Welcome to the enchanting realm of The Three Valleys, where snow-capped dreams come alive and skiing adventures know no bounds. Glistening in the heart of the French Alps, this iconic ski area boasts not just slopes but a symphony of experiences, with world-renowned resorts like Courchevel, Meribel, and Val Thorens as its jewels.
Imagine carving your way through meticulously groomed pistes, feeling the rush of adrenaline on challenging off-piste terrain, and basking in the convenience of top-notch facilities. With a staggering 600km of skiing terrain, served by 183 lifts, every skier, from beginners to experts, finds their paradise here.
The Three Valleys isn’t just a destination; it’s an exploration of diverse charm. Picture the rustic allure of traditional villages harmonizing with the modern pulse of high-altitude playgrounds. Whether you crave the thrill of black runs to test your skills or seek a winter wonderland for your family to create cherished memories, this Alpine haven beckons. Join us as we delve into the unique essence of each resort, unveiling hidden gems that promise to make your snow-filled adventure truly unforgettable.
- The 3 Valleys encompasses a variety of resorts to suit different preferences and skiing abilities
- With numerous on and off-piste experiences, visitors get a well-rounded ski holiday experience
- Family-friendly resorts and diverse après-ski options
Unpacking The Three Valleys
The 3 Valleys is the largest interconnected ski area in the world. As a skier or snowboarder, you’re in for a treat with the diverse array of resorts, breathtaking landscapes, and fantastic terrain on offer.
Located in the Tarentaise Valley of the Savoie region, it comprises several ski resorts, each with its unique charm and character. The most renowned among these are Courchevel, Méribel, and Val Thorens. Courchevel itself is made up of five Alpine villages, all connected by an efficient bus service, while Méribel is a beautiful chalet-style resort situated in the heart of The 3 Valleys.
Besides the major resorts, smaller villages like La Tania and Saint-Martin-de-Belleville also form part of this vast ski area. If you’re looking for something more tranquil, consider Le Praz, a picturesque Savoyard village with charming architecture and a laid-back atmosphere.
As you explore, you’ll be amazed by the diverse landscapes, from the snow-capped peaks to the pristine valleys stretching all the way to the neighbouring Maurienne Valley. With such a vast area, there’s no shortage of snow and skiing opportunities, allowing you to make the most of your time on the slopes.
To make the experience even more seamless, a single ski pass grants you access to the entire interconnected ski area. So go ahead and enjoy your adventure in the astonishing ski area, creating unforgettable memories as you glide through the enormous valleys.
What Resorts are in The Three Valleys?
Courchevel is famed for its rich and famous luxury lifestyle but you’ll still find a variety of accommodation options, including apartments, chalets, and hotels. This resort is perfect for all abilities, with terrain suited to beginners, intermediates, and experienced skiers. The charming chalet-style village offers a luxurious experience for your skiing holiday. Within Courchevel, there are a number of villages at varying altitudes including Courchevel 1850, Courchevel 1650, Courchevel 1550, and Le Praz (1300).
Méribel, known as the heart of The Three Valleys, welcomes skiers of all abilities. Offering an array of accommodations, from ski lodges to catered chalets, you’ll find the perfect setting to unwind after a day on the slopes. Méribel’s ski area provides great beginner, intermediate, and advanced runs to accommodate any skill level. Within Meribel, there are a number of villages at varying altitudes including Meribel Centre, Meribel Village, and Meribel-Mottaret
La Tania offers a friendly atmosphere in a purpose-built, chalet-style resort. Accommodations include apartments, chalets, and hotels, ensuring a comfortable stay for all. As a family-oriented ski resort, La Tania provides a variety of slopes to suit beginners and intermediates, making it an ideal location for all ages. Plus it is directly connected to Courchevel by bus (and ski lifts).
The highest altitude resort is Val Thorens – the highest ski resort in Europe. With a variety of ski-in, ski-out accommodations, including apartments, chalets, and hotels like the renowned Le Val Thorens, you’ll enjoy the convenience and luxury of this resort. The expansive terrain offers opportunities for both beginner and experienced skiers.
