Isabelle Fabre Snowshoeing in Casterino Casterino MinIsabelle Fabre Snowshoeing in Casterino Casterino Min
©Isabelle Fabre Snowshoeing in Casterino Casterino Min
Adventure 10Gliding to the end of the world

Two days of skiing around Castérino

Have you ever skied in a white paradise? Departing from Castérino, a small village at the foot of the mountains, these two days of skiing offer adventure at the end of your skis. Ski touring on the first day, cross-country skiing on the second, the pleasures vary, and so do the skis. Away from it all and the noise of the ski lifts, the pleasure of the descent rewards the efforts of the ascent. Don’t ski? On this wide plateau with its grandiose landscapes, snowshoeing is a memorable experience. Everyone off-piste for the end of the world!

DurationStartLevelIdeal season
2 daysCastérinoEasy to intermediateDecember to February

Why do we love it?

That feeling of being at the end of the world, a paradise on a bench!

The scent of larches, starry skies, sunrises over the snow… Mother Nature puts on a show.

The gentle warmth of Casterino, its comforting local cuisine.

Day 1

Stage 1 / Ski touring

Alone or with a certified guide, this day in the Vallée des Merveilles will take your breath away. Disconnection guaranteed in this wild, all-white domain. Far from the ski resorts, all you hear is the soft crunch of your skins in the snow. In total freedom, you set out on your own path. Where will it take you? On the trail of the variable hare hidden in the powder or on a descent among the larches? From Castérino, here are three possible outings.

La Roche de l’Abisse

Level: advanced

13.4 km / 940 m ascent + climb

North of Castérino, the last Mercantour summit before Italy. This itinerary, with its tricky forest return, is for experienced skiers. Magnificent views of the Alpine arc, Corsica in the background and some beautiful curves to finish.

The Red Rock

via Gias de la Gasta and Cime du Plan Tandasque.

Level: advanced / 5.6 km n / 716 m ascent +.

South of Castérino, this magnificent, fairly technical circuit is accessible up to the Cime du Plan Tandasque (2256 m). The more athletic can push on to Rocher Rouge (2331 m).

Mount Chajol

Level: beginner

Loop: 9.5 km, ascent + 783 m / Return: 10.2 km, ascent + 753 m

To the east of Castérino, two perfect walks for the uninitiated and lovers of wide open spaces. Breathtaking views of the Mercantour massif.

Good to know

Please note that we don’t rent equipment on site. Sledges and snowshoes are available for hire at some lodges, but availability varies.

Take advantage of a 50% discount on cross-country ski and snowshoe equipment rental at theAuberge Sainte Marie-Madeleine, on presentation of your Snow Train ticket.

Stage 2 / Cocooning in Castérino

You’ve earned a little rest. At an altitude of 1150 metres, Castérino is the perfect place to relax and unwind. Whether in a small family-run inn with a chalet atmosphere, or in a cosier hotel, all of our drop-off points know how to welcome guests. After a delicious ravioli stew, enjoy one of the most beautiful starry skies in the world.

Day 2

Stage 3 / Cross-country skiing at its best!

It’s time for cross-country skiing. Pierre, a ski patroller at Casterino, will tell you all about the snow conditions and recommend an itinerary. With its three marked trails, the little resort is like the Great North. Around the Vallon de Castérino, the green and blue runs are ideal for fun without overexerting yourself. The red run, towards the lake, is reserved for the most athletic skiers.

Good to know

Choose the right equipment: versatile, lightweight touring skis, sealskins, poles, knives… pack a bag with appropriate clothing and protection, not forgetting sun cream.

What if you don’t like skiing?

There’s no question of denying yourself the joys of the snow. A toboggan run and three secure snowshoeing trails promise you snowy days in the sun. As beautiful as on skis, the valleys, populated by chamois and ibex, are magnificently preserved.

Small gestures and good reflexes

You are entering the living space of wild animals. Winter is a delicate period for them, when access to food is complex. To avoid frightening them and, above all, preventing them from fleeing and expending unnecessary energy, keep your distance and remain discreet.

Take an empty garbage bag with you and don’t throw any waste, even organic waste, into the wild. Unfortunately, they don’t melt like snow in the sun!

Who to contact

Mercantour Guide Bureau – Tende

Tel.: 04 93 04 67 88

Our good addresses

Auberge Sainte Marie-Madeleine

Small mountain inn with family atmosphere, authentic homemade cuisine.

04 93 04 65 93

Val Casterino Inn

Simple, comfortable hotel-restaurant, delicious food, lovely view of the hills, garden and children’s play area.

04 93 04 64 38

Chamois d’or Hotel

Cosy three-star chalet-style hotel, rustic-chic restaurant, communal lounge and daytime spa.

06 50 37 30 17

Hôtel Les Mélèzes

Small, casual two-star hotel, top-notch restaurant, landscaped terrace.

04 93 04 95 95


Menton is only an hour and a half from Castérino. Reach the hamlet by car from Tende (D6204) or why not by train? From mid-January to mid-March, the Train des Merveilles becomes the Train des Neiges, taking you to the resort of Castérino by shuttle. Terminus: the end of the world.