France Ski Accommodation in Val d'Isere, France

Description

Val d’Isere is one of the most famous ski resorts, due to its large ski area, amazing après ski, and wide variety of restaurants – there is something for everyone in Val d’Isere! It is also one of the prettiest resorts at high altitude. The resort level is at 1850m, and there are plenty of beautiful, traditional alpine chalets and hotels in resort. There are 300km of piste (15% green, 42% blue, 26% red and 17% black). Val d’Isere, combined with Tignes, is part of the Espace Killy.

Val d’Isere is split into 7 smaller villages.

1) La Daille, it is a short bus ride from town and is where there are cheaper chalets that have great ski access.
2) Le Cret, the village that boasts the high end, luxurious chalets that usually come with a driver service because it is a 10 minute walk to town and isn’t near the slopes either.
3) Les Carats, this little area of Val d’Isere is extremely luxurious, the chalets here are next to the famous ‘Face’ piste and have beautiful views of the town – which is only a short walk away.
4) Le Chatelard/La Legettaz/Le Joseray has plenty of ski in/ski out chalets and hotels that are about a ten minute walk to town, but only a stone’s throw away from the famous Cocorico’s après-ski bar that is at the foot of the slopes.
5) Le Laisanant is a quieter area, also situated about ten minutes away from the town centre but has plenty of ski in/ski out properties.
6) Le Fornet is about a fifteen minute bus ride away from Val d’Isere town centre. There isn’t any good nightlife or ski school access in Le Fornet, but it has some lovely restaurants and the quickest ski access to the glacier.
7) Centre Village can be quite noisy but it is the hub of Val d’Isere – lots of amazing shops, restaurants, bars, chalets and hotels with excellent ski access.


Getting There

A large proportion of Val d’Isère’s chalets and hotels can be booked with UK flights and airport transfers included, and despite the often early starts, it’s a great way to take the hassle out of your ski holiday and reach resort in good time to begin enjoying yourself. 

For those keen to arrive under their own steam, there’s a range of travel options to choose from. 

Buying flights

If you’re booking flights independently, Chambéry, Grenoble, Lyon and Geneva are the best airports to fly into, with transfer times of between two and three hours. Geneva offers the most flight routes and, being larger, handles fresh snowfall better – but it’s the longest transfer time to resort. The closest airport to Val d’Isère is Chambery, but there are fewer scheduled flights to choose from. 
Flying is the most popular way of reaching the Alps from the UK, but services can be disrupted when it snows heavily. If you’re bringing skis or snowboards with you, be sure to check the excess baggage rules with your airline of choice. 

Taking the train

Bourg St. Maurice is Val d’Isère’s closest train station, a little over 30 km from the resort. From the UK, Eurostar train services run from central London and Kent through to Paris, where travelers can switch to connecting TGV services to Bourg St Maurice. From here, private transfer and public coach services are on hand for the 45-minute drive into the resort. 

The train is a relaxing way of reaching the Alps, but the changes involved do mean carrying heavy equipment through sometimes busy terminals. 

Self-driving

Reaching Val d’Isère from the UK by car offers great freedom, but it’s a 13-hour drive from London and you’re not likely to need your vehicle in resort. For self-drivers, key things to consider include fitting snow tyres and packing snow-chains, budgeting for the toll-paying motorways, and always carrying your license and registration details. 


When to Go



Where to Stay

There’s a chalet for everyone in Val d’Isere!

As previously mentioned, the resort is split into 7 smaller villages, the chalets and chalet hotels are dotted around all of the villages in Val d’Isere.

La Daille: La Daille is where most of the cheaper chalets are. There is great ski access as it is close to the Funival and the La Daille gondola that goes straight up to the legendary après ski bar - Folie Douce. But, La Daille isn’t a very pretty little village, there are very few shops, restaurants or bars and it is a good ten minute bus ride from the centre of town.

Le Cret: This area is suitable to clients who want a luxurious chalet. It isn’t near the slopes or the town centre, but chalets around here usually come with a driver service.

Les Carats: Les Carats is known as the ‘Millionaires Row’ – it is where the extremely luxurious chalets are, and they are priced accordingly.

Le Chatelard/La Legettaz/Le Joseray: This is a great area for groups who want both ski in/ski out and want to be a short walk away from après-ski bars and nightclubs. The properties here are an easy ten minute walk to town centre, or a short bus ride.

