Guest Post: Winter Holidays
Winter holidays are increasingly popular amongst couples, groups and families wanting to escape the gloom and head for the slopes and sun in the coldest months. Winter holidays are not only a chance to catch some sunshine, but they can also be a rewarding opportunity to learn some new skills and experience a different kind of holiday. Search for mountain holidays with Inghams to see some of the activities and experiences winter holidays can offer.
The ski season lasts from around December to April in Europe, with the U.S. and Canadian seasons starting a little earlier. Europe has a variety of superb resorts, from the larger to the more intimate, with many catering for beginners and others appealing to the more experienced. Depending on the resort, there may be a busy nightlife suitable for young people and groups, while other resorts are quieter and more geared towards families.
Popular skiing and snowboarding destinations include the Italian Alps, with resorts such as Cervinia, Cortina d’Ampezzo and Livigno offering incredible scenery at high altitudes and the Milky Way resorts of Sestriere and Sauze d’Oulx offering superb slopes and a vibrant nightlife, and the fantastic Italian Dolomite resorts, such as Corvara and Colfosco and La Villa.
In France there are many excellent family friendly resorts including Avoriaz, Courchevel, Flaine and La Plagne. France’s high altitude slopes include Chamonix, Les Arcs, Morzine and Tignes, while the resorts of Val d’Isere and Val Thorens are popular amongst groups and offer a superb nightlife alongside incredible skiing.
Andorra has some great resorts for beginners and novices, such as Arinsal and Pas de la Casa. Both these resorts are family friendly with childcare facilities to keep young children occupied during the day. Soldeu is a lively resort popular with groups for its nightlife.
For something more unusual, resorts in Lapland in Finland offer a unique experience. The resorts here tend to be quieter and are popular with those seeking unspoilt surroundings and stunning landscapes, as well as the mesmerising sight of the Aurora Borealis. Resorts include Levi and Saarisselka with their Arctic scenery and welcoming atmospheres, and Yllas featuring the longest slopes in Finland and beautiful log cabins to warm up in after a day in the fresh Finnish air.
Many ski resorts offer non-ski activities alongside skiing and snowboarding, and these are excellent options for groups containing both skiers and non-skiers. Activities on offer can include snowmobiling, tobogganing, ice skating and outdoor swimming, while resorts often also offer spa treatments, hot tubs and traditional entertainment.