6 Top Tips for Skiing Half-Term

With half-term upon us, the slopes are about to be filled with loads of little ones. Family ski time is amazing and a great experience that you can all share, and we want to make sure you make the most of your holiday time. So here are a few tips to help make skiing half-term as smooth as possible.

1. Ski over lunch

Depending on the age of your children and the time of your lessons this may or may not be feasible. However, it’s a great way to make the most of the quietest time of day on the slopes. Opt for either an early lunch around 11:00 or a late one after 14:00…or both! The window from 12:00 – 14:00 will be when most people are taking a break to grab some grub. If you can make snacks & meals work around this time slot, it’s worth it.

2. Stay safe on the piste

Ski safety is also a valid concern when there are lots of little ones whizzing around. Here are a few top tips to keep in mind:

  • Always stop to the far side of the piste, specifically on a high point. If you stop just under a drop in the slope, people skiing down won’t be able to see you.
  • Look around when crossing an intersection as skiers are coming from all directions.
  • Take care on chair lifts with little ones. Sit next to them and help them get on and off the chair.

3. Make sure your kids are dressed properly

This will make their days on the slopes more enjoyable, and thus YOUR days on the slopes more enjoyable. Ensuring their boots are completely dry each evening, double-checking that they don’t have any lumps in their socks, and using a balaclava to keep their whole head warm are just a few top tips from a local mum. Check out this guide on how to dress your child for skiing – from head to toe.

4. Beat the half-term morning rush (yep it’s possible)

If you can manage to get up and out the door early, you can beat the lift queue rush. Essentially, get there before they open so you’re ready and waiting. This means being prepared in the morning – see point 5!

Everyone will be meeting up for their lessons starting from 9:00 – 9:30. And by the time the entire group arrives, everyone is checked in and ready to go, they will be getting to the lift queues a bit later. So those lifts opening at 9:00 will get their rush between 9:15 – 9:30. Try to beat it and get up and out on the hill quicker.

la tania kid friendly ski holiday

5. Be prepared!

This might be an obvious one but it makes a big difference. Organise your clothing the night before. Set out all the kids’ kit in advance. Know your skis and boots are ready to go. Pack your rucksack in the evening. And have a plan for the day! The more prepared you are, the less time you’ll waste in the morning and hopefully the more relaxed you will feel.

Also, prepare as many other aspects of your week as possible – such as making dinner reservations well in advance.

6. Ski the ‘outskirts’ of resort

If you want to escape the crowds and find some empty pistes, our best recommendation is to ski to the outskirts of resort. For example, head over to the far end of 1650. Or ski down into Meribel Village where there is less cross-traffic, or up to the tip-top of Mont Vallon in Mottaret. All of these ‘outskirts’ of resort will have much less through traffic, and also can take longer to get to, so you’re bound to find some quieter slopes. Plus you can make a little adventure out of it!

Cheers to a fab time skiing half-term this year!

Self Catering Ski Chalets – What to Expect

Catered ski chalets used to be the norm, but now more and more people are opting for more flexibility in their ski holiday with self catered options. Self catering ski chalets are a great option if you like to go out to eat and want to try a few different restaurants throughout the week. Or on the contrary, if you have a big group and think it’d be more economical to cook family dinners. They’re also perfect if you’d like a mix of the two. Or if you’re just someone who doesn’t want to interact with anyone first thing in the morning and would prefer your own space.

If you’ve always done catered chalets, or haven’t done either and aren’t sure which to choose, here’s what you can expect from a self catered chalet.

All of the same pre-arrival services

The booking process and all the services we offer before you arrive in resort are exactly the same as when you book a catered chalet. We’re on hand from the first enquiry through booking, to preparing and arriving in resort. We’ll help make it as smooth and as stress-free as possible. We can also organise your lift passes, ski hire, ski school and book restaurants for you.

In resort, we’ll be on hand in case you need any assistance – so you aren’t totally left on your own!

self catering ski chalet

A high-quality, cosy chalet

Gone are the days of tiny, budget apartments being the only self-catered options. Now, you can find cosy self catering ski chalet options that really feel like home away from home.

Our Chalet Dahu is situated right on the piste so you can ski-in and ski-out. It has a large open plan living and dining room centered around a log fire, and with six bedrooms, your whole group can join for the week. You can finish off the day sitting on the terrace that overlooks the La Tania pistes and enjoy a glass of rosé in the sun.

