What is it that one seeks when going on a vacation? It's a chance to get away from the hullabaloo of our daily lives. When on a vacation, we want to relax and wish for a change of scenery. For some, this vacation could be a view of the snow-clad mountains as you go down the slopes on your skis. You can pick from some fabulous locations with Alpine Elements; destinations in the Alps that will give you an adrenaline rush as you indulge in skiing and snowboarding. When you pick a location for a ski holiday, you also want to appreciate the natural beauty of the place. These are some of the choicest locations around the globe that fit the bill perfectly both in terms of excellent pistes and amazing scenery.
Tignes is a group of villages including Tignes Le Lac, Val Claret, Les Boisses and Les Brevieres in the Alps. It is perfect for if you love skiing and you want to do it surrounded by majestic peaks and tall trees. The alpine experience at Tignes will leave you refreshed and rejuvenated. The place offers guaranteed skiing all year round with the huge amount of snow that it gets. There are several free lifts for beginner skiers and skiing down to Les Brevieres is something that intermediate skiers can try. Mickey’s Ears, the Lavachet Wall, and the Fingers make the veteran ski lovers come back to Tignes year after year. When you are not roaring down the piste, you can enjoy the scenic beauty around Tignes Dam which is so mesmerizing that you would want to spend hours enjoying it. Lac de Tignes and Lac du Chevril are two beautiful lakes in Tignes which are a treat to the eyes.
Val d’Isere, France
Val d’Isere is linked with the neighboring ski destination Tignes to form a total ski area of 300 km of pistes with 78 lifts (called Espace Killy ski area). The resort is located in the French Alps, very close to the borders of Italy. The ski slopes here are for all kinds of ski lovers; the simple ones for the beginners and the high-quality intimidating ones for the veterans. You can use the ski lifts to reach breathtaking sites like Face de Bellevarde, a black-rated piste, and the Grande Motte glacier, which is used by summer skiers.
Winters are a magical time in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, located at the base of the largest peak of western Europe, the Mont Blanc. This resort town near the borders of France, Switzerland, and Italy entices skiers from all over the world to revel and indulge in the adrenaline gushing sport of skiing on its marvelous pistes all year round. Cable cars ferry the tourists up the peaks like Aiguille du Midi and Pointe Helbronner, giving them panoramic views on the way. Brévent is excellent for skiing in Chamonix if you are at an intermediate level but it also has steeper slopes for the pros. If you have more than a day, you can also try Grands Montets, another popular choice.
Courchevel in France is a part of the legendary Les Trois Vallees (Three Valleys) in the Tarentaise valley and an all year round ski destination to get powder stains. A Three Valleys ski pass will let you explore the entire 600 km of piste of the Three Valleys network. Courchevel is interconnected to Meribel and Val Thoren through lifts and slopes. Its 150 km of piste is served by 58 lifts and there are freeride off-piste skiing as well as snowboarding options. This skiing terrain caters mainly to intermediate and groomed skiers. There are some green and blue terrains here for the amateurs also.
Canada’s first national park at Banff offers a great view with glacial lakes and their azure blue water, snow-capped mountains and dense forests to complete the picture. Hiking, skiing and green alpine views welcome you at this national park which is the third oldest national park in the world. Not many people know about the excellent piste in Banff since it is more popular as a summer vacation spot. There are three resorts inside Banff National Park and all three operate on a shared lift ticket (Ski Big 3). If you are not carrying your ski gear, you can use the interchangeable rental gear that you get here.
It is one of the best villages in Switzerland and easily one of the most beautiful ones in the world. Located on the border between the Bernese Oberland and the Vaud Alps, the village is a two-hour drive from Zurich or Geneva. Though Gstaad isn't very big, it is frequented by a lot of skiing enthusiasts. Its spell-binding and panoramic view of the Vaudois, Bernese and Valaisan Alps of Glacier 3000 is what draws people to this village. In Gstaad, there are more than 62 cable cars and lifts along with 250 km downhill ski slopes to choose from. These cable cars connect Gstaad to the surrounding ski areas of Wispile and Rinderberg that gives visitors several more kilometers of cross-country trails and all-level pistes.
St. Moritz, Switzerland
This luxury alpine ski destination is located in the Engadin Valley of Switzerland. A two-time host of the Winter Olympics, St. Moritz has been associated with adventure sports events like the Cresta Run. The frozen lakes here are grounds for polo, cricket and ice horse racing. Diavolezza, Corviglia, and Corvatsch are some popular ski and snowboarding areas and there are also several cross-country ski trails in St. Moritz. The place gets an enviable 300 days of sunshine which makes it the perfect pick for a ski vacation.
St. Anton, Austria
The village of St. Anton am Arlberg in the Tyrolean Alps, is often called the “cradle of alpine skiing” as the local museum is filled with documents that chronicle the ski history of the sport. Another fact that adds to its ski lineage is that St. Anton is the birthplace of the father of modern skiing, Hannes Schneider. It offers a vast ski area, with fast lift links to Lech and lifts and cable cars connecting it to the slopes of Rendi and Valluga. The region gets the maximum amount of snow in Europe and its 305 km of slopes with a vast off-piste terrain make it a busy place, especially in winters.
A trip to these fabulous pistes is guaranteed to give you a fabulous skiing vacation. Most of these locations also have amazing pubs and eateries where you can sit and exchange skiing stories with fellow skiers. So, it's time to pack your gear and head to the mountains!