Monday, 5 January 2015

Skiing in Val d'Isère

A little before Christmas, my Dad and I packed our wooliest of socks and set off for a last minute trip to snowier climates. Our destination was Val d'Isère, a lively ski resort in south-west France, where world cup alpine events are regularly held.

I have to say, getting of the plane we were initially very worried. Since we were going early in the skiing season, we didn't expect the snow to be magnificent, but the lack of a single snowflake was definitely cause for concern... As we began to travel up into the mountains, we started to see little patches of white fluff, although not nearly enough to ski on! Luckily however, by the time we made it into Val d'Isère, we could see snowy peaks despite the fact that the village was bare.

After our first delicious chalet dining experience (canapés, followed by a three course dinner- thank you Ski Total!) and getting to know the other people staying in the chalet, we headed to bed and wished for snow.

Waking up the next morning, we were greeted with the news that fresh flakes had fallen in the night! We eagerly pulled on our ski gear and dashed for the first lift up the mountain. Our chalet was superbly placed as the lift was a literal stone's throw from our front door which made the morning journey up the mountain incredibly easy and pain free, especially since the lack of snow had meant that some of the other village lifts hadn't opened! Feeling rather smug, we noticed that our first run down the mountain left the first tracks in the new (although not very deep) powder covering the slopes!

As the week progressed, gradually more and more snow fell until pretty much all of the ski area was open. This was quite a weird experience for me as I'd never been skiing before when snow was particularly sparse and we were so confined to specific ski areas. Initially, I was worried we would quickly get bored, but instead we had a great time trying to discover the last bits of powder left untouched or a new off piste route down the mountain side. However, I have to say, my poor skis gained some nasty gouges from the thinly veiled rocks sticking out of the snow...

Our chalet (Chalet Bandire) is also definitely worth a mention. Although relatively basically decorated, the food we were provided with was absolutely fantastic and incredibly plentiful (a big thank you to our chalet team!!). The cakes baked for afternoon tea were particularly nice and I could often be found in the evenings slumped on a sofa with my second slice of cake balanced on my tummy- heaven! I love staying in chalets though for the simple reason that you get to meet other people and make friends. Dinners are a communal affair which just adds to the whole experience, making the holiday really sociable and enjoyable!

On our chalet team's day off, Dad and I headed into town for dinner. I was very excited as I'd found somewhere that served my favourite French dish- pierrade.  This is where you cook your own selection of meats on a hot stone at your table. Not only is it really fun, it means you get a variety of different meats to nibble on, cooked exactly the way you like them. Unsurprisingly, I very happily dug in and before long was absolutely stuffed full of sliced of duck, beef and chicken.... Oh and of course some lovely potato gratin!

Despite not having the most snow in the world, I had a really good fun time skiing in Val d'Isère. It had provided me with a much needed chance to dust off my skis and to see some snow before Christmas. However, after all the fantastic food, I definitely came home fatter than when I left, despite all the exercise!


  1. Looks like you had a lovely time! All that food sounds great too ;) xx

  2. lucky you, what an amazing trip! I didn't get to go skiing last year but we're planning a whistler trip for next month, can't wait!

  3. Oh Whistler is one of my absolute favourite places to ski! Keep an eye out for the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Shop- their chocolate bear paws are to die for!


  4. This looks like an amazing place to ski! Thanks for sharing
    The Doctor Diva

  5. Oh wow. Your trip looks gorgeous. Look at that powdery snow. I've never been skiing before.

    :] // ▲ ▲

  6. Loving it! I work in south africa at the moment and i miss snow so much! I used to ski every year so this is a nice reminder of what I have been missing out on. Val D'isere was one of my favourites but I also love Tignes, mainly because i'm lazy and didn't have to go far haha. Hope it wasn't too much of that sort of icy-snow hybrid that you really feel you carve up on the way down

    anyway, love it!

  7. Oh we were quite lucky in the end- if you kept of the piste, there was a fair bit of powder =D On piste was a whole different story though!
    Hope you find some snow sooner or later!


  8. Gorgeous pics… The last time I was on the slopes to ski, I was 9! Yikes! Must make sure I do a skiing holiday soon x
    Much love, Bailey from Vanilla Blonde