Le Laisanant: This area has plenty of ski in/ski out properties, and is cheaper than Le Chatelard and Les Carats – mainly because there isn’t much going on here apart from having good value chalets that are a ten minute walk to town.

Le Fornet: This is a great village that is well-suited to guests who want a nicer chalet but can’t afford to be in the centre of Val d’Isere. It is about a fifteen/twenty minute bus ride to town but has great ski access.

Centre Village is close to all the shops, restaurants and bars, and also offers ski in/ski out properties – what more could you want!



Getting around

There is an extremely reliable, free shuttle bus service that runs in Val d’Isere – connecting all villages.

Train Rouge busses are the most common, and do a large loop of the resort – from Le Fornet, through town centre, to La Daille - they run every 5 minutes from 8:30-17:30, every 10 minutes from 17:30 to 20:00 and every 15 minutes from 20:00-02:00.

The Train Vert busses (Rond Point des Pistes – Chatelard or Legettaz) and the Train Bleu busses (Main bus station – Aquasportif / Le Joseray) run every 15 minutes from 8:30 to 17:30 and every 15 minutes from 7:00 to 20:00.

Walking around Val d’Isere is also a very pleasant experience as there are beautiful chalets to look at and some great shops to pop in to!

There are also very few parking spaces in Val d’Isere for guests who want to drive there and use their car in resort. There are plenty of private/operator-run driver services available in resort.


Apres

Val d’Isere is home to the best après and nightlife in France!

Apres Ski

Folie Douce – This famous après ski bar on the mountain is easily accessible for pedestrians by taking the gondola up from La Daille, and for skiers/snowboarders skiing down from Olympique. This legendary après bar is world famous for the incredible dancing; famous DJ’s and live dancing shows. The shows begin at 3pm and finish at 5pm every day except on Sundays.

Cocoricos – Coco’s is a classic après ski bar situated at the foot of the slopes. There is a live band that performs from 1pm-5pm every day (except Sundays) and then the resident DJ takes over until 8pm. The songs are all classics that everyone can sing along to whilst dancing on the tables in their ski boots!

On the days when people still want to go to après, but are far too cold to be outside, Le Petit Danois or Morris are indoor bars in the town centre and are guaranteed fun.

Live music/sport

Petit Danois – Petit Danois is a bar in the town centre, offering live music, all sorts of drinks and cocktails, English DJs and dancing on tables!

Morris Bar – Morris is located on the edge of the town centre. This bar provides live music (The Domino’s band make regular appearances throughout the season), and a great DJ after the band finish to keep the crowd on their feet. There is also an annual beach party that takes place in Morris Bar towards the end of the season.

Pacific bar – Pacific is located in the town centre. It is a great, lively bar with big TV screens showing live sport. 

Cheap drinks

Saloon Bar – Saloon is at the foot of the slopes, there is a live DJ, beer-pong tournaments and it is well-known for selling the infamous Joss Shots.

Bananas – Located on the foot of the slopes, Bananas has cheap food, cheap drinks and a great atmosphere. There is a terrace area, and a bar on the ground level as well as another bar underground.

Blue Note – Blue Note is a smaller bar, but just as fun as the rest! Seasonnaires tend to hang out there a lot due to the cheap drinks.

The Fall Line – Fall Line is near Les Carates, but is so cheap! When there isn’t too much snow, there are tables outside, and there is a large bar area and a table-tennis table inside.

Clubbing

Dick’s Tea Bar – This well-known club is located both near the slopes and the town centre. It is open from 1am-6am. It is the first choice club for famous DJ’s who visit the resort.

Doudune – Doudune is located on the foot of the slopes underneath Cocoricos après-ski bar. It was designed by the same person who designed the famous music festival – Tomorrowland, this is noticeable due to the fact that as you walk in to the club you are greeted by a giant, fake elephant! There is a large dance floor, two bars, and a VIP area.



Eating out

There are plenty of different restaurants in Val d’Isere – ranging from takeaway pizza to Michelin stars.


Mountain dining:

La Fruiterie – This popular restaurant is joined to the Folie Douce après-ski bar. There is a buffet option, as well as table service dining on the terrace. La Fruiterie is expensive, but the food is delicious, the views are unforgettable and there is a great, lively atmosphere.

Tete de Solais – This restaurant is very close to the top of the Solais gondola; allowing easy access for both pedestrians and skiers. The menu is varied, offering pizzas, burgers, salads or steak. There are lovely views and a relaxing atmosphere.

