As winter is approaching in the Northern Hemisphere, many people from all over the world will be planning winter vacations. What better way to enjoy a winter vacation and yet having a healthy full body workout instead of gaining winter weight by going on a skiing vacation?
In this article, we will be taking a look at two of the more popular ski resorts in France and if you are heading to Europe for your winter holidays then the information here may come in useful.
The ski resorts of La Plagne and Les Arcs in France are surrounded by breathtaking white capped mountain ranges. Both resorts attract skiing enthusiasts mainly from France and Europe. However in the past few years, the resorts are also attracting more and more Asians and American skiers and holiday makers.
La Plagne is one of the largest single ski areas in the world, with 212kms (about 132 miles) of pistes served by 144 ski lifts and is linked to Les Arcs by a four minute cable car ride. This ski resort is made up of 10 villages and is probably the most visited ski resort in the world.
In additional to skiing activities, visitors can also indulge in other activities such as bowling, working out in a fully equipped gym and sports centre, get away from the winter chill by taking sauna baths, go hang-gliding or ice-skating.
For a family outing, there are more than 200 shops to go shopping in or dine in La Plagne myriads of restaurants. Bars and dance clubs light up La Plagne by night.
La Plagne is sometimes billed as the ‘third generation’ French ski resort with its futuristic architectural designs has probably also influenced other ski resorts in France such as Flaine, Avoriaz and Les Arcs to go for the new world space age architecture and abandoning the charming rustic designs of traditional ski resort architecture.
Skiers in La Plagne will encounter various permutation of piste and off piste, from exhilarating steep descents on the huge glacier at Bellecote(3,000m or almost 10,000ft), then cruising delightfully down quiet meandering larch lined avenues to the charming villages of Montchavin-Les Coches, Champagny-en-Vanoise and Montalbert.
Now let’s take a look at Les Arcs. This resort has a Eurostar train terminal connection at Bourg Saint Maurice and thus making it the most accessible high-altitude ski resort in France.
Les Arcs is also known to have pioneered the so called ’ski evolutif’, which is a technique used for fast learning by progressing quickly from short skis to longer skis.
Les Arcs is also the homeground of the “Kilometre Lancee” in which daredevils on huge 237cm or 8 ft skis, clad in thin aerodynamic plastic suits and donning ‘Darth Vader of Star Wars’ style visors, speed down the specially designed track at exhilarating breakneck speed of up to 240kph (150mph) or more.
Just like La Plagne, Les Arcs ski resort has acres and acres seemingly never ending good cruising ski terrain and its off piste opportunities are simply fantastic.
Take for example, the Aiguille Rouge, which dominates the resort has many challenging runs down its front face slopes. The Aiguille Rouge is also the starting point for one of the longest skiing descents in the French Alps. The largely black run down to the charming village of Villaroger is over 16km or about 10 miles long. Whew!
With such fabulous skiing opportunities, it is therefore not surprising that La Plagne along with Les Arcs ski resorts in France is able to attract so many skiing enthusiasts from all the world, isn’t it?