Winter is coming and we all hope that the health situation will allow those who wish to join the French ski resorts to enjoy the joys of the mountains. Downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, but also hiking, mountain walking or dog-sledding, all occasions are good to observe with stars full of eyes the beauty of the immaculate mountain scenery. To fully enjoy all these activities, it is essential that there is snow, and if possible, plenty of it! In France, the Alps and the Pyrenees are generally spoiled with a generous amount of powder every year, and here are the 10 most snowy ski resorts in France to help you prepare your future holidays
1- Avoriaz, like a futuristic city
With its eco-designed architecture and perfectly integrated into the landscape, Avoriaz is a delight for many winter sports lovers. We love its exceptional location, on a cliff overlooking the sublime Morzine valley. Created in 1966, the resort has a responsible vision of mountain tourism, and that's very much to be appreciated. Apart from its architectural audacity, the snow cover is generous, with snowfall of up to 293 cm. Ideal conditions to enjoy the gigantic ski area of the Portes du Soleil. You can spend as much time as possible outdoors to contemplate the superb panoramas of the dizzying peaks of the Chablais massif
2- Flaine, snow and design
It was at the end of the 1960s that Flaine was installed in the heart of a splendid natural circus in Haute-Savoie. Its environment is breathtakingly beautiful. Architecture, art and design also make this ski resort a real open-air art museum. In Flaine, you can go skiing and cars are not allowed. All good reasons to open your eyes wide and enjoy the richness of the place at every moment! In terms of powder snow, nothing to say, Flaine benefits from a rich and constant snow cover throughout the season, thanks to its exceptional exposure. After a few sessions on skis or snowshoes, enjoy an intense cultural life.
3- Font Romeu, one of the oldest resorts in France
Heading for the Pyrenees to stop at a ski resort renowned for being particularly sunny, which means that it always attracts a large number of winter sports enthusiasts. While some people fear the effects of global warming on the snow cover of the Pyrenean ski resorts, Font-Romeu, located on the Cerdanya plateau, is protected by its 1,800 m of altitude. In 2019-2020, between 120 and 150 cm of snow fell on both sides. Nordic skiing, downhill skiing, snowshoe walks and games for children, you can also enjoy a moment of relaxation and well-being in the resort's hotel spa
4- Val Cenis, the alpine exception
Created in 1967 on the former communes of Lanslevillard and Lanslebourg, the resort of Val Cenis today includes no less than five former villages: Bramans, Sollières-Sardières, Termignon-la-Vanoise, Lanslebourg Mont-Cenis and Lanslevillard. At the foot of the Mont-Cenis pass, it is at a perfect altitude to take a good dose of oxygen in an atmosphere that is at once family-friendly, sporty, lively, but also restful. Skiing in all its forms, walks to see Mont-Cenis and its splendid lake, but also the eternal snow of the Vanoise National Park, the snow is always there, and in quantity, to spend memorable moments.
5- Val Thorens, the highest ski resort in Europe
With an altitude of 2,300 m, Val Thorens is the highest ski resort on the Old Continent as well as one of the largest ski resorts in France. A status that guarantees mountain enthusiasts to find abundant snow during the winter season! It has 68 runs, including 27 red runs for those who are more at ease on powder snow. For those who wish to vary the pleasures during their stay, it is important to know that the activities on offer are varied: you can go sledding, a classic, but also more original activities such as karting on snow!
6- The Grand Tourmalet, the Pyrenees XXL
In the Pyrenees, the Grand Tourmalet ski resort brings together Barèges and La Mongie to offer you a unique skiing experience! Barèges is a typical Pyrenean village that has managed to preserve its authenticity, while La Mongie offers a 100% gliding atmosphere at the foot of the slopes. You can put on your skis, snowboard or settle down on a snowscoot to enjoy the 100 km of slopes of an incredible area with snow that is never lacking. For those who wish, it is also possible to enjoy Nordic activities, warm up in a balneotherapy centre or go and admire a sunrise or sunset from the Pic du Midi
7- La Plagne, one of the most popular
Snow, snow, snow and more snow, that perfectly sums up a winter spent in La Plagne. Located in the Tarentaise valley in Savoie, the resort has eleven village resorts. It is very easy to go from one resort to another thanks to the free buses. You can take advantage of the most beautiful sunny days to ski or to go hiking, equipped with snowshoes. But La Plagne is also the perfect place to enjoy thrilling experiences such as a bobsleigh ride or a run down a slope, sitting on a sledge in the middle of the night!
8- Ax 3 domains, pearl of Ariège
The ski resort of Ax 3 Domaines is located in the heart of the Ariege Pyrenees. It offers all the conditions for snow sports enthusiasts to have a successful stay, and in particular good snow cover on its three ski areas: Bonascre, Le Saquet and Les Campels. There are 80 kilometres of slopes in total. Depending on your desires, you can go downhill skiing, snowshoe hiking or speed riding. But you can also enjoy 360° panoramic views of the Pyrenees during a good mountaineering session, hurtle down the slopes with a fat bike or have a good time with the children by building an igloo in the village of Igloo.
9- La Clusaz, a very varied offer
La Clusaz is located in Haute-Savoie, at the foot of the Aravis massif and the Aravis pass. It offers the setting of a pretty mountain village, where the inhabitants are always happy to welcome visitors who come to recharge their batteries and have a good time with friends or family. In this benchmark alpine destination, an infinite playground, the Beauregard plateau is a must with its abundant snow that invites long sessions of snowshoe hiking. On the program: discovery of authentic wooden chalets and panoramas of the Aravis and Mont-Blanc. La Clusaz is also a perfect place for lovers of downhill skiing, snowboarding, sledging, dog-sled rides or paragliding to get an adrenalin boost
10- Bonneval-sur-Arc, an authentic Savoyard resort
Bonneval-sur-Arc, like all the Savoyard resorts, benefits in winter from generous snow cover, which is conducive to a multitude of outdoor activities. Situated in Haute Maurienne Vanoise, the village breathes authenticity and appears like a commune at the end of the world. At the foot of the Iseran pass, you can ski on an area of 26 slopes, including 7 red and 3 black, for the most comfortable. In the heart of the village, a space is also dedicated to beginners, because yes, everyone has the right to enjoy the pleasures of the snow. As one of the Most Beautiful Villages in France, Bonneval-sur-Arc is also a privileged place to contemplate the beauty of the buildings, during the day and in the evening in front of a starry sky.