Alpe d’Huez is in many ways the perfect ski resort; it’s high altitude at 1,869 metres (although the highest point is over 3,000 metres – and you can ski at that point even in the summer). It’s glacial, and offers skiing to suit all abilities. Snowboarders are also well catered for, with some great snowparks. The transfer from the airport is pretty short and there’s plenty to do for the non-skier, including snowshoeing, helicopter sightseeing rides, ice skating and ice driving.
A plus for families is the ‘Famille Plus’ award from the French Tourism Organisation, meaning that Alpe d’Huez is particularly suitable for family ski holidays.
Thanks to the purpose-built nature of the resort, we feature a wide range of catered ski chalets that are ski-in, ski-out, many with either a hot tub or sauna.
Located in the exact centre of the Portes du Soleil ski area, Avoriaz (1,800m) offers a whopping 650km of terrain. The high slopes are snow-sure, the lifts are reliable and high-tech, and there are (count them) five snow parks and a super-pipe.
Avoriaz is a modern resort and is completely pedestrianised; sleds and horse-drawn sleighs are the norm, as is skiing back to your chalet. Avoriaz isn’t a top resort for après-ski or energetic nightlife but it is near Morzine, which has more choice of bars and restaurants.
Avoriaz is a mecca for skiers and snowboarders looking for ski-in, ski-out catered chalets. Almost every chalet we feature is in a true ski-to-the-door location. There aren’t too many catered ski chalets in Avoriaz and they’re very popular, so we’d recommend booking early.
One of our favourite places in the Alps, Chamonix is busy town rather than a purpose-built ski resort. It features several ski areas and has a vibrant town centre with a wide range of shops and bars.
Chamonix is great for the serious skier, but a little limited for beginners. However, if you have a group of dedicated skiers or are booking a family ski holiday for experienced older children, Chamonix will tick your boxes. The quantity of nightlife will help!
We have a range of catered ski chalets both in Chamonix and its close neighbour Argentiere (the place to be for expert skiers!).
Perhaps the glitziest ski resort there is, Courchevel is not just a ski resort but one of the global destinations for the rich and famous who flock there just to be seen. To some, this can be a major draw to the resort, to others it can overshadow something that Courchevel was famous for before the jet-setters discovered it. The skiing, which is world-class. Most skiers and snowboarders who have visited a lot of resorts will put the 3 Valleys in their list of top resorts, and Courchevel is generally recognised as having the best skiing the 3 Valleys have to offer. This does cause some people to argue that Courchevel has the best single ski area in the world…
Most of our catered chalets in La Plagne are ski-in ski-out; the resort is an excellent choice for skiers and boarders of all abilities. The ski area consists of several villages, including Belle Plagne, Les Coches, Montchavin, Plagne 1800, and Plagne Centre – all of which are very different, so it’s important to pick the right location for your needs. We can help you choose the best chalet; having spent seasons in La Plagne we know the area well.
La Rosiere is a popular ski resort thanks to a wonderful ski area and a pretty resort centre. We feature a good range of chalets here, many of which family friendly and offer childcare facilities. Several of our chalets are located in the Les Eucherts area of the resort which is a very convenient destination thanks to the proximity of the pistes, lifts, ski school meeting points and ski hire shops too. A lovely place to stay!
La Tania is a lovely place to stay, situated in the vast 3 Valleys ski area. A traffic-free resort, it’s a great option for families and has several ski schools, tons of childcare options and great activities for kids. Adults don’t miss out either, with some good bars and restaurants, and live music somewhere on most nights. La Tania is also good for beginners, with a short nursery run in the heart of the resort.
We have a varied selection of chalets here, many of which are ski-in, ski-out and have hot tubs too. La Tania also has several independently-run chalets which offer superb service and value for money.
One half of the enormous Paradiski ski area, Les Arcs offers superb skiing for all levels. There are several areas in which to stay, the high altitude resort are called Arcs 2000, Arcs 1950, Arcs 1800 and Arcs 1600. A little lower down the valley are the more traditional villages, Peisey-Vallandry and Peisey-Nancroix.
