For families, choosing the right ski resort is the most important part of planning a sporty winter holiday. To ensure that everyone is happy, there are lots of things to consider, ranging from accommodation to childcare. This can be a difficult and complicated task even for veteran holidaymakers. To give you a helping hand, here are a few things to look out for. |
Guaranteed Snow – Ski seasons can be long, sometimes too long, and tour companies might entice you with cheap prices off season – but then you find no snow when you get there. Nothing will sap the energy from the party like turning up and finding no snow, so it is always useful to consult independent websites beforehand.
Travel – No one likes travelling, especially young children. It’s a good idea to keep the travelling to a minimum where you can; this means shorter flights and shorter transfers. A resort further abroad may be cheaper, but is it worth the misery?
Accommodation – Good quality, family-friendly accommodation is your first priority. Although a little expensive to begin with, catered chalets end up saving money over the week and make the whole holiday easier for tired children and their parents.
Nurseries and Ski Schools – The resort you choose must have slopes for all abilities. If your children have little to no skiing experience, it is also a good idea to check that the resort has reputable but affordable ski nurseries and schools.
Off-Piste Activities – On a week-long trip in the mountains, everyone will need a break from the slopes every so often. Make sure that your resort has lots of off-piste action, such as swimming pools, sledging or animal farms.
The Best Resorts:
With all factors considered, here are some of the best resorts for families.
La Plagne, France – La Plagne is a huge ski area spread across ten different villages, each of which has plenty of catered chalets and at least one nursery. There is also a ski school or two in every village, some of which are run by Brits to help with the language barrier.
Ylläs, Finland – For a more Christmassy atmosphere that the kids will love, head off to Ylläs in Finland. This resort has your off-piste activities covered, offering snowshoeing, reindeer sleigh rides and sledging. Accommodation here is not right on the slopes, which means that the chalets are quieter at night and everyone gets more sleep.
Klosters, Switzerland – Klosters has a reputation for family fun like no other. This is mainly because of Madrisa Land, Switzerland’s largest adventure park on Klosters’ Sonnenberg Mountain. The park contains loads of extra safe areas for the kids to have good old-fashioned fun with snow ball fights and more.
Alpbach, Austria – A small, cosy resort, Alpach is popular with British families looking for a less hectic ski holiday. There is a great selection of catered chalets built right next to the ski nurseries, which is perfect for the little ones.
Belinda Smythson works for Ski Amis, a specialist ski travel agency and booking service that has been helping avid skiers and hikers craft their perfect winter holiday for over a quarter of a century. If you're looking for catered chalets, La Plagne is an ideal choice. For accommodation anywhere in the Three Valleys, Paradiski, Espace Killy or Chamonix Valley, Ski Amis is the go-to company for winter sports fans searching for the holiday of a lifetime.
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