4 Must-Visit Ex-Winter Olympic Destinations
In 3 weeks the 2018 Winter Olympics will begin in PyeongChang, South Korea. Aiming to win at least 6 medals from the Games, Team GB hope to make this their most successful Winter Olympics in history. Whilst you might not win an Olympic medal on your ski holiday, it is possible to hit the iconic slopes from previous games. We’ve taken inspiration from this year’s Olympic Games and had a look at the venues from past Winter Olympics and shared a few of our favourites.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Games
In 2010, the Winter Games were hosted by Vancouver, British Columbia. One of Canada’s most bustling cities, the Games saw 2,566 athletes from 82 countries compete over 17 days. Whilst the venues for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games were stretched over a 120km area, the mountain resort of Whistler was a key site. Host to a variety of events including alpine skiing and cross-country skiing, Whistler has continued to invest in its Olympic legacy. In addition to offering tours of the Olympic facilities, visitors can experience sliding down the world’s fastest ice track in a bobsleigh or on a skeleton sledge, or even have a private ski lesson with an Olympic Athlete. A short drive south of Whistler, the Whistler Olympic Park offers 130 km of world-class facilities, including tobogganing and ski-jumping.
Turin 2006 Winter Games
Located in northern Italy, Turin was the host of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games. During the Games, Norway’s Kjetil Andre Aamodt become the first Alpine skier to earn four medals in the same event and the first to win four gold medals in total. Whilst the Olympics were spread over numerous resorts, one of our favourites is Sestriere. The site of one of three Olympic Villages, the resort was chosen as the centre for the alpine events, hosting both the men’s and women’s alpine skiing competitions. Visitors can stay in the Olympic village and even try night-time skiing on the same floodlit runs athletes skied during the 2006 Winter Olympics.
Innsbruck 1964 & 1976 Winter Games
Two-time host to the Winter Olympic Games, Innsbruck is the capital city of Tyrol in western Austria and is an iconic destination for winter sports. First hosting the games in 1964, it became the host of the 1976 Games after the state of Colorado refused public funds to support Denver. Opening more than 260km of slopes, Olympia Skiworld at Innsbruck allows visitors to the opportunity to ski in the tracks of icons from both games.
Cortina D’Ampezzo 1956 Winter Games
Part of the Dolomiti Superski area, Cortina d’Ampezzo was host to the 1956 Winter Games. During the Games, 821 athletes from 32 countries competed in 24 events. It was at these games that the USSR marked their debut by winning more medals than any other other nation. Visitors who are advanced skiers can test out the former Olympic courses such as Pista Olympia. You are also able to climb to Faloria and try the extensive Vitelli run which saw the Olympic giant slalom event and is now a slow-ski area.