Most of the catered chalet properties are in Arcs 2000 which is the perfect base for high altitude convenient ski access. The resort is small but well equipped with a few shops and bars but skiers looking for a resort with lots to do after skiing are better served elsewhere. Arcs 1950 is exclusively self catered apartments but good quality ones. This part is the newest of the resorts and does feel someone “Disneyland-esque” but again, you get great ski access and a little more going on than in 2000. Arcs 1800 has a handful of chalets and lots of self catering apartments, it is also the liveliest part of Les Arcs and has a decent selection of shops, bars and restaurants. Last but not least are the two villages of Vallandry and Nancroix. These are our favourite places to stay in Les Arcs because of the traditional charm and super tree skiing that are on the doorstep. The Vanoise Express also departs Vallandry so getting over to La Plagne is super simple.
Les Carroz is a small village in the Grand Massif ski area, the fourth largest linked ski area in France. The resort is only an hour from Geneva airport, and has the laid-back atmosphere of a traditional village. Les Carroz is a great choice for families with a variety of activities for children on offer. Les Carroz is at the base of the ski area and snow can therefore be a problem in the early or late season. The skiing around the village is all tree lined and therefore a great place to ski when the bad weather rolls in! Not a huge amount of choice but Carpe Diem and Marlow Bar are worth a visit. There is a club in the village too, Club 74.
Les Deux Alpes
Les 2 Alpes is located in the Southern Alps and only an hour and a half from Grenoble airport. The resort is one of the liveliest of any ski destinations with a huge range of bars and nightspots. The ski area is very high, the village is situated at a modest 1650 metres but skis up to 3588 metres. Les 2 Alpes is a great choice for skiers looking to make their money go as far as possible, some of the chalets here are very good value indeed. The town centre is quite sprawling and therefore understanding the geography is the key to making sure you find the right location for you. The most central lift is the Jandri Express gondola, we generally recommend judging locations based on distance from this lift. If you are close to this lift, you are very central which is great for those looking to make the most of the nightlife but less so if you are averse to some ambient noise. If you prefer a more tranquil location, these do exist but you will be a bus ride or a long walk from the skiing.
Les Gets is a pretty little ski village in the Portes Du Soleil ski area, just 90 minutes from Geneva airport. The village is a lovely place to stay and best suits families or groups of skiers looking for a charming Alpine setting in which to relax. It doesn’t really suit guests looking for nightlife or a vast selection of resort amenities. Les Gets is one the far right side of the ski area (as you look at the piste map) and its surrounding ski area best suits beginners and intermediates. There are a good range of green and blue slopes, most of which are in the trees, meaning the skiing isn’t too badly affected during inclement weather. To access the rest of the enormous Portes Du Soleil ski area, ski down to Morzine and then walk from the bottom of the Pleney piste for 5 minutes to the Super Avoriaz gondola and away you go. This isn’t that convenient so we tend to recommend Les Gets for family groups that will be happy with the immediate area. Whilst Les Gets is not a resort that lively groups choose to stay in because of the quieter atmosphere, there is a surprisingly good choice of bars. Certainly more than enough to offer a choice of venue for a couple of drinks after skiing or heading into town for a beer or two after dinner.
Les Menuires and Reberty are two smaller villages located just below Val Thorens. Reberty is practically the same resort as Les Menuires, in fact it’s a small collection of chalets just above Les Menuires. The resort itself could never be described as “pretty”, it is purpose built and not particularly attractive. Whilst it doesn’t offer aesthetic value, it does offer amazing ski access to almost every single property in the resort. There are quite a few pistes above Les Menuires however they do tend to be all very similar. In spite of this, they are superb for intermediate skiers or experts looking to get their ski legs back before heading out to explore the rest of the 600km of pistes on offer. The beauty of the location is that both the Val Thorens and Meribel ski areas are only a lift or two away.
