Popular Alps ski resorts
The winter resorts of Europe’s Alps and Dolomites are legendary, not only for their world-class skiing, but also for the picture-perfect Alpine villages and celebrity-studded resort towns at their base.
Spectacular appears to be an inadequate description of the scenery, and lift systems at many of them allow access between several mountains on a single trip – often in a single day. A single ski run can last several hours, starting high in the mountains and ending in the heart of the village below.
What to Expect in Europe for the 2021/2022 Ski Season: Significant changes are being implemented throughout Alpine Europe in response to public health concerns. European countries which have the best ski resorts takes a different approach: Austria has national rules in place for all resorts; Italy has national rules that apply to specific regions as needed; and Switzerland has basic national rules and leaves the rest to its individual cantons. Standard rules have been established in France by the organization representing ski resorts and regions.
Many of the measures are the same: masks are required in all indoor areas and on closed lifts, après-ski activities are restricted, competitions and festivals are canceled or shortened, and capacity in lodges and on lifts is reduced.
After months of confinement, you need to get out in nature more than ever. You intend to travel less this year, but you prefer one-of-a-kind trips to destinations known for their unique tourist offerings. You want to ski in Europe’s best ski resorts because skiing is in your blood and contributes to your well-being.
Here is a list of best ski resorts in Europe
It’s finally time to have some fun! Here is a list of the best ski resorts in Europe, as well as those popular with visitors from all over the world (the most visited ski resorts on our site during the last 12 months by travellers from 172 countries).
1. Val Thorens, France
Every winter, Val Thorens and its professional and passionate teams do everything they can to provide holidaymakers with magical experiences. They transmit their values, passions, and know-how by sharing these moments. A shared vision, “LIVE UNITED,” that has been written for nearly 50 years and has only one goal: to create unique, festive, gourmet, or sporting experiences together. Val Thorens innovates and creates experiences at 2300 meters above sea level.
“Val Thorens has achieved the impossible by becoming the highest ski resort in Europe. Since the 1970s, sportsmen and mountain dwellers, who helped build this project, have given it exceptional fame to Val Thorens such as the Goitschel sisters“Vincent Lalanne, director of Val Thorens.
The goal is simple: to make everyone’s stay easier and more enjoyable! Val Thorens is dedicated to creating unforgettable memories and long-lasting bonds between its visitors and residents.
Val Thorens has been named the best ski resort in Europe five times, and it has also been named the best ski resort in the world several times. This winter, the most awarded ski resort awaits you for a safe and enjoyable holiday in Europe’s best ski resort.
2. Alpe d’Huez, France
This resort is a perfect blend of fun, relaxation, and sport; it is a favorite among families, as well as friends, couples, beginners, and experienced skiers. Alpe d’Huez is also one of the best ski resorts in terms of guaranteed snowfall. Alpe d’Huez has three times been named the best ski resort in Europe, but it is most famous for its incredible atmosphere. It is both a family ski resort and an authentic resort, but it is also fun, chic, and ideal for shopping or après-ski. Finally, it is one of the best ski resorts for… skiing, with cutting-edge infrastructure.
The resort is endowed with facilities that harmonize with the natural features of the resort; it offers holiday makers indoor / outdoor, sports and cultural activities. Alpe d´Huez is a “par excellence” lifestyle resort; with a wide range of opportunities for snow sports and plenty of other activities. This winter, there will be snow, and the restaurants and cafes will be open. If the covid-19 epidemic resurfaces, France intends to lift the lockdown. We recommend that you book your accommodation and ski passes in advance for added security because social distancing rules limit the number of people allowed in hotels and cabins.
3. Kitzbühel, Austria
Kitzbühel is an excellent choice for skiers looking for Europe’s best ski slopes. You also ranked Kitzbühel first among Europe’s best ski resorts for the New Year, as well as first among Europe’s most beautiful ski resorts.
Kitzbühel, the most legendary sports destination in the Alps: this self-assured slogan represents a town that seamlessly blends tradition and sophistication. Kitzbühel’s international reputation has been enhanced by the legendary Hahnenkamm, a long sporting tradition, and pioneering ventures in Alpine golf and winter sports.
Today Kitzbühel remains a place of contrasts, where rustic Tyrolean guesthouses rub shoulders with international designer boutiques. Visitors can experience Kitzbühel in many ways, from the alleyways in the medieval old town and the breathtaking pistes to the town’s elegant hotels and scenic hiking trails.
