One of Italy's best known ski resorts and a classic in the history of winter sports, San Martino boasts some of the most spectacular scenery in Europe, offering a back drop of pink Dolomitic rock where the rock spires reach their highest and most spectacular profiles. The locals call the various shades of pink and purple created by the sunlight on their 'Pale di San Martino' terrain as 'enrosadira'. San Martino lies on a wide highland of pastures surrounded by thick conifer woods, on the southern slopes of the Alps, in the area of the Dolomites that is the easternmost part of Italy's Trentino region. The resort's rather long-winded official title is currently 'San Martino di Castrozza e Primero ' which takes in the valley town of Primero beneath the resort. San Martino's area also extends to include the nearby high-altitude lifts of Passo Rolle which begin by the roadside at 1994 metres (6482 feet) giving great late season skiing. San Martino remains a very Italian resort, popular with Venetians - the Adriatic resort only 110km (67 miles) to the south, few modern international guide books do justice to its stature as one of Italy's five largest ski resorts and its importance in the history of skiing, bring one of the country's earliest destination centres, establishing winter sports holidays in the 1930s. Its 'new era' started in the middle of the nineteenth century with the first English and German travellers who founded international tourism in mountain areas with the discovery of the Dolomites. These early 'tourists' names included Francis Fox Tuckett, John Ball, Theodor von Wundt, Amelia Edwards and Elisabeth Tuckett. In order to accomplish these historic climbs and explorations, the travellers sought the help and collaboration of local hunters and shepherds who, with the passing years, become qualified professional mountain guides, the legendary "Aquile di San Martino" (the eagles of San Martino). Consequently San Martino became an early major centre in international tourism with the construction of elegant hotels, amongst which are some of the oldest in Trentino. During the First World War the town was burnt down by retreating Austrian troops (leaving little more than the church tower, which dates back to the twelfth century, of the original village) but it rose again in the inter war years by which time it was a part of Italy.
One of Italy's best known ski resorts, San Martino boasts some of the most spectacular scenery in Europe, offering a back drop of forested hills backed by 3000m of pink Dolomitic rock. The ski area is a free five minute bus link from the village centre.