The Three Valleys is made up of three major ski resorts (hence the name!): Courchevel, Meribel and Val Thorens. However within that, are other smaller resorts that fall within the larger resorts. For example La Tania is part of the Courchevel Valley and resort. Here’s our destination guide of how the Three Valleys resorts compare to one another.
Courchevel & La Tania
Courchevel includes the villages La Tania, Le Praz, Courchevel Village (1550), Courchevel Moriond (1650) and Courchevel 1850. And there is loads to love about Courchevel.
High quality skiing – It’s hard to describe how well taken care of the pistes are in Courchevel. Queues for lifts are rare, everything is interlinked really well, the grooming is immaculate and the resort is constantly getting new upgrades. If you’ve skied in Courchevel before this may be something that you take for granted, but the lift company really puts in a lot of work to make it easily accessible for everyone and a pleasant skiing experience.
Variety of price point options – One of the best things about Courchevel is that the whole valley caters to all types of budgets. Courchevel 1850 is definitely the most expensive and you will struggle to find budget accommodation there, however all of the other villages including La Tania have relatively cheap options. This also goes for food as well. You can opt for easy takeaway pizza or dine at a Michelin star restaurant, and everything in between.
Variety of Pistes – Although many resorts tout themselves as having something for every level of skier, Courchevel and La Tania however offer a truly do. There are a good variety of pistes with numerous accessible beginners areas, loads of wide open pistes for intermediates, and big adventures for powder hounds. So if not everyone in your party is the same level of skier, you won’t have to worry about them
Meribel is made up of Meribel Centre, Meribel Village and Meribel Mottaret. It’s a famous resort amongst many British holiday-makers.
Central location within the 3 Valleys – Meribel is known as the heart of the Three Valleys because it’s situated in between Courchevel and Val Thorens. This makes it easy to get around. Spend a few days exploring Courchevel, another few in Val Thorens and really make use of a 3V lift pass.
A great après and party scene – If this is something you’re after on your ski holiday, Meribel has some of the best après in the Three Valleys. The infamous Folie Douce is situated here (although easily accessible from Courchevel). The Rond Point plays music piste-side nearly every day and you can keep the party going into the wee hours a Sully’s. Other great spots include Jacks Bar, The Brewer’s Den, The Tav & Scott’s Pub.
Charming Chalet Village – You won’t see any high-rises or big block apartments in Meribel. The resort has managed to keep its aesthetic charming and traditional even as it’s grown. There are local regulations ensuring all new buildings use local materials and keep within a similar chalet style.
See Meribel has more info about the resort.
Val Thorens has 150km of pistes and includes the villages of St Martin de Belleville and Les Menuires. It also includes what is considered the fourth valley, Orelle. This is off to the far righthand side of the resort.
High Altitude – One of the best perks about Val Thorens is its high altitude. Situated at 2300m it’s the highest resort in the French Alps. And with that comes two things. Firstly, snow. It’s considered a snow-sure resort because it is situated so high, it often doesn’t struggle with snow the way some lower resorts do. But also, it means a longer season. So if you’re looking for an early Dec getaway or want to come out into early May – you can do that in Val Thorens.
Budget-friendly – Val Thorens is an affordable resort, which is why it tends to draw in loads of uni groups and a younger crowd. However, quieter villages further down the mountain have more authentic french alps charm if that is something you’re after.
Festivals and events galore – Of the whole Three Valleys, Val Thorens is host to the most events and festivals. Elctro festival Festi Val Tho runs during the end of March, a bike race Trois Vallees Addict Tour is here and the resort is also often host to the Tour de France.
Check out See Val Thorens website for everything you want to know about the valley.
But we love La Tania the most
We might be biased, but we love La Tania. It gives you all that Courchevel has to offer and it’s just 2 lifts away from accessing Meribel. Along with that it offers you great access to the entire 3V scene at a more reasonable price than the centre villages.