Best Places To Ski In France

Best Places To Ski In France

Ah, Oui Oui, skiing in France, what a dream. Croissants and coffee in the morning, perhaps a fondue for dinner, can we think of any more cliches? Perhaps a ski instructor who gets a little too close wearing a vintage ski suit, saying” it’s all in the hips”? Did we take it to a weird place? Maybe? But regardless, we were so excited to put together a list of the best places to ski in France.  We didn’t even mention Tignes or Val D’Isere, we wanted to delve off the beaten track. . . 

Best Places To Ski In France

We don’t do things by half here at Ridestore, we want to make sure you have all the information in one place, making sure that we provide you with the ultimate guide to skiing in France. No need to search for information in any other place, whether you want to know how much your ski pass will cost, how many km of ski-able terrain there is, all the way to the insider tips.

Related Reading: 100 Best Ski Resorts In Europe 2019/2020 Season

So let’s dive in! 

Best Places To Ski In France

Why don’t we begin with the ski resorts located on the Upper East side, bordering with Switzerland and Italy. 

Les Gets

Les Gets
Credit: Les Gets - Page Officielle Facebook

Getting There

Where: Haute-Savoie, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, South-Eastern France.
Closest Airport: Geneva 75 km 1 hr 5 ms
Closest City: Geneva is a beautiful city and really close, It’s well worth a visit.
Driving Tip: Its a long drive from Northern Europe and can be done over 3 days. You can even add just an extra hour to the Journey and go via Luxembourg, which is stunning. Its a 2-day drive from Central Europe and you can stop is the beautiful and historic Baden Baden.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €260
Average price- main course: €13
Average price – Beer: €8
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €105

Get To Know Les Gets

Les Gets is a lovely little resort where one can experience all the fun and exciting thrills of a classic ski holiday in the french alps. Skiing, apres, spa, friendly locals et al! 72 runs across 117 km ensures there is something to please everyone. In terms of infrastructure, it seems as if the resort itself has deigned an experience geared towards beginners with a myriad of top notch, award winning ski schools speaking a variety of languages (specialising in English). Just an hour from Geneva makes this a beginner skiers paradise. 

Insider Tip: Head to Bar Bush for apres.  It’s a well known name in town, always popular with locals and seasonnaires alike.  real spot.


Ridestore Recommends: Hop over to neighboring Morzine for an afternoon and do a Cocktail master class at Avalanche Cocktails Morzine.

Morzine

Morzine
Credit: Morzine Avoriaz Page Officielle Facebook

Getting There

Where: Portes du Soleil Area on the Swiss Border
Closest Airport: Geneva 88km 1 hr 25 ms
Closest City: Another resort conveniently close to Geneva, which means you could even spend a day in the city or visit nearby Lakes!
Driving Tip: Its a long drive from Northern Europe and can be done over 3 days. You can even add just an extra hour to the Journey and go via Luxembourg, which is stunning. Its a 2-day drive from Central Europe and you can stop is the beautiful and historic Baden Baden.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €285
Average price- main course: €12
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €110

Get To Know Morzine

Part of the legendary Portes Du Soleil ski area Morzine is a spot! There season  is noticeably shorter, with the epic riding to be had between Jan and March, it fairly unlikely in recent years that you would find favorable conditions during early or late season due to its comparatively low elevation. BUT when the good times roll, they really roll! Morzine itself is home to 107km and 125 runs to please all riders plus an electric apres ski and night life scene! 

Insider Tip: Head over to the Avoriaz side for “The Stash” park designed by Burton for an unforgettabe Park experience.

 
Ridestore Recommends: Freeride lines off the  Pointe d’Angolon, left of the Chamossière lift.  When you get to the arrival point, get your camera ready, you have stunning views of the Mont Blanc before skiing down on the ridge to the Col d’Angolon. 

Chamonix

Chamonix
Credit: Chamonix-Mont-Blanc Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: At the Mount Blanc base, on the border between Italy & Switzerland.
Closest Airport: Geneva 100 km 1 hr 25 ms
Closest City: Although Geneva is the closest city, just across the Italian border and a continued 1.5-hour drive, you can make it to Turin in 2 hours, and Turin is a massively underrated city with stunning architecture
Driving Tip: Central European riders can make this drive over 2 days, head via Frankfurt from the west or Via Nuremberg from the East. Bother cites offer a welcome stopover. From Northern Europe, make the trip over 3 days, stopping firstly in Hamberg then Frankfurt. Or drive via Luxembourg. From the UK it’s an easy drive too. Headfirst to Dover, then across the border, stopping in Dijon for a night before continuing the remainder of the way.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €265
Average price- main course: €11
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €70 (They have a few excellent hostels)

