes
on TV. There are other Ladin ethnic minorities, everyone with its own language, in the neighbour valleys Badia and Fassa, in Livinallongo, in Friuli and in the zone around Cortina d’Ampezzo. Finally there is a Ladin minority in Switzerland.

Source : www.valgardena.it


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