Home to some of the largest and most famous mountain ranges in the world, Europe boasts a huge number of different skiing resorts to suit your needs. Whether you a relative novice just wanting to learn how to stay on the ski’s without falling over or a more experienced skier looking for a challenge, Europe has it all.
Split into five different and distinct resorts, the largest of which, St Anton, is considered to be one of the most famous ski resorts in the world, Arlberg offers its visitors the combined beauty of these picturesque alpine towns, connected by an incredible 82 lifts and hundreds of different runs. Arlberg is particularly well known for its après-ski, especially in St. Anton with places like Krazy Kangaroo and Mooserwirt.
Trois Vallées, France
Reputed as the world’s largest ski area, Trois Vallées comprises some of the most famous skiing resorts around, including Méribel, Courchevel, Les Menuires, and Val Thorens, connected by 600 km of slopes and 180 ski lifts. In a resort of this size, you will certainly not run out of places to go and things to see.
Corina d’Ampezzo, Italy
Situated in the beautiful Dolomite region, Cortina is the leading skiing resort in Italy and is well known as one of the most stylish resorts around, a hotspot for some of Italy’s most wealthy citizens. It boasts views of magnificent mountain ranges with very rugged rock formations. With an enormous 762 miles of slopes and 460 lifts, you certainly won’t run out of places to explore.
Zermatt is one of the few skiing resorts that can be truly classed as international. Its location deep in the south of Switzerland on the Swiss-Italian border means that it is entirely possible to ski cross-border. Also, with it being in the heart of the Alps, there is snow all year around giving skiers the opportunity to practice their craft 365 day per year. Zermatt can be easily reached when you compare car rental Geneva Airport offers on the French or Swiss side. With the spectacular scenery offered by its prime location at the foot of the Matterhorn and 360 km of slopes in the winter season, it certainly offers guests a unique skiing experience.
Parts of the United States receive a great deal of snow in winter, making them ideal for ski vacations. If you’re planning a ski trip to the USA, here are a few you may want to consider.
This resort features over 3,000 acres that are located in close proximity to the downtown Aspen area. In all, there are 84 different trails for cross-country skiers to partake of. In addition, there are 20 ski slopes complete with lifts to easily transport visitors. Snowboarding is also a popular activity here, with several areas set aside for this activity. There are also plenty of lodging and restaurants for guests to choose from.
Lake Placid, New York
Lake Placid is located in the northeastern USA, in a mountainous area known as the Adirondacks. The 1980 Winter Olympics were held here. Several slopes are located throughout the town of Lake Placid ranging from expert skiing to bunny slopes. A toboggan slide area is also found in this town and contains a jump trestle that ends on Mirror Lake. Bobsledding, ice-skating, and hockey are all popular winter activities here as well. A number of chain hotels provide lodging for this quiet area.
Porcupine Mountains, Michigan
Located near the Canadian border, the Porcupine Mountains provide spectacular views of Lake Superior. This location is ideal for downhill skiing, and there are numerous cross-country routes to enjoy as well. Those who are somewhat less adventurous can enjoy taking a snowmobile ride through the area instead. Ice fishing can also be enjoyed on Lake Superior as weather permits. Lodging here ranges from quiet cabins that overlook the lake and mountains to vacation homes with full kitchens and private patios.
The USA can be a fun place to visit any time of year, and winter is especially nice for those who enjoy skiing. Cold weather activities allow visitors an interesting opportunity to view some of the finest mountain ranges in the world while also appealing to their sense of adventure.
A skiing holiday is always fun, but what better time to go than at Christmas? Many companies, large and small, offer excellent packages, which include many extra events for the festive season. Make Christmas different with a skiing vacation from the many hundreds to choose from.
Skiing At Christmas
For the younger skier, places like Flaine in France and Sestriere and Val Gardena in Italy are excellent. Many people find north east Italy ideal as a base and with that in mind a cheap car hire Trieste Airport deal is worth a look. With many cheap deals available, you are guaranteed a good time, as well as that one element of Christmas you are not certain of at home, snow.
For the more sophisticated skier, St. Moritz, Zermatt and Verbier in Switzerland have great deals on chalets for the Christmas period, why go to all the trouble of cooking your own Christmas dinner when a first class dinner can be cooked for you?
