If you are seeking as much snow as possible, we have uncovered the five top ski resorts in France for high altitude.
It can be frustrating when the ski season is brought to an abrupt end by a lack of snow. So, we have found the top five ski resorts in France, at the highest altitude, as they benefit from being snow sure and have fabulously long ski seasons.
For those that want to be on the slopes for as much of the year as possible, see exactly what France has to offer.
1. Val Thorens, 2,300m-3,230m
With the boast of being not only the highest ski resort in France, but the highest in all of Europe, Val Thorens is the go-to location for those with an appetite for the most thrilling heights. The highest peaks are Péclet and Thorens at 3,230m. Val Thorens was purpose-built to be the ultimate skiing experience within the Three Valleys.
But should you ever want to change up the scene, you’ll also have easy access to Méribel and Courchevel. You can access 600km of ski pistes with a full lift pass. Val Thorens has fantastic snow cover, and it promises skiing from Christmas right through to Easter.
Another bonus is that Chambery airport is just an hour and thirty-five minutes away.
2. Tignes, 2,100m
Tignes connects with the well-known Val d'Isere, between the two, you can glide down grently and test yourself on the steepest of slopes, with a total ski area of 300km.
When one thinks of Tignes, one immediately pictures the Grande Motte Glacier, standing dominant and tall along the skyline. Not only is the Grand Motte Glacier beautiful to look at, but it also means that you can ski here near enough all year round.
Another stand-out feature of Tignes is the “Eye of the needle” rock formation that sits at the top of the Aiguille Percée lift. Although Tignes is praised for how snow sure it is, there’s also a great selection of non-skiing activities such as golf, archery, and yoga.
3. Alphe d’Huez, 1860m
If you are seeking a super family-friendly vibe from your ski chalet, then base your property hunt in Alphe d’Huez. The ski resort has been awarded the Famille Plus, a national French award that recognises resorts for how accommodating they are for families.
To gain the award, resorts must meet six criteria, including prices to suit all budgets and all ages; entertainment suitable for all ages; and a high standard of professional childcare. Alphe d’Huez also has the most extensive range of nursery slopes, making it an ideal place to take your children and have them fall in love with skiing.
Alphe d’Huez is also special for being south-facing and sunny. Experiencing 300 days of sunshine a year has earned the resort the nickname, l'Isle du Soleil, “Island of the sun”.
As such, the resort is as busy in summer as in the winter, and often features in the Tour de France.
4. Val d’Isère, 1,850m
In combination with neighbouring Tignes, Val d’Isère provides you with 300 pistes and plenty of other off-pistes to explore. While there are options for all abilities, Val d’Isère is home to the black rated piste, La Face. It is a challenge for the bravest of skiers to face (pun intended, sorry).
While Val d’Isère is known for its high-end hotels, its Old Town is made up of old stone and wooden-clad chalets, giving it an authentic, old-fashioned feel.
The snow season often lasts right through to the beginning of May, and in the summer, you can make the most of the green valleys, lakes, waterfalls and the bike park.
5. La Plagne, 1,800m
La Plagne is made up of eleven villages, each with its own character. The lowest village, Plagne 1800, is made up of cute wooden chalets while Belle Plagne towers mightily 2,100m above sea level.
La Plagne boasts of a lively atmosphere, with a choice of bars, nightclubs, and live music. And if you fancy a change of snow, as part of Paradiski, La Pagne is connected to Les Arcs/Peisey Vallandry via the Vanoise express. In La Plagne, you’ll find 134 groomed slopes, while the north face of Bellecôte has brilliant off-piste options.
Moreover, La Plagne has areas of a slightly more gently gradient, making it well-suited to walkers. Plus, discover the gorgeous, protected fauna and flora in Vanoise National Park. If you enjoy kayaking, head to the Isère river. You will also find France’s only bobsleigh track here.
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