Guide to Family Skiing in France
Looking for a low-down on family ski holidays? You're in the right place!
Skiing with the family is such a rewarding holiday especially when you have planned it right - that is where our helpful guide to family skiing comes in! There is a lot to think about when planning a ski holiday, by breaking it down, we look to help you along the way.
Ski Collection have researched our extensive range of resorts and residences that we feel are best suited to providing families with a perfect base for their holiday, we are able to offer advice as to the best available option available to you and your family.
We will also cover travelling to the resort & all the ski extras!
Get the right ski resort
The resort that we feel is our 'best family resort' as voted for by our reservations team is La Rosiere, find out more about the resort here. We have listed below the resorts and residences we feel are a great match for family ski holidays, however the best way to ensure that we can get the resort to your needs is to call us and discuss your specific requirements.
Best family resort as voted by Ski Collection: La Rosière (Tarentaise Valley)
Most sought after family resorts: Arc 1950 (Paradiski), Peisey-Vallandry (Paradiski), Arc 1800 (Paradiski), Plagne Soleil (Paradiski), Belle-Plagne (Paradiski), Plagne Centre (Paradiski), Val Thorens (3 Valleys), Meribel-Mottaret (3 Valleys), Les Menuires (3 Valleys) & Tignes Le Lac (Espace Killy)
Is the resort suitable for everyone's ski requirements?
It is not necessarily the case that all members of your party will be beginners, therefore are there enough challenging runs available to those more competent? There are resorts with a relatively small ski domain which in turn links up to larger domains offering a much wider range of runs to those of all abilities.
One of the best family friendly resorts in the French Alps is the car-free resort of Avoriaz in the Portes du Soleil. With so much to offer on and off the slopes, it's a great location for a family ski holiday!
Family friendly ski accommodation
The location of your accommodation is another important consideration for a number of reasons. First of all how far is the residence from the centre of the resort? Although your accommodation will more than likely be self-catering you may still like to go out in the evenings to the local restaurants and entertainment venues. Therefore, somewhere that is only a short walk to the resort centre is a real benefit. Is the residence offering door step skiing, this is an added benefit especially for the children, as they will probably have some difficulty in walking in their ski boots and you will certainly be left carrying an armful of ski equipment to the nearest lift.
The majority of the resorts that Ski collection feature are what are referred to as purpose built resorts. This simply means they have been developed primarily as a ski resort rather than being traditional villages. These villages offer excellent ski opportunities but can have their own disadvantages in that because they have not been developed with the skier in mind the location of amenities may not be ideal. This is where purpose built resorts come into their own. There are some resorts that are car-free with everything you need close at hand and also benefiting from door step skiing. An excellent example of such a resort would be Arc 1950, which has the family friendly accommodation 'Le Village'.
Travelling to the resort
When choosing a resort it is worth bearing in mind how you are planning on getting to the resort. For resorts in the northern Alps such as Avoriaz and Flaine the self drive option may be a good option as the drive times are much less than the Southern Alps resorts. The benefit of self-drive is obviously the flexibility it affords you with not only time but also the amount of luggage you can take.
For resorts in the Paradiski, Espace Killy and 3 Valleys ski areas then it is worth bearing in mind the ski train which takes you to the heart of the Alps to either Bourg Saint Maurice or Moutiers and only a relatively short transfer from the major resorts.
If you prefer to fly and this is an excellent option especially if you are interested in skiing in the Southern Alps, it is worth considering the transfer time between the airport and resort, with the Southern Alps resorts offering relatively good transfer times and costs to the majority of resorts. The value for money these resorts offer are an excellent reason to consider them for a great family ski holiday.
Ski School Descriptions - Children
Beginners (from 4yrs old): Your child has never skied before or has completed their 'Ourson'. They will start the week at the kindergarten. According to their level, they then move on to open slopes. A lift pass is then necessary in this case.
1st star preparation: Your child can take a drag-lift and has the 'Flocon'. They can snowplough on green slopes.
2nd star preparation: Your child has the 1st star. They can ski with ease on gentle slopes.
3rd star preparation: Your child has the 2nd star and can turn parallel on blue and red slopes.
After the 3rd star: Bronze star, Gold star and then introduction to Competition, Grand Tourisme or Snowboard.
Ski School Descriptions - Adults
Beginners: You have never skied before.
Level 1: You have skied for one week, can take a drag lift and ski on green slopes.
Level 2: You can turn parallel on blue slopes but do not feel confident on red slopes.
Level 3: You can turn parallel on all types of slopes except in powder.
Grand Tourisme: You can make short turns in mogul fields, steep slopes, in all types of snow conditions and all types of ski areas.