Posted on 18 December 2021
For an alpine getaway, your choice of skiing areas in France is just as crucial as resorts. After all, seven of the world’s and Europe’s best ski areas are in France, so there are many resorts, all of which need careful navigating to make most of your time on the slopes. The good news is that every year, the best ski resorts in France spend roughly 300 million euros on infrastructure varying from snow cannons in low altitude resorts to chairlifts and gondolas accommodating thousands of people every hour. So, skiers will find the perfect area and resort for skiing holidays. Let us look at five major areas that make France the world’s top skiing destination.
Five of the Best Skiing Areas in France
1: Popular Portes du Soleil
Portes du Soleil encompasses 12 resorts spread over France and the Switzerland border. Some purposely built resorts attract criticism for their architecture, while others maintain traditional alpine and sport ambiences and architectural style. Sitting between Lake Geneva and Mont Blanc, skiers quickly access 30 snow parks, 208 lifts, 400 square kilometres of skiing area and 307 pistes. Beginner and intermediate snow fans will be delighted by red and blue runs, but hardcore skiers enjoy a decent selection of green and black. As the closest area to Grenoble airport, skiers who want a short transfer time should head here.
Prominent resorts to stay include…
- Avoriaz Resort: Sitting at 1800 metres, Avoriaz is a purpose-built resort accommodating skiers, hosts freestylers and snowboarders.
- Morzine Resort: With a lively après ski season, Morzine includes a town centre and several smaller satellite districts. Morzine is the Portes du Soleil’s largest town.
- Les Gets Resort: Families and beginner skiers adore Les Gets because of great Mont Blanc massif views, and Geneva is just one hour drive away.
- Beautiful Chatel: Separating into three separate areas, Chatel suits beginner to intermediate skiers and delight in knowing, they heavily invested in snow machines to combat low snowfall.
2: Three Valleys Area and Resorts
Three Valleys deliver in style with a lively après ski social scene. It happens to be the Europe’s largest ski place and a massive winter wonderland playground. Covering 105 square kilometres, expect a variety of runs to suit everyone and smooth operating ski infrastructure accommodating thousands of skiers who enjoy varied slopes. With an average five-month season, three valleys operate efficiently with 300 ski slopes, 163 ski lifts, 32 gondolas, and three cable cars.
Notable ski resorts to stay include…
- Luxury Courchevel: As a hang out destination for royalty, celebrities and anyone who has oodles of cash, Courchevel is France’s most luxurious resort. Holidaymakers and property buyers favour the modern ski-in ski-out chalets.
- Meribel Resort: High altitude Meribel offers an abundance of snow for a sure ski season, alongside glacier skiing and snowboarding opportunities.
- Bride Le Bains: Sitting 20 minutes from Meribel, with excellent deals on ski accommodation, Bride Le Bains is low key but still delivers the perfect settings for an ideal French Alps holiday.
- Menuires Resort: Often called the best ski resort for children, kids enrol in ski schools or private lessons. Menuires offers many off-slope activities and a family-friendly après ski scene.
- Saint Martin De Belleville: Think charm, fine wine and authentic Savoyard cuisine from Saint Martin De Belleville that brims all year round with on and off-slope activities.
- Val Thorens: High level Val Thorens offers well-priced ski passes, well-maintained chair lifts, five magic carpets, and an abundance of blue, red, black, and green slopes.
- Purpose Built La Tania: Initially built for the 1992 Olympics, La Tania sits at 1400 metres and offers a traffic-free village centre with many shops, restaurants, ski schools, and ski hire shops.
3: Skiing in Espace Killy
Home to Tignes and Val d’Isère ski resorts, the big Espace Killy, sits in the Tarentaise Valley of southeast France, and with higher peaks, offers a more extended ski season than Portes du Soleil. Espace Killy delivers it all from lively après ski, relaxation, ski schools and lessons, new luxury chalets and apartments and of course, exceptionally ski infrastructure and slopes. 155 green, blue, red, and black slopes and 78 lifts covering 300 kilometres attract beginners, intermediates, and experienced skiers. Sitting between 1,550 and 3,450 metres, Espace Killy offers plenty of off-piste and cross-country skiing across 3,200 hectares.
Two resorts to stay in include…
- Beautiful Tignes: Tignes offers up five villages to choose from including Les Brévières, 1800, Lavachet, Le Lac and Le Val Claret.
- Val d’Isère Resort: Stylish Val d’Isère sitting among the Vanoise National Park peaks boasts an authentic all-rounder atmosphere accommodating everyone from young to old.
4: Get to Know Paradiski Ski Area
Paradiski ranges from 1200 to 3250 metres, but 70% of it sits at higher altitudes; hence skiers can expect decent snowfalls on their skiing holiday. With impressive views of Mont Blanc Massif, they enjoy 425 kilometres of ski runs, 54 lifts and 200 kilometres of descent. The highest peak, Aiguille Rouge, means “Red Needle,” and skiers flock here for 7-kilometre pistes.
Notable places to stay include…
- Peisey Vallandry: Consisting of five traditional alpine villages linked by the Vanoise Express cable car, locals have fantastic Mont Blanc views.
- Les Arcs Resort: A cable link car links Les Arcs with La Plagne, so skiers have the best of both worlds. Les Arcs received a family-friendly label from the French tourism board.
- La Plagne Resort: Choose from six villages ranging from 1800 to 2100 metres, all of which have that special French ambience.
5: Explore the Grand Massif
The Grand Massif, France’s fourth most extensive mountain ski place, offers 265 kilometres of pistes, 140 slopes and 72 ski lifts. Unlike other ski places, one benefit is lesser crowds at mountain lifts and ski slopes. In addition, this area offers slalom banks and forest trails and 64 kilometres of cross country runs. Starters use two nursery areas with 118 gently slopes, while more ambitious people head to 107 challenging Alp slopes. Meanwhile, 41 other slopes offer more of a challenge.
- Sixt Resort: A small mountain Alp town that perfectly suits a group of friends, where not everyone likes the slopes because there is an ample range of winter off-slope activities.
- Samoens: With traditional French alp vibes, Samoens delivers a charming après ski social scene.
- Flaine: Purposely built at 1,600 metres, Flaine offers easy access to ski places through local lifts, but most people ski in and out of Flaine during winter because the local council banned cars.
- Morillon: Sitting at 1100 to 2100 meters, starter ski fans adore authentic Savoyard vibes and ambience during winter. Morillon is also child friendly.
- Les Carroz: Sitting on a plateau at 1140 meters, Les Carroz accommodates all levels of ski fans and snowboarders in idyllic surroundings against the best forest background.
Also about Skiing in France
Best French Ski Resorts: France’s long list of ski resorts like Chamonix attracts millions of people every year, for a getaway break or somewhere to buy French Alps property. As a prime spot in France, some ski resorts count themselves as Europe’s best, and they tap into ski domains with award-winning terrain for ultimate skiing experiences.
About Us: As a real estate agent operating in the French alps, we give professional advice about ski resorts in a caring manner, always putting buyers’ needs first. Browse our portfolio of apartments and chalets that are the perfect base for skiing in France. Then use the contact details to find out more or talk with an agent about skiing areas in France.