Top 5 Ski Resorts In France You Can't Miss

Top 5 Ski Resorts In France You Can't Miss

Why come to France to ski? Because the Alps offers everything you holiday could ask for! It's a place where anyone will feel "tall" after skiing it. The ski resorts in France are like French food and red wine. They are famous for for many reasons. The unique geographical environment and reasonable prices make this the first choice for skiing in the European Alps. Let's talk about the five major ski resorts in France.

1. Three Valleys Ski Resort 'Les Trois Vallées'

Image by Nadine Doerlé

The Three Valley Ski Area (also translated as Three Canyons in China) is currently the world's largest connected ski area, with 335 ski trails with a total length of more than 600 kilometres and a maximum altitude of 3,230 meters. The entire Three Valleys is composed of 8 ski resorts including Courchevel, La Tania, Méribel, Brides-les-Bains, Val Thorens, Les Menuires, St-Martin-de-Belleville, Orelle, among which are Courchevel and Méribel (Beautiful Bell), Val Thorens (Torrens Valley) these three ski resorts are the most famous. This is the most famous ski area in France and even the world. It has everything from affordable to luxurious services and supporting facilities. It is loved by skiers all over the world. A lot of athletes are also doing tier training at this place for the 2022 Beijing winter Olympics game. If you like to visit the 2022 winter Olympics game in Beijing, don’t forget to get you Chinese visa first.

The diversified trails of the Three Valleys allow skiers of any level to find their own area here, from a large number of gentle beginner areas to the two big black tracks Le Grand Couloir and Couloir Tournier. Every year, the ski resort places interesting props on some junior trails for children to play, such as snowmen, bells, igloos, etc. There are also many children's entertainment facilities in each ski resort.

How can I get there

The nearest town to the Three Valleys Ski Resort is Moûtiers, about 20 kilometres away. The Three Valles is about 107 kilometres from Grenoble (about 1 hour and 10 minutes by car), 77 kilometres from Chambery (about 55 minutes by car), 200 kilometres from Lyon (about 4 hours by car) and Paris about 600 kilometres (about 7 hours by car).

Ski ticket price

The price of a one-day ski pass for the Three Valleys Ski Resort is 60 euros, and a one-week ski pass is 294 euros. If 2 or 3 people buy a weekly pass together, there are discounts of 10 and 15 euros per person.

2. Chamonix 

Image by Sofia Iivarinen

In the hearts of all ski lovers, Chamonix is a place that needs a pilgrimage. This small town on the border between France, Italy and Switzerland hosted the first Winter Olympics in 1924 and was also the base camp for climbing the famous European highest peak, Mont Blanc. Even if you don’t know how to ski, you can enjoy the 360-degree view of the Alps by taking the Southern Needle Cable Car. It attracts mountain-climbing and extreme skiing enthusiasts from all over the world. If you want to participate in all kinds of difficult skiing activities here, challenge the famous trail Vallée Blanche, in addition to hiring a guide, you also need to have high physical fitness and Ski technology.

For beginners, what Chamonix can actually bring may not be as loud as his name. The beginner slopes here are not as many as other ski resorts. But coming here to ski is a milestone for any snow friend. n addition to the Chamonix Valley area, it is also connected to the surrounding Evasion Mont-Blanc, Verbier-Grand Ski in Switzerland, and Courmayeur in Italy. Buying the largest Mont Blanc unlimited ticket, less than 300 euros a week, allows you to experience a total of 3 countries, 4 ski areas, a total length of more than 400 kilometres of slides, the highest altitude is 3840 meters.

How can I get there

Chamonix is about 200 kilometres from Grenoble (about 2 hours by car), about 80 kilometres from Geneva (about 1 hour by car), about 150 kilometres from Chambery (about 1 hour and 30 minutes by car), and about 220 kilometres from Lyon Km (about 2 hours by car), about 615 kilometres from Paris (about 5 hours by car).

