It's decided: Milan and Cortina d'Ampezzo have been accepted to host the 2026 Winter Olympics! The Italian concept came out on top against the sole competitors Stockholm-Åre. Other candidates, such as Innsbruck, had already fallen through earlier on. The Winter Games will take place from the 6th to the 22nd of February 2026.
To minimise the amount of venues that need to be constructed from scratch, and stick to the 2.3 billion euro budget, the competitions will be held at eight different places in the north of Italy. Among other places, Olympic medals will be awarded in South Tyrol for the first time.
By the way: The last Winter Olympics held in Europe took place in 2006. Back then, another Italian host, Turin, was chosen by the IOC for the biggest winter sports event in the world. Therebetween, the Games were or will be held in Vancouver (2010), Sochi (2014), Pyeongchang (2018), and Beijing (2022).
Overview of the Competition Sites for 2026
|Baselga di Piné||Speed Skating|
|Cortina d'Ampezzo||Alpine Skiing, Curling, Bobsleigh, Luge,Skeleton|
|Livigno||Snowboard, Freestyle Skiing|
|Milan||Opening Ceremony, Ice Hockey, Figure Skating, Short Track|
|Val di Fiemme||Ski Jumping, Nordic Combined, Cross-Country Skiing|
The Olympic Villages will be located in Milan, Livigno, and Cortina.
Alpine Skiing in Cortina and Bormio
Two well-tried and famous World Cup venues will be hosting the alpine events of the 2026 Olympics. For many years now, Cortina d'Ampezzo in the Dolomites has been an integral part of the FIS World Cup schedule. It has even hosted Winter Olympics before, in 1956. And in February 2021, the Alpine World Ski Championships will take place here on 'Tofana'. Cortina was picked as a venue for the Winter Games 2026 to host the alpine women's races as well as the team event. Additionally, it will see the deciding races for medals in curling as well as bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton.
The men's alpine events will be hosted a four hours' drive away, in Bormio, on one of the most difficult and most spectacular runs in the world, Stelvio. Like Cortina, Bormio was tried and tested as a venue for large sports events. Every year, the men's World Cup races take place here, and twice before it was competition site for the Alpine World Ski Championships (1985 and 2005).
Biathlon in Antholz
The biathlon competitions will be staged at an absolute biathlon stronghold in 2026: Antholz in South Tyrol has been a fixture in the IBU World Cup calendar, and has hosted the Biathlon World Championships five times. The next BWCH in February 2020 will also take place here.
Südtirol Arena seats around 19,000 spectators. Located at around 1,600m/5,249ft above sea level, it is the highest biathlon stadium in the World Cup. The mighty mountain peaks of Rieserferner Group, and the picturesque Lake Antholz provide a beautiful backdrop for the fights for gold, silver and bronze. Besides, it will be the first time in Olympic history, that medals will be awarded on South Tyrolean soil.
Snowboard and Freestyle in Livigno
Livigno, where the Olympic competitions in snowboard and freestyle skiing will be decided in February 2026, is located right by the Swiss border. The ski resort is particularly popular among young winter sportsmen, and its numerous terrain parks and fun lines promise tons of action. Small stadiums will be set up in Mottolino (10,000 seats), Sitas-Tagliede (10,000 seats), and Carosello 3000 (3,000 seats) for the Winter Games. One of the Olympic Villages will also be situated in Livigno, only a few minutes' walk away from the competition sites.
Ski Jumping, Cross Country, and Nordic Combined in Val di Fiemme
Ski jumpers, cross-country skiers, and Nordic combiners willl also return to well-known World Cup venues for the 2026 Olympics in Italy. They will fight for Olympic gold in Val di Fiemme, in the Province of Trento. Jump competitions will be staged at 'Trampolino dal Ben' in the small town of Predazzo, where 20,000 spectators can watch the two ski jumps (hill size 134 and 106) from the stands.
The cross-country races will be hosted in the neighbouring town of Tesero. The cross-country arena Lago di Tesero was fully renovated in 2012, and seats up to 30,000 visitors for the Olympics. Floodlight facilities even provide for night races. The tracks in Val di Fiemme are among the most diverse in the world, and a fixture in the World Cup. In early January 2020, for instance, the final of the legendary Tour de Ski will be decided here.