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Valmeinier

This traditional alpine resort has it all; beautiful French architecture straight off the front of a Christmas card, a brilliant ski area, connections to the Three Valleys and a Tourist Office who make it their mission to ensure all ages have the best ski holiday possible - you’ll go once and almost definitely fall in love.

Beginner

Intermediate

Advanced

Snowboard

At a glance: • Easy upgrade ski pass options • Short transfer • Brilliant day care options

Great for: • Snow activities • All ability levels • Skiing for all disciplines • Families

This traditional alpine resort has it all; beautiful French architecture straight off the front of a Christmas card, a brilliant ski area, connections to the Three Valleys and a Tourist Office who make it their mission to ensure all ages have the best ski holiday possible - you’ll go once and almost definitely fall in love.

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Valmeinier Resort

Valmeinier is a beautiful resort tucked away in the French Alps in the ‘Galbier-Thabor’ ski area, close to the Italian border and the Vanoise National Park. A gem of a resort, it promises beautiful views, brilliant skiing and a delightful fusion of French and Italian culture.

The resort is divided into two villages that are just 300m apart, meaning that facilities in both are available regardless of where you’re staying; with a free ski bus circulating between the two, you’re not going to find it hard to get around. At the bottom of the ski slopes, Valmeinier 1500 is the quieter of the two. Anyone looking for scenery won’t be disappointed by the stunning vistas of the surrounding mountains. Valmeinier 1800 is slightly newer (but just as pretty), with a larger choice of facilities like bars, restaurants and cinemas. It is protected within the National Park, so the landscape is totally unspoilt, guaranteeing unforgettable views. Both villages are incredibly hospitable, hosting welcome drinks at the start of each week and putting on plenty of free entertainment like quizzes and magic shows throughout the season.

When it comes to the lift passes, you’re spoilt for choice with the chance to tailor your pass daily to suit where you fancy skiing. Children under 5 can usually ski for free and in the past the ticket office have offered a student discount if you have ID. The basic Valmeinier pass gives access to the skiing areas around Valmeinier and Valloire, with options to upgrade to a different village in the Maurienne valley for around €15 a day, so you don’t pay a large bulk price for resorts you may not get to. Alternatively, get the bus to Val Thorens and upgrade your pass for access to the Three Valleys area for around €20/day.

Stats & FAQ

Location: Northern Alps, Savoie, France

Established: 17<sup>th</sup> Century

Open: late December – mid April

Downhill: 150km

View our detailed Valmeinier 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 Valmeinier snow history.

Nearest Airport & Transfer Time:
Grenoble1h30
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • 47runs 53%

  • 32runs 37%

  • 9runs 10%

Top Altitude:2600m
Bottom Altitude:1430m
Resort Altitude:1500/1800m
Longest run:12km
Slope Orientation:N
Vertical Drop:1170m
Skiable Vertical:1170m
Night Skiing:Yes
Glacier:No

Snow Report

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Web Cam

Valmeinier web cams
Downhill Runs:150km
Beginner slopes:53%
Intermediate:37%
Advanced slopes:10%
Lift Pass Price: €170 (6-day Adult)
Nearby resorts: Valloire, Les Karellis, Albiez-Montrond, Val Thorens, Valfrejus

Skiing/BoardingSkiing in Valmeinier

Beginners have an excellent choice of greens and blues around the resort and further afield. For an easy start, take the TSD Jeux lift from 1800 village towards Le Gros Crey peak and take the green Pt. Dejeuner connecting to the Chardons for a really lovely practise run back down to the village. Greens mastered, head towards the Grand Plateau to take the super long Selles blue back to the village. High in altitude, it’s ideal for kicking the snow-plough habit whilst taking in the incredible scenery.

Intermediates have all sorts of red runs to explore for a week. To start close to home, ski your way to the Gros Crey lift to take the long red run Genepi to get back into the swing of things. Hopping across to the next valley will find you a whole host of red runs to play on. The Plan Palais lift will lead you to 4 superb reds; Plan Palais, Stade, Praz Conduite and Goulet.

