Along with the partying, eating copious amounts of food and celebrating in the streets, one of the most integral elements of a New Year ski holiday is snow. The start of the year is generally a great time to ski in Europe, however snow cover in late December and early January can vary from resort to resort, so why not pick our brains for information on the most snow-sure destinations?
Our knowledgeable reservations team will be more than happy to talk through your requirements and point you in the right direction. So whether you’re looking for wild après, the ultimate in-resort dining or high altitude slopes, we’ll do our best to make sure you bring in 2019 in style.
Here are just a few of our picks for high-altitude early-season skiing in Europe:
The highest slopes sit at 3,300m, ensuring snowy mountains throughout the season.
Great piste-grooming and high altitude make Tignes a dependable New Year resort!
The village sits at 2,300m, making it the highest resort in the Alps and a snow-sure destination.
Our Top Tips
1. Once you’ve decided where to go, make the most of the mountain by letting us organise your instructor. Whether its group or private lessons, we can help!
2. Book your lift pass before you travel. With the majority of our French resorts, we can send your hands-free cards out with your travel documentation to ensure you’re not waiting to get on the slopes.
3. Enjoy fantastic savings with Skiset over New Year and throughout the season. Book your holiday with us and profit from Skiset’s Kids Rent Free offer in any of our participating French resorts. For every qualifying adult renting equipment, kids receive a free Espoir or Mini Kid Pack (skis, boots and poles only).
4. Ensure the smoothest of travel during this popular travel period. We can help by booking Fast Track security passes, seats that include priority boarding and even lounge access at the airport. Combine that with private or executive transfers and you’ll be in resort in no time!
5. Allow us to pre-book your table for New Year’s Eve (if you’re not eating at the property you’re staying at). We’re able to help out with restaurant reservations and here’s a selection of restaurants we’d recommend:
- La Cave at Hotel Le Koh-I Nor in Val Thorens serves Savoyard dishes with a twist, courtesy of Michelin starred chef, Eric Samson.
- L’Ursus at Hotel Les Suites – Maison Bouvier in Tignes offers fine dining with an Alpine forest theme and will feature a special New Year’s Eve menu.
- The Hazienda in the Austrian resort of St Anton will serve a massive 10 course New Year’s Eve menu!
- La Luge at Hotel Le Blizzard in Val d’Isère has a warm and relaxed vibe – perfect to enjoy their delicious fondues and raclettes.
6. New Year’s Eve parties in the Alps are famous for attracting big crowds, big names and transforming Alpine villages into dancefloors. Firework displays and torch-lit descents, street parties and spectacular DJ sets are on offer in many of our European resorts. A few of our top picks for those wanting to party all night include:
- The New Year’s Eve Pop-Rock Party in Tignes Le Lac and midnight fireworks.
- The New Year’s Eve Fun Radio Party transforms the centre of Avoriaz into a dancefloor complete with DJ.
- The New Year Party in Courchevel is a massive, free, open-air dance party.
7. While many resorts put on huge parties, plenty of resorts also offer family-friendly activities. As many families also go skiing during the school holidays, most resorts want to ensure that their younger visitors also have fun and offer early-evening entertainment catered towards the whole family. Some of the resorts we recommend for young families, or for those simply wanting a slightly quieter New Year, include:
- Morzine: this Savoyard village offers activities like face painting and a huge firework display which starts at 6:30pm.
- Val d’Isère: the New Year’s Eve Festi Light features something for everyone. Ice sculptures, a street party, the Airstar illuminations and the firework show can be enjoyed over either a hot chocolate or a mulled wine.
- Alpe d’Huez: this sunny French resort usually holds an early-evening Dance Show at the ice rink, featuring the Big Dancers (4m high huge, lit-up figures) as well as a slightly later firework display.
8. In addition to the concerts and street festivities, you can be sure that all the usual après-ski bars and clubs will be even more fun and buzzing full of people! A few of the Ski Independence team’s favourite spots include:
- The Mooserwirt après-ski bar in St Anton. Think DJs, disco and dancing on tables.
- Dick’s Tea Bar is a Val d’Isère institution and first opened on New Year’s Eve in 1979.
- The Frog and Roast Beef is an English bar in Val Thorens which broadcasts live sports and presents live music.
9. The fun needn’t stop after New Year’s Eve. Most resorts also hold a range of activities and events on New Year’s Day, with some of the traditions stretching back several decades:
- The New Year’s Day Snow Show in Val d’Isère is a downhill ski display starring the resort’s instructors. It is scheduled to take place at 6pm and is a great chance to watch your favourite instructors over some hot chocolate and vin chaud.
- Morzine will hold a treasure hunt for kids (and adults!) on New Year’s Day. Participants must follow clues around the ski area to be in with a chance of winning the grand prize!
- The New Year’s Day Pig Race is a long-standing tradition in Klosters, Switzerland. Pigs are cheered on by the whole village as they are let loose around an obstacle course – not a sight to be missed!
For more information on any of the above, or if you wish to add extra services to an existing booking, please don’t hesitate to call 0131 243 8097