What’s included

Although food is not included with your package, here’s what we at Ski Dazzle do include:

  • Hot tub
  • Ski-in ski-out location
  • WiFi, bluetooth speaker & UK Freesat TV
  • Linen, bath towels & robes
  • Boot warmer
  • Log fire
  • Parking

We also provide a welcome hamper with the essentials to get you started when you arrive. And if you’re looking for a few more extras, we offer the following services to make your stay a little bit easier.

You can opt for daily bread delivery service that includes baguettes, croissants and pain au chocolates. We can also offer wine, beer and soft drinks delivery at a very reasonable price – which is convenient when you don’t have a vehicle. We also have a raclette evening on Tuesday nights. Opt for a traditional Savoie dinner that you can prepare yourself in your own chalet. We deliver the machine and all the ingredients needed.

Why book self catered?

At the end of the day it all comes down to personal preference. Whereas some people prefer not having to think about meals and having a chef prepare them all for you, others like the flexibility to eat what and when they like. Stay late at the Folie Douce one afternoon. Cook dinner early if everyone is starving. Or just head out to a restaurant. You can do what you wish in a self catered chalet, with no schedule to adhere to.

Self catering sound like it’s for you? Check out Chalet Dahu’s availability for the rest of the season and get you next ski trip booked in.

Courchevel Piste Map – Best runs in resort

Find the most up-to date Courchevel Piste Map for 2020 below. You can also download it here and save to your phone.

Courchevel Piste Map 2020

We also recommend you download the 3 Valleys App, this will show you which lifts are open on any given day when you’re in resort. It also gives a 3-day forecast, updates on piste grooming and webcam access. Perfect for when you’re in resort on your holiday.

Now that you’ve got your piste map on hand, you might need some recommendations of where to ski. We’ve rounded up our favourite spots to ski in Courchevel for all levels.

Best pistes for beginners – green runs

Aside from the number of magic carpet beginner areas around resort, there are plenty of green runs for once you’ve graduated from those. Here are some nice, gentle green runs in Courchevel that are a great next step.

  • Loze Est – From the top of Coqs chairlift (also accessible by taking Dou Des Lanches) this nice green winds its way down to Courchevel 1850, and gets the morning sun.
  • Plan Fontaine – Although pretty long and windy, this green run from the top of La Tania back down into resort is perfect for giving your ski legs a challenge.
  • Verdons – Situated right in the centre of 1850, this run (aptly) runs from the top of Verdons bubble down to the Croisette. It’s wide and slightly rolling – perfect for practicing your turns.

 

group ski holiday

Best pistes for intermediates – blue runs

As with all grades of piste, there is a range within each colour. Some blues are more difficult than others, but here are some of our favourites.

  • Folyeres – On our home turf in La Tania, everyone loves Folyeres. Although at parts it seems like more of a red than a blue, it’s undulating and a nice long run right back down into resort. You’ll likely take this one daily!
  • Creux – From the very top of the Saulire – where you can catch some stunning views & a few snapshots – runs the long blue run Creux. It tends to get bumpy later in the day, so we recommend hitting this one early. You can ski down to the mid-station of Marmottes chair, or all the way down to Aiguille de Fruit for a nice, long run.
  • Cospillot – A lesser-known run, tucked away at the bottom of Pralong chair is Cospillot, a quiet run through the trees that hardly gets any traffic. It winds its way down to 1550 and is perfect when you want to escape the crowds.

Best pistes for advanced – red & black runs

For those looking for more challenging runs, Courchevel does not disappoint.

  • Marmottes – This run always has great snow. A long with a steep, but not too steep of a gradient, this is great run that catches the sun for most of the day. Access it from the top of Suisse, Vizelle or Saulire Express.
  • Chapelets – Over on the far side of 1650, Chapelets is a great red run to challenge yourself.
  • Jean Blanc – Another semi-hidden gem. From the top of Plantrey chair, this black run sits between La Tania and Le Praz and has really steep challenging bits. It also is one of the last pistes to get groomed so after it’s snowed you can often find fresh powder here.

Best off-piste areas

For those who want to venture off-piste we highly recommend you do so only with an instructor or a local guide who knows the area. And be sure you have all the safety equipment required. There is no messing around when it comes to safety off-piste. But that being said you can get some amazing runs in around the resort.