Bar de l’Ouilette – This restaurant is on the Solais side of the mountain, easy to reach after a few green runs down from the Solais gondola. When the sun is shining – this is the place to be! There is a large terrace with amazing views of the slopes. There is also an outdoor bar, and an outdoor kitchen serving traditional French crepes. Inside, there are well-priced sandwiches and quiches, as well as other hot food options.

Edelweiss – This restaurant is on the slopes in Le Fornet. It is more expensive, but the incredible food and luxurious atmosphere make it worth it! There is also an outdoor seating area.

Peau de Vache – This restaurant is half way down the infamous ‘La Face’ run, there is also a chair lift that comes up to the restaurant – allowing pedestrian access. Peau de Vache is an unforgettable place – the burgers are amazing! There are also a few tables outside, with great views of the resort.

Traditional French

Fondue Factory – Traditional French Savoyarde, also have delicious chocolate fondues for desert. Large restaurant in the centre of town, traditional French feel with a relaxed atmosphere.

The Lodge – A restaurant in the centre of town, specialising in traditional French cuisine; known for their Savoyarde specialties.

La Baraque – A very popular restaurant located in the centre of town. Great for a drink and a snack at their bar, but even better for a traditional French cheese fondue in the dining area. During peak times in the winter season it is essential to book this restaurant well in advance.

Maison Chevallot – Located in the centre of town. This is a very small restaurant with a large bakery. The display window is a beautiful site – every French pastry you can imagine will be there and will have been baked that morning! Also serve delicious, well-priced sandwiches, salads and quiches.

Quick and Cheap

Petit Danois – Le Petit Danois is well-known as a bar, but also serve cheap food every evening. Some of the options include, nachos, burgers and wraps.

Roxy/Quicksilver – There is a Roxy/Quicksilver clothing shop, with a cafe in it. The cafe have 22 different types of burgers, all served with a large helping of French fries. The Roxy/Quicksilver cafe is also one of the few places in resort that serve a Full English Breakfast or Canadian pancakes in the mornings.

Michelin Stars

Table de l’Ours – This restaurant is very close to the slopes and is in the same building as a luxurious wellness spa. The a la carte menu offers a variety of meat and fish dishes.

Atelier d’Edmond – Located in Le Fornet with amazing views of the mountains. This restaurant was rewarded for a Michelin Star in 2012 and for the second star in 2015. There is an a la carte menu, as well as three set menus, the cheapest one starting at £100 per head without drinks.

...and many more restaurants!



Activities

There are lots of non skiing activities to do for people in resort who don’t want to ski all day and for non skiers.

In the Centre Aquasportif there is a swimming pool, a tidal pool, a heated pool, steam rooms, a large gym and a climbing wall. All of these activities can be paid for individually, or you can buy a day pass to use everything in the centre.

Every Monday there is a clothing and food market in the centre of town. There is a wonderful selection of scarves, jackets and hats, as well as lots of cheese, sweets and cold meats to try before you buy!

Snow shoeing is another great activity to do, a snowshoe is a piece of footwear to wear when walking over snow. Snowshoeing is a form of hiking on ski slopes – great fun and great exercise at the same time!

In the evenings, a nice thing to do is to watch the torchlit descent. The ESF put on a special ski show before the torchlit descent down La Face, which is followed by an amazing firework display. If you stand on the foot of the slopes and watch it, there is free mulled wine!

There is also an ice rink at the foot of the slopes. Ice skating is a lot of fun, especially when you are surrounded by snow. It costs £10 for an hour, there is also a little stall there selling hot chocolates with mini marshmallows!

In Val d’Isere, there is also the opportunity to do BMW Ice Driving. There are instructors who teach you how to drive on ice, and then you drive around an iced track in a BMW, on a motorbike or in a go-kart.

Paragliding is a great non-ski activity! Tandem flights with an instructor are great and you get to see the best sights in resort. It isn’t a cheap activity but it is unforgettable.

Another great activity to do in resort is husky sledding. You can choose to either be the driver after learning to drive your own sledge or be a passenger. The dogs pull you around the lake and snow covered golf course – a must do activity on a ski holiday!



Ski School

There are several ski schools in Val d’Isere that cater for all levels. There are ski schools that offer private lessons, group lessons, as well as guided off-piste lessons.
Lessons do not always need to be pre-booked, but this is advised during peak weeks (Christmas, New Year, Half Term and Easter).