In Les Menuires, located at the foot of La Masse, you’ll find charming chalet-style accommodation alongside more modern apartments and hotels. The resort caters to all skiing abilities, with a mix of beginner, intermediate, and advanced slopes to explore. The quieter atmosphere is perfect for those looking to escape the bustling ski resorts.
Brides-Les-Bains is a picturesque spot with a more serene setting compared to some of the busier resorts in The 3 Valleys. With a range of accommodation choices, from chalets to ski lodges, there’s something for everyone. The village sits lower down in the valley so there is no skiing directly in Brides but a gondola whisks you up onto the slopes directly into Meribel.
Saint Martin de Belleville provides a more traditional, authentic Alpine experience. With a variety of chalet-style accommodations and hotels, you’ll feel right at home in this charming village. The resort caters to skiers of all abilities, ensuring a great time on the slopes for everyone in your party. It offers a smaller rustic feel to the other super resorts making it a quiet place to hide away while still having access to world-class skiing.
Best Ski Pistes in The 3 Valleys
As an avid skier, you’ll find that The 3 Valleys ski area offers a diverse range of slopes to suit everyone’s taste and skill level. With over 600 km of interconnected pistes across multiple resorts, you’ll have plenty to explore and enjoy during your trip.
In Courchevel, you can experience top-class skiing across its five beautiful villages. For beginners, head over to the Bellecote and Verdons slopes in Courchevel 1850. If you prefer a challenge, put your mogul skills to the test on the Grand Couloir, one of the steepest ski runs in the world! For highspeed, the newer Eclipse piste was purpose-built for the World Cup and is a fearsome challenge as you race into Le Praz. Finally, for a sure-fire winner in the morning, the long Creux Blue piste is perfect for the whole family to warm the legs up.
No trip is complete without exploring Meribel’s picturesque ski runs. The Altiport area offers a family-friendly haven with gentle, tree-lined pistes. For more experienced skiers, Meribel-Mottaret provides an adrenaline rush as you tackle the black-rated Cote Brune and the infamous Face run.
Surrounded by breathtaking Alpine scenery, Val Thorens offers some of the best high-altitude skiing in The 3 Valleys. Beginners will appreciate the wide, groomed runs, while expert skiers can conquer the Chamois and Peclet slopes. For a real leg burner then get ready for Cime de Caron – a whopping 12kms long from top to bottom. Don’t forget to take a breath and enjoy the stunning views at the top!
Don’t miss the picturesque St Martin de Belleville slopes, where you can admire traditional chalets and historic buildings as you ski. The runs in this area are perfect for intermediate skiers. For a local favourite, glide down the Jerusalem piste, a gentle and sunny run which winds its way down the mountain.
Each resort in the Three Valleys has its unique charm and appeal. For instance, you could head to Courchevel 1650 for some fun leisurely afternoon cruising. For more thrill-seeking snowboarders, the Meribel Terrain Park and Courchevel Family Park offers big air challenges, while La Tania is excellent for tree runs, especially in low visibility conditions.
The vast ski area allows skiers of different abilities to fully enjoy their experience with varying pistes available to suit beginners, intermediates, and advanced skiers. In addition, the ski pass grants access to all resorts within the area, allowing for seamless exploration of the entire ski region.
Apres Ski and Amenities
During your time in the Three Valleys, enjoy fantastic après ski options, with a huge range of bars, restaurants, and other amenities to entertain yourself after a day on the slopes.
You’ll find a variety of lively bars across the different resorts, catering to various tastes, budgets, and atmospheres. The resorts are famous for their infectious après ski atmosphere, ensuring that you can dance the night away or simply unwind with friends and new acquaintances. As you sample the local drinks and delicacies, enjoy live music performances or even DJ sets at La Folie Douce, Bar 360, or Rond Point.
One of the real highlights, especially in the ski resorts of Val Thorens and Meribel, is the iconic après-ski venue, La Folie Douce. Known for its high-energy atmosphere, La Folie Douce brings together live music, DJ sets, and performers, ensuring an unforgettable experience high up on the snowy slope.
