The European Alps are home to some of the best ski resorts in the world for family and kids and are surely going to be the flavor of the summer of 2019! Ski resorts are perfect places to escape the summer heat of your respective country and enjoy a cool vacation high up in mountains that brim with snow not to mention the quaint wooden cafes and spectacular panoramic views of the snow-capped alpine landscape. Charming bakeries serving delicious hot snacks, coffee and wonderful European desserts, and beautiful resorts with their warm interiors are bound to make your stay even more memorable. Whether you wish to stroll about in the snow or enjoy an exhilarating skiing run; these resorts offer unlimited fun and enjoyment. So if escaping the scorching heat is a priority for you this summer, check out some of the best ski resorts in Europe!
1. Val Thorens, France
Val Thorens sits at an altitude of 2,300 meters and is also considered to be one of the largest ski destinations in the world. It is typically open from mid November to early May and its highest peaks are Pointe du Bouchet and Cime De Caron. Cime de Caron has is home to the one of the biggest cable cars in the world and has the capacity to accommodate 150 passengers! While not as sunny as other resorts Val Thorens tends to attract visitors that are inclined towards a pure skiing experience and is among the most visited skii lodges in France. It is also a dedicated car-free zone, and has a reputation for providing a wonderful winter sports experience to its visitors. Val Thorens should definitely be on top of your European skiing destination list due to its sheer sportiness and its wonderfully pure mountain resort ambiance!
2. Alpe d’Huez, France
Alpe d’Huez is repeatedly touted for possessing some of Europe’s finest ski slopes. It is an idyllic snowy paradise, blessed with a relatively bright, sunny climate which is surprising given its sub-zero temperatures. It’s various ski runs stretch for over 249 Kilometers and have over 84 ski lifts to ferry eager winter sports enthusiasts about. The resort is also home to the longest ski run in the world; the Sarenne Black Run which stretches for an unbelievable 16 Kilometers! Once a quaint village, located at an altitude of 1860 meters in the Grandes Rousses mountain range, It started developing as a major skiing center way back in 1936 and. While the resort is open all year round, it’s focus shifts to summer sports such as cycling as well as various other cultural festivals during the summer. There are also a vast variety of restaurants, cafes and shops to peruse through if you ever feel like taking a break from its magnificent slopes.
3. La Plagne, France
La Plagne is an area that hosts a group of beautiful family winter sports resorts. It is located in French Alps and is possibly the most popular Ski area in the world; receiving a staggering 2.5 million visitors every season. It was established in 1961 and has seen continued success in the years following its inception. La Plagne was also the site for the 1992 Winter Olympics held in nearby Albertville. While it initially started with a solitary resort, the area has grown to such an extent that that there are now over 11 resorts in the area with each one offering a slightly different skiing experience. Every resort offers all the amenities you’d expect from a state of the art Ski Resort, from internal heating, to internet access to sublime luxury lodge furnishings! And with over 225 Kilometres of slope to explore there’s no reason you’ll ever be let down or bored while tearing across its exhilarating landscape!
4. Saint Francois Longchamp, France
The beautiful ski resort of Saint Francois Longchamp is located and spread along the French Alps, at an altitude of 1450-1650 meters. The best part about this resort is its relative ease of access. It is located a mere 2 hours from major cities like Lyon and Geneva and is 12 km away from the nearest train station. The resort boasts of numerous skiing trails that scale according to skill level so as to provide different level of challenge to both novices and season skiers alike. You can partake numerous activities here such as s dog sled riding, ski lessons and exhilarating descents down the slopes akin to ivory powder! Saint Francois Lonhchamp also offers some of the most panoramic photo opportunities out of all the ski resorts we’ve visited, which will definitely interest all of you Instagram enthusiasts!
