Posted on 15 November 2018
The vast number of things to do in Alpe D’Huez makes it ideal for both non-skiers and those who live for the slopes. Sitting in the French Alps’s Rhone region, the area’s main claim to fame is 250 kilometres of piste lying on the Grandes Rousses Massif.
However, as its reputation grows as a dual season resort, more off slope activities are springing up. In fact, many visitors these days are non-skiers, eager to experience local culture, adventure activities and ways to relax.
10 Exciting Things to do in Alpe d’Huez
1: Landscape Views at Pic Blanc View Point
Standing at 3330 metres, Pic Blanc, the highest point in the region offers spectacular landscape views. Amateur and experienced photographers love it up there, but even if you choose not to take the camera, it is still a powerful reminder of Mother Nature’s beauty.
On a bright day, people can see a fifth of France from the viewing point. Some visitors stay overnight but most travel up for a quick visit in the DMC cable car running in summer and winter. Check weather reports before leaving to make sure visibility is high.
2: Get Active in Alpe D’Huez Sports Center
Palais des Sports et des Congres is an all-encompassing super centre for those who still like to be active off the slope. Various activities include badminton, squash, archery, table tennis, football, climbing walls, an outdoor ice rink, indoor swimming pool, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, multi-sports – bodybuilding and cardio rooms, and basketball.
3: Alpe D’Huez Golf Course (Summer)
As one of many summer activities in Alpe d’Huez, the 9-hole golf course opens its doors to beginners, amateur and experienced players. Extra facilities include a shop, Clubhouse, and driving range and for added fees, a resident coach can help you improve your swing. For friendly competition, check out their tournament days.
4: Paragliding : An Unusual Thing To Do
The French Alps is all about altitude but to go even higher, sour through the skies. Le Signal peak is the perfect place to ski and then take off for a bird’s-eye view over the town. Your experienced instructor handles all technical aspects leaving you free to be amazed at stunning landscape views. Flights last for 5 minutes which is ideal for first timers while dare-devils often go further afield, on a 20-minute trip.
5: Helicopter Tours : Sky High Activities
So para-gliding isn’t for everyone but if you still want an amazing bird’s-eye view, take to the skies in a helicopter. Operating all over the French Alps, White Tracks does everything by helicopter including airport transfers and sightseeing tours. If the quote is out of your budget range, club together for a collective once in a lifetime experience.
6: Alpine Coaster
Last December, an Alpine coaster ride opened to much fanfare and so far, it has received rave reviews from families. One and two seat sledges run at 40 kph for 700 metres. The track ranges between 1.2 to 1.5 metres above ground and includes two tunnels, 65 metres of vertical drops, and 10 bends. It’s a great way to break up the day and have a little fun at the same time.
7: See the Ice Cave Museum: Grotte De Glace
Sitting at the top of the DMC2 gondola, Ice Cave Museum is a remarkable collection of sculptures proving when we want to get creativity, awesome results inspire us all. An underground gallery of 120 metres features many themes from year to year including China, Egypt, antique Greece, fire and much more. Children love this short activity lasting 20 minutes. Grotte De Glace is the fourth most popular activity on Trip Advisor.
8: Visit Eglise Notre Dame des Neiges
Even non-religious people will enjoy a visit to Eglise Notre-Dame-des-Neiges church to admire their modern architecture. Open since 1970, and dedicated to the Virgin Mary, its name translates into the lady of our snow. One architectural aspect people always admire is the pipe organ crafted into the shape of a hand.
9: Take On The Famous 21 Cycling Bends
French cycling enthusiasts know about France’s 21 hairpin bends. As the most challenging Tour De France stage, the difference in height between the starting and finishing points of Bourg d’Oisans and Alpe d’Heuz is a staggering 1143 metres. This is only for hardcore biking enthusiasts, so anyone else should cheat by doing the turns in a car, on non-cycling days.
10: Go Dog Sleighing
One of the most popular things to do in Alpe d’Huez is dog sleighing with Second Souffle Activity Centre. Departing from Bourg d’Oisans, this is also a year-round activity because in summer, people swap sleighs for bikes. Alternatively, link up to the dog with a harness to go dog hiking. Second Souffle also offer horse riding lessons for beginners and experienced riders.
Further Reading: For more information about Alpe d’Huez and other French Alp destinations, check out our ski blog and news article. Otherwise, if you are thinking about buying a ski property, view our portfolio of ski apartments and chalets, or contact us to speak to an experienced sale representative.