The winter period can be both exciting and daunting at the same time. On one hand, it’s the perfect time to relax and enjoy a holiday with family and friends. On the other hand, it can be challenging to find places that offer outdoor activities, especially if you’re stuck in an area with little to offer. If you’re looking for inspiration for your next winter holiday and you want somewhere with stunning scenery, then consider visiting one of the ten most beautiful ski resorts in the world.
1. Avoriaz, France
Avoriaz is much more than a ski resort. It offers activities beyond skiing and other winter sports. During summer months, tourists flock to Avoriaz to hike, mountain bike, or enjoy a round of golf with spectacular views of the surrounding beautiful mountain range. Travelers can visit Aquariaz, a stunning water park that opened its doors in 2012, which has become a major attraction. It features a large variety of tropical plants and trees for an exotic experience throughout the year.
2. Cortina d’Ampezo, Italy
The scenic town of Cortina d’Ampezzo has established itself as one of the most popular destinations for international jet setters, and it’s not hard to understand the attraction. This ski resort offers its guests a well-rounded holiday experience the whole family can enjoy, from skiing through the Dolomite Alps to ice-karting and après-ski parties.
3. Lake Louise, Canada
Located in the Banff National Park in Alberta, the Lake Louise Ski Resort is equipped with one of the largest terrain parks in Western Canada, and a large learning area for adults and kids alike. The resort offers excellent summer and winter deals and a whole list of exciting activities, such as a sightseeing Gondola trip that takes you over the Canadian Rockies – keep your eyes peeled for Grizzly bears!
4. Meribel, France
The Meribel ski resort’s extensive slopes cater to all levels of experience, thus making it a family-friendly winter sport destination. The Olympic Centre is open throughout the entire year and is equipped with all the features necessary to make your holiday memorable, and above all, relaxing. Book one of the many traditional wooden chalets to capture the cozy spirit of the French Alps.
5. Wengen, Switzerland
If you have always pictured yourself spending the cold winter months in a charming little mountain village, book your holiday to Wengen now. This is a car-free resort that can be reached via rail or gondola. It is extremely popular for its “Swiss Snow Kids Village,” where children (above 3 years of age) are invited to spend the day playing games, learning how to ski, and taking turns on the snow carousel while their parents brave the adult slopes.
6. Morzine, France
If you’re looking for a ski resort with character, then Morzine is it. Settle into one of the luxurious chalets with views of Lake Geneva to the north, and the Mont Blanc alpine range to the south, and you will return home feeling relaxed and rejuvenated. Around 650 kilometers (about 400 miles) of ski slopes guarantee an active winter holiday, and once the snow has melted away, the beautiful landscape turns into a natural paradise for all those who are looking to spend their summers hiking through its dense forests and along the river gorge.
7. Val D’isere, France
At only five kilometers (3 miles) from the Italian border and that of the Vanoise National Park, Val D’Isére has been cited as the “Most Beautiful Ski Area in the World.” The majority of the resort is made up of chalet-style houses and hotels, all of which are illuminated with mesmerizing light fixtures bathing the snowy streets in a warm, welcoming glow.
8. Zermatt, Switzerland
In Zermatt, winter sports are possible all year long in the highest ski resort in Europe. Surrounded by the Pennine Alps and offering 360km (about 220 miles) of skiing and snowboarding opportunities along Klein Matterhorn, Schwarzsee, Gornergrat, and Sunnega, Zermatt is one of the most popular winter sport destinations in Switzerland. Like some of the other ski resorts mentioned on this list, Zermatt prohibits the use of combustion-engine cars, and runs almost entirely on battery-driven transport to ensure a smog-free view of the Matterhorn.
9. Niseko, Japan
Made up of four resorts, a variety of groomed slopes, tree runs, obstacle parks, and the largest lit area for night-skiing in Japan, Niseko guarantees an exciting holiday stay. To round off the experience, book yourself into one of the site’s beautiful lodges decorated in Japanese or Western style. While Japan may not be the first place that comes to mind for skiing, the Abuta District in Hokkaido attracts skiing enthusiasts from around the world.
10. Alpbach, Austria
The Tyrolean Mountains and their traditional farm and guesthouses are absolutely enchanting during the height of the winter months. When the entire area is covered in crunchy, white snow, it’s difficult not to feel as though you have just stepped onto the scene of a romantic Christmas movie. Alpbach may be one of the smaller ski resorts on this list, but it has more than plenty to offer, including at least 18km (11 miles) of black runs, great walking tracks leading past wonderful waterfalls, and traditional mountain restaurants where you can kick back with a beer and a delicious helping of Käiserschmarn.
In conclusion, if you’re a dedicated mountaineer, an enthusiastic snowboarder, or a sucker for all things wellness, these resorts guarantee an unforgettable holiday experience for the whole family. Don’t let the winter period intimidate you, there are many places around the world that offer breathtaking scenery and exciting outdoor activities that are perfect for your winter getaway.