4. Zermatt – Switzerland
Zermatt is consistently ranked as one of Europe’s best ski resorts. You’ve also named it one of Europe’s most beautiful ski resorts, one of the best train destinations, and one of the most luxurious ski resorts.
The snow sports resort of Zermatt – Matterhorn is one of those places that everyone should visit at least once in their lives. The breathtaking Alpine scenery and 360 km of pistes draw skiers, foodies, and Alpinists.
The village at the foot of the Matterhorn is surrounded by breathtaking Alpine scenery. The village looks like something out of a fairy tale when it is covered in snow at 1,620 meters (the level of the train station). 360 kilometers of pistes, located at elevations ranging from 1,620 to 3,883 meters in both Switzerland and Italy, provide limitless and borderless skiing opportunities. 70% of the slopes are on a glacier or can be snowed on. Then there’s Zermatt’s Snow Park, which is a must-see for freestylers and snowboarders alike.
5. Cortina d’Ampezzo – Italy
Cortina d’Ampezzo is a world-famous Northern Italian ski resort. It is located 40 kilometers from the Austrian border, is well-known for the quality of its slopes and infrastructure, and is easily accessible (highways, buses, Venice and Verona airports). Cortina d’Ampezzo, or simply Cortina, is the most well-known mountain resort in Italy.
Skiers can enjoy 120km of slopes of varying difficulty, ranging from beginner runs to Women’s World Cup slopes. One cannot leave Cortina without experiencing the three ski areas, each with its own distinct personality: Faloria-Cristallo, Tofane, and Lagazuoi-Cinque Torri-Giau. The Forcella Rossa, which combines steepness with unrivaled views, is a must-see for expert skiers.
Skiing in Cortina is a full-body experience: skiing on perfectly groomed slopes is even better when you know you’ll stop for lunch and sample a local dish at one of the many delicious mountain huts. And, while you’re out there skiing, don’t forget to take in the breathtaking views of the Dolomites and the valley.
Cortina in winter is a destination for skiers and snow lovers alike, surrounded by the breathtaking scenery of the Dolomites. Because of Covid-19 sanitary measures, the number of available accommodations will be limited; make sure to book your lodging and ski passes in advance.
6. Sölden – Austria
This winter, ski in complete safety in one of Europe’s best ski resorts. In addition to the glacier ski slopes, the Sölden and Hochsölden winter ski area is set to open in November. Skiers and snowboarders can choose from 148 kilometers of perfectly groomed slopes for all levels and abilities, as well as 35 mountain lifts with no lift lines. The winter term in tztal’s renowned skiing paradise already has three seasons tailored to early winter enthusiasts, passionate endurance athletes, and après-ski enthusiasts.
Linked ski areas in the eternal ice The glacier slopes in the upper Ötztal, towering high above the skiers village, offer perfect snow conditions already from early September.
That’s when the valley’s meadows and forests are at their most colorful, with hues ranging from yellow to russet and dark red. The highest panoramic road in the Eastern Alps transports skiers and snowboarders from Sölden to the slopes of the Tiefenbach and Rettenbach glacier, one of Austria’s largest glacier ski areas, by car or coach.
Snow is also guaranteed between 1350 and 3340 meters above sea level from October to May, thanks to a top-of-the-line snowmaking system that covers roughly 80% of all slopes.
7. Gstaad – Switzerland
This winter vacation enjoys safe and chic experiences in one of Europe’s best ski resorts. The combination of the unique experiences that have made Gstaad famous is unrivaled.
It is unique to Gstaad, making it the “last paradise in a crazy world” (quote by actress Julie Andrews, a regular visitor to Gstaad). The prestige value of the Gstaad brand is at the top of the list. The internationally recognized brand, which is associated with luxury and high society, creates a value that resonates far beyond the primary target group. As a result, it is not surprising to see Gstaad listed among the most beautiful ski resorts in Europe and the most luxurious ski resorts in Europe.
8. St Antom am Arlberg – Austria
A massive ski area jam-packed with electrifying events, cool traditions, adrenaline rushes, pure fun, and unrivaled piste pleasures. St. Anton am Arlberg is also home to ski legends and pioneers like Hannes Schneider, who help to validate Arlberg’s claim to be the “birthplace of alpine skiing.”
Visitors from all over the world appreciate St. Anton for its state-of-the-art cable car systems, exclusive hotels, and international bars, as well as its chocolate-box village charm, and their presence alone characterizes its cosmopolitan flair.
The Arlberg is Austria’s largest interconnected ski resort and the world’s fifth largest.