  • Creux Noir – At the top of Creux Noir chair is loads of accessible off-piste area. The chair is closed for this winter due to renovations, but next year, put this one on your list.
  • La Tania & Le Praz Trees – When it’s snowing & the weather is in, take full advantage of the clarity that the trees provide. You can lap this area 10x over and always take a different route.
  • Courchevel Couloirs – Very famous, as they should be, you can ski a variety of the couloirs at the very top of Courchevel. A bit of a hike is required to access them. And we have to admit sometimes the hike is more difficult than the ski. But if the snow’s good, it’s absolutely worth it.

Child Friendly Ski Holidays in La Tania

Taking your children skiing is a great experience. You’ll definitely be making family memories that will last, and it’s lovely to be able to do an activity that the whole family can enjoy together. And if you’re looking for the best place for child friendly ski holidays, La Tania is it. La Tania is one of the most family-friendly ski resorts in the Alps, and it’s perfect for your next ski trip with kids. Here’s why.

La Tania for families

Small, car-free centre. The centre of La Tania is very small and free of cars. Along with sledging happening most evenings and a small playground, it’s perfect for families. Also, the tourist office usually has kids activities on each week, so be sure to check in when you arrive in resort to see what’s on.

As for restaurants in La Tania, overall they are very casual and child-friendly. Many of them offer a kids menu and have an early seating around 18:30.

Child-friendly accommodation at Ski Dazzle

If you’re staying with us at Ski Dazzle, we have everything on hand for children. In each chalet you’ll find an assortment of books and board games, as well as DVDs and British television to keep them entertained. For smaller children, we’re fully equipped with high chairs and cots.

But most importantly, when it comes to meal time, we cook separate meals for children. Our chefs are known to whip up a mean spaghetti Bolognese, and homemade pizzas always make the list. We also can also whizz up some fruit or veg for babies.

la tania kid friendly ski holiday

Rent baby and toddler gear & toys

If there is anything else you need for your baby or child, but it just won’t fit in your luggage, you can rent it. There is a great baby hire service in the Three Valleys. Holiday Baby Hire has a large range of kids gear on rent just for your stay. From buggies and baby backpacks, to toys and books, to potties and baby monitors. Everything is high quality and the items are carefully cleaned and safety checked each time they’re rented out.

It’s great way to have more of the comforts of home for your little one, without having to lug everything out to the Alps.

Kid-Friendly Ski Schools

For children who are aged 4 and up, they can start to learn to ski. Ski schools these days are much more customer-oriented and focused on the children learning through play. Gone are the days of instructors shouting drills. There are a handful of ski schools we recommend that are in English and offer small groups.

Putting children in group lessons is the most cost effective option. Plus, it’s great fun for children to learn with others of their same age and ski ability.

We do recommend you book well in advance, especially during Feb Half Term and other school holidays, as lessons book up quickly.

Child Care

Whether you’re looking for someone to look after your children once they’re done with their ski lessons, or you have tiny ones who aren’t skiing yet, you may need child care whilst on your ski trip.

In La Tania, there is a creche in resort that offers quality child care and is conveniently located right near the gondola. Or if you’d rather have a private nanny come to your chalet, there are a few companies who offer nanny service. They’re also available for an evening if you want an adults night out.

For kids aged 3, they can join the ESF’s Piou Piou group, which introduces them to the joys of snow in a safe environment.

family friendly ski holiday

Non-Skiing Children’s Activities

What else can you get up to when the kids are done skiing, or maybe just not interested? Here are just a few options.

Sledging – Kids as little as 6 months can enjoy sledging on a gentle slope. The centre of La Tania turns into an informal sledge run after the lifts closed.

Playground – As mentioned previously there is a small playground in the centre of La Tania.

Soft Play – For those not-so-sunny days where you’d rather stay inside, Courchevel 1850 has a soft play area. Free to use, you can catch the bus up to Courchevel to access it. The soft play area is situated just near the bus stop in the bottom of the Croisette.

Swimming – Head up to Aquamotion for a day of swimming. Pools, slides, diving boards, surf wave and a child’s area for smaller ones are bound to keep the kids entertained for an afternoon.

The key to a perfect family ski holiday is keeping the kids happy. We know that happy kids = happy parents. So head to La Tania for your next child friendly ski holiday, and be sure to get in touch with us if you’re looking for accommodation.