Get To Know Chamonix

Chamonix is the home of freeride skiing. It’s a resort that inspires riders from all over the world. It’s snow sure, long season, insane views and undeniable quintessential French charm. Pus, with Italy just a tunnel ride away, there is a ton of culture to experience which make Chamonix so unique. With the addition of the Sky Way cable car and the on foot access to various view points, one can view the Mont Blanc from the famous Aiguille Du Midi and take in the spectacular views. 119 runs over 119 km plus oodles of off piste zones, Chamonix is paradise. Oh, you also have world class restaurants and epic après ski, brushing shoulder with Russian Celeb royalty! 

Insider Tip: Get ont he Tramway Du Mont Blanc to Nid d’Aigle at 2,372 m, offering breathtaking views of the Bionnassay glacier.


Ridestore Recommends: Head to the Brévent – Flégère sub Ski Resort, which is the biggest ski area within Chamonix and perfect for a challenge. Ideal for intermediate and advanced riders. 

Val Thorens

Val Thorens

Getting There

Where: Tarentaise Valley, Savoie, French Alps
Closest Airport: Chambéry 122km, 1 hr 45 m
Closest City: The beautiful city of Lyon is only 2.5 hours away and is an excellent spot for a city break.
Driving Tip: If coming from Northern Europe head via Hamberg then down to Luxembourg over 3 days. If you are driving from Central Europe, why not drive over 2 days and stop in Strasbourg. Another historic city that’s a must-see.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €256
Average price- main course: €13
Average price – Beer: €8
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €100

Get To Know Val Thorens

Literally skiing in the sky of Europe, its the highest ski resort in the continent, nestled in the famous 3 valleys.  Certainly the local think the skiing in the best in the world, many tourists agree but when you pair that with world class apres ski, (let’ just say, La Follie Douce and let that sink in) it puts Val T up on the global stage. It’s home to 84 pistes over 150 km of terrain but its the above the tree line views that take the biscuit. 

Insider Tip: You catch miss the chance to watch the sun set from the top of the Peclet Funitel then ski or blue Tête Ronde or red Christine.


Ridestore Recommends: Get on the incredible zipline from the top of Le Bouchet! Fly above the slopes.

La Rosiere

La Rosiere
Credit: La Rosière - Espace San Bernardo Facebook

Getting There

Where: Montvalezan, Haute Savoie
Closest Airport: Chambery 135km Aiport 2 hr 20m
Closest City: Bourg San Maurice is just 20km away and although it cant be categorised as a city is worth a stop for Lunch. Plus a better place to stock up on food before heading up the mountain
Driving Tip: It’s possible to do this drive in one day from central Europe, perhaps if you have 2 drivers in the car to split the efforts. From Northern Europe the route via Western Europe is the best and most scenic, even passing by Belgium en route. The drive can be split between 3 days

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €231
Average price- main course: €11
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €90

Get To Know La Rosiere

The perfect mix of Italy and France, just like Chamonix, La Rosiere is also linked to the Aosta Valley, but unlike Chamonix, La Rosiere is quieter, relaxed and homely yet retrained its absolutely epic skiing. 91 runs over 152km. The resort is an intermediates paradise yet there are plenty of harder runs over in La Thuile. It is south facing, but the Italian side faces North meaning the snow quality tends to be better.

Insider Tip: You must head to Italy for Lunch! Try the Polenta and salsiccia which is a regional dish which is delicious. 

Ridestore Recommends: Enjoy the offpiste over at Col de la Traversette.

Montgenèvre

Montgenèvre
Credit: Montgenèvre Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: Hautes-Alpes, South-Eastern France
Closest Airport: 60km Turin 1hr 20m
Closest City: Turin is a really underrated city, architecturally and culturally. It’s worth taking a day in the city!
Driving Tip: Central European drivers need to head via Frankfurt, and if there are 2 drivers, it’s doable in one day, otherwise, stop in Frankfurt and take 2 days. From the North, the Western route is more scenic with the option to pass via Cologne.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €199.5
Average price- main course: €10
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €85

Get To Know Montgenèvre

Part of the well connected, absolutely awesome Milkey way ski area; Montgenèvre is home to 48 runs over 99 km. Ski between France and Italy, over to the lovely resort of Claviere. Montgenèvre is catered for families and for the cost-savvy traveler, coming out on average much cheaper than its neighbours.