If Europe is not far enough afield, how about Lake Louise in Canada? Skiing in a gorgeous setting or Aspen in Colorado, U.S.A. with its miles and miles of superb ski runs and a fun crowd.
Make Your Christmas Special
If self-catering is not for you there are lots of hotel and package options where everything from your lift pass to your Christmas dinner, often including a candlelit ski down the mountain, is laid on. If you can afford it, why not treat yourself to 5 star luxury in one of the grand alpine hotels such as the Inn at Lost Creek in Telluride, Colorado or Badrutt’s Palace Hotel in St. Moritz. However, the most romantic or traditional family, Christmas skiing vacation is surely the chalet. With midnight mince pies and champagne, candlelit skiing and a sumptuous Christmas dinner, as well as lots to keep the children happy, there are many to choose from to suit every budget.
With many options available, including some where you can even exchange your property with someone in your chosen ski area, there really is a vacation to suit you. Many packages even throw in a free ski pass for early booking, but be fast; this is one of the most popular times of the ski season and the best deals go fast.
When you pack to go on a ski holiday, what you need to take, the essentials if you like, is very different to when you pack for any other type of holiday. A skiing holiday requires that you take very specific items, and that you use a lot of common sense.
What To Pack – The Basics
The main thing to bear in mind when packing for a skiing holiday is that you will be at high altitudes and sometimes temperatures will be below freezing. Also, skiing is a very demanding sport even though it can be a lot of fun, so the first thing you need to make sure of, is that you have the proper equipment. A well-fitting, not too tight ski suit or salopettes and jacket is vital. If you are not dressed in warm, light, waterproof clothing that allows ease of movement then your enjoyment of the sport will be greatly curtailed.
It is far better to choose proper clothing, made especially for skiing than it is to hit the slopes in trendy jeans and a cute little jacket. Jeans are not ideal for skiing; they soak up water which freezes as temperatures drop and turns into ice. Well-fitting ski boots and thick socks are also a must. If you only buy one piece of equipment, always choose to buy your own boots. Ski equipment can always be hired at the resort, but your own boots will be worth what you pay for them many times over.
What Else? Other Things You Will Be Glad You Packed
For après ski, jeans and a warm padded jacket are usually fine. It is better to dress in a few light layers for warmth so a few cotton or light wool sweaters and some t shirts are fine. Moonboots or yeti boots are ideal for walking on snow and ice. At night time when you venture out, the streets, which may well be black during the day, will have iced over and footwear that you can walk on ice in is a must.
These are the absolute must have items. Of course you will want to add to that, but this is a good base to build on. Don’t forget to take sunscreen, you can buy it there but it is usually expensive. Goggles or sunglasses and a ski hat and a hat and scarf for wearing off the slopes are worth taking too. Gloves for skiing and gloves for at night are important, don’t forget to pack them. If you use common sense and take the correct clothing, then you will enjoy your holiday so much more.
Whatever the size of your party, finding holiday apartments in Aspen really is not as difficult as you might imagine. Whether you are a honeymooning couple, enjoying an extended family holiday, or are just a group of friends out to enjoy the best there is in skiing, Aspen has something to suit you. From a traditional chalet type apartment to one equipped with Wi-Fi and all the latest gadgets within walking distance of the Silver Queen Gondola which will take you right to the heart of the skiing within steps of your front door.
Unique Aspen Accommodation
Holiday apartments in Aspen really do give value for money. For a very reasonable price you can find architect designed apartments, decorated to the highest standards with flat screen TVs in every room, whirlpool baths and sometimes even a Jacuzzi to take away all those post ski aches and pains. There are wonderful apartments such as the 5 bed, 3 bathroom Red Mountain Retreat, sleeping 12 available to the much more personalised owner rental or exchange deals offered and other similar sites. Another good place to look for apartment rentals is through the local tourist board. They will be happy to put you in touch with local independent letters and will also have an up to date list of all apartments available through them. Local estate agents are good, if you can afford the extra charges. The benefit of renting holiday apartments in Aspen through a reputable agent is that you will be covered should anything go wrong.
Aspen really is one of the prime ski locations in the world with a richly deserved reputation. The advantage of renting in Aspen, rather than going the traditional hotel or package deal route, is that you have the freedom to come and go as you please, at what times you please. There is so much choice available and some really unique apartments are free to let. Surely, Aspen has something for everyone.