A skiing holiday is no doubt the highlight of the year for many families.
As family ski specialists with 28 years of experience, our friends at Ski Famille have written this blog to guide you, month-by-month, on the best time for a family skiing holiday.
Whether you have pre-school children with more flexibility on when you can travel, or you’re confined to specific weeks such as school holidays, this guide will help you pick the best time based on your family’s requirements. Make sure you have the right ski kit and hit the slopes with your brave explorers!
December marks the start of the ski season in our four resorts in the French Alps:
Les Gets - A magical resort that’s perfect for beginner skiers!
Plagne 1800 - A pretty, family-orientated resort close to La Plagne
Les Bruyeres - A traditional Savoyard hamlet in the famous Three Valleys
Reberty 2000 - A pretty satellite resort near to Les Bruyeres in the Three Valleys
You usually have the choice of three different weeks in December: Skiing in the first week of the season
A traditional family skiing holiday runs from Saturday to the following Saturday. The first week of the ski season in the French Alps typically starts on the Saturday closest to 15th December. We highly recommend this week and believe it’s a good choice for families who don’t have school-age children. Most children are still at school meaning this week is often a little quieter, however, if you have the option to travel in this week, we highly recommend it! With the quieter slopes and untouched snow, you’re likely to be the envy of your friends back home as you conquer the fresh, untouched pistes. As it’s a little quieter this week, you’ll notice our prices
are lower (and so too are your family’s lift passes). This can be a great way to get yourself in the festive spirit, to then return home for Christmas Day. Simply put, this week can be considered a hidden gem! Skiing in the week of Christmas
Skiing this week is very popular (for obvious reasons!) and we therefore recommend booking early to avoid disappointment. As you can imagine, Christmas spent in the mountains is truly an amazing experience. To really make the most of this week, we recommend bringing grandparents, aunties and uncles to fill a whole chalet
to yourselves. Let someone else cook the turkey while you work up an appetite on the slopes, and then relax by the crackling fire in your alpine chalet while someone else does the washing up! On a Ski Famille holiday each child gets a special visit from Father Christmas
too, and in Les Gets you can even go and meet him in his log cabin in the Enchanted Forest. To add to the excitement, Father Christmas will personally deliver your child’s present to your chalet. Many resorts
host various events too, such as a torchlit descent or a fireworks evening with mulled wine! Skiing into the New Year
This week is always a popular one, and for good reason too! See in the New Year in luxury and style in one of our beautiful ski resorts. Enjoy the glittering fireworks with a backdrop of snow-topped mountains, and watch torchlit descents by local ski instructors. New Year is a special time for families and we pull out all the stops to make it go off with a bang. We believe there is no better way to see in the New Year
than sipping champagne next to a roaring fire surrounded by your closest family. Book a whole chalet to make your friends part of the celebrations. Settle down to a spectacular three-course evening meal
, specially created for our New Year’s guests before taking advantage of our childcare service and heading out to enjoy the celebrations taking place across your resort. Finish the night off with a spectacular firework display before taking on that red run first thing on New Year’s morning.
January is a fantastic time to ski for the quiet slopes and affordable pricing. Most children have gone back to school; If yours haven’t, then we highly recommend making the most of this month. The snow is generally pretty good by January. Expect light, fluffy powder in this month – and with fewer skiers around – you’ll have this fresh, untouched snow all to yourselves! It’s not just the quieter slopes that appeal; avoid queues onto the ski lifts, and – far more importantly – no need to wait for an available seat in your favourite mountainside restaurant. In a nutshell, January offers fantastic value skiing, with quieter slopes and Apres (after skiing) activities leaving you with more flexibility to plan your day.
Our French resorts (and all resorts in Europe) tend to experience even more snow in February. Most families make the most of the excellent mid-season ski conditions by skiing in the Half Term week (Saturday 16th February this year, or Saturday 23rd February for some other UK schools). Earlier into the month, you’ll find some well-priced skiing combined with excellent conditions.
With the changing of the seasons comes longer days... and with longer days comes more time on the slopes. Ski lifts close later as it’ll get dark later, meaning you can really maximise your time slaloming down the mountains. March is generally a quieter month too, so you can enjoy a calmer atmosphere and take to the slopes without feeling rushed. It starts to get a little bit warmer in March, which may be rather attractive to those ‘fair-weather-skiers’ amongst us! With the sun making more of a regular appearance, that mid-morning slopeside coffee can double up as a sunbathing session! You can still take advantage of the excellent snow conditions too. March actually tends to be one of the snowier months, and by this point in the ski season you can expect a brilliant snow base; any additional powder is only going to enhance the conditions!
Similarly to March, April experiences even longer days and warmer weather. Bag yourself a bargain
as lift pass prices and your favourite mountain restaurant fall in price during this final month of the season. Overall, the warmer weather makes skiing at this time of year even more enjoyable. Warm and sunny weather makes for a great family-friendly Apres ski-scene (after skiing-scene). As parents, you may want to sunbathe on one of our chalets’ terraces, or your children may want to get out and about in resort with our nannies as part of our fantastic a À La Carte Childcare
. Now that you might have an idea on when is the best time for your family to ski, it’s worth learning how to choose your family ski chalet and what to avoid
. If you’d like help, Ski Famille’s friendly and knowledgeable team will be delighted to help guide you through your options on 01252 365 495.