The beating heart of the 3 Valleys, Meribel is the centre-point of the largest and oft-argued best ski area in the world. Meribel is one of the most popular destinations for the Brit skier for a good many reasons. First and foremost is the ski area which attracts vast flocks of winter sports enthusiasts every single year. Not only is there something for everyone, I’d argue that in terms of skiing, there is everything for everyone. For beginners, intermediates and experts, the 3 Valleys gets 5 stars for every category in both quantity and quality. Meribel also has a vast range of accommodation, offering a range of properties for budget, mid-range and luxury budgets. Meribel is one of the most aesthetically pleasing “mega resorts” thanks to very strict building regulations that insist all buildings are built in the traditional French alpine style. For those looking for a “pretty, chocolate box resort” look no further. The next arrow in the Meribel quiver is the Apres-ski and nightlife which is as good as you’ll find in France. Whether it be the brand new Folie Douce franchise or the tried and tested Rond-Point or “Ronnie” to its many fans, Meribel is one of the very few French resorts that can hold a candle to the Austrian competition.
Morzine is a great destination for a ski chalet holiday, especially if you want to arrange your own travel. Due to its close proximity to Geneva airport, there is an abundance of high-quality independent chalets.
A flourishing Alpine village between Lake Geneva and Mont Blanc, Morzine is in the middle of Portes du Soleil, one of the largest ski areas in the world. Investment in ski infrastructure, as well as new bars and restaurants, are making Morzine a top choice for both families and groups.
Sainte Foy is a bijoux resort located very close to the monster resorts of Val d’Isere/Tignes and La Plagne/Les Arcs. The resort is very pretty and best suits to two types of skiers; families and powder addicts. The other resorts that are close by are very easily accessed, especially if you have a car with you, making this resort an excellent base from which to explore the neighbouring areas. The ski area in terms of pistes is very limited but this is reflected in the price of the lift pass which is almost half that of other major French resorts. It does offer some incredible off piste opportunities though, and this is perhaps the main draw to the resort for good skiers.
A picturesque little ski town in the Grand Massif ski area. We can’t think of many ski resorts as pretty as Samoens, it’s a lovely spot for a relaxed week away from the hustle and bustle that has become common-place in the mega-resorts on offer close by. The resort suits families perfectly and boasts one of the shortest transfer times, just one hour away from Geneva airport. If you are looking for a picturesque and relaxed setting for your next ski holiday then Samoens might well be exactly what you are looking for. Samoens is a gorgeous mountain village at the foot of the Grand Massif ski area. The village centre is very pretty indeed, with lots of old buildings, shops and a lovely weekly market too. Samoens also has a decent selection of bars and some lovely shops along it’s main street, from bakeries, supermarkets and bric-a-brac shops too.
Serre Chevalier, (or Serre Che) is a large ski resort located in the southern Alps, close to the Italian border. The resort is spread out over several villages, all of which are between 1350m and 1600m above sea level. The skiing goes up to 2730m too. Serre Che is very much an undiscovered gem as far as the Brit ski market is concerned and therein lies its attraction. It still feels like a proper French resort, English is spoken everywhere but not to the same extent as resorts such as Meribel and Val d’Isere where it is practically the official language. The slopes outside of French holidays and the weekends are quiet and the ski area itself is very big indeed, certainly more than enough for a weeks holiday.
The main villages that we feature accommodation in are Villeneuve, Chantemerle and Briancon but there is also Monetier and Salles Les Alpes. Briancon is actually a proper town (the highest in Europe apparently!) and has all the amenities you would expect, supermarkets, bars, restaurants etc. You don’t get the feeling of isolation that you do in some of the purpose built resorts in France. The resorts themselves (especially the old town part of Villeneuve and Monetier) are very picturesque, the medieval fort in Briancon is even a UNESCO world heritage site. As far as nightlife and après-ski goes, Serre Che is relatively low key but more than able to keep most groups amused.
St. Martin de Belleville
St. Martin de Belleville is a quaint village located below its bigger and scarier neighbour Val Thorens. There isn’t a lot going on here though, so party animals are better suited elsewhere. What St. Martin does offer is high quality accommodation (there are more high standard catered ski chalets here than in Val Thorens itself) in a peaceful and convenient setting. It basically does everything Val Thorens doesn’t! St. Martin has remained an authentic Savoyard village, complete with clock tower, narrow streets and stone-clad farms. Gateway to the 3 Vallées ski area, St. Martin’s reputation is for high quality catered ski chalet accommodation, a friendly, laid-back vibe and outstanding cuisine. Here, you’ll find La Bouitte, the first Savoyard restaurant to be awarded three Michelin stars.
