In January, Val Thorens tends to be much quieter compared to preceding weeks like Christmas and New Year, which means you should be able to find a really good deal on our package holidays.
That said, Val Tho is by no means a ghost town, with lively après ski and plenty of varied activities including tobogganing and snow mountain biking.
With historically good snowfall and temperatures hovering around freezing up at resort-level, the conditions in January are generally ideal to explore the vast 3 Valleys.
January Snow History
Average snow depth
Average snow depth
January ski rating
The tourist office is very confident when it comes to reliability – they’re known to have a “snow guarantee” running from November to May. In January, there’s an average snow depth of 130cm at the top of the ‘Sommet des 3 Vallees’ piste (3,200m) and 86cm at resort level. Average temperatures hover around 0.6 degrees, though it’ll be colder on those high runs, so hit those January sales and bring plenty of shiny new gear with you.
There’s loads of terrain to roam, especially if you’re an intermediate skier or above. At the top of the Bouchet, you’ll find a couple of red runs on the snow sure Glacier de La Pointe Renod. Lower down, the blue Peyron is a long run that’s ideal for cruising and practicing turns.
Because the resort is so high, there aren’t any tree-lined runs in the local area for shelter if there’s low visibility. You will find some below the resort, including blue, red and black runs at the top of the Roche Noir or Masse 1 lifts, which might be the place to head if the weather’s playing up. The black Rocher Noir is a long, fairly steep run and leads down to Les Menuires at 1850m or for something a little less testing, you’ll find the blue Vallon in the same area. The slopes around Boismant are usually sunny, which is great if it’s icy elsewhere (especially first thing in the morning). If you have the Three Valleys ski pass, pop over to Meribel in the next valley, which has loads of treed and south facing terrain.
Val Thorens’ bars and clubs are always lively, even during off-peak weeks. Folie Douce, with the “the highest dance floor in the world”, is famous throughout the Alps and usually has live DJ parties on its sun terraces from around midday. Down in the resort itself, the Red Fox has happy hours and karaoke, and clubs like Malaysia (reputedly the biggest club in the Alps and host of big names like Chase and Status) and Klub Summit (“the highest club in the world”) provide plenty of laughs until the early hours.
If you fancy a break from skiing or there are non-skiers with you, there’s a toboggan run which at 6km is the longest of its kind in France. You can also give snow mountain biking a go with guided runs down a specially constructed 8km piste that leads to Les Menuires. A new addition to the resort is La Tyrolienne - the world’s highest zip wire which hurtles you at 100kmph between Orelle and Val Thorens.
Val Thorens usually has plenty of competitions throughout the season, which are great if you love lively crowds, cheering and frantic bell ringing. In previous Januarys, the resort has hosted the Savoie Snowboard Tour (which is aimed at younger boarders), the FIS World Cup (including Downhill, Slalom and Super G and Skicross) and the SFR Freeskiing Tour.