5 Tips for Group Ski Holidays

Organising group ski holidays can be challenging. Not only do you have loads of different needs, such as different skiing abilities, but you also have loads of opinions. Don’t worry. These five tips will help make the planning process a bit easier, so that you can enjoy your next group ski trip – hassle free!

1. Split out the organising duties

The organising of a group ski holiday can be difficult. So if you are starting to feel like you have too much on your plate, dish out some duties! Split up the responsibility amongst different members of the group. Have someone sort out the transfers. Have someone else book the ski hire. And hand off the ski lesson organising.

This way, no one person has all the pressure on themselves. Also, the more opinions and ideas that are brought into the mix = a better ski holiday for everyone.

2. Pick a resort for all levels of skier

Choosing the ski resort is the first step in organising your ski holiday, so choose one that works for everyone in the group. Some resorts are full of advanced terrain, and others might not have enough for those looking to go off-piste. Your best bet is to choose a resort with a mix of terrain and piste levels.

La Tania is a great option because it has such great access to both Courchevel and Meribel ski areas. La Tania itself doesn’t have loads of beginner runs – although the green piste is getting a facelift this year – you still have so many options in nearby resorts.

Skiing in La Tania France

3. Decide what you want to spend

Skiing can be an expensive holiday. Or it can be relatively reasonable, depending on where you go and how you spend it. It can be a touchy subject with a group if not everyone is keen to spend on the same things. Agree if you want to be eating out or not. Or agree to disagree. Just make sure it’s addressed beforehand so that no one ends up feeling pressured to spend more money than they planned.

La Tania is a really affordable option for accommodation. And being part of the Three Valleys, you won’t sacrifice amazing skiing or delicious food and drink options. We have both catered and self-catered chalets in La Tania, the perfect base for your next ski holiday. Choose the style that fits your group’s needs.

4. Sort out lessons beforehand

Normally there are advanced skiers in the group, as well as some lesser experienced skiers and maybe some first-timers. The best part about going in a big group, is that everyone enjoys themselves on the slopes, and that doesn’t necessarily mean skiing altogether.

It’s also most important for beginners to get proper instruction. Although it might sound like a good idea for your friend who’s been skiing for 10 years to teach you. In reality, ski instructors are trained for a reason – it is a skill. It usually ends poorly, and most importantly that experience friend isn’t going to be fully enjoying their time on the slopes, and that isn’t fair.

Get your lessons sorted ahead of time so that’s one less thing you need to faff with when you arrive in resort. And so that you know everyone in your group will have a good experience on the snow.

group ski holiday

5. Plan a fun day out

Fancy dress outfits on the slopes all day long? Dancing the afternoon away at the Folie Douce? Or an après-ing to some live music at the Ski Lodge? Plan one big day out in the week for everyone to let loose. The best part about having a big group making memories and sharing experiences together.

Hopefully organising your next group ski holiday will be a bit smoother with these tips. And if you have more questions about skiing and staying in La Tania, check out our blog. 

A Quick Guide to Ski Hire for Beginners

Renting ski equipment is a great option for first-time skiers, children or for those not interested in investing in skis themselves. Not only is it cost effective, it also saves you loads of hassle. You don’t have to lug your skis out to resort, and often you can get the ski hire delivered straight to your chalet. Talk about convenience! If it’s your first time around, here’s a quick guide to ski hire for beginners to help you out before your holiday.

What are the benefits of renting skis?

Savings – For those who’ve never skied before we definitely recommend renting skis. Ski gear is a big investment no matter what level skier you are, however if it’s your first time, you want to make sure it’s a sport you love before you splash out.

Secondly, a cost of owning skis that is often overlooked are the airline baggage fees. These can add up quickly when flying to and from the Alps, and are something you need to factor in if you’re bringing your own skis.

For children, it’s a no brainer. They are growing quickly and might need different sized equipment each year, so you’re best off renting.

Ski Hire Technician – If your bindings aren’t set just right or anything goes wrong with your skis throughout the week, you have the ski technician on hand to help. They’ll fix up your equipment or sort you out with a new pair if need be. A service you wouldn’t have with your own skis!

Get the Latest Equipment – Ski hire shops purchases news skis regularly (most do every year), so you know you always have new equipment with the latest technology.

ski hire for beginners

Who should I book my ski hire with?