When it’s time to eat, tantalise your taste buds with the superb selection of restaurants the Three Valleys has to offer. Ranging from traditional Savoyard cuisine to international flavours, there’s something to satisfy everyone’s cravings. Whether you’re hungry for gourmet dining or just looking for a quick bite on the mountain, you won’t be disappointed by the mouth-watering options available.
During your stay, indulge in some retail therapy at a variety of shops across the resorts, selling everything from fashionable skiwear to unique souvenirs and gifts. You’ll find both high-end boutiques and affordable stores to suit your shopping needs.
If you prefer a more relaxed evening after a day on the slopes, why not catch a movie at one of the cinemas available in the area? Boasting both mainstream and independent films, you can enjoy the latest releases or discover hidden gems to watch as you munch on popcorn and unwind.
The Three Valleys also offer a range of wellness facilities to help you rest and rejuvenate after a long day on the mountain. Take a dip in the Aquamotion complex in Courchevel, or pamper your body in a hammam or spa for the ultimate relaxation experience. You’ll leave feeling refreshed and ready to face another day carving up the pistes.
The ski area boasts an incredible snow record, ensuring that you have an enjoyable time on the slopes. To enhance the natural snow, The 3 Valleys resorts are equipped with snow cannons to provide optimal conditions on the pistes. The experienced snow grooming teams work tirelessly throughout the night to maintain the slopes’ quality, ensuring a smooth skiing experience for you.
In case of any emergencies or accidents, the ski patrollers are always on hand for your safety. These professionals are trained in first aid and snow safety, so you can have peace of mind while navigating the mountains. Additionally, snowmakers help create the perfect snow conditions for skiers and snowboarders throughout the winter.
To truly make the most of your skiing experience, we highly recommend taking lessons from ski instructors. They can help you refine your technique and enhance your skills on the slopes. The friendly instructors will guide you with patience and enthusiasm, making learning enjoyable.
For the best service and ski hire in The 3 Valleys, White Strom has ski shops throughout Courchevel and Meribel which you can visit or even have your equipment delivered and fitted in your accommodation.
Things to Do for Non-Skiers
The Three Valleys is home to a wide variety of non-skiing attractions, providing ample opportunities for visitors to experience the stunning landscapes and comfortable apartments in the region. The area boasts several activities and options that cater to all interests and age groups, ensuring you’ll find something to enjoy.
If you’re fond of breathtaking views, consider exploring the region on foot with a 3 Vallées pedestrian pass. This pass takes you on many different routes, showcasing the beauty of the mountains and valleys while giving you a chance to traverse the snow-covered paths. It’s a fantastic way to soak in the picturesque surroundings and truly appreciate the phenomenal landscapes.
Looking for a more adventurous experience? Try some of the non-ski activities like dog sledding, tobogganing, or helicopter flights. These thrilling options allow you to see the Three Valleys from a different perspective while creating unforgettable memories of your trip.
In addition to the outdoor activities, there are plenty of options for enjoying your time indoors. At the Aquamotion Centre, you can unwind with a swim in the pool or spend some relaxing time in their spa.
For the younger crowd or the young at heart, consider a fun-filled visit to the Le the various bowling alleys in Méribel and Courchevel. The centres also feature arcades, pool tables, air hockey, and a bar, ensuring entertainment for everyone in your group.
In conclusion, The 3 Valleys offers a diverse range of ski resorts, each with its unique charm and character. Courchevel is perfect for those seeking luxury, while Méribel is known as the heart of the area. La Tania is a family-oriented resort with a friendly atmosphere, and Val Thorens offers the highest altitude skiing in Europe. Les Menuires provides a quieter atmosphere, and Brides-Les-Bains offers a more serene setting. Finally, Saint Martin de Belleville provides a traditional Alpine experience. No matter what your preference, there is a resort in The 3 Valleys that will suit your needs and provide an unforgettable skiing holiday.