Val Thorens, France
At 2,300m altitude, Val Thorens is the highest ski resort in Europe and is part of the Saint-Martin-de-Belleville commune in the Savoie department of France. The resort’s altitude means that its ski season is slightly longer than most, often running until mid-May; there are also snow cannons covering over 90km providing artificial snow to ensure a longer skiing season. Val Thorens is considered to be the ‘most international’ European ski resort with over 70% of its visitors travelling in from other countries.
Off-piste you can enjoy the Val Thorens Sports Centre, which has a fully-equipped gym, an Aqua Club and spa, tennis, squash, volleyball and other sports facilities, as well as a Fun Park with trampolines, bouncy castles and ball pools for younger visitors.
How to get there
Since it is one of the most popular ski resorts in the world, Val Thorens has excellent transport links.
- By air: The nearest airports to Val Thorens are Lyon Saint-Exupery, Chambery-Savoie and Grenoble-Isere in France, and Geneva-Cointrin in Switzerland. From whichever airport you use, you will need to get a bus or train transfer or rent a car to get to Val Thorens ski resort. Flights from London to Lyon cost from around £50 return if you book early. London to Chambery costs from £88 return. London to Grenoble costs from £75 return and London to Geneva is from £35 return.
- By train: The nearest train station to Val Thorens is Moutiers, 37km away, but there are many bus and taxi connections available. You can get the Eurostar straight from London to Paris and then take the TGV to Moutiers, which takes around 4 hours. You can also catch the TGV service from Lyon Saint-Exupery airport. There are also direct links to Moutiers from Geneva train station. For train times and booking information, please click here.
- By bus: Lyon Saint-Exupery, Geneva-Cointrin and Chambery airports are connected to Val Thorens by a frequent bus service. There is also a coach service which connects Moutiers train station to the resort; online booking information can be found here.
- By car: The official Val Thorens ski resort website has a tool, which allows you to plan your route to Val Thorens yourself, taking you straight from your starting address to the Val Thorens tourist office. This tool can be found here.
Who does the resort cater for?
Despite being world-renowned, Val Thorens still caters for everyone from complete beginners to professionals. There is one ski school within the resort, and three others nearby, so it’s easy to begin or improve your skiing or snowboarding skills. You can book lessons online to save time and your passes will be sent to your home address, so it is advised that you book at least 3 weeks in advance of your arrival. There are also many family facilities, including a crèche for small children and classes in the snow garden to help children get used to the snow and skis. Reservation details and more information can be found here. For the more adventurous there is Val Thorens’ sole cross-country trail, ‘La Combe de Caron’, which goes from 1,800m-3,200m and is for experienced skiers only!
Owing to its immense popularity there is a wide variety of accommodation available within the Val Thorens resort.
- Hotels: There are nine tourist hotels with prices ranging from €60 (£48) a night to €2,200 (£1,785) for a night on the prestige floor of the 4* Le Fitz Roy. For information and further prices for any of the Val Thorens hotels, please click here.
- Hotel Clubs and Holiday Villages: There are three holiday villages available, two of which are full board so all catering is provided for you. These cost from €360 (£290) to €1,600 (£1,298) per person per week. For booking information, please click here.
- Chalets: There are over 14 chalets available for weekly rental. These spacious apartments cost from €510 (£413) to €7,302 (£5,925) for the chalet for a week. Further information on prices and booking can be found here.
- Apartments: Val Thorens also offers a high number of apartment buildings especially for tourists. These range from 2* to 4* and cost from €250 (£200) to €3,400 (£2,760) per apartment per week. For more information, click here.
The resort has over 200 skiable pistes totalling over 600km of trails, of which 47 are Green Runs (absolute beginners, often very wide), 94 Blue Runs (marked and perfect for beginners and improvers), 102 Red Runs (for intermediate and experienced skiers) and 33 Black Runs (often steep and unmarked). The resort also has around 1500 snow cannons to augment the natural snowfall.
- 600km Downhill Pistes
- 5km Cross Country trails
- 197 Ski Lifts
- 1,430m Max Vertical
- 3,300m Highest Lift
- 2,300m Resort Altitude
- 1.5 miles Longest Run
Office de Tourisme
Maison de Val Thorens
Tel.: +33 (0)4 79 00 08 08
Fax: +33 (0)4 79 00 00 04