So you’re looking for a spring ski resort. You want somewhere that’s high and that has reliably kept the winter snow. You want somewhere with a wealth of exciting ski runs which will stay open long into the season. And there’s more to spring skiing than the mountain. There’s the atmosphere too.
Spring skiing is also about the festivities: the Easter celebrations, music festivals and end of season parties. Spring is when the ski resorts let their hair down, a great time to try après activities you might not normally consider. Snake gliss and pond skimming anyone? Yes, spring skiing is all about fun. So you’re definitely looking for a spring ski resort. Where do you go?
Well, we reckon these destinations are your best bet for an awesome spring ski holiday:
Best for: Party atmosphere
The expansive and eclectic ski resort of Ischgl has huge amount of pisted terrain suitable for skiers of all abilities. Its snow-sure reputation ensures that you will be skiing until late into the season. But, as amazing as Ischgl’s reputation for skiing is, the resort has always been most fondly remembered for its incredible parties and festivals.
This year, Ischgl will be celebrating Easter in style with an open-air Top of the Mountain Easter Concert. The concert is free for anyone with a valid lift pass and takes place from 1pm on 1 April. Shortly after, the Banked Air Snowboard Contest will take place from 3 April to 8 April. The event will see snowboarders perform incredible stunts in Ischgl’s snow park.
Best for: Quiet end of season retreat
Saas-Fee, otherwise known as the ‘Pearl of the Alps’, encompasses some of the highest mountains in Switzerland and offers year-round skiing on the Allalin glacier. It’s as close to a guaranteed ski experience as you can get.
The picturesque ski resort of Saas-Fee is ideal for families with young children. The resort has an excellent kindergarten for both skier (ages 3-4yrs) and non-skier (from 18 months) children, so Mum and Dad can both head out and explore the exceptional ski terrain. The resort is suitable for all abilities, but is ideal for intermediate skiers. There are plenty of cruising red runs, with the longest piste stretching for 9km.
During the first week of April, Saas-Fee will host the Saas-Fee Film Festival. The event celebrates innovative foreign films with moving and challenging stories. Screenings take place at the 60 year-old Cinema Rex, and tickets begin at CHF15 per adult. This is sure to be a compelling event, and a unique way to end a day spent skiing amongst cinematic scenery.
Best for: Variety of skiing and live music
High altitude Tignes is seemingly inundated with snow every winter. Backed by the Grande Motte Glacier and situated in a superb snow-bowl, Tignes has one of the most enviable snow records in the Alps. It’s a safe option for any late season ski holiday.
The skiing in Tignes ranges from steep, no-nonsense black runs, to twisting reds and cruising blues. Excellent, gentle green runs crest the divide between Tignes and Val d’Isere, part of the same Espace Killy ski area. There are snow parks a plenty and even a half-pipe, as well as high altitude glacier skiing and opportunities to back-country. It’s a cliché but there is literally something for every skier in Tignes.
Tignes’ unmatched on-piste eclecticism is mirrored in the varied nightlife and après ski activities. The resort is famously lively and at no moment in time is this truer than during the spring ski season. From 17 – 19 April, Live in Tignes by Francofolies will provide three days of free concerts in resort. The eclectic event will host performers and DJs from around the world. It’s an exciting end of season party and a great way to end a day of epic skiing.
Best for: Spring sun and snow-sure
The Cervinia ski area crosses the Italian border with Switzerland to form a massive ski area with Zermatt. While Zermatt may have the greater name recognition, Cervinia has the sunny side of the mountains and its south-facing slopes are ideal for catching the rays in a piste-side deck chair.
As one of the highest resorts in the Alps, Cervinia boasts a fantastic snow record, with many kilometres of runs to explore. There are 150km of runs in the local ski area alone, this more than doubles to 350km when you take into account the whole area, with the pistes peaking (no pun intended) at 3,480m. And if you’re at all worried about the quality of snow during the spring, rest assured that snow cannons cover 80% of the resort.
Away from the mountain, Cervinia provides some excellent dining options. The village has a great selection of bars, restaurants and pizzerias. Our top recommendation is the English country pub-style bar The Dragon, only a short walk from the main slope and part of our very own Xtra Chalet Dragon.
Best for: Stunning scenery and wealth of activities
One of Austria’s highest ski resorts, Obergurgl has good snow conditions through November to May, making it among the best places in the Alps to go skiing in the spring. A weekly ski-show, night skiing and tobogganing provide a varied selection of activities to enjoy when you’re not on the slopes.
Obergurgl connects with the, even higher altitude, Hochgurgl. Together the two ski resorts provide 110km of pisted ski terrain. The many mountain huts dotting the mountainside are perfect for skiers who like to stop to admire the view. Head to the startlingly modern ‘Top Mountain Crosspoint’ in Hochgurgl for the most stunning views of the entire valley. There is a fantastic mountain restaurant here, as well as Europe’s highest motorcycle museum!
The beautiful Obergurgl-Hochgurgl ski area is the stunning back-drop for a series of interesting events and activities throughout the spring. On the 6 April to the 8 April the Open Faces Freeride Contest will provide action packed, off piste entertainment. From the 8 April to the 14 April, ‘Yoga in the Alps’ will run twice a day in Obergurgl providing guests the opportunity to flex the muscles and relax in epic surroundings.
Where-ever you go skiing this spring, the fantastic snow conditions that we have had all season should provide an excellent base for the last couple of months. What could be better than incredible snow and sunny, spring skiing weather? Don’t miss out on the opportunity to ski what has been described the best snow in 30 years – take a look at our spring ski deals for 2018.