Here is some information about three of the most popular/well-known ski schools in resort:

ESF has more than 250 English-speaking instructors who offer ski and snowboard lessons to all levels. Lessons are available for children from 4 years old, and ESF are open every day from 9am-5pm. Off piste snowboard lessons, heliskiing and an inter resorts tour is also available with ESF.

Oxygene is a ski and snowboard school that has been operating for over 20 years. They offer child or adult group lessons taught in English or French, as well as private instructing and off-piste guiding. Children from 4 years old can join group lessons or have private lessons.

New Generation has a strong reputation in resort and offer ski and snowboard lessons with either English, French or Italian instructors. They teach children from 4 years old, and also offer off piste lessons for the advanced skiers.


Getting around

There is an extremely reliable, free shuttle bus service that runs in Val d’Isere – connecting all villages.

Train Rouge busses are the most common, and do a large loop of the resort – from Le Fornet, through town centre, to La Daille - they run every 5 minutes from 8:30-17:30, every 10 minutes from 17:30 to 20:00 and every 15 minutes from 20:00-02:00.

The Train Vert busses (Rond Point des Pistes – Chatelard or Legettaz) and the Train Bleu busses (Main bus station – Aquasportif / Le Joseray) run every 15 minutes from 8:30 to 17:30 and every 15 minutes from 7:00 to 20:00.

Walking around Val d’Isere is also a very pleasant experience as there are beautiful chalets to look at and some great shops to pop in to!

There are also very few parking spaces in Val d’Isere for guests who want to drive there and use their car in resort. There are plenty of private/operator-run driver services available in resort.


Family ski

Val d’Isère is one of France’s Famille Plus ski resorts, which means the infrastructure, facilities and services available are wonderfully well geared toward welcoming parents with children. You’ll find diverse terrain for all levels of skier and snowboarder, outstanding ski schools, strong snow coverage, generally easy ski access, diverse childcare options and plenty of non-ski activities to engage in.

Many of the pistes running back to resort are steep and often busy ¬– especially at the end of the ski day – but wary parents can easily take youngsters back to resort via the lifts and gondolas. 

Family Activities in Val d’Isère

Away from the pistes, there’s no shortage of engaging and exciting activities to try as a family. Hold the reins and charge along forested paths on a husky dog-sledding adventure, try your hand at ice-skating on the resort’s outdoor rink, give indoor climbing a go, or enjoy thrills and spills on Val d’Isère’s tobogganing area – located near the nursery slope and the Savonette lift. Swimming is also a popular non-ski activity, with a dedicated aqua-centre offering a huge range of water-based activities. Meanwhile, snow-shoeing routes outside town offer a wonderful opportunity to escape into the alpine wilderness as a family. 


Group Ski

Freestyle 

Freestyle skiers in search of big-air thrills can visit the resort’s popular terrain park, the Valpark, nestled within the Bellevarde/La Daille sector with a combination of drag and chair lifts offering hassle-free uplift. Standing at the top, you gaze down over a series of kickers lined up according to their difficulty, with three levels suited to beginners, intermediated and advanced freestylers. Away from the jumps, the park offers diverse features including quarter-pipes, boarder-cross courses, rails and boxes – everything you need to sharpen your park skills on the snow.

Freeride

Freeride skiers and snowboarders seeking out the steep and deep need to keep a keen eye on the weather, because when fresh snow falls, Val d’Isère’s off-piste routes get popular! From the tree-lined runs and open bowls of Le Fornet to the Hidden Valley and the rolling slopes beneath the Charnet peak, Val offers a wealth of exciting off-piste terrain – but finding it and staying safe without local knowledge isn’t always easy. For these reasons, booking an off-piste guide is essential. 


Childcare

Val d’Isère’s diverse childcare options include chalets and hotels with in-house nurseries, private nanny companies, and resort-based childcare services. You can book your youngsters onto full-day childcare programs which can include lunch and ski school too – leaving you free to explore the slopes independently – or opt for half-day services for more time to ski together. Supervised lunches, organized excursions and activities, plus evening childcare services offer extra flexibility to parents keen to see the best of Val d’Isère as a family. 


