The mere mention of skiing in Chamonix France conjures images of beautiful people enjoying a winter vacation skiing fast and furious down steep, challenging mountain pistes.
We consider the skiing in Chamonix as world class and the center of the town, Chamonix Mont Blanc, is an absolute delight, having retained its old world charm.
We’ve skied each and every one of the pistes, and our favorites, we’ve returned to over and over again. This synopsis “Ski Chamonix” shares with you our brief overview on each of the areas in the resort, with references to detailed reviews.
The 5 major regions to Ski Chamonix:
The absolute must knows:
We've condensed the 10 absolute must knows about Chamonix which I suggest you read before you pay for the accommodation. At least you'll then be making informed decisions.
Orientation Before you Ski Chamonix
When one refers to the ski resort of Chamonix France, this is a reference to the resort which comprises several ski regions within the valley, at the centre of which is the town of Chamonix Mont-Blanc. The villages along the valley are access points for lifts servicing the ski areas that stretch from Vallorcine/Le Tour at the head of the valley to Les Houches.
Ski Chamonix - The Villages and Ski Regions Along The Valley
Ambience Of The Chamonix Ski Resort
Now, we've skied in lots of resorts all over the world but there's a particular energy about Chamonix that's both laid back and beautiful yet bustling with athletic vigour.
Much has to do with the beautiful elegant setting of the town of Chamonix Mont Blanc and the particular French chateau style of building in the prestigious part of the town centre.
In my opinion, Chamonix is far more attractive as a resort than Verbier, the Swiss ski resort favored by the European Royal families which seems to be overly represented by little ones and their nannies.
Fast and Furious Pistes
Skiers, you'll not be short of adventure when you ski Chamonix!
The steep deeps of Les Grand Montets will draw you back again and again. It really is the best of the best in world class terms and it seems most skiers in the Valley think so too. The cable car is always packed. Always.
Naturally, you will spend a day of your vacation going down the glacier, the Mer de Glace. This is afterall, what this resort is famous for - the off piste Vallee Blanche. There's nothing like this and it makes for an incredible adventure skiing amongst seracs or ice towers, dodging crevases. It's seriously dangerous stuff!
...and there is no better experience than skiing with the World Cup Champions when they're training down the Kandahar at Les Houches.
Don't forget there's all our Courmayeur in Italy to explore and the skiing here is truly awesome.
Calm and Easy Pistes
Because the Chamonix Ski Resort is so extensive, there is so much terrain with long and uninterrupted red and blue pistes. There are wide open sunny bowls at Domaine de Balme at the head of the Valley and the sun blessed south facing slopes of Brevent - Flegere make for fun filled days.
Let's not forget the incredibly popular Les Grands Montets. The mid and lower levels of this mountain have wonderful lengthy blue and red runs with terrain parks with jumps and bars just for fun!
We were after fast, steep and furious runs and Les Grands Montets and when we ski Les Houches, Kandahar always delivered.
Best for Families?
For the best chamonix skiing experience for families, we’d recommend Domaine de Balme for its wide bowl. It is sheltered and sun drenched with long, wide slopes. We consider this resort ideal for family ski holidays as it has fantastic wide perfectly groomed runs to keep family members with different ski abilities satisfied and challenged, as well as many interesting activities for other tourists.
Best for Intermediate Skiers?
For intermediate skiers, while all the regions have long, well groomed runs, the best resort experience, in our opinion, would be at Brevent-Flagere for its access to an enormous mountain area and the sun blessed slopes make for ideal gentle conditions.
For videos of the ski runs at this resort, visit ChamonixVideos.com. It has footage and commentary of many of the resort's varied pistes.
Chamonix Resort Pass
We consider this resort delivers the best value for skiing in France given it has unique opportunities with partnering with sister resorts in Italy and Switzerland and there really is nothing quite like the Vallee Blanche!