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mucche al pascolo a livigno

The animals of Livigno

Cows, alpacas, marmots and… huskies: close encounters with the local fauna


Spending a holiday in Livigno in summer means reconnecting with nature: the peaks of the Alps provide a panorama of your stay in Alta Valtellina, the valley slopes offer forests and trails for trekking, hiking and mountain biking, the green meadows fill the eyes and satisfy the eyes. And the animals that populate the Livigno valley in large numbers also contribute to creating a bucolic setting, offering families and children many opportunities for close encounters. So let’s find out which animals can be encountered in Livigno.


Cows grazing or in stables in Livigno

cow in livigno

Livigno’s animal par excellence is the cow. The mountain cows graze happily on the green meadows of the Livigno valley and it is not uncommon, during a walk in the mountains, to hear the sound of the cowbells of these animals: follow it and it will bring you face to face with a herd that spends its days grazing on the pasture grass. In the summer months, the shepherds usually take Livigno’s many cows to the mountain pastures, where the climate is cooler and there is more mountain grass available, while the village meadows are mown and the hay is stored as fodder for the winter. In September, one of Livigno’s most important events is the Alpen Fest, which celebrates the transhumance of the cows that return from their high-altitude pastures to the village stables: a veritable parade of animals, accompanied by farmers dressed in typical Livigno clothing. In addition, there are numerous farms in Livigno that offer the possibility of visiting the stables with the cows and witnessing the milking of the animals.


Wild animals in Livigno: chamois, ibex, marmots

ibex and wild animals in livigno

Mountain holidays are an opportunity to explore an environment rich in natural wonders: there is no shortage of excursions in Livigno, and even by following a simple itinerary suitable for everyone, there is the possibility of reaching unspoilt corners and admiring stupendous views. With a bit of luck and patience, and perhaps with a telescope, it is also possible to observe from afar some of the wild mountain animals that populate the peaks: the roe deer with their leaping gait, the chamois that run wild on the mountain slopes, the ibex with their characteristic horns, the eagles that circle the sky. The easiest animal to perceive, but more difficult to spot, is the marmot, whose whistle can be heard echoing in the air: seeing marmots in Livigno is now quite easy even at relatively low altitudes, the best place being Val Federia.


Horses, ponies and alpacas in Livigno

livigno alpaca

Riding in Livigno is one of the most popular family activities: you can do it on horseback, in one of the town’s riding centres that organise courses and excursions with instructors, or in the saddle on ponies that children are sure to adore. But one of the attractions that children love most is Livigno’s alpacas: in the Tresenda area, at the southern end of the valley towards the Forcola pass, there is a farm that houses, among other animals, some wonderful specimens of llamas and alpacas. For children, there is the possibility of stroking and getting to know these animals up close, as well as an excursion with an alpaca.


Huskies in Livigno

husky sleddog with karts near livigno

Livigno is the place to meet animals that cannot easily be found elsewhere. Not only cows, sheep and other mountain dwellers: Alta Valtellina is also home to the Nordic dogs that live at the Husky Village in Arnoga, Valdidentro, a few kilometres outside Livigno. This facility for sled dogs, the only one of its kind in Italy and the Alps, is home to more than 70 examples of Alaskan Husky, a type of breed that is directly descended from the great champions who in past centuries pulled sleds driven by musher dogs in prohibitive conditions, in the territories of Alaska and Greenland, inspiring among other things the famous cartoon Balto. The Husky Village organises unforgettable husky-dog sledding trips in summer or husky-drawn sled rides in winter for adults and children (children under 13 years of age ride with an instructor), at the end of which you can familiarise yourself with the sled dogs, petting them and discovering their sociable and playful nature.

Discover the experience with the huskies in Livigno

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