Ski ticket price

The Mont Blanc ski pass in Chamonix costs 62 euros a day, and a one-week ski pass costs around 299 euros. You can also buy a separate Chamonix valley area ski pass, which is slightly cheaper than the pass.

3. Les Deux Alpes and Alpe d'Huez Ski Resort in the Oisans Valley

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Grenoble, the capital of Isère in southern France, is a university city and a technological city. Within an hour’s drive from Grenoble, there are large and small ski resorts, among which Les Deux Alpes and Alpe d'Huez are undoubtedly the two most impressive.

The Alpe d'Huez ski resort was the site of the sledding event for the Grenoble Winter Olympics in 1968 and is an important stop in the famous Tour de France in summer. As one of the most famous and largest ski resorts in Europe, Alpe d'Huez ski resort has 133 trails of various types with a total length of 250 kilometres. There is the Sarenne (16km), the longest black run in the world, and the Tunnel (you have to go through the mountain to access), one of the hardest pistes in the world. At the same time, it is a super large ski resort suitable for skiers of all ages and levels. Alpe d'Huez ski resort is perfect for everyone to practice their skiing. There are multiple pistes of all gradients, so one can quickly improve their skills. For middle-level 'snow lovers' its perfect. n addition to skiing, you can also participate in various fun activities such as snow hiking, dog sledding, paragliding and so on.

Not only that but just around the corner lies Vaujany, a beautiful little chocolate box village perched on the mountainside. It provides 'backdoor skiing' into the ski area and is definitely the most beautiful part of the mountain in this area. It is perfect for young families and groups of 50 years+ adults.

Les Deux Alpes' slopes, on the other side of the valley range from 1650 to 3,600 meters above sea level. It is the second oldest ski resort in France (after Chamonix) and has the largest glacier trail in France. There are several great fun skiing areas. The Snowpark is top-notch, ranging from small jumps and small rails that novices love, to big features that masters love. If you don’t have a level of Freestyle, then look and copy the pros! The glacier from 3,200 meters to 3,600 meters has a large wide and flat blue piste. Due to it's height, summer glacier skiing is also possible.  At the top of the mountain, there is another cable car leading to the La Grave ski resort on the other side of the mountain. There is an all-inclusive trail, which is definitely a paradise for masters.

How can I get there

The closest city to the Alpe d'Huez and les Deux Alps ski areas is Grenoble, which is 63-70 kilometres away (about 1 hour to 1hour 20 mins by car). The ski resort is about 120 kilometres from Chambery (about 1 hour and 50 minutes by car), about 173 kilometres from Lyon (about 2 hours and 10 minutes by car), and about 640 kilometres from Paris (about 6 hours by car).

From Grenoble, follow the A480 motorway in the direction of Sisteron/Gap and then connect to the D1091 road in the direction of Briançon and Bourg d'Oisans to Alpe d'Huez.

From Paris Lyon station or other metropolitan railway stations, you can take the TGV high-speed train or TER intercity express train to Lyon and Grenoble station, then transfer to the OuiBus to Bourg d'Oisans, the market town in the valley. The train from Paris to Grenoble takes about 6 hours.

Ski ticket price

The price of a one-day ski pass for Les Deux Alpes is 39.2 euros and a one-week ski pass is 240 euros. The price of a one-day ski pass for Alpe d'Huez is 51 euros, and a one-week ski pass costs 259.5 euros.

4. Killy Ski Resort 'Espace Killy'

Photo by Robert Bye

Espace Killy, located in the Tarantès Valley, is named after the French ski legend-3 Olympic gold medalist Jean-Claude Killy. The ski area consists of two large ski resorts, Tignes and Val d'Isère. There are more than 300 kilometres of ski trails and the highest altitude is 3450 meters.