Advanced snow lovers have a number of challenging black runs, as well as several mogul fields to satisfy their inner adrenaline junkie. Close to Valmeiniers Village, ski to the Gros Crey lift and head high to take the Grand Choulet for some black and then red skiing back down to the village for lunch. The Crey du Quart peak has a short but lethal mogul run Costerieux, and if that isn’t enough, ski towards the Setaz des Pres peak for the long and bumpy black Dahu, approach with caution!

The resort also has 4 slalom courses, 2 international competition runs, speed racing areas and night skiing. Freestylers can conquer the modular Snow Park, with an easy park for beginners as well as intermediate and advanced parks. There’s also a ski-cross area and cross country trails.

Valmeinier Apres Ski

Anyone looking for very lively après-ski à la Val Thorens, Valmeinier is not the place for you. If, however, you’re happy with a few pubs, a club and plenty of restaurants, as well as fun evening activities, this resort won’t disappoint.

For a warm, friendly atmosphere, live music and DJ sets, pop into the Irish Pub Aux Lutins Verts in 1800. If it’s a game of pool that catches your fancy, the No Comment pub has a few tables and occasionally live music. La Picasette is just by the main chairlift and has a nice terrace to catch the last of the afternoon sun. For something different, rock on over to the Lebowski Bowling Bar, where you can bowl, play table football, arcade games and bop along to the resident DJ. When drinks have been flowing, and you’re reluctant to go home at closing time, stay out for one more at the Brasilia nightclub in 1800 to round off your night.

Being close to the Italian border, you’ll be spoilt for choice with both authentic French and Italian cuisine, meaning there will be more homemade pizza and hot cheese than you can shake a ski pole at. Savoyard classics a plenty, L’Estaminet is the best choice for traditional French cuisine. They serve plenty of cold meat, potatoes and the ‘piece de resistance’, hot cheese - the ‘plat du jour’ is brilliant value if you’re on a budget. For something with a bit less cheese, l’Elan comes highly recommended online for its fabulous French cooking, warm atmosphere and excellent wine advice. Try La Braserade a table top BBQ for really social dining and a break from fondue. Le Marmiton is great for families as the children’s menu has a lot of choice, and the pizzas are tasty and great value for money. It also has things like paella on the menu to try something totally different.

Those after some alternative snow fun can also try their hand at sledging, ice-skating, snake tobogganing and even paragliding.

Best time to go

Best time to ski Valmeinier

When is the best time to ski Valmeinier?

For resorts with a lower altitude, the best time to ski section is very much based on weather conditions and snow quality at different parts of the season. Due to the slopes reaching up to 2600m, with 70% of the ski area above 2000m, snow should be good throughout the season here, so it depends more on what you want from your ski holiday.

Early season sees the festive run up to Christmas and New Year, usually with good early snow as the resort is high. Mid-season famously has the best snowfall, so powder heads will not be disappointed with any of the runs around Valmeinier. If it’s half-term you’re keen on, this is a terrific choice as it’s quieter than more main-stream French resorts, with brilliant childcare options and it’s easy enough to keep all ages entertained for a week. Finally, late season has warmer temperatures, possibly some slushier snow around the villages themselves, but high quality skiing towards the top of the area, with some incredible views of the surrounding valleys and National Park in the sunshine.

Peak Dates

If you’re looking for excellent skiing, Christmas cheer and beautiful views from a traditional French village, Christmas in Valmeinier is for you. The Tourist Office ensures there’s plenty to do and high top altitudes mean snow should be good. Browse Valmeinier Christmas ski holidays ‣

Anyone looking for a magical way to celebrate December 31st should consider New Year’s Eve in Valmeinier. Fireworks, vin-chaud and great skiing should make it a night, and indeed holiday to remember. Browse Valmeinier New Year ski holidays ‣

Taking the kids away for Half-term in Valmeinier is a great choice for a family holiday. The snow will be wonderful and with events galore throughout the week, family fun is not hard to find. Browse Valmeinier Half Term ski holidays ‣

For a sunny ski break, look no further than Easter in Valmeinier. The temperatures make skiing really pleasant, whilst the high altitude preserves snow quality, so meandering down the mountain whilst getting the ever famous goggle tan is soon to become a reality. Browse Valmeinier Easter ski holidays ‣

