Despite being linked to the glamorous Swiss resort of Zermatt via the Matterhorn Ski Paradise this high-alpine town has never taken off in quite the same way when it comes to nightlife. It is undeniably a fabulous base for those wishing to ski one of the best ski regions in the world, but if you arrive here expecting to find the same buzz as Zermatt you will be disappointed. There are sufficient bars to enjoy a few beers and generally your money will go further on the Italian side of the border, but the resort doesn’t really get lively until the weekends when the masses from Turin and Milan descend on it. The few late night venues therefore suffer from a lack of atmosphere midweek (if they even bother to open) and being overcrowded at weekends. For those with access to transport it is possible to find lively venues not too far away from resort, with the world famous casino at St Vincent, 19km away, being a popular option for those with dinner jackets and deep pockets!
Whilst the apres ski vibe is positively underwhelming, much more energy is put in to the culinary scene. The Italians love their food and this small town punches above its weight with almost 50 restaurants to choose from, offering everything from fast food to high class dining. Again, the weekends generally bring a huge influx of people from the nearby Italian cities, so it would be worth planning ahead and booking a table for those busy Friday and Saturday evenings. You can expect to find a lot of local produce in the restaurants; a natural situation considering that chefs from all over Western Europe enjoy working with the rich pickings of the Val d’Aosta.
Mountain restaurants are of a high standard too and the international nature of the ski area means that there is a great variety of food to be found on the slopes. The local slopes offer several traditional Italian eateries dominated by filling pasta dishes, whilst skiing over the border in to Switzerland brings about fairly dramatic menu changes with cheese and Rosti reigning supreme. Don’t forget that the Swiss quote prices in Francs (CHF) and the food may seem pricey when compared to prices in Cervinia itself.