Last updated on February 23rd, 2024 at 01:39 pm
The expert’s guide to the best ski resorts in Europe, from classic resorts in the Swiss Alps to where to go ski touring in Scandinavia
It’s a rather cruel twist of fate that the inaugural ski season after the COVID-19 pandemic, which was eagerly anticipated, ended up being plagued by inadequate snowfall. This resulted in delayed openings and shortened ski seasons across Europe. As we approach the 2023-2024 season, though snowfall remains uncertain (although climate change projections suggest a potentially delayed start), optimism abounds, and the Alpine region is buzzing with anticipation.
1. Val Thorens – France
Val Thorens and its teams of professional and passionate people, do their best to provide travelers with magical experiences. A common vision, “LIVE UNITED” which has been written for almost 50 years, and which has only one goal: create together unique, festive, gourmet or sporting experiences. At 2300 metres above sea level, Val Thorens innovates and creates experiences.
5 times awarded the title of best ski resort in Europe, Val Thorens has also been awarded several times with the title of best ski resort in the world.
Val Thorens has constantly evolved since 1971 and it is close to celebrate its 50th anniversary and has never stopped questioning and renewing itself. Val Thorens it is the highest point of the 3 Valleys, the largest ski area in the world and benefits from a location which 48 years ago was qualified too remote, but the truth is that it boasts beauty and charm.
Vincent Lalanne, director of Val Thorens, said “Val Thorens has achieved the impossible by becoming the highest ski resort in Europe. Since the 1970s, sportsmen and mountain dwellers, who helped build this project, have given it exceptional fame to Val Thorens such as the Goitschel sisters”
A pioneer station in terms of technological transformation such as the drone of the piste service, which assists the daily missions of ski patrollers, Val Thorens relies on excellence in all sectors. The goal is to always create unique memories and lasting bonds between its clients and inhabitants
“This award recognizes imagination, a taste for risk, a pioneering spirit and teamwork, based on a common philosophy, LIVE UNITED. However, this is a great responsibility and an obligation of excellence that always drives us to work for the improvement and satisfaction of our customers”. Vincent Lalanne, director of Val Thorens.
Open & close dates: 25 Nov 2023-5 May 2024
Sanitary measures: All professionals of Val Thorens who adhere to the Clean United Label promise to respect the guidelines and recommendations of their respective professional sectors. This commitment is valid for both the application of sanitary protocols and other recommended measures to help control the virus.
Travelling to France: Travelling from EU countries is allowed without restrictions.
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Chambéry (1h30), Lyon (2h), Geneva (2h30).
Where to Stay: La Datcha Val Thorens Click Here
2. Kitzbühel – Austria
Kitzbühel is a perfect choice for skiers looking for the best ski slopes in Europe. You have also ranked Kitzbühel in first place of the best ski resorts in Europe for the New Year and in the first place of the most beautiful ski resorts in Europe.
Considered the most legendary sports destination in the Alps, Kitzbühel, the legendary Hahnenkamm, a long sporting tradition and pioneering ventures in Alpine golf and winter sports have all contributed to Kitzbühel’s worldwide reputation.
A places of contrasts where rustic Tyrolean guesthouses rub shoulders with international designer boutiques. Travellers can experience Kitzbühel in many ways, from the alleyways in the medieval old town and the breathtaking pistes to the town’s elegant hotels and scenic hiking trails.
Tyrol’s most sophisticated resort attracts visitors from all over the world, including celebrities, with its traditional character combined with modern flair. International events like the Snow Polo World Cup, multi-award-winning restaurants serving up creative cuisine, and a state-of-the-art conference centre show how Kitzbühel manages to move with the times while staying true to its roots.
Open & close dates: 25 Nov 2023-7 April 2024
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Salzburg (1h10), Innsbruck (1h20), Munich (2h10).
Where to stay: “A-ROSA Kitzbühel” Located in the best rated area in Kitzbühel. Health & Safety measures taken
3. Alpe d’Huez – France
France plans to stop imposing a strong lockdown if the covid-19 epidemic resumes. For added health protocols, we recommend that you book your accommodation and ski passes in advance because social distancing rules reduce the number of people allowed in hotels and cabins.
Open & close dates: 02 Dec 2023-21 April 2024
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Grenoble (1h30), Lyon (2h), Geneva (2h40).
Where to stay: https://chamoisdor-alpedhuez.com/en/ Health & Safety measures taken.
4. Cortina d’Ampezzo – Italy
When you ski in Cortina you will experience perfectly groomed slopes. And while you ski, remember to stop from time to time to enjoy the uncomparable views on the Dolomites and beautiful valley.
In Cortina visitors love to take a stroll around pedestrian Corso Italia, a legendary street that offers one of the best shopping scenes in the Alps, but if you’d rather meet up with your friends, head to one of the many wine bars for aperitivo. And the day is not complete without dinner out: let yourself be spoilt for choice between a fancy restaurant and a traditional agriturismo.
Open & close dates: 25 Nov 2023-1 May 2024
Entry restrictions: Specific entry rules for each country are available at ViaggiareSicuri
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Treviso Airport (130km) but you can also land in Venice (150km).
Where to stay: Cristallo Hotel Cortina. Health & Safety measures taken.
5. Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn – Austria
Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn have been placed among the best ski holiday destinations for many years.
The Skicircus Saalbach Hinterglemm Leogang Fieberbrunn is not only one of the largest ski areas in Austria, with an extensive range of exciting activities, international flair and breath-taking natural landscapes, it is the coolest ski area in the Alps. 270 km of slopes and much more are waiting to be discovered. With this health crisis we all want to get back to nature and Saalbach Hinterglemm is exactly what you need.
For a safe & nature winter holiday in Europe, book your stay in Saalbach Hinterglemm. Do not delay in booking your accommodation and your ski passes, health regulations will reduce the number of available accommodation and the number of places in the cable-car cabins.
Open & close dates: 08.12.2023 bis 01.04.2024
Health Protocols: To guarantee you a safe holiday, the resort’s employees working in contact with customers have been regularly tested since September 1st. So far, nearly 25,000 tests have already been carried out on tourism professionals (hotels, campsites, hostels).
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Salzburg (1h30), Innsbruck (2h20), Munich (3h).
Where to stay: “Vaya Fieberbrunn fine living resort“. Health & Safety measures taken.
6. Zermatt – Switzerland
Among the most luxurious ski resorts in the world, Zermatt is also one of the best resorts in Europe and best destinations to visit by train.
Open & close dates: All Year Round Skiing
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Geneva (2h45), Milan (3h)
Where to stay: Zermatt Peak Chalet or visit here for more luxury chalets https://hauteretreats.com/city/zermatt/
7. Megève – France
Open & close dates: 9 Dec 2023-14 April 2024
Nearest airports: Book your flights to Geneva/ Switzerland (1H20 by car). Check the travel restriction for Switzerland, they may be different from those from France
Where to stay: https://hauteretreats.com/city/megeve/