In St. Martin, you can stay anywhere from a converted traditional barn to a modern mountain chalet. Aside from great skiing, you’ll find a choice of winter activities here including Nordic dog-sledging by day or by night. There’s also the St. Martin museum, beautiful Baroque-style churches, spas and concerts to keep you entertained.
Tignes is one of France’s premier resorts. One half of the famed “Espace Killy” ski area, the other half being Val d’Isere. Tignes is one of the most snow sure resorts in the world thanks to its high altitude and it being the home of the imposing Grande Motte glacier. The skiing itself is a melange of world class off-piste, beautifully groomed pistes and some skiing for the very experienced only. Whatever your level, Tignes will have more than enough skiing for you.
As a resort, Tignes could never be called beautiful, so if you are keen to stay in a resort that offers aesthetic beauty as well as incredible skiing then Val d’Isere may be a better choice. However what Tignes lacks in charm, it more than makes up in ski convenience and value for money. Tignes is fragmented into 3 main villages, the central hub being Tignes Le Lac. Splintered off Lac but still high altitude are the villages of Le Lavachet and Val Claret. All 3 areas are well linked by an efficient and free 24 hour bus service.
Further down the valley, just above the damn that splits Tignes and Val d’Isere is the lovely little village of Les Brevieres. Each of these areas have their own pros and cons but are all excellent places to stay depending on your reasons.
Tignes Le Lac and Val Claret are the better choices if you are looking for some shops, nightlife and après-ski whereas Le Lavachet is more tranquil location. All 3 can offer good ski access.
Perhaps the most famous ski resort of them all, Val d’Isere is one of the top destinations for a catered chalet holiday. We have a wide variety of chalets to choose from, whether you’re looking for luxury with a hot tub, a ski-in ski-out location or the latest special offer. Arguably the most famous ski resort on the planet. For almost every skier or boarder, “Val” ticks every box regardless of what they are looking for from their resort of choice. First and foremost, the skiing is incredible. Linked with Tignes, the ski area is called Espace Killy, named after the area’s favourite son. The area is vast, with over 300km and 97 ski lifts. Val d’Isere best suits intermediates and upwards although beginners are also well looked after thanks to a wide range of excellent ski schools. The pistes are immaculate and the snow park is world class but perhaps the main reason that experienced skiers and boarders flock to the Espace Killy is the off-piste which is as good as you’ll find in any major ski resort in the world. We do recommend you use a qualified guide to explore the off-piste, not only will it guarantee that you find the best stashes of powder quickly but safely too.
Our chalet holidays in Val Thorens offer high-altitude skiing in the largest linked ski area in the world. The majority of our chalets here are situated very close to the slopes, so it’s a great destination for serious skiers and boarders who want to get on the mountain quickly. Val Thorens is part of the Three Valleys ski area, the largest linked ski area in the world with 600km of piste to choose from. The resort is famous for two main things, its incredible high altitude skiing and its vibrant nightlife scene. The resort is purpose built but it is not as unattractive as some of the other resorts of its type. Thanks to its purpose built nature, most of the properties offer excellent ski access although some of the chalets are ski in, but this involves taking an non-pisted track. Please call for details of a specific property. The village centre has a covered “mall” with a good selection of shops.
The resort is at 2300m, the highest ski resort in Europe. It’s a very popular choice for early and late season for obvious reasons. The skiing suits skiers of all abilities too, there is a great choice of nursery slopes in and around the resort itself and some amazing descents from the Caron peak.
One disadvantage to the resort that skiers should be aware of is that because of its height, it is above the treeline and therefore in times of bad weather the skiing is inaccessible.
Val Thorens is a serious resort, it best suits skiers looking for amazing terrain and heady nightlife.