We recommend booking your skis with Ski Higher in La Tania. They can provide two different levels of service: either you go into the shop and pick them up, OR even better, your skis are waiting for you in your chalet and a rep from the store comes and personally fits you. And as they’re our preferred partner, we can offer you 30% off shop service and 20% off in-chalet service.

What type of skis can I rent?

You can rent a large variety of skis, and pick the ones right for your level. Ski Higher offer 4 different types: Initiation, Leisure, Dynamic & Premium.

Initiation skis are the best option of ski hire for beginners and all the way up through Premium for advanced, strong skiers. You can get the right pair for your ability.

ski hire mountain view

How much does it cost?

For 6 days rental, you can expect the following prices with Ski Higher La Tania:

Adult Skis or Snowboard & Boots – Range from €108-184. The lowest prices are their Initiation range up to Premium.

Children’s Skis & Boots – Ranges from €55-104, depending on their age.

Helmet – €20

Insurance – €12

We recommend taking out insurance on your ski hire because unfortunately, ski theft does happen on the mountain. This way you’re covered!

When should I book it?

If you’re skiing during the school holidays you should book in advance to make sure you can get the right size and type of skis you’re looking for. During less busier weeks in January and March, it isn’t as necessary to book in advance, but is one less thing to do once you arrive in resort.

Need to sort out anything else before your holiday? If it’s a chalet you’re after – we can help. And if you’re looking for more information on La Tania our Courchevel, check out our latest blogs.

How to Spot & Avoid Fake Ski Chalet Websites

A guest recently shared that they almost booked their ski holiday through a fraudulent company. Unfortunately, this has been going on in the ski industry for a while, and still persists today. We want to make sure you are aware of these and know how to spot them, so that you can avoid ski chalet scams.

What are fake ski chalet websites?

Fake websites posing as agencies or chalet companies will either create a fake chalet from stolen photos around the web, or pose as an ‘agency’ with multiple chalet listings.

These sites will steal photos and copy descriptions directly from other websites, which can make them seem legitimate at first glance.

We unfortunately have heard various stories over the years of holiday-makers losing their money to these types of scams, and we do not want that to happen to you. Here is how you can avoid ski chalet scams:

avoid ski chalet scams

1. Check Their Online Presence

First, check their online presence across multiple platforms. This includes social media, review sites (Trip Advisor, Google, etc.) and digging deeper into their website. All of these things should have a history.

Are they on social media? For how long? How many followers do they have? Are people interacting with their pages and writing positive feedback? You can get a good sense of how genuine a company is from their social media profiles. And if you don’t find one at all, that’s definitely a red flag. It would be rare that a legitimate ski chalet company had zero social media presence.

Check TripAdvisor and Google to see if they have genuine reviews that have been there over time.

Dive into their website more. Do they have a blog where they share local info and have been doing so over a few years?

2. Look for companies with organic search results

Do you know the difference between a paid (advert) Google search result and an organic (unpaid) one? 60% of Brits don’t, according to a 2018 study.

Although many reputable and legitimate companies pay for Google Ads, the organic search results will only contain legitimate companies. Scammers will not be able appear in the search results without paying for them.

It can be hard to spot, but a paid advert will have a small box marked ‘Ad’ just to the left of the URL (see below). You’ll notice how many adverts are listed before organic results appear. Not only is it best practice to go straight past the ads to avoid scams, but generally the best sites will appear at the top organically.

google ad vs organic search results

3. Check for different payment types

The biggest warning sign is if a website only accepts payment via bank transfer. They do this purposely so that you have no guarantee on your purchase and are put in a vulnerable position. Look for a company that offers a variety of payment types (which may include bank transfer) but will often include credit/debit card, PayPal, etc.

When in doubt, pay by credit card so you have a layer of protection on your payment.

4. Availability for busy weeks

The majority of these scams are running during the busy weeks of the season – Christmas, New Year, Half Term and Easter. These are weeks with high demand, and thus limited availability, which is where the scammers come into play.

If you’re searching for one of these busy weeks at quite short notice, and it seems too good to be true, it probably is. That Feb Half Term chalet you found in December at a bargain? Be careful…

5. Search on Companies House

If it’s a UK company, look on Companies House to find genuine company information.