Insider Tip: Enjoy some of the fun and exciting non-skiing activities such as sleigh rides, snowmobiling, and  even snow-shoeing.

Ridestore Recommends: Head over to  Sauze D’Oulx and go Heli-skiing! (It’s illegal in France but you gotta love that Italian airspace for powder experiences!)

Next up let’s head south to the French Pyrenees, a totally different experience but one that can’t be missed!

Grand Tourmalet

Grand Tourmalet
Credit: Grand Tourmalet Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: French side of the Pyrenees
Closest Airport: Lourdes 46 km 56 m
Closest City: Lourdes is just around the corner and is a gorgeous city with religious significance but worth a visit for coffee and croissants as well!
Driving Tip: It’s not really feasible to drive from Northern Europe, It would need to be spread over 4+ days. It’s better to fly from all destinations.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €197
Average price- main course: €9
Average price – Beer: €5
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €75

Get To Know Grand Tourmalet/​Pic du Midi – La Mongie/​Barèges

Grand Tourmalet ski area is a paradise for intermediate riders 37% blue runs and 29% red runs and freeriders, the wealth of terrain is massive, grab a map and get exploring. With Grand T being off the beaten ski track, they rarely have crowds, and the resort is mostly populated with locals and families from France and neighbouring Spain so you will have the mountain to yourself. Plus you gotta love those prices,  lt’s make this th new Val D’Isere!

Insider Tip:  Night skiing is a must while in the area!

Ridestore Recommends: Freeride is calling! Enjoy the untapped terrain around Pic du Midi.

Saint-Lary-Soulan

Saint-Lary-Soulan
Credit: Saint-Lary-Soulan Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: French side of the Pyrenees
Closest Airport: Lourdes 76 km 1hr 3m
Closest City: Toulouse only a few hours away and is a charming town that you simply must visit!
Driving Tip: It’s not really feasible to drive from Northern Europe, It would need to be spread over 4+ days. It’s better to fly from all destinations.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €183
Average price- main course: €10
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €80

Get To Know Saint-Lary-Soulan

Welcome to the best-kept secret of the Pyrenees, Saint-Lary ski resort. It offers 100km of ski slopes across 3 areas: Pla d’Adet, Espiaube and Vallon du Portet. Enjoy 360 views of the Pyrenees and some perfectly groomed red and black runs that wind through the forest, plus they are on a north-facing side, which means excellent snow quality. You can eat really well in this town, hearty mountain fair without breaking the bank.

Insider Tip: Eat at restaurant La Grange, its the most delicious restaurent int own.

Ridestore Recommends: Take a day riding freeride with local guide and FJWT champ Polo de Le Rue.

We had to share a few secrets spots! 3 quiet resorts that put skiing and snowboarding at the forefront. Let’s explore. . . 

La Grave

La Grave
Credit: SATG- Téléphériques des Glaciers de la Meije Facebook

Getting There

Where: Hautes-Alpes, South-Eastern France
Closest Airport: Grenoble 121km, 1 hr 50 m
Closest City: Geneva is under 3 hours away and a city that has to be visited, a little slice of Swiss luxury.
Driving Tip: Fron Northern Europe, this drive needs to be done over 3 days, driving through central Europe via Frankfurt. From Central Europe, friends can drive via Nuremberg over 2 days.

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €264
Average price- main course: €10
Average price – Beer: €7
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €90

Get To Know La Grave

La Grave is the holy land for freeriders. It’s not the resort you will read about in the magazines or see posted all over Instagram but its where all passionate and dedicated freeriders go at least one to discover their back county soul.
“La Grave and the massif of La Meije offer the biggest lift-accessed off-piste skiing in the world! Not only that but it is one of the few massifs which has an incredible 2300m of (7545 ft) vertical drop. This off-piste mountain range can provide exhilarating skiing terrain for the advanced skier and tele-marker. The Skiers Lodge is perfectly positioned within only 3 minutes walk to the lift! This lift ascends from the village at 1400m to stations at 1800m, 2400m, 3200m, and finally to Dome de la Lauze, “the Glacier”, at 3550m.”- Our friends at a Grave Skiers Lodge

Insider Tip: Head to the K2 Pub after a day on the hill to cheers to the day and meet locals and fellow kindred spirits. 

Ridestore Recommends: Get a guide for the first few days, it’s worth it to explore the hidden corners of the mountain. 