5. Saint Gervais Mont-Blanc, France
After going through renovations fairly recently, the ski resort of Saint Gervais has received a major face-lift and looks all set to welcome skiers and visitors once again in 2018! The typical Belle Époque architecture of the resort is still intact and looks majestic alongside its charming neighboring village. Overlooked by the imposing Mont Blanc mountain, the Evasion Mont-Blanc ski area is the third largest in France. The resort has over 450 Kilometres of slopes and to get through all of it should present a mouthwatering challenge to the most adventurous! There are plenty of other activities to do in Saint Gervais that include snowboarding, paragliding, rafting and custom built thermal spas!
6. Saalbach Hinterglemm, Austria
Saalbach Hinterglemm is Austria’s largest ski resort and encompasses an area of 270 kilometers. The resort is equipped with 70 modern lifts that efficiently facilitate the movement of its skiers. the lifts utilize specialized heated seat covers during particularly cold winter days and can accommodate as many as 8 people on one chairlift! Skiing paths for this resort are found on either side of the valley with most visitors favoring the south end due to its relatively sunnier weather. The slopes themselves are well-maintained and allow for lightening fast, adrenaline pumping skiing and snowboarding experiences for enthusiasts of all skill levels. The resort has over 50 mountain huts which serve a vast assortment of local favorites such as schnitzel and bratwurst!
7. Kitzbuhel, Austria
Kitzbuhel is one of the most renowned ski resorts of Europe and boasts of a legendary ‘winter sports destination’ status. The resort has over 230 kilometers of skiing paths along with 57 cable cars and chairlifts designed to ferry visitors about the expansive snow covered grounds of the lodge. The lodge prides itself on providing a variety of slopes for skiers of all aptitudes. The legendary Hahnenkamm, a wonderful ski slope, has contributed a lot to the winter sports tradition of Kitzbuhel. Its delightful neighboring town that shares the same name also has a steady mix of tradition and modernity. International designer boutiques, quality guest houses, and plenty of scenic hiking trails add a new dimension to Kitzbuhel and in turn help attract droves of tourists on a yearly basis.
8. Gstaad, Switzerland
Gstaad in Switzerland is a skiing resort that has carved a particularly cozy niche for itself. It’s garnered a top-class reputation that owes primarily to its high quality services and luxury tourism. Located in the Berner Oberland, it is home to one of the largest ski areas in the Alps. Gstaad has a charming village that comprises of a picturesque promenade. The promenade is lined-up with numerous shops, restaurants, art galleries and hotels. It also has several hiking trails with varying degrees of difficulty. Gstaad is also highly popular with international celebrities and socialites many of which who make the resort their winter holiday home!
9. Baqueira Beret, Spain
Baqueira Beret in Spain is certainly among the top 10 Ski resorts in Europe. It comprises of a large complex with three main skiing areas – Beret, Baqueira and Bonaigua. All three areas have distinct characteristics, modern facilities, and well-maintained ski runs that are suitable for all types of skiers. The resort offers an array of necessary amenities like restaurants, cafes, guest houses, and prides itself on providing the best possible service out of all the ski resorts in the area. There is also a permanent stadium that hosts several skiing competitions and public exhibitions for the entertainment of its patrons. This is just one of the reasons it is among the best ski resorts in Europe!
10. Are, Sweden
Are is the largest and most advanced alpine resort in Northern Europe Located in Sweden, this amazingly diverse alpine resort offers skiing, snowboarding and plenty of other winter sports and activities that suit every level or skill set. And with over 30 state of the art ski lifts visitors should have no trouble finding their way to their favorite slopes. While Are has some highly challenging black and black-diamond ski runs meant primarily for seasoned skiers, there are more than a few easy slopes that are ideal for both children and beginners. Are has served has the venue for numerous winter sports events including 1954 and the 2007 Alpine World Championships! During the summer, the resort offers numerous other sports such as hiking, cross country running and cycling with each sport providing their own unique challenge.
Check out the top 10 beautiful summer destinations for a cool holiday. Looking for beautiful offbeat ski resorts? Check out the Georgian ski resort of Gudauri and our detailed guide of Gudauri. Also have a look at our holiday packages for Europe!