We always talk about skiing for families, couples and groups and what the ski runs are like, whether they are ideal for beginners, intermediate or advanced. We talk about what accommodation is available from hotels, apartments or ski chalets and how close the accommodation is to ski lifts and we mention the nearby shops and attractions. Today is different, today I want to talk about après ski and which areas in particular do this very well!
Everyone has heard of The Three Valleys or in France known as Les Trois Vallées which is a ski region in the Tarentaise Valley in the Savoie department. This is a beautiful area to ski in as it’s partly in the Vanoise National Park and as you would imagine its picturesque views are delightful. The Three Valleys is the largest interconnected ski area in the world and has many wonderful bars, restaurants and nightlife on offer. Skiing and snowboarding here is popular especially with the young and carefree, they live life to the full and they want to play hard too and they can here, possibly more than many other ski regions.
Meribel is perfect for socialising with a super range of bars and restaurants, live music is always played and large pitchers of beer can be shared with friends and then on to something a tad stronger. It does get busy and you may wait a while to get served so it’s advisable for a few friends to visit the bar at the same time and get a stock of drinks. Popular is buying a bottle of spirits for the evening so your not wasting time back and forth to the bar. One bar has thought of a super way of visiting the bathrooms as it gets that crammed, they have installed a slide to the lower floor where the toilets are situated – a great idea!
Towards the evenings head into the centre of Meribel Village with its lovely restaurants and continue to enjoy the evening there. This is where the locals hang out on the terraces of restaurants and bars (depending on the weather of course) and they can listen to a live band or DJ and soak up the atmosphere. It doesn’t have to be all party, party, party there are some more sedate bars and restaurants if you fancy a quiet evening, you will find a lovely mix of holiday makers and locals mainly from the UK and France.
Courchevel is the place to be seen and offers a diverse après ski that suits every taste. You can hit bars and restaurants that offer an affordable evening out or you can go upmarket for the ultimate experience. There is one well known bar that serves canapés with drinks free of charge however the drinks are more expensive to buy, but it’s a lovely way to start the evening. The rich and famous frequent Courchevel so get ready to rub shoulders with them if you wish. Visitors here are middle class and therefore happy to pay inflated prices to be around like minded people.
For the best night out start at the foot of the slopes where the bars are vibrant but not too noisy, meet at fire pits where it’s a lovely way to meet new people and enjoy a delicious glass of full bodied red. Move on to the central bars and restaurants in the village where the music is eclectic and treat yourself to a cocktail or two, dance the night away to live music and the resident DJ who does a great job all season.
As the season approaches and it will be in full swing very soon, visit both Meribel and Courchevel in The Three Valleys, the atmosphere is wonderful, vibrant and deliciously lively!