Mountain matchmaker: 5 ski destinations for a long weekend

It's never been easier to zip to the Alps and back for a short ski jaunt. We select the best easy-access resorts for a white weekend

By Robert Stewart
Published 2 Apr 2019, 14:36 BST, Updated 15 Jul 2021, 13:21 BST
Two skiers on a mountain

Two skiers walking on a mountain

Photograph by Getty Images

1 If you’re after… A fast-track to beginner terrain

Where? Winter Park, Norway.

Why? Just half-hour’s drive from central Oslo (a two-hour flight from London), Winter Park has 18 runs (good for novices), a kids’ ski school and Europe’s only public superpipe.

How to do it: Ski Safari has three nights, B&B, at Scandic Holmenkollen Park hotel for £589pp. Includes return flights, airport transfers and a two-day ski pass.

2 If you’re after… A vast choice of ski areas

Where? Morzine, France.

Why? The 90-minute transfer from Geneva Airport, huge choice of accommodation, quick access to the vast Portes du Soleil ski area, lots of après ski, and relatively good-value restaurants and bars.

How to do it: Ski Weekends runs several three-star chalets in Morzine, from £303pp for three nights, half-board, including flights, transfers.

3 If you’re after… Virtually guaranteed snow cover

Where? Samoëns, France.

Why? The pretty village is around an hour’s drive from Geneva Airport. It links directly into the Grand Massif ski area, which has one of the best snow records in Europe.

How to do it:  Ski Weekender has four nights, half-board, at two-star Chalet Boule de Neige from £399pp. Includes flights, transfers, and three-day ski pass. 

4  If you’re after… A quick-access, cosy Swiss resort

Where? Engelberg, Switzerland.

Why? Just a 90-minute drive from Zurich Airport, the traditional village (full of wooden chalets) is great for advanced skiers and snowboarders, with some of the best on- and off-piste in the Alps.

How to do it: Ski Solutions has four nights, B&B, at three-star Hotel Terrace from £755pp, including return flights, airport transfers and a three-day ski pass. 

5 If you’re after… A city & ski weekend break

Where? Innsbruck, Austria.

Why? An ideal short-break spot with bonus nearby ski resorts. Hit the steep slopes of Nordkette via funicular. Or, 15 minutes by car, bus or taxi, is Igls, great for beginners and intermediates.

How to do it: BA and EasyJet have added lots of new flights this season. EasyJet Gatwick-Innsbruck from £30 one-way. Airbnb from £105 a night. Day ski pass €38 (£34).


Published in the Winter Sports guide, distributed with the November 2018 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)

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