Ask the experts: Ski resort for mixed abilities and ages

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By National Geographic Traveller (UK)
Published 16 Nov 2016, 15:00 GMT, Updated 8 Jul 2021, 09:38 BST
Courchevel 1850 ski resort in Les Trois Vallées, Savoie.

Courchevel 1850 ski resort in Les Trois Vallées, Savoie.

Photograph by Getty Images

Q: Where is a good Alps resort for a group of skiers and boarders with very mixed abilities and ages?

Dave Watts, editor, Where to Ski and Snowboard: Courchevel in France fits the bill. It has good beginner slopes and English-speaking ski schools such as New Generation Ski & Snowboard School, BASS (British Alpine Ski & Snowboard School) and RTM Snowboarding. An intermediate's paradise, the Trois Vallées ski area is home to 370 miles of pistes, along with some tough black runs and challenging off-piste. Out of the four main villages here, I'd suggest staying in Courchevel Moriond, which has convenient nursery slopes and easy access to the main slopes by gondola — but is cheaper than the highest resort, Courchevel, also known as 1850. Along with hotels and apartments, plenty of catered chalet holidays run by British tour operators are available, including Le Ski, with 18 chalets, most with a hot tub, sauna or steam room.

If a big ski area and steep slopes aren't top of your list, try Obergurgl, Austria. Long popular with British families, it has great beginner and intermediate slopes, plus a quiet, chalet-style village, with little traffic and mainly four-star hotels or catered chalets. Obergurgl also has family-friendly, teatime après-ski — both up the mountain and in the village. Pay an extra €10 (£8.50) when you buy your week's ski pass to cover a day in Sölden, a short, free bus ride away, with 90 miles of mainly intermediate pistes.

Where to Ski and Snowboard 2016 is available at

Published in the The Alps Winter 2016 guide, distributed with the November 2016 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)

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