Ever Thought About Going Skiing in the Alps?
By. Mirjam Jaeger
Ever thought about going skiing in the Alps ?
Well if any of you are planning a ski trip to Europe, here are some tips where to go and what to expect.
Being Swiss I skied in a lot, like really a loooot of resorts all over Europe and also around the world. I’ve skied in Chile, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Czech Republic, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and of course the United States.
After I have seen that many different ski resorts I have to say that there is nothing like the Alps though. If you’re looking for some really good slope or backcountry skiing then the Alps are the place to be!
The resorts are big, the slopes steep and long and whether you’re a beginner or an expert you will find the right slopes that fit your level.
Here are some of my favorite resorts in the Alps :
Arosa is where I grew up skiing. My parents took me on vacation to Arosa for over 14 years ! It is not the biggest resort in Switzerland but enough diversity for a week of vacation. Arosa is situated at the end of a valley and doesn’t get any trough traffic. All the slopes are really sunny, you barely don’t get any shadow and it’s really relaxing if you’re looking for not too many day tourists cause most of the people that ski in Arosa are there for longer than just a day as it is a lil further away from the highway. It is around a 2hour 30 min drive from Zurich airport. There is also a train you can catch and the ride up to Arosa is really beautiful. It is in the German part of Switzerland.
Another great thing about that resort is that there are plenty of hiking trails for any age if you wanna go enjoy the nature and be away from the busy ski slopes. All sunny and relaxing.
Definitely a great resort, also for families, if you’re looking for a relaxing ski vacation, riding great fun slopes.
Verbier is one of the most famous ski resorts in the world. It is situated in the french part of Switzerland, around a 2 hour 30 min drive from Geneva airport or a 4h drive from Zurich airport. You can also go there by train and bus.
The resort itself is beautiful, full of typical Swiss chalets but very international. English turns out to be spoken just as much as French. If you go there you have to be prepared that everything is gonna be really really expensive. It is worth it but just be prepared. From Verbier you can ski over to different valleys and it is one of Europes biggest ski resort, it’s impossible to ski all the resort in one day 4vallees shows you which other ski resorts Verbier is connected too. The other ski resorts are smaller though and there is not as much night life going on where in Verbier there is.
Verbier is always very busy though. As soon as it snows be prepared that there is gonna be lift lines cause the backcountry skiing is really good but also dangerous. Only go if you know what you’re doing and know the resort. If you’re looking for a trendy resort that requires quite some skiing skills you will love Verbier.
PORTES DU SOLEIL (Switzerland/France)
Portes du Soleil consists out of 12 different ski resorts, all connected. They are in Switzerland and France and you can just ski over the boarder for the day. It’s pretty cool. It is huge and again, one of the biggest or even the biggest ski resort in the world. It totally depends where you stay though. All the villages aren’t like Arosa or Verbier. The 12 resorts aren’t that fun and are mostely small. Avoriaz, France is big but there is no cars and you will see high buildings instead of nice chalets. I wouldn’t suggest that resort if you’re looking for a nice typical European resort. The appartements are small, the hotels aren’t good standard (like in most of the ski resorts in France). The skiing is great in Portes Du Soleil, really great, definitely a must see but the different resorts to stay at aren’t just that great.
Geneva would be the closest airport to all of the 12 resorts there.
The French part of Portes du Soleil will be cheaper than the Switzerland part but also the standard of the housing/hotels lower.
Zermatt is where the famous Matterhorn can be seen. It is one of the most beautiful resorts in Switzerland, there are no cars in the village, you will have to park the car further down the valley and take the train or an electro taxi up to the resort. In the village you will have to walk or take electro taxis. Only fresh mountain air without any car pollution….the village has really really old chalets and every time I go there I’m still amazed with how beautiful everything is.
There is a glacier you can ski all year around and that is also open in winter and from which you can ski down to Cervinia, Italy, the resort on the other side of the Matterhorn.
The slopes are long, interesting and there is a couple of different mountains to ski on. There is a lot going on at night as well, a lot of good restaurants and really good hotels. Once again this resort is quite expensive so don’t be surprised.
You can get to it in about 3hours and 30 min from Geneva airport or in about 4 hours from Zurich airport, of course also with the train.
Definitely a must see if you want a relaxing vacation, with good skiing and high quality in hotels and food.
If you have any questions about any of these resorts or also other resorts, just comment on this blog post and I will answer your questions.
A trip to Europe is definitely worth it if you’re a real ski addict. It is very different from all the resorts here in the US !