Sainte Foy

sainte foy
Credit: Sainte Foy Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: Tarentaise, Savoie, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Closest Airport: Chambery 135km Aiport 2 hr 20m
Closest City: Bourg San Maurice is just 20km away and although it cant be categorised as a city is worth a stop for Lunch. Plus a better place to stock up on food before heading up the mountain
Driving Tip: It’s possible to do this drive in one day from central Europe, perhaps if you have 2 drivers in the car to split the efforts. From Northern Europe the route via Western Europe is the best and most scenic, even passing by Belgium en route. The drive can be split between 3 days (Same as La Rosiere, it’s just down the road.)

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €257
Average price- main course: €10
Average price – Beer: €6
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €100

Get To Know St Foy

St Foy is a gem nestled in a stunning Tarentaise, Savoie mountains. On one side you have Val D’Isere and Tignes, on the other La Rosiere and in the distance the breathtaking peaks of the Aosta Valley. St Foy has been adopted by ski loving Brits yet has still managed to retain its small village/local atmosphere. Plus, due to the overall difficulty level for the mountain, it tends to attract a more passionate and dedicated rider crowd.It’s home to 25 runs across 27 km, not an extensive mountain but oodles of touring, mountaineering and off-piste routes in addition to the piste.

Insider Tip: Try torchlight skiing and check out local event calendar, they often have free street concerts in the piazza. 

Ridestore Recommends: Put your skills to the test and try your hand at the Freeride World Qualifier route, ask guides for directions! 

Les Houches

Les Houches
Credit: Les Houches Chamonix-Mont-Blanc Official Facebook

Getting There

Where: At the Mount Blanc base, on the border between Italy & Switzerland.
Closest Airport: Geneva 100 km 1 hr 25 ms
Closest City: Although Geneva is the closest city, just across the Italian border and a continued 1.5-hour drive, you can make it to Turin in 2 hours, and Turin is a massively underrated city with stunning architecture
Driving Tip: Central European riders can make this drive over 2 days, head via Frankfurt from the west or Via Nuremberg from the East. Bother cites offer a welcome stopover. From Northern Europe, make the trip over 3 days, stopping firstly in Hamberg then Frankfurt. Or drive via Luxembourg. From the UK it’s an easy drive too. Headfirst to Dover, then across the border, stopping in Dijon for a night before continuing the remainder of the way. (Same as Chamonix, it’s just down the road.)

Staying There

Average price- 7-day ski pass: €232
Average price- main course: €11
Average price – Beer: €8
Average price- Hotel stay 1 night: €105

Get To Know Les Houches

“Nestled in the heart of the Mont-Blanc Massif, this family resort, with its string of hamlets, is faithful to the traditional image of mountain holidays.”- Les Houches.

Les Houches is Chamonix’s more quiet, relaxed and calm older sibling. Retaining its charm and tranquility. Indeed focused towards families and those looking for a more traditional French village feel. Les Houches has 30 runs over 34 km with 38% of the runs being blue and 45% are red, it’s ideal for intermediates.

Insider Tip: Freestylers need to head to the Bellevue Airpark, its epic!

Ridestore Recommends: There are a few absolute musts in Les Houches; try the famous “Verte des Houches”! Amongst local pro’s and racers it is known as one of the most pretty yet challenging, the run includes the famous “La Cassure (The Break)”, the “Rocher Blanc (White Rock)”, the “Goulet”, and the “Schuss Battendier”. Any intermediates with a competitive side may want to put themselves and their friends to the test.

Best Places To Ski In France

We assume you are on the edge of your seat now, just as we are, ready to book your next French riding adventure right? We hope you liked this article and found it useful, anything we can do to spread the love, passion and excitent for riding, its what unites us after all. . .

Best Places To Ski In France

That’s it for the moment, guys, we hope you find this article useful! France is the ultimate ski destination, offering something for everyone, we hope this article shows that. All the inspiration you could need. 

If you are heading on an adventure this Winter, send us a pic, tag us online and let us know how you got on tag @dopesnow or @ridestore using #Dopesnow #Ridestore.

PS. 

Hey Riders, note from your gal Angelica here. All prices are/were correct at the time of writing through research and extensive knowledge of skiing in France through traveling to these places numerous times! All advice is my own.  However maybe you have some better advice to offer or any addendum or changes to make, in which case feel free to email me on angelica@ridestore.com and we can consider adding them in!  Drive safely if you opt to take a car instead of flying (I also selected resorts that are easy to access), but be sure to stop for regular breaks and take lots of pictures, driving through the French Alps is stunning. – Check out the Viaducts/Bridges around Bourg-Saint-Maurice.

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