A Simple Guide to Choosing Your Perfect Ski Destination
In Ireland, snow means M50 closures and epic fails on RTE News. In the Alps, snow means winter wonderlands with towering peaks blanketed in white.
We don’t know if it’s the fresh alpine air, or the adrenaline of cutting through the fresh white powder, but skiing holidays are BIG with the Irish. You simply haven’t had a hot chocolate until you’ve tasted it at 2,000m on the side of a mountain.
Plenty of Europe will be white by November; so how do you choose where to go? Here are a few ski destinations to consider based on your skills.
Destinations for beginner skiers:
Söll is great value because the resort is part of the SkiWelt area. This is Austria’s largest linked ski and snowboard area; its 279km of slopes includes the famed Kitzbühel. It’s a good bet for a group with mixed experience, and there are decent facilities for families, including nursery and children-only slopes. After dark, the pretty village of Söll has a lively après-ski atmosphere.
Mayrhofen is a great choice for first-timers. The instructors have a great reputation, and the crowd-free nursery slopes are excellent. The terrain parks are some of the best in the Alps, attracting a steady amount of snowboarders. Up the mountain, you’ll find some delicious and good-value mountain restaurants.
Soldeu is part of the Grandvalira ski area in the Andorran Pyrénées. The terrain is excellent for beginner and early intermediate skiers, and the ski schools with their native English speaking instructors get consistently good feedback. The facilities for families are good, with nurseries and snow gardens for young children.
Destinations for advanced skiers:
Verbier is one of the most luxurious ski resorts in the world – just ask Prince Harry or Richard Branson! Some parts are under snow all year-round, and you can see Mont Blanc from some of the slopes. Experienced skiers come for the renowned off-piste slopes. Extreme snow-boarders love Verbier’s powder and terrain; it’s on the Freeride world tour. The 410km of pistes keeps intermediate skiers happy; in a whole week you won’t do the same run twice.
Val Thorens, France
Val Thorens is the highest resort in the Alps; expect incredible views of sky-scraping peaks. All skill levels are catered for; gentle nursery slopes for beginners and challenging off-piste terrain (bring a guide). It’s big with snowboarders for its terrain park and reliable snowfall. Every visitor loves the convenience of ski-in/out accommodation.
Courchevel is part of the famous Trois Vallées, the biggest linked ski area in the world. The village at 1850 is known as the ‘St. Tropez of winter sports’, because of the airstrip, Michelin-starred restaurants and passing celebrities. The other three villages are different in atmosphere and reasonably affordable. The pistes are amongst the best groomed in Europe, and cater to every level and skill. Gentle slopes keep beginners happy, while the advanced will come for slopes that hosted the 1992 Winter Olympics.
Fancy a Ski Holiday?
Of course you do! Why not check out our great value all-inclusive ski packages here