France Ski Resort Guide
France is and has always been the top choice for British skiers. It’s easy to see why, the ski areas are big the skiing is high and snow sure and the ski lifts are fast. Most of the ski resorts are easy to reach whether you choose to travel by plane, train or car.
The most popular ski holiday type in French ski resorts are catered chalets, we offer over 1200 different ski chalets most of which are in France. France also has more than its fair share of quality hotels and the widest choice of self-catered apartments. More and more of our clients are now booking a Club Med all-inclusive skiing holiday. Club Med is a French company that’s delivering such great value for money that nearly one in 10 holidays we now sell is to a Club Med resort hotel.
Popular French Ski Resorts
We love the large linked ski areas such the Three Valleys with 600 km of pistes which links Meribel, Courchevel and the lofty Val Thorens, Europe’s highest ski resort. Other popular ski areas include the Espace Killy which connects Frances number one ski resorts of Val d’Isere and Tignes.
The Portes du Soleil is the world’s largest international linked ski area, with 600 km of popular ski resorts on the French/Swiss border with popular ski resorts such as Morzine, Les Gets and Avoriaz.
The Paradis ski area is the latest of Frances mega linked ski areas and brings together the Les Arcs and La Plagne ski areas to the perfect intermediate ski area. The Grand Massif ski area is little visited (by British skiers) and is a gem that more skiers should visit, the most popular ski resort in this ski area is Flaine.
Don’t miss out on the many ski resorts in France that aren’t big linked ski areas, Most offer over 150km and include ski resorts such as Valmorel, Alpe d’Huez, Les Deux Alpes and Serre Chevalier which are all popular ski resorts with our clients.
France is a good choice for a family skiing holiday, there are plenty of catered ski chalets, some of which have a crèche with childcare available. Club Med also include childcare and full day ski lessons when booking one of their all-inclusive skiing holiday.
Every ski resort will offer some easy runs, but choosing the wrong ski resort could mean you are skiing on just one ski run all week or face sections of steep terrain getting from one easy ski run to the next.
Choosing the right ski resort for intermediate skiers very much depends on your skills and inclination.
You could book one of the ski resorts with a large ski area such as the ski resorts in the Three Valley ski area, which with 600km of piste means you can ski a different area each day. You don’t have to choose one of the big named ski resorts like Courchevel, La Tania is on the same local ski pass and has some of the best runs for intermediate skiers.
Few ski resorts will have enough difficult ski runs to keep most advanced happy all week long, what gets an advanced skiers juices flowing are long runs, preferably steep black, long runs. Ski resorts such as Chamonix with extensive off-piste skiing, or Val d’Isere with some of the best lift-served off-piste skiing are natural choices for advanced skiers, but these are well publicised and after fresh snow, the best steep runs get crowded with advanced skiers.
Catered Ski Chalet Holidays In France
By far and away the most popular ski holiday in France is the Catered ski chalet holiday. It’s one of the most cost-effective ways to spend a week in the mountains. Tour operators rent mountain ski chalets for the season and often staff them with students on a gap year, or more mature couples who cook and clean. Typically a week’s holiday on an off-peak week costs around £600-700 that’s around £100 a day for a bed for a week, included are return flights and transfers and 6x three-course evening meals within most cases unlimited wine, 7 x breakfasts and afternoon tea and cakes.
Self-catering Apartments in France
Some French apartments are like shoeboxes, a 19sqm apartment for 4 people can’t be much fun and certainly won’t give any elbow room. However, in recent years, developments such as at Les Arc 1950 have seen the quality and space available improve beyond all recognition, and for skiers on a budget or who prefer to cook their own meals, booking a self-catered skiing holiday is a really great alternative to staying in a hotel or ski chalet.
Club Med All-inclusive Ski Holidays in France
Nearly one in ten ski holidays we now sell is with the French tour operator Club Med, we believe their holidays represent exceptional value for money and the quality of food and drinks from the bar, ski lessons and ski passes which are also included makes sense for families in particular. Club Med ski holidays are more like a resort than just a hotel. We are sure that the all-inclusive nature of Club Med keeps most clients in the hotel for the duration of their holidays apart from when they are skiing. It makes sense! As soon as you step outside you need your wallet.
Après Ski in French Ski Resorts
Nearly all French ski resorts make an effort to offer a good après ski side, although we still prefer the Austrian way best. Après ski is in two parts in France, the immediately post ski party of which the Folie Douce now operating in Five resorts is the clear winner. Later in the evening when the bars come to life. If a party is important for you when skiing pick your ski resort carefully as not all ski resorts in France are equal when it comes to party time.