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Families in Valmeinier

Families and children are incredibly welcome in Valmeinier, with the resort doing its absolute best to provide a full range of facilities and activities to ensure that Mum and Dad, as well as the little ones have a really enjoyable family holiday. We have some really lovely self-catering apartments that are brilliant for families, especially ones with younger children who will probably get hungry quite a while before the set evening meal is served in catered accommodation. The Residence Le Vermont apartment complex located at the top of the 1800 villages is perfect for families, as it’s just 50m from the nearest lift, so no-one needs to struggle up any hills with heavy ski equipment. Although it’s not far at all from the main centre of the village, it tends to be quieter in the evenings, so little ones can get enough sleep before another long day skiing.

The best thing about the resort is the impressive choice of day-care options available to parents. The ‘Galipette 1’ nursery, for 3-35 months is perfect for little ones who just aren’t big enough to ski. Mum and Dad can leave them safe in the knowledge that they will be well looked after by the fully qualified resort staff. There is then the Galipette 1 & 2 clubs, one for skiers and one for non-skiers for ages 3-9. The skier option offers a mixture of ski lessons with fun alpine education so that children really understand the environment they’re in. The non-ski option combines the same alpine lessons with fun outdoor activities like treasure hunts and ice-skating with indoor games, a meal and even a nap. Finally, a combination offer is available, where parents can pay for day-care and a lift pass together to save some money and ensure a good routine. Children are taken to and picked up from lessons by staff, and there is an awards ceremony at the end of the week.

When they’re not in day-care or skiing, there is plenty of other stuff to keep young and older children occupied. You’ll find 3 sledging slopes in the resort, one for little ones, one for older little ones and one for teens and adults. It’s floodlit in the evenings so take the whole family once the lifts close for a really fun alternative to the traditional après-ski.

Family holidays, whilst incredibly enjoyable, can be a bit stressful, so leave us to do the hard work and choose a package that includes flights and transfers, or a package with channel crossings for those who prefer to pack the clan into the car. Alternatively, book accommodation on its own if you’re as yet undecided on travel.

GroupsGroup Holidays Valmeinier

The accommodation available in Valmeinier is perfectly suited to groups, as it provides a cosy base, and allows for flexibility for the group to do their thing, explore the resort separately or altogether. If you’re looking for a holiday that is leaning more towards relaxation than partying, the Residence Le Vermont is situated in the upper part of the 1800 village, a mere 50m from the nearest lift. Whilst being just a short walk from all the bars, restaurants and shops, it’s not bang in centre, so quiet, chilled out evenings watching the sun set across the Maurienne Valley and the National Park will not be hard to come by. If, however, you do fancy some partying, and don’t trust yourself to walk too far in the snow, check out the Residence Les Lodges de Pierres Valmeiniers. Right in the centre of the village, it really won’t take you long to get from your front door to the nearest bar, Aux Lutins Verts, is brilliant for a lively drink or 2 . The complex also offers stunning panoramic views across the surrounding valley - watching the sunset and listening to hubbub of the resort will provide the perfect backdrop for an evening in.

Groups visiting Valmeinier will have plenty to do for a week in the resort. The variety of skiing is fantastic, with runs to suit all ability levels, and generously subsidised ski pass upgrades available to anyone who wants to ski further afield.

Really lively après-ski is not on the cards here, but that’s not to say that there isn’t plenty to do, and indeed drink, once the lifts close. There are a number of bars, including an Irish Pub and Bowling Alley with a DJ, as well as lots of restaurants, the Brasilia nightclub and entertainment like quizzes and shows for children. The provision of snow sports is excellent here, so if your group fancy doing something a bit different, book a snow snake session, to go down the mountain in one long line of sledges.

Booking holidays in groups can be made tricky by ‘that one disorganised friend’ so let us organise things instead. We have packages with flights and transfers included if your group just need to be told where to be and when, or packages with channel crossings if you fancy a walkie-talkie sponsored road trip to the Alps. Alternatively, if you really are dead set on booking your own travel, grab an accommodation only deal, and get packing those suitcases.


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