France is known as a destination of culture, history, and cuisine. While sightseers flock to Paris and beach-lovers to the Cote d’Azur, ski enthusiasts can find great conditions on the slopes of France’s mountains. Destinations like Val d’Isere have hosted Olympic races, while ski towns, nestled in the scenic valleys in the Alps, welcome skiers from around the world with a mix of culture and comfort.
If you are looking for a true European ski vacation, then France is a great place to come. You can find skiing paradise in the best ski destinations in France. Here are some great options for your next ski vacation in France.
Val d’Isere has hosted Olympic alpine skiing races and has been the training ground for some of Europe’s best skiers. There are runs for people of every skill level here, but more experienced skiers will truly thrive in Val d’Isere’s conditions. In addition to steep slopes, there is plenty of terrain available for off-piste skiing. Another thing that makes Val d’Isere a great destination: the high number of non-skiing attractions. Like many resort areas in France, Val d’Isere has a lively apres-ski scene, but there are also opportunities for dog-sled rides and snow-shoe treks in the mountains and valleys surrounding the ski slopes.
This resort area has runs for skiers of all experience levels. Novices will welcome the gentle slopes of the beginners’ runs, while more practiced skiers will enjoy steeper runs and the chance to ski mogul courses. Deep powder runs and some great off-piste opportunities round out the impressive ski menu at Courchevel. This is a popular resort area, so there are plenty of attractions and distractions away from the lifts and slopes. A lively apres-ski scene can be found here, as can family-oriented activities like tobogganing and horse-drawn sleigh rides.
This resort area sits near Mount Blanc, which boasts the highest summit in the European Alps. While many of the other resorts on this list do a good job of catering to novice skiers, this one is focused on more advanced skiers. The runs are very long here, with plenty of steep drops. Chamonix is known throughout Europe for its off-piste runs, which offer a nice mix of challenging terrain, speed, and jaw-dropping scenery. This is also one of the best ski destinations in France to mingle after a day on the slopes. People hit the bars and nightspots after dark, and there are plenty of live music performances and special events to make the nighttime as exciting as a day on the slopes.
St Martin de Belleville
People who are coming to France to ski and to expereince a stereotypically quaint French mountain village will find what they are seeking in St Martin de Belleville. A pretty village located at the bottom of the ski slopes, this is the perfect place for a romantic ski vacation. People who don’t want to be distracted by a typical sli resort scene will certainly welcome the relative quietness of this village.
Les Gets and Morzine
These unique ski resorts sit near the Swiss border in the popular Portes du Soleil ski area. Les Gets is geared towards families and is arguably the best place in France for skiers with children. A great menu of beginning and intermediate runs give novices and younger skiers a lot of variety, something that they will have a hard time finding in many European ski resorts. One area inside Les Gets is actually only open to children, and adult skiers are not allowed. Morzine is an adjacent resort area that also caters to novice and intermediate skiers. Lift tickets for both resorts can be bought at the same time.
More advanced skiers in the Portes du Soleil area can find skiing paradise in Avoriaz. In fact, people who are staying in the Morzine area can catch a local shuttle bus and be at the bottom of the lift that leads to the best runs in Avoriaz in under five minutes. It is possible for a family with a mix of advanced skiers and novices to base themselves in Morzine and give every member of the family a great ski experience without any hassle whatsoever.
Have you enjoyed a ski vacation in the alps? Tell us what you think the best ski destinations in France are in the comments section below.