Once again it is that time of year where the summer months are slowly but surely becoming nothing but a distant memory and we look forward to watching the landscape transform from once lush greenery to the beautiful tones of red yellow and amber that we associate with autumn. But don’t despair if you missed out on the chance of getting away in the summer; winter ski holidays are an excellent way of getting see what a country has to offer out with the summer tourist season. Ski season lasts much longer on the European continent than it does in the UK, usually from November right through to April giving you plenty of opportunity to get away during the winter months. It is also a great way to spend your Easter break. So to help you make up your mind here is a list of what we think are the top 10 destinations for ski holidays in 2016.
This small Austrian resort town is home to one of the most famous and prestigious downhill races on the world cup skiing circuit. Each January crowds of up to 100,000 people cram their way onto the slopes to see the biggest names in skiing take to the pistes. Although if you’re planning on staying here any time throughout racing season then it’s advisable to book up to 6 months in advance as accommodation often gets snapped up quickly by avid fans.
La Grave, France
This French mountain resort has become famous for the notorious challenge posed by its steep skiing slopes which follows paths across glaciers, cliffs, and no-fall zones and as such has become somewhat of a ‘Mecca’ for big-mountain purists. The town itself is quite small with only around 500 permanent inhabitants with only a few pubs and so is very intimate in terms of its nightlife. With only one chairlift, no ski patrol and no marked runs it certainly is not for the faint hearted and that’s exactly why skiers are attracted back year after year.
Val Thorens, France
This little French resort town holds the title as being the highest resort in Europe at an altitude of 2,300 feet. The resort itself is very new combining the best of skiing with the best luxury accommodation and catering. It has a wealth of blue and red runs that will keep most intermediate skiers busy and due to its modern design has more chairlifts than you can shake a stick at meaning you won’t be waiting around for very long.
St Anton, Austria
This beautiful alpine town is steeped with tradition that keeps visitors returning year after year. With over 200 miles of ski runs and 440m of cross country terrain St Anton has a mixture of terrain that will keep everyone from the most inexperienced novice right up to the seasoned professional well challenged. Their resorts themselves are fantastic and offer saunas and outdoor Jacuzzis to help sooth your muscles after a hard day on the slopes. St Anton is also affectionately referred to as ‘Britain in the Alps’ due to the number of British tourist that holiday there during the winter months, and will likely be one of Austria’s busiest ski holiday resorts in 2015-2016.