The Piste

There is skiing/snowboarding for all standards in Val d’Isere; where there is skiing from 1550m to 3456m. The standard of piste grooming is extremely high and the lift system is regularly being upgraded. There is a free Village lift at the foot of the slopes, as well as the Solais gondola that takes beginners to the nursery slopes – there is also a large area for beginners in La Daille. 

There are two main gondolas’ at the foot of the slopes that take you up to opposite sides of the mountain. The Solais gondola, which was updated for the 2016/17 season – there is wifi in the gondola, as well as heated seats. The quickest way to ski to Le Fornet is by getting the Solais gondola up and then ski down a few green/blue slopes. Le Fornet is at the western part of the resort, where there is a lift that provides access to the Le Pissaillas glacier (3280m). Runs back down to Solais are intermediate (blues and reds).

To get to the eastern side of the mountain there is the Olympique bubble lift. This side of the mountain is where the infamous black run – ‘La Face’ is situated; it was the run used for the men’s downhill race in the 1992 Albertville Winter Olympics and the 2009 World Championships. Skiing from the Olympique lift also takes you to La Daille, where there is a chair-lift that takes you in to Tignes. The resort is very well connected, which allows groups who come for a week to get a really good idea of where everything is in a short amount of time.

Val d’Isere is good for beginners, but great for intermediate’s due to the fact that 42% of the runs are blue and 26% are red. Intermediate/advanced skiers/snowboarders will be pleased to know that there are more runs over 2300m in Val d’Isere than any other resort in Europe. Val d’Isere is an extremely snow sure resort – there are 974 snowmaking cannons and solar cannons allowing for a full ski season.


Ski School

There are several ski schools in Val d’Isere that cater for all levels. There are ski schools that offer private lessons, group lessons, as well as guided off-piste lessons.
Lessons do not always need to be pre-booked, but this is advised during peak weeks (Christmas, New Year, Half Term and Easter).

Here is some information about three of the most popular/well-known ski schools in resort:

ESF has more than 250 English-speaking instructors who offer ski and snowboard lessons to all levels. Lessons are available for children from 4 years old, and ESF are open every day from 9am-5pm. Off piste snowboard lessons, heliskiing and an inter resorts tour is also available with ESF.

Oxygene is a ski and snowboard school that has been operating for over 20 years. They offer child or adult group lessons taught in English or French, as well as private instructing and off-piste guiding. Children from 4 years old can join group lessons or have private lessons.

New Generation has a strong reputation in resort and offer ski and snowboard lessons with either English, French or Italian instructors. They teach children from 4 years old, and also offer off piste lessons for the advanced skiers.


Equipment Hire

There are plenty of ski/snowboard rental shops in Val d’Isere. Clients are advised to pre-book their equipment if they know what they will need in order for it to all be there ready and waiting.

These are just a few of the ski/snowboard rental shops that all have great reputations in resort:

Oxygene is located in the town centre. They have plenty of skiing and snowboarding equipment available for all ages and levels.

There are two Snowberry rental shops in Val d’Isere. The Streetside shop has more equipment available, and the Slopeside shop is used as more of a hub to service skis and snow boards.

Intersport is a large shop located in the town centre. They sell a wide variety of ski/snowboarding kit and also have a rental section in their store.

Killy Sport has all of the most exclusive brand names and a wide variety of equipment to rent. Their store is located in the town centre.

Skiset La Daille is in La Daille and has all equipment needed for both skiers and snowboarders.


Lift Passes

There are two main types of lift passes to choose from – either the Full Area lift pass (Val d’Isere and Tignes) which gives you access to all 300km of piste or the Val d’Isere Valley Pass (150km of piste and glacier access).

2017/18 rates for a Val d’Isere and Tignes lift pass:

Adult (14-64) 1 day pass: £50, Children (5-13) and Senior (65-74): £40
Adult 6 day pass: £250, Children and Senior: £200
Family (2 adults and 2 children): £805
Family (2 adults and 3 children): £1007

Kids under the age of 5 and seniors over the age of 75 ski for free. Clients can pre-book lift passes through specific operators in order to save them time when they get to resort.


Piste
Val d'Isere, France Snow Report
Current conditions
Temp: -2° C
Wind: 9mph
Direction: s
Conditions: Partly cloudy skies
New Snow
24hrs: 4cm
Snow Depth
Top: 280cm
Base: 130cm

Val d'Isere Chalet Sleeps

Chalets sleeping: 2 people & over
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Ski Chalets in Val d'Isere

Ski chalets in Val d'Isere

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