Escape to the slopes: Where to go skiing in 2019
Picturesque views of snow-capped mountains, the feeling of the warm sun kissing your cheeks, adrenaline pumping through your veins – these are just a handful of the highlights a winter trip on the slopes has to offer – and with the harshest months of UK weather looming, there’s no better time to get away.
When you’re thinking of where best to enjoy the excitement of a few action-packed days on the slopes, the first places that spring to mind are bound to be France, Switzerland, Austria and Italy. From total beginners to seasoned pros, skiing and snowboarding enthusiasts of all levels can find what they are looking for in any of these destinations – but with some of the most popular resorts involving long queues and busier slopes, why not head off in a different direction to the crowds this year and enjoy a luxury break at one of the lesser known resorts?
Off the beaten track
If you’re a frequent skier, then you’ve probably heard of Chamonix, in France. Playground of the rich and famous, this popular resort offers the height of luxury for those looking to enjoy a winter ski break in style – but its great reputation comes at a price, making it one of the busiest resorts in France.
Just 6 km down the valley you can find the charming, family friendly resort of Les Houches – a quieter choice located in the heart of the picturesque Mont-Blanc Massif. Leisure skiers can admire the majestic views of the Mont Blanc Valley from the Les Houches slopes and lavish, fully-equipped chalets during their stay, while those who are looking for a good dose of adrenaline and a bit of a challenge can find Chamonix’s black routes just a short car journey away.
If you’ve tried and enjoyed France but are ready for a change, Livigno in Italy is a great alternative to the better known ski resorts across Europe. Providing skiers and snowboarders with 115km of alpine slopes to enjoy, this Italian gem also offers visitors more flexibility with the dates they want to ‘surf’ the slopes, as the snowsure season lasts from November to May.
More exotic destinations that are lesser known still can be found in Slovenia, Bulgaria and Romania. The Bulgarian slopes at Bansko are the most expensive, starting from €194 (approx. £167) – but the luxury you’ll get for your money is certainly worth the expense. Bansko is closely followed by Slovenia at €162 (approx. £140), while the Romanian slopes, with beautiful wintry landscapes, offer daily prices from 35 RON (approx. £6.20). The unspoiled beauty and idyllic nature of these destinations will not disappoint, making them great new destinations to try in 2019.
Lighten the load
Once you’ve decided where to go this year, you’re halfway to your dream winter getaway – so what can you do to make your life easier when it comes to organisation? One way to make your trip lighter, smoother and even more relaxed is to leave your equipment at home and consider hiring it from the resort – saving you the time and energy you don’t want to be spending on what should be a break from the stresses and strains of life. Many airlines charge extra for carrying ski or snowboarding equipment, so save yourself the hassle and get the best high-end equipment for the week when you arrive.
Weekly rental prices for skis, boots and poles range from €50 (£43) in Bulgaria to €90 (approx. £78 ) in Livigno. Additionally, rentals often offer ski packages which include equipment, ski passes and even lessons.
Best way to pay
Wherever you decide to go, and whether you decide to hire your equipment or take it with you, paying for your trip in a foreign currency can be something of a minefield. Sending an international money transfer from your bank account might seem to be the obvious way to pay, but it can, however, be an extremely costly experience. Online financial service providers tend to be a more cost-effective method; the solutions found at Conotoxia.com include international multi-currency transactions such as currency exchange and money transfers. Visit https://conotoxia.com/money-transfer and find out more.
With your destination decided, your ski equipment sorted and the payment all taken care of, you’re all set to enjoy an action-packed winter break with a difference this year. All that’s left to do is book that luxury chalet!