21 March 2024

In Carnia among spas, Nordic skiing and lanterns in the night

Paluzza, Arta Terme and the Laghetti di Timau: here's what to do around here

What have you been up to? Have you missed my previous stories about Carnia? Oh, that’s very unfortunate. Before reading this one you need to catch up on the first, second and third. I actually had to unpack this adventure of mine that lasted many months into several episodes, as it would have been impossible to condense everything into a single article.

This time I decided to take you to Paluzza, where I was a guest at the Albergo Diffuso La Marmote (if you are interested, there’s an active “MissClaire Sends Me" package here, that includes 2-nights-minimum stay with a 10% discount). The facility consists of twenty-two apartments located throughout the village, perfect for those who love to travel while getting in tune with local traditions. 

I stayed in a lovely and very recently refurbished apartment, consisting of two rooms with three beds, a bathroom, and a living area with kitchen. The breakfast, which I found to be amazing in widespread hotels, as it only offers local products, was a real treat! There’s such a big amount of food, that often a doggy bag is almost a must on the way home.

The apartment was right in front of the church with its bells (which I didn't hear, but my photographer did) and the village tavern: yes, the very one you find open even late at night and where all the kids from the neighboring villages gather. There’s only one thing left to do: to fully integrate, a stop at the Ostarie da Cleve is a must.

However, we’re not here to drink, but to experience life in the mountains, with its nature and the many experiences offered by Visit Zoncolan! I participated in the night-time lantern hike, an hour-long walk in the woods just outside Paluzza, accompanied by the iconic Silvio! Someone who knows more than anyone about the history of these places... I was really amazed, which is why I want to share with you one of his anecdotes. Only one, because otherwise I would have to write a novel. Say, do you know why Paluzza is called that? Its name comes from “swamp” (palude, in Italian). You might think “All right. So…”. I know, “So, what does that have to do with the town”? The valley where it’s located is very wide, as there used to be a lake here, and Paluzza was a swampy area! Unbelievable, isn't it?

Anyway, this is better than Shahrazad’s tales. Silvio's stories are almost endless: from the Roman Empire to the history of the Torre Moscarda, from the creation of the consular road called "Via Iulia Augusta" to... I'll stop here, no spoilers. If you want to hear more, just get up and go listen to them with your own two ears, because I can guarantee you will be absolutely amazed. Silvio will enrapture you and you’ll end up following him everywhere like a Pied Piper around Mount San Daniele’s woods.

You can’t not make a stop at Laghetti di Timau, which are just a 15-minute drive away, where Nordic skiing awaits you. I must admit that I had tried it in the past, but it hadn’t convinced me at all... that was until I met Gabriele, a cross-country ski instructor (to book, +39 334 9268954): he’s the one who changed my mind! We started step by step, from the very beginning and with a lot of patience: the correct movements, the skiing, the bindings, either with or without poles, and then off for the whole 3.5-kilometer loop track! I never wanted to leave that beautiful feeling of silence, nature, and peace.

Oh, I apologize but I missed a step. You can rent your gear right there at the Laghetti: park your car and you'll catch a glimpse of a little house, where you can pick up what you need (and if you look farther away, you'll see another little house where you can fill your belly with good food).

At the Trattoria ai Laghetti in Timau, right above the cross-country ski slope, you can enjoy some really good herb cjarsons, a wild boar stew with amazing polenta, the classic frico e polenta, and a Sachertorte with whipped cream that I couldn't pass on! So, you burn 100 calories while skiing, and you will ingest another 1000 with lunch. I can say, however, that it’s worth it.

Do we want to give up the ever-loved relaxation? Write it down and repeat with me: Arta Terme.

In December they opened after they had a really modern and beautiful makeover! They now have a swimming pool for adults and children, a pool with thermal water for rehabilitative treatment, a wellness area with saunas and steam baths, a Kneipp path, a gym, an outdoor pool, and then comes the highlight. I'm talking about the evenings events they organize every other Friday: from 6:30 p.m. there are themed aufgusses with amazing sauna masters, scrubs in the steam room, a buffet dinner (I've been there twice, and I’ve always had a great meal) and at midnight, off you go into the arms of Morpheus for a record-breaking sleep.

In short, you tell me. Had you ever thought that Carnia could host all these experiences? Well, I didn't, and I had to change my mind. Yet, don't think the tales are over, because there's more being prepared for you, my dears: with Visit Zoncolan anything’s possible.

See you soon on these screens with episode 5.


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