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Ax Les Thermes

One of the oldest, greatest spa towns in the Pyrenees branched out into ski tourism in the 50's and hasn’t looked back since... Combine a day on the slopes at Ax-3 Domaines with a good soak at the Ax Les Thermes thermal baths, for a heady blend of pistes and pampering.

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At a glance: • Historic spa town • 3 linked ski areas • French & Spanish cuisine

Great for: • Spa & Ski breaks • Non skiers

One of the oldest, greatest spa towns in the Pyrenees branched out into ski tourism in the 50's and hasn’t looked back since... Combine a day on the slopes at Ax-3 Domaines with a good soak at the Ax Les Thermes thermal baths, for a heady blend of pistes and pampering.

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Ax Les Thermes Resort

Ax Les Thermes is an old spa town in the Pyrenees close to Andorra and Spain. The healing powers of its sixty or so hot springs have brought visitors to the town since the times of the Romans. Soldiers came here to recover during the Crusades and Ax was established as a leading spa resort in the Victorian era. Hovering around 77°C, the thermal waters here are the warmest in the Pyrenees - and you can experience them for yourself at the colossal Bains du Couloubret spa.

Though the thermal waters have been a draw for centuries, it wasn’t until the fifties that locals decided to attract skiers and snowboarders too. Up at 1400m, the AX-3 Domaines ski resort was created above the town, with a gondola to link Les Thermes and ski area base station. You can also reach the resort via a 15 minute drive up the mountain road that often plays the final stage of the Tour de France.

The ‘3 Domaines’ refer to the trio of ski areas: Bonascre, Saquet and Campels. Bonascre, the lowest and oldest acts as the gateway to the region with direct links from the town. Next up, Saquet is the highest of the region, with slopes streaming down from 2300m. Domaine des Campels is the third, connected by blue and black pistes from Saquet.

Both the spa town and resort have their fair share of accommodation - Les Thermes being the prettier, more traditional base and purpose built 3 Domaines the more convenient for skiers with apartment blocks moments from the slopes.

Stats & FAQ

Location: Pyrenees, France

Established: 1955

Open: December - March

Downhill: 80km

View our detailed Ax Les Thermes snow forecast or snow report and see all live webcams, piste maps, road and travel maps and lift pass prices. For a picture of historic snow conditions see the snow depths month by month with our Ax Les Thermes snow history.

Nearest Airport & Transfer Time:
Toulouse (TLS)125km, 90 mins
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • 19 runs

  • 10 runs

  • 7 runs

Top Altitude:2411m
Bottom Altitude:697m
Resort Altitude:720m / 1400m
Longest run:4km
Slope Orientation:
Vertical Drop:
Skiable Vertical:
Night Skiing:No
Glacier:No

Snow Report

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Web Cam

Ax Les Thermes web cams
Downhill Runs:80km
Beginner slopes:
Intermediate:
Advanced slopes:
Lift Pass Price: €174.30 (adult 6 day)
Nearby resorts: Soldeu

Skiing/BoardingSkiing in Ax Les Thermes

Learners can pick up the basics at the Evolution Space beginner’s area, then practice on the greens found on the plateau between Bonascre and Saquet. Boulevard La Griole is a gorgeously long green run taking you down between the trees to the Bonascre base station – a great one to aim for by the end of the week.

Blue run skiers get to explore the whole area, from the Savis valley run in Campels to pistes lined by forest like Bonsacre and Sapins which lead back to the resort.

In the red run department, we love the pistes in Domaine des Campels. The Savis chair leads to two descents that dip into the treeline – reach it via the Berger run (which starts off as a black) or Combes, which leads into a blue.

Experts have the thigh-burning Olympique piste, which takes you down to the Rebenty chair base – take the lift and ski the Campeillots for another adrenaline-inducing descent. Domaine de Saquet is home to the Tute run, served by the 6-man Tute chairlift. There are some brilliant powder runs through the forest and next to the pistes – get a local guide to show you the best terrain for the weather and your ability. The Saquet Plateau is home to the Natural Forest Park, which has features for beginners and experts.

Ax Les Thermes Apres Ski

On the mountain, the Tetras restaurant in Saquet has outdoor seating on a south facing terrace – we like to nab one of the deckchairs and watch the world ski by. Also in Saquet, Louzat looks over the plateau with its outdoor bar – often hosting parties throughout the ski season. For drinks at the foot of the slopes you’ll find the likes of the DZI DZI and Komo bars.

Down in Les Thermes, we like Casa Mauricio for tapas and La Pizzatiere for pizzas. La Table du Sud Ouest and Couteaux Fourchettes serve good old fashioned french food. For drinks, try Le Vieux Four.

You can’t visit Ax les Thermes without a trip to Les Bains du Couloubret, with its Roman style thermal pools, bubble beds and wellness centre. Other activities include igloo building, VTT riding (half bike, half ski), snake gliss and snowshoeing.

Best time to go

Best time to ski Ax Les Thermes

When is the best time to ski Ax Les Thermes?

There isn’t a glacier here, so the best time to visit is usually the middle of the ski season. 200 snow cannons provide layers of artificial snow in the colder winter months. If the snow isn’t up to scratch at the end of the season, there’s always the option to combine a skiing and spa holiday – enjoying the slopes first thing in the morning then heading down to the Bains du Couloubret for some downtime.

Peak Dates

Spend a quiet Christmas in Ax les Thermes – shopping at local market stalls and skiing the three ski areas.

Split your time between the spa and the slopes for a relaxing and refreshing start to the New Year in Ax les Thermes.

Half Term in Ax les Thermes is brilliant for families who want to make the most of the ski-out resort, or teachers who need a week of good snow on the mountain and pampering in the town.

With slopes above 2000m, the 3 Domaines area often stays in good condition for those spending Easter in Ax les Thermes, and if things do get slushy in the afternoon there’s always the spa! Browse Ax Les Thermes Easter ski holidays ‣

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Families in Ax Les Thermes

Whether your clan are tempted by the wellness facilities or the ski area, this area is brilliant for holidays with children. Stay in the resort if you want to be able to ski straight out every morning, or pick the town if some relatives want a more spa-focussed break. The ESI ski school run the Pitchouns club for kids aged 4-6 years, where they’ll learn new skills while learning about the local environment. Group classes are also available for more advanced skiers and snowboarders.

GroupsGroup Holidays Ax Les Thermes

With three ski areas, a ski-in, ski-out resort and a fully-fledged spa town at your fingertips, Ax has a lot to offer groups. This is a great place to bring non-skiers, who can explore the historic town and sample the wellness facilities while the rest of the group enjoy the slopes. Sharing the cost of a mountain guide is a brilliant way for experienced skiers and snowboarders to explore the off piste terrain, while a private instructor can help others learn and improve on the gentler ski runs.

More Ax Les Thermes Holiday Resources


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