TOP TIPS FOR PLANNING YOUR FAMILY SKI HOLIDAY – NEAR GENEVA
by Laura from Let’s Explore
This week saw the first snow dustings on the mountain tops like icing sugar, changing our daily view from Geneva. Even after years in Geneva, we still get excited about it! ‘Did you see the snow this morning?’ is the first thing we ask each other when we get to the office.
When we first arrived in Geneva we found it strange that the Swiss would go on an annual ski break from Geneva because the mountains are so close by that you could easily just go on day trips. But you soon learn that this is not comparable to staying in a resort, even if it’s just for a few nights.
So we also started going on a ski break every year, and these have become our favourite holidays. For us it is about spending quality time together, warming up with hot chocolate and playing board games in the evening. This combined with fresh mountain air and being active makes for an unbeatable family holiday.
HERE ARE SOME OF OUR TOP TIPS FOR BOOKING YOUR PERFECT FAMILY SKI HOLIDAY
SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
It is important to find something for everyone! In most families, there is at least one person who does not want to ski all day every day, or who is not comfortable on difficult slopes. So, you need to find resorts which can accommodate the needs of your entire group. Are there easy blue slopes? And at the same time enough challenging slopes for the good skiers? Are there winter hikes, snowshoe paths or is there an ice-rink? For us, it is also super important that the village is nice with enough affordable restaurants to meet for lunch, as indeed, our family also has a less confident skier… me!.
We have tried several family-friendly ski resorts in both Switzerland and France and you can find reviews of these resorts here
SAAS FEE – One of our new favourite resorts
Saas Fee is a beautiful Swiss resort which has plenty to offer for everyone! A really good restaurant next to the easy slope where we all meet, a good ski school for the kids, the highest Alpine Metro, a snow park for bigger kids and all the facilities you would need in this car-free town! As from 2020 Saas Fee has also been added to the Magic Pass – see the next point below.
Check out our complete Saas Fee guide on Let’s Explore:
THE MAGIC PASS
If you count on making the most out of the winter season and plan to ski a lot, the Magic Pass is definitely something to consider. The Magic Pass is an annual lift pass which can be used in participating resorts for the snow season, but also for hiking in summer. More info on the magic pass can be found on their website: https://www.magicpass.ch/en/
This year the family-friendly resort of Saas Fee has also been added to their resort list.
If you see an apartment or a hotel, always check out the exact location and distance to the ski-school! Or, in case it’s not clear, call the tourism office to ask. We have also learnt this through our own mistakes, and we have had to carry all the equipment in uncomfortable skiing boots, with an angry toddler in tow 😊. Stay really close to the slopes, or choose ski-in ski-out locations.
SLEDGING AND SMALLER KIDS
When our kids were small, we always considered carefully what other activities the resorts had to offer before booking our holiday. Is there a heated swimming pool in the village? Or special themed ski slopes such as in Les Gets, which really help to make their first slides in the snow a fun adventure! We also always looked for slopes suitable for sledging. But beware, sledging slopes seem like a fun activity with small kids, but they sometimes really aren’t for the fainthearted. We have found ourselves on really steep sledging slopes with our little ones! Ask around, read forums and reviews to avoid yourself in tricky situations!
RENT SKIS AND CLOTHES
Buying your own skis can be expensive, especially with fast-growing kids! Most sport shops in Geneva rent out skis and boots for a fair price for the whole season! You can also check out the ‘bourse aux skis’ in the region, for which you will often see notices by the roadside, and buy second hand ski gear there. You can find a calendar of all the second hand ski sales in the area here: https://fr.skiinfo.ch/actualites/a/580273/les-bourses-aux-skis-2019
Coming skiing this winter?
Children grown out of their ski gear?
Need to save space in the luggage?
Les Petits Montagnards in The French Alps hire out top quality ski gear for all the family, latest Roxy, Burton, Rossignol, Quicksilver, Sorel and many more brands – your order will be waiting at your ski chalet when you arrive.
To rent ski-clothes for children, visit this site.
Are you ready for the ski season? Any tips you’d like to share? Please comment below.
WHO IS LAURA?
Our guest blogger Laura writes her own blog – Let’s Explore, where she shares her tips and ideas for travelling with children, and hiking and skiing around Geneva. Originally from the Netherlands, she now lives in Switzerland with her French-Swiss husband and two boys. Passionate about cultures – whether they be far away or closer to home, she sees moving around as a ‘school of life’. When she is not moving around, she still discovers cultures by cooking recipes with locals from multiple countries! If you would like to find out more about Let’s Explore’s travel tips or recipes, you can visit her blog, or follow her Facebook or Instagram Pages.