Davos is one of the oldest and most well-known resorts in Europe. Unfortunately, its impressive history has led to a very dated appearance in parts, with grim buildings and old lifts dominating the landscape.
However, its slopes have few rivals and they provide a skiing experience that cannot be faulted. The resort’s huge size makes it possible to visit a different area every day during your stay, and the surrounding area offers considerable off-piste opportunities.
Having said this, its huge size and resultant traffic problems have led many to conclude that the atmosphere found in many other ski resorts is lacking here, and as such it will not usually turn up in lists of the most popular resorts.
How to Get There
The best option for international skiers is to take a flight to Zürich. From here it is easy to catch a train or bus to the resort. Mid-January is a cheap time to fly, and so is mid-March onwards, so book then to pick up the best deals.
From Zürich airport, take a train to Landquart, and then a connecting one to Davos, which takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes. Alternatively, take a train from Basel which goes through Landquart and Klosters. This is a slightly longer journey at 3 hours and 30 minutes, but the service is hourly.
From Zürich airport (located 99 miles away from Davos), follow the A-11 motorway in a southerly direction. This will take you to the A-3. Continue on the A-3 until you reach Chur. You will need to drive to Davos via Kublis and Klosters, and the whole journey takes about 2 hours 30 minutes.
Alternatively, from Landquart take the A-8. This route should take you about 2 hours. If you drive from Basel, the distance is 140 miles and will take about 2 hours and 45 minutes.
A daily shuttlebus runs between the resort and Friedrichshafen Airport. It takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.
Who The Resort Caters For
Davos caters for skiers of all types, from families with young children to party animals who are keen to enjoy the nightlife. There are five nightclubs in the resort, as well as numerous restaurants and bars, so there is plenty to keep everyone happy.
There are also numerous activities on offer whilst away from the slopes, including ice-hockey, train rides, a trip to the winter sports museum, shopping opportunities, and plenty of walking or hiking.
For business travellers, there is a large convention centre with seminar facilities, as well as a casino to provide some extra amusement.
Snowboarders are catered for with a snow park consisting of half-pipes, kickers, and rails. There is also a large ski school which has over 150 teachers, making the resort ideal for beginners or children.
What accommodation does the resort offer?
There are numerous hotels in Davos, catering for all tastes and budgets. There are over 70 slopeside hotels, with a combined total of 24,000 beds. A couple of the most popular are the Turmhotel Victoria and the Kongress Hotel Davos, which are both four-star hotels. However, there are also lots of apartments to choose from if you would prefer to steer clear of the hotels.
Because the buildings are not considered to be picturesque, many people choose to stay in the nearby resort of Klosters, which is far more attractive. These guests then travel to the Davos slopes purely to ski, giving them the best of both worlds.
What Davos lacks in atmosphere, it makes up for in its skiing. It is well known for the quality and the length of its runs, and has slopes suitable for beginners, intermediate skiers, and advanced skiers. The off-piste areas are also very highly-regarded and offer exciting skiing for those looking for a challenge.
There are five main ski areas: Parsenn, Rinerhorn, Pischa, Madrisa and Jakobshorn. These areas contain 19 miles of market runs and 47 miles of cross-country slopes. Snow is also produced mechanically to ensure optimal conditions.
The slopes are extensive and are spread out over the mountains. Away from the lifts you will find long and easy runs, and fantastic cross-country trails. You will find well-located lifts throughout the region, all of which provide good and convenient access to the slopes.
- Highest lift: 2,844m
- Lowest lift: 1,110m
- Number of lifts: 55
- Number of slopes: 110
- Total length of all slopes: 200 miles
- Longest slope: 70 miles
- Snow cannons: 20