Tignes and Val d'Isère are paradise for skiers with a certain amount of experience. The high-quality snow and the design of the piste make the road full of fun inside and out. For beginners, Tignes provides 8 free lifts, allowing beginners to experience skiing without paying the cable car fees at the beginning. Another highlight of Tignes is the unique underground funicular. I believe most snow lovers are accustomed to closed gondola, semi-closed seat cable car, or unclosed lift, but subway-style trains are not common. Another high-speed cable car transports hundreds of people to an altitude of 3,000 meters in a short time, directly to the Grande Motte glacier. Travelers with insufficient skiing skills can easily take the cable car up and down to experience the feeling of seeing small mountains at high altitude. The Val d'Isère ski resort will host the Alpine Ski World Cup in mid-December. In addition to major events, the ski resort also has a large number of ski trails to meet the needs of skiers of all levels.

Each ski resort in Espace Killy provides a wealth of entertainment activities. The Val d'Isère ski resort has several well-respected and well-known restaurants, such as Les Barmes de l'Ours and L'Atelier d'Edmond. In addition to classic French cuisine, it also offers specialties from the Savoie region, such as Cheese, sausage, etc. Feast on a cheese fondue with high mountain characteristics, and you will be more relaxed when you ski on the snow the next day.

In addition, many small villages in the huge area of the ski resort also have many distinctive buildings, such as wooden houses with traditional ceiling decorations, and Baroque churches. You can also explore after skiing. Have you ever thought of spending Christmas and New Year at a ski resort? Every year on the evening of December 24 and December 31, Tignes will hold two grand performances. It's very exciting to spend Christmas in a snowy atmosphere and leap into the new year.

How can I get there

The closest town to the Val d'isère and Tignes ski slopes is Bourg-Saint-Maurice, approximately 30 kilometres away. The ski resort is about 160 kilometres from Grenoble and Geneva (about 1 hour and 30 minutes by car), about 130 kilometres from Chambery (about 1 hour and 30 minutes by car), and about 240 kilometres from Lyon (about 4 hours by car) , About 690 kilometres from Paris (about 7 hours by car).

Ski ticket price

The price of a one-day ski pass in the Espace Killy area is 55.5 euros, and a one-week ski pass is 278 euros. You can also buy a separate Tignes area ski pass or a ski pass for the Val d'isère ski resort, which is slightly cheaper

5. Ski Paradise 'Paradiski'

Photo by Nicolas Michot

La Plagne, also located in the Tarantès Valley in Savoie, and the nearby Les Arcs and Peisey-Vallandry together form a ski paradise (Paradiski) The ski area is now operated by Alpies, a world-renowned ski resort group. Paradiski has 232 ski trails with a total length of 425 kilometres and the highest altitude is 3417 meters. It also has the most modern large high-speed cable car in the world today.

Some people say that this is the most diverse ski resort in France, and the three ski resorts have their own characteristics. In contrast, Les Arcs has more skilful and more demanding trails, while La Plagne has a large number of smooth trails, suitable for beginners and casual skiers. There are large woods in the low-altitude area, and sliding in such a scenery is definitely a rare experience.

In addition to ordinary skiing experience, you can also try La piste de l'aiguille Rouge, one of the best ski trails in Europe, and experience the ultimate experience of 7 kilometres non-stop, from 3200 meters above sea level to 1200 meters. In addition to sliding, there is a very good view on the 3200-meter viewing platform, where you can overlook the three countries of Switzerland, Italy, and France.

How can I get there

The closest town to the Les Arcs ski area is Bourg-Saint-Maurice and the closest town to the La Plagne ski area is Aime la Plagne. The ski resort is about 150 kilometres from Grenoble and Geneva (about 1 hour and 30 minutes by car), about 169 kilometres from Lyon (about 3 hours by car), and about 650 kilometres from Paris (about 7 hours by car).

Ski ticket price

The ski pass for Ski Paradise Resort is 59 euros for one day and 298 euros for a week. You can also buy a separate La Plagne ski pass or a pass for Les Arcs and Peisey-Vallandry ski resorts, which are slightly cheaper than unlimited passes.

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