Proudly lying at an altitude of 2,300m (7,500 feet), the ski village of Val Thorens is officially the highest ski resort in Europe and is part of Les Trois Vallées ski area. The snow in this area is pretty much guaranteed and it’s a great bet for early or late season skiing with its own glacier; Cime de Caron, at 3,200m.
Val Thorens, renowned for being a fully “ski in/ski out” resort, now has some serious options for the luxury hotel aficionados looking for great mountains and a bit of pampering. Luxury spas and Michelin starred restaurants, once the reserve of Courchevel 1850, are now being developed to take advantage of this unique position.
For those looking for some serious aprés ski there are plenty of good bars and restaurants, including the legendary Folie Douce. And if you are wanting to experience something different, Val Thorens offers ice rally driving, night time skidoo tour and the world’s highest zip wire at 3,200m; not for the faint hearted!
Easily accessible from Chambery, Lyon or Geneva by car or helicopter, it is now a serious contender for an upmarket visit to the world’s biggest ski area.
Given its high altitude, Val Thorens is renowned for the quality of its snow and offers excellent conditions for beginners and experienced skiers alike. There are various ski areas which include Plein Sud (3 Vallées), Péclet, Moraine, Grand Fond (Montée du Fond), Rosael, Caron, and Boismint. Plein Sud is great for sunshine, and the renowned après ski bar, the Folie Douce. Some of the best snow can be found on the north-facing slopes in the Caron and Grand Fond sectors.
There is terrain for all abilities, including some spectacular and very accessible off-piste (best skied with a mountain guide). Plus there are excellent ski schools with a very well planned beginners ski area.
There is some good off-piste terrain to explore so why not take a guide out for the day and enjoy a challenge and some great views.
If you fancy trying something different why not experience some ice driving on the highest ice racing track in Europe.
Val Thorens is a great corporate ski trip destination; fantastic hotel options without the Courchevel price tag, fun, action packed activities to choose from and some awesome après ski.
There are several mountain restaurants in the Val Thorens ski area – one positioned at the top of the Cime de Caron offers great views; and perhaps the best known and smartest mountain restaurant is the Fruitiere which serves excellent food.
The après ski at the Folie Douce offers daily live music up the mountain with dancing on tables, and for some late night fun try Klub Summit, Malaysia and Le Baramix.
Val Thorens offers a wide choice of good restaurants including local Savoyarde specialities such as fondue, raclette and pierrade. The most famous one being, L’Oxalys, the 2 Michelin star restaurant which has put Val Thorens on the gastronomic map – don’t miss the pigeon in a foie gras pastry crust with liquorice sauce.
Geneva: 2 hours 20 minutes
Chambery: 1 hour 35 minutes
Lyon: 2 hours 50 minutes
Grenoble: 1 hour 50 minutes