If they’re a foreign company, get in touch with the local tourist office. The tourist offices will know reputable companies in the area and they may even have a list of chalets and agencies in their resort that they could check for you.

call up or phone to avoid ski chalet scams

6. Phone them

Scammers have a harder time hiding behind the phone. Moving your communication away from solely email is a good way to avoid ski chalet scams.

If it is an agency site, search for the chalet website directly. Get in touch with them to see if indeed they work with this ‘agency’.  If it is a ski chalet site, ask to speak to the owner or director. This person should be an expert on their chalet and be able to answer any and every question you have. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about things you feel a bit uneasy about.

Contact details should be easy to find, and that includes a phone number. Definitely don’t keep your communication solely to email if you feel uncertain.

Book in confidence with Ski Dazzle

Book with us directly for the best rates and know that you can book in confidence. We’ve been helping holiday-makers enjoy their time in La Tania since 2002, and you can find guest reviews going back many years both on our website and across multiple platforms including TripAdvisor.

We accept debit or credit card, along with bank transfer. You can also find us and our history on Companies House.

Getting to the Alps: Everything You Need to Know

So you’ve decided that you’re coming to the Alps this winter. Amazing. Now, how to get there?

Many people opt to fly into the Alps, however both driving and taking the train are two other options. Here are all the pros and cons, and what to take into consideration before you decide how you’re getting to the Alps this winter.

Things to consider:

  • How many people there are in your party?
  • How far your resort is – both from the UK and from the nearest French/Swiss airports?
  • How much time do you have?

getting to the alps by plane snow mountains airplane wing

Getting to the Alps by Plane

Flying can be a cost-efficient and quick way to get to the Alps. This of course depends on where you live (distance to airport with frequent number of flights), and how close your ski resort is to the airport.

In general, most people fly into Geneva Airport. It offers a large number of EasyJet and British Airways flights in and out daily, and provides easy access to most resorts in the French Alps. However other airports to look into are Lyon, Grenoble and Chambery. Although they might have fewer flights, they can get you closer to your resort. For example La Tania is only 1hr15min drive from Chambery versus the 2hrs15 mins from Geneva.

You need to take into consideration the flight cost (plus baggage, which will be extra if you’re bringing your skis with you) as well as the cost getting to resort – via a transfer, renting a car or train.

From the airport

Transfers are simple and definitely take away any hassle. Someone is there waiting to take you to the transfer bus and drive you straight to your accommodation whilst you sit back and relax. Typically, a one way private transfer from Geneva to La Tania for four people costs approx 300 Euros. If you go for a shared option, the price is between 50 and 65 Euros per person. However, you might have to wait around in the airport for others or have a longer trip to resort because of other drop offs along the way.

You can rent a car at the airport, which usually works out cheaper than transfers if you have 4+ people. You also have the flexibility to leave and return when you’d like. And you can get around in resort if needed – which can be a huge perk. Make sure any car you rent has snow tyres on it!

There is also the option to take the train from the airport. However these are usually pretty inefficient (loads of stops) and still won’t get you directly into resort – unless of course you’re going to Chamonix!

You’re looking at roughly 7hrs travel time from arrival at the airport in the UK, plus any travel time to the airport. So this is definitely the quickest way to get to the Alps.

getting to the alps by car snowy trees

Getting to the Alps by Car

Driving can be a cost efficient way when you have lots of people and loads of luggage. Ski equipment for each person on a flight quickly ads up. You can also bring out food with you (which is definitely cheaper in the UK than France) if you’re staying self-catered, or you just want some goodies from home.

Once you’re in France it’s approximately 10hrs to Courchevel. Do keep in mind there are a number of tolls in France that you’ll have to factor into the budget.

Road trips can be super fun. And again, this gives you a car to use in resort which allows you to get around to places that the local buses might not be able to.

getting to the alps by train snow

Getting to the Alps by Train

Although it’s becoming less and less popular, there is a snow train that runs every weekend from London St Pancreas direct to Moutiers and Bourg St Maurice. There is one that leaves on Saturday morning and arrives in the evening. Or there is a night train that leaves Friday night and arrives Saturday morning. The overnight train gives you a full 2 extra days on the slopes, however they do not offer beds, so you are “sleeping” in a seat the whole night. You then just need to arrange a transfer from the train station, which won’t be too expensive.

