Oct 11 2012
Val Thorens, Europe’s highest ski resort and one of the most famous among the France ski resorts, is set in the French Alps at an altitude of 2,300 metres. Surrounded by several high peaks over 3,000 metres, the resort provides cable car access to Cime de Caron (3,200 m), the highest skiable peak in the area. Many of the slopes here face north and north-west, which naturally provides for good snow conditions. Although the slopes are not so sunny, the resort still attracts an ample skiing crowd. Skiing season here lasts until mid-May. Val Thorens, part of the Three Valleys ski area and connected by a common ski pass, is a fantastic venue for advanced skiers. The site also has a number of options for intermediates.
The resort’s ski schools provide instruction for children in several reserved areas. A local snowpark features areas for border-cross, big air, snow tubing, quarter and handrails. The area boasts incredible off-piste possibilities, and one of them, Combe Rosael, has been turned into a long black run. A purpose-built ski resort, Val Thorens still has a truly alpine character, characterised by chalets and wooden buildings, as recent construction has attempted to shun modern architecture. Lodging here is mainly comprised of self-catering apartments. The resort also has around 10 hotels, including a four-star facility, along with over 50 restaurants. A major portion of the Val Thorens skiing hotels are ski in/ski out. The resort also contains a huge renovated indoor sports complex and an Aqua Club with three tennis courts, a gym and a squash facility.
Val Thorens is probably France’s most international ski resort, with over 70 percent of its visitors being foreigners. Val Thorens was primarily designed for young and active people who seldom slip out of their ski jackets. This sight is supplemented by a coloured throng of snowmobilers, snowboarders, para-sailors and mono-skiers. This particular atmosphere has been transferred to the nightlife scene, marked by vivid neon signs, bright ads and loud speakers. The après-ski situation is perfect for a casual drink and an unpretentious chat with fellow skiers at the local bars. Visitors seeking a more upscale atmosphere might like the top-end hotels and their fine restaurants.