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The Ladins:
language, culture, and traditions

The Ladins are a community of about 30 thousand people, distributed among the valleys: Badia, Gardena, Livinallongo del Col di Lana, Ampezzo in Belluno and Fassa.

The Ladins are distinguished for their linguistic identity and for their particular attention to tradition, agriculture, and craftsmanship. Their respect for the environment is seen in the local architecture in complete harmony with nature. Alta Badia is in fact dotted with buildings with wooden decorations: Les Viles, the typical Ladin houses, made up of three basic parts:

  • The ciasa, the real house
  • The majun, the stable
  • The tablè, that is the barn

We find many accommodations that are called "Ciasa", this is because many hotels in Alta Badia use the name in Ladin language. A holiday in Alta Badia means embracing the Ladin lifestyle, simple and dictated by the laws of the land, where every fruit is a gift to be protected.

shot two wooden cabins meadow with mountains background

Usanze e tradizioni ladine

The Ladin Language

The Ladin language is part of the identity of the Ladin population. It has very ancient origins and is spoken daily in Alta Badia. It derives from the union of Latin with the language of the population that inhabited the Dolomites in ancient times.

The Ladins of the province of Bolzano are recognized as a third ethnic group and therefore protected. In fact, there are lessons in Ladin language and culture, as well as news broadcasts in Ladin on television and radio.

At the Ladin Cultural Institute and the Ladin Museum in San Martino in Badia you can learn about Ladin history and traditions.

Some short phrases in the Ladin language:

We offer you some short phrases in the Ladin language, to know and discover the language of this valley.

  • Bun déGood day
  • Buna sëraGood evening
  • Buna nötGood night
  • Co vara pa?How are you?
  • BunFine/Bad
  • Ula vaste pa?Where are you going?
  • A ciasaHome
  • GiulanThank you
  • A s'udëiFarewell
  • Co aste pa inom?What is your name?

Ladin customs and traditions

The Ladin people carry on ancient traditions. Many of these are tied to religious festivities and wedding nuptials.

During Palm Sunday, for example, "la granara de saresc" is held, during which children go to church to have some brooms made with the branches of a particular plant blessed. Each child, once back home, hangs the broom from the fence to protect their families, taking care not to drop the "granara" on the ground.

Some customs are instead linked to wedding events, such as "Tò la nöcia or rubè la nöcia". During the wedding festivities it is tradition for friends to kidnap the bride, who will be taken to the inns of the village. The groom must look for the bride in all the inns, paying the bill from time to time.

If you come to Alta Badia you cannot but taste the ancient Ladin dishes which, handed down from generation to generation, are still made according to the original recipes and using genuine local ingredients.

Get involved in Ladin traditions and discover Alta Badia!

Colfosco passeggiate alta badia

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