The train is ideal if you live near to London or Ebbsfleet, and is the most relaxing of all the journeys, plus you get more time on the slopes if you opt for the Friday night departure.

Travelling to La Tania this winter? Here are all the details on distances from airports, cost of tolls, and more.

Top 5 Tips for Family Ski Holidays in France

When you’re going on a family ski holiday, you want to make the most of your time together. There can be a lot to think about, and a lot of different people in the group to please. However, France is a great option for a family ski trip. There are ski resorts in France that offer great value for money, whilst giving you access to some of the most stunning mountains in the world. Here are our top five tips for making the most of family ski holidays in France.

1. Choose a ski resort with a variety of pistes

It’s likely that you’ll have different levels of skiers in your family. Check out the piste map of your resort before you go and see what types of runs are in resort. Ideally, you want to have a good mixture of all levels. This gives little kids and beginners an opportunity to start on appropriately challenging terrain and gives the more advanced skiers adventure so that they aren’t bored.

And even if everyone is a beginner, you’ll want to be able to progress onto more challenging slopes as the week goes on.

family ski holiday kid child sledge sledging

2. Partake in some non-skiing activities

Another great way to make sure everyone in the family has fun, is to mix up the activities. Grab a bum board and go sledging around the village after a day on the slopes, or check out some of the larger sledge runs for bigger kids. Go see some live music and have a bit of an après session. Take a day or afternoon off skiing to go swimming at Aquamotion. Or treat yourself to a massage!

There are plenty of activities in Courchevel to keep everyone occupied.

3. Organise things in advance

There is something to be said for the over-organiser when it comes to family ski holidays. We’re big fans of booking as much as you can in advance so that you can start relaxing as soon as you get to resort. Things to book in advance:

  • Childcare – If you have a small child who won’t be skiing, book them into the local creche or secure a nanny to come to your chalet.
  • Ski Hire – Usually you can get great deals on ski hire when you book in advance, then all you have to do is pick it up once you arrive.
  • Ski Passes – Again, you can often get discounts when booking through your accommodation provider, and they can have it waiting in your chalet for you upon arrival. One less thing you need to organise yourself.
  • Ski School – For your children who are skiing, it’s highly recommended to book them into lessons beforehand, especially during school holidays. Groups book up early, and it’s a great chance for them to ski with other children and gives you some time on the slopes without them.
  • Restaurants – If you’re going for a catered ski chalet, book your chalet hosts’ night off dinner well in advance. Restaurants fill up quickly, especially in La Tania!

fondue france

4. Indulge in the local fayre

When in France, right? Because you are going to a country with some of the best food in the world, take the chance to indulge. The French Alps is well-known for gooey, cheesy deliciousness. It’s a great opportunity to share different food and culture with your children as well. Three cheese dishes we highly recommend:

  • Tartiflette – A baked dish made up of potato, onion, lardon, and the star of the dishL: Reblochon cheese
  • Raclette – Originally this was a way for famers to use up cheese that was starting to go hard, however now it’s a favourite in the Alps. A Huge chunk of raclette cheese is put under a heat lamp on the table & as it melts you scrape it off onto your plate of potatoes, salad & meats.
  • Fondue – You likely have heard of fondue – a melted pot of cheesy goodness that you dip pieces of bread into. There are a variety of different types of fondue you can order. We’ve found some with morel mushrooms in them before. Yum!

5. Stay somewhere lovely

Choose a great accommodation so that everyone can relax – yourself included – in a lovely environment. We have three beautiful chalets in La Tania, France which are all perfect for a family ski holiday. Check out Chalet Juliette, Chalet Dahu or Jamais Bleu. All are perfect for relaxing family ski holidays in France, partially due to the hot tubs you can dip in after a day’s skiing (amongst many other amenities).

Child Friendly Ski Holidays

10 Activities in Courchevel Not To Be Missed

We know you’ve come to Courchevel for the amazing skiing that the Three Valleys has to offer. However, there are plenty of activities to keep you busy beyond skiing. Whether you’re looking for a fun adventure with friends, a kids activity or something for the non-skiers in your group – Courchevel has something to offer.

Here are a few fun activities in Courchevel to add to your bucket list for the week.

1. Aquamotion

This state of the art pool and spa centre is a great activity for both kids and adults, and perfect if you want to take a day off skiing to rest your legs. The swimming area has a kids play pool, two large pools, diving boards and a slide.

