Winter can be a dark and cold time of the year for many of us but for snow sports enthusiasts it’s the season in which to travel the world and hit the slopes. A few hours on a plane can bring you to the world’s best ski resorts and you don’t always have to wait until winter to enjoy your favourite snow sport.
Snow sport lovers have plenty of destinations to choose from whether they’re beginners looking for lessons, seasoned skiers or snowboarders searching out the best half-pipes. Ski resorts around the world welcome thousands of visitors every year during the ski-season. Depending on the location the season generally runs from around October until late spring, although summer skiing is an option in some countries. If you’re considering a skiing holiday this year then here are just a few of the best skiing destinations around the globe.
Arctic snow sports
Lapland is synonymous with winter sports and the ski season here can last until mid-May. Resorts such as Yllas and Levi in Finland boast some of the best slopes for skiing and snowboarding, and the scenery is spectacular. Levi is considered the best resort in Finland, boasting 43 slopes and 200km of cross country trails. Both of these ski resorts offer lessons for beginners and the many Lapland short breaks available will be ideal if you’re thinking about trying out some winter sports for the first time.
The top ski resort
Head to Whistler Blackcomb in Canada if you’re looking to experience the thrills of what is regularly described as the world’s top ski resort. This epic ski resort located two hours from Vancouver is set amidst the spectacular Coast Mountains. Over 50,000 visitors arrive in Whistler each year to enjoy skiing and snowboarding over the 8,100 acres of slopes. Skiers can enjoy over 200 marked trails suitable for all skill levels while summer skiing and snowboarding is available at Blackcomb Glacier.
The glamour of St Moritz
St Moritz in Switzerland’s upper Engadin provides a stunning Alpine setting and that’s part of the reason why this is one of the world’s most famous ski resorts. The region boasts over 350km of ski pistes with altitudes of between 1,800 and 3,303 metres above sea level. The snow here is guaranteed and this area is blessed with sunshine even during the winter months. Nursery slopes, cross country skiing, downhill glacier skiing and 140kmp tobogganing are all available in Switzerland’s largest ski resort.
The Three Valleys experience
Courchevel ski resort is located at the highest point of France’s Three Valleys skiing area, within the French Alps. This resort offers some of the most breath-taking scenery in the world, with views of over 1000 Alpine peaks. Skiers can use a single pass to ski between the three valleys and this is the world’s largest interconnected ski area. Over 600km of pistes, a resort altitude of up to 1850m and some of the best aprÃ¨s ski in Europe makes Courchevel one of the most exciting skiing destinations.
Image by Matt Squirrell, used under Creative Comms license.