With lockdown no doubt wiping out your spring and summer holiday plans you could be forgiven for being a tad miffed. Don’t get mad, however, get skiing!
Even if you have never skied before, there are plenty of great resorts across Europe that are accepting bookings for the winter season. Unlike spring and summer, ski resort tour providers have still been able to offer their full range of holidays as if Covid-19 hadn’t happened.
They are eager to do this again, and as skiing holidays could be a good bet going forward should we end up in lockdown in the future, now is a good time to start shopping around for your first or next skiing holiday.
So how do you choose the perfect ski resort for you?
Find a ski resort that caters to your level
Once you’ve decided it is time to hit the piste, it is time to find a suitable resort. If you are a seasoned skier, you probably have your favourite resorts. If you are new, however, then you will want one that is geared towards getting you up and running on the slopes and building your confidence.
Many newcomers opt for skiing in Grandvalira, Andorra. It has slopes suitable for slalom experts and novices, and it features ski instruction and services for British holidaymakers and caters for kids. If you’re interested, check out Grandvalira with Esquiades.com for information.
There are regions that offer skiing that is suitable for those that want off-piste skiing and black runs, to those that want to learn the basics. This kind of resort is ideal if you have mixed abilities in your group.
How good is the ski school?
Ski schools are not just for beginners. Skiing is addictive, and once you’ve skied one slope, you’re want to ski the next and improve your skills. The better resorts cater to this, improving your skills and setting achievable goals.
From a beginner perspective, you’ll find plenty of resorts offer excellent instruction to get you out on the slopes. If you have a family, take the time to find a resort with an excellent reputation for teaching kids how to ski. A good school ensures your children have the best holiday they have ever had.
Do you want nightlife?
Ski holidays are not just about weaving down a mountain. The nightlife in ski resorts is often very vibrant. If you are travelling as a couple or group of friends, you may want to party to the wee hours. If you’re a family, however, you may want a quieter time in the evening. The better European skiing regions offer you a range of resorts catering to all.
Partying in ski resorts tends to be expensive. If you’ve got one eye on the budget, you may want to check out somewhere like Andorra rather than Switzerland.
More affordable than you might think
Skiing has a reputation for being an expensive pastime, and this is true to some degree. There are good resorts that are more reasonably priced if you shop around. Like other holidays you can shop around to find special offers that come with things such as lift passes, travel and accommodation, reasonably priced meals, and so on and so forth. It is worth taking the time to do this. Some offer special deals over school holiday periods.
It’s not just about skiing
An aspect to consider is what other activities are available at the resort or are nearby. Here are some examples of what to look for:
- Are there tours of nearby attractions or natural beauty such as forests?
- Is there snowboarding or tubing? Some resorts offer zip lining, which is quite amazing if you’re of a thrill-seeking mind-set.
- Are there things that smaller children may enjoy like riding on a sledge?
Depending on your circumstances, aspects like this may be important. If you’re a family, you’ll love skiing, but every so often you’ll need to mix things up and take a break.
Are the ski lifts close to the resort?
Resorts are not always that close to the slopes. This may not be an issue for you, but often skiing holidays start early morning to catch the light. The closer you are to the lifts, the more time you can spend in bed, and for many this is heaven.
Is there going to be snow?
This may sound strange but depending on the weather you may find some ski resorts don’t get the snow needed to ski; the higher the peaks, the more chance of snow. So anything around two thousand metres is generally fine. The better resorts use cannons to keep the runs open should the weather not cooperate.
Skiing is a wonderful sport and pastime. There is a variety of things you can do if you find a good resort, and once you’ve skied once you’ll want to ski twice and probably three times! Given the state of the world at the moment, skiing could be the holiday of choice in the future. Why not give it a try?