The separate spa area can be an additional add-on to your pass, where you can indulge in a bit of relaxation. They have an indoor-outdoor pool and jacuzzi, salt pool, hammams, saunas and also offer massage & beauty treatments. In addition to all of this the centre has a climbing wall and a mini wave pool to test your surf skills.

Find out more about what Aquamotion is really like.

aquamotion courchevel

2. Helicopter Ride Over Courchevel Valley

Check out the views of the Alps from above. Take an opportunity to make use of Courchevel’s Altiport – which was named the 7th most dangerous airports in the world due to it’s short runway(don’t let that put you off)!  You can get taken up in helicopter and get views of Mont Blanc and the Alps from above.

3. Sledging

Sledging is one of our favourite activities in Courchevel after the pistes close – for both families and friends.

There has long been a fast and fun sledge run between Courchevel 1850 and 1550. Head up the Grangettes gondola in 1550 (which is free after the pistes close), and from the base of 1850 you head down a windy track through the woods back down to 1550. It’s free to use, you just need to rent a sledge for approximately €5.

However just a couple years ago, Courchevel 1650 added in their own sledge run which is some fierce competition for the old one – it’s longer and faster! The sledging winds from the top of Ariondaz gondola, through tunnels and around bends as it heads down to the base of resort. Helmets must be worn because you can get some speed on this one! It’s approximately €10 per person, which includes your sledge.

New Tobaggan Run in Moriond (1650)

4. Indiens Teepee in 1650

Perfect for tiny tots is the Indiens park in Courchevel 1650. This is located just above the Ariondaz gondola (moved from it’s previous location), and is a fun activity to break up a day’s skiing. Also a chance for little ones to rest their legs for a bit. Head into the teepee and try on a traditional headdress, get your face painted, sing some songs and play the drums. The big kids can get a vin chaud inside to keep them warm whilst the kids play.

5. Family Fun Park

Right in the centre of Courchevel 1850 is the Family Fun Park. Younger kids can have a race on the skier cross, play in the igloo or give the tubing jump a go (landing safely on an airbag). Bigger kids can try out the green and blue graded boxes and jumps scattered throughout the park. You might end up looping this over and over for those who enjoy the features that add a little more interest to a day’s skiing.

6. Verdons By Night

Ever wanted to ski in the dark? Okay, not total darkness… On Wednesday evenings Courchevel opens Verdons gondola and the aforementioned Family Fun Park for night skiing. The park is totally lit up and they usually have music on, providing a nice atmosphere. It’s a fun and different experience and definitely one worth doing. It’s also a great time to ski without any queues or hardly any other skiers around. You don’t need to be an advanced skier to take advantage of this as the green run is the main piste open.

activities in courchevel

7. Skidoo

Take the opportunity to try out Courchevel’s snowmobiles. Available any day of the evening you can rent the snowmobiles and go for an adventure with a guide. You can also take passengers from age 8. Definitely one for the thrill-seekers.

8. Stay in a Refuge

For the more adventurous, there is the option to stay in a mountain refuge. Although this take a bit of organising, it’s an experience to be remembered. Scattered around the off-piste areas of resort, you’ll find tiny mountain refuges where you can spend an evening. Some are manned where dinner will be cooked for you, however many are unmanned and it’s up to you to show up with food. They’re fully equipped with cooking equipment and logs to stoke the fire. Although it will be a trek to get in and get out, if you’re after a bit of serenity tucked away in the mountains – this is where you should head.

activities in courchevel

9. Ice Skating, Bowling & Rock Climbing

Located inside Le Forum in Courchevel 1850 you will find a handful of shops and restaurants, as well as some activities for non-skiers in your group. There is a large ice skating rink where you can take figure skating lessons, and where they often have events on. On the base floor there is a climbing wall – although it’s not always open so be sure to check that beforehand. And there is a trendy bowling alley which has a bar inside and often has music on at night.

10. See What’s On

Head to the tourist office when you’re in resort and see what’s happening that week. Every single week throughout winter the resort has a variety of special events going on. These can be anything from figure skating shows, ice hockey matches, fireworks displays, torchlight descents, and much, much more.

Amongst all this, you of course have a plethora of ski terrain to keep you busy each day, and loads of restaurants and bars to check out each evening. You won’t be hard-pressed for activities in Courchevel to keep you busy.