A ski holiday which includes the whole family is great in so many ways. As well as skiing there are lots of other reasons to choose a ski resort as your family holiday destination. There is so much to think about, where to go, what to pack and where to stay. If you are an avid skier, then you may be looking to incorporate a great family holiday with the individual enjoyment of getting out onto the slopes. Some of the best family ski resorts are located in Europe and the Alps, so here are five of the best ski destinations for families looking for adventure.
1) Avoriaz, France
Avoriaz is a popular family friendly resort because of its excellent safety standards, making it a great place to stay for families with children. The whole village is car free which is one of the draws for those who want an intimate alpine feel. You and your luggage are taken to your ski-in/ski-out accommodation by snow cat or horse-drawn sleigh. An adventure in itself. Another great feature of Avoriaz is The Village des Enfants which has a unique take on teaching kids how to ski.
Children from the ages of three to sixteen years old can take part in this ski school which encourages the concept of learning through play. The sheltered area of the nursery slopes makes it the perfect place to leave the children with their professional instructors. The timings also mean you can drop of the children, then still make it on time for your own adult lessons.
Chalets can offer ski in ski out lodgings for those heading straight to the slopes and there are lots of other activities to try here too. Ski joering is a unique sport you can find here which is a combination of sleigh riding and skiing. You hold on to long reigns attached to the horse’s and are pulled along on skis.
2) Obergurgl, Tirol, Austria
An amazing glacier resort, Obergurgl guarantees excellent skiing conditions for the whole family. The village is set at just under 2000m and its high-altitude slopes reach over 3000m, which is one of the highest for a traditional Austrian resort. The altitude means that there is reliable snow for a long season which typically lasts between November and May.
Children are well looked after in Obergurgl and you can get some good deals too. Under nines have free ski lift access and there are different ski clubs to choose from including the resort’s Bobo Ski club for outdoor activities or the Bobo kindergarten for indoor adventures.
Staying in this resort is also a family friendly affair. You can choose family accomodation which offer everything you could need for everyone on their holiday. Plus, there’s plenty for the whole family to do but there are also childcare options to choose from enabling the parents to have some adult time both on and off the slopes.
3) Wengen, Switzerland
Another car free resort, Wengen is a charming and friendly ski village which keeps families returning year after year. For beginners and children there’s a nursery slope right in the centre of the village and two kindergartens which offer child care for babies as young as six months. There is also a good ice rink, and a cinema to use during your down time too.
Found high above the Lauterbrunnen valley, the village is only accessible by cog railway which is very sweet and means the resort offers fantastic panoramic views. After the resort stop, the cog railway goes right up through a tunnel and emerges at Jungfraujoch. Which is the highest railway station in Europe at 3450m. From here you can enjoy even more amazing views of the Aletsch glacier which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Skiing here is normally a mix of beginners to moderate abilities, although does cater for the more advanced. The atmosphere being about everyone enjoying their ski holiday together rather than for elite skiers. Relax and enjoy a lovely atmosphere and excellent skiing for all.
4) Les Gets
Always a favourite for families Les Gets is a traditional resort which offers the perfect setting for your family ski holiday. The village is pretty and charming, and the skiing has something to offer for for everyone. The runs nearest to the resort are great for beginners but there’s also the Portes de Soleil nearby for more experienced skiers which on a whole means the destination is excellent for all abilities. There is also an ice rink, a cinema and sports centre to use when the family are not on the slopes.
For kid’s adventure time away from skiing you can visit Les Gets adventure park which offers more than 86 games over seven courses. Plus, other snow adventures such as snowshoeing, snow park and nearby dog sledding too.
There are babysitting and childminding services available in Les Gets as well as accommodation to make your stay in Les Gets with kids easier. Family friendly chalets are popular here and you will have everything you need for children of all ages.
5) La Plange
If you are travelling in a family of varied skiing abilities, then his might be the destination for you. La Plange is within a ski area that combines eleven resorts across the varying mountain terrain. This means that all types of slopes are available for visitors staying in the resort. All of the resorts are linked by free buses and a cable car making it easy to get around.
There are plenty of other activities to try here other than skiing. For example, there’s an artificial frozen waterfall to try ice climbing, the chance to try night time skiing at Jean-Luc Crétier ski stadium and also an Olympic Bobsleigh run open to the public which is fantastic fun. For younger children there’s lots to enjoy too. Including the Igloo Village and the Ice Cave, and for the adventure seekers, the Super Tyro zip-line, paragliding, snowmobiling and of course, good old sledging.
Within this destination you will find child friendly chalets are available in the resort which have everything you need for you for a family stay. Anything you need for young children or old, you should be able to source through your tour operator, chalet manager or within the resort. This includes stair gates, high chairs push chairs and even formula milk or baby food upon request.
Where will you choose to spend your family skiing holiday?
Like every other type of holiday, you will be balancing having plenty to do to keep everyone happy with the relaxing and fun element of being away. There are some resorts that offer more for older or younger children depending on your family’s demographic. You must get that balance right for your own family to ensure an enjoyable time for everyone. It can be hard to please every personality. But as you can see there are plenty of places that will give you the time to enjoy activities with the kids as well as your own skiing time. Which resort will you choose for your next family skiing holiday?