As soon as you master the confidence of gliding down a snow-covered slope on skis, you only want one thing:
Yet every slope in all the world’s resorts has an end.
But wouldn’t it be great if you could find a snow field with slopes so long that you can barely see the end? Where you can ski or snowboard until you run out of time? Or energy?
Well, guess what?
Some of the world's biggest ski resorts have such slopes. The length of trails in a few of these resorts will surely give you a well-earned thigh burn. Your only complaint will be exhaustion and the length of the day.
We know you’ve often wondered how the world’s biggest resorts stack up against each other in size. So we’ve compiled a handy list showing you just that.
At number 5 in our list, you can start your morning with a hot mug of espresso in Italy and end the day with a perfectly baked croissant in France.
1 Les Trois Vallées, France – 600km
Les Trois Vallées is French for “The Three Valleys.”. It is the largest ski resort in the world.
This resort complex is made up of three interconnected ski fields that are lift-linked. The resorts are:
- Val Thorens (At 7546, this is the highest resort in Europe)
Les Trois Vallées is nesled in the Northern French Alps, in Tarentaise City, east of Lyon. It also lies to the south of Moûtiers town and is partly in the Vanoise National Park.
To get to the resort complex, there are four airports that are located between 1.5 and 2.5 hours away. These are:
The airports are connected by direct flights from various major cities in the world. You can also find convenient transfer options from the airports to Moûtiers station.
Les Trois Vallées consists of 600 kilometers of slopes, with 328 ski runs that are accessible using the 166 lifts. The terrain is variable and consists of alpine glaciers and steep, groomed trails. Skiers and snowboarders also love the magnificent views of the French Alps and Mont-Blanc.
Dozens of French chalets, lodges, and restaurants can be found in the three valleys. They range from luxury accommodations and dining to budget-friendly options for individuals, groups, and families. Top restaurants and on-mountain chalets can be found in Courchevel, St Martin de Belleville, and Méribel.
2 Sella Ronda, Italy – 426 km
This resort complex is a collection of ski areas that encircle Sella Mountain. It is nestled within the Dolomites in northern Italy and located in a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The ski area resembles a circuit and revolves around the Sella massif.
Visitors arrive via the Innsbruck Airport (about 1.5 hours away) or Bolzano Airport (about 1 hour away). Transfer options from the airport include car rentals and shuttle busses, conveniently located at the airport.
Sella Ronda is part of the Dolomiti Superski, a massive area in northern Venice. The circuit has several offshoots that provide access to four ski fields, including:
- Val Gardena
- Alta Badia
- Val di Fassa
These ski areas are linked and can be accessed using the Dolomiti Superski pass.
Sella Ronda consists of 426 kilometers of slopes across three valleys, linked by 222 lifts. Val Gardena and Arabba have the most challenging pistes, with Corvara having gentler, beginner-friendly slopes.
Various accommodation options exist across the circuit, from luxury chalets and plush apartments to family-run bed and breakfasts.
3 Paradiski, France – 425 km
This is a ski resort complex that includes a network of twenty villages. Three ski areas make up the resort complex and include:
- Les Arcs
- Peisey Vallandry -
- La Plagne
The three snow fields are interconnected and can be accessed via the largest cable car in the world, the 200-plus passenger Vanoise Express.
Visitors jet in to Paradiski via either Grenoble, Chambéry, Lyon, or Geneva. However, the closest airport is Chambery, about 69 kilometers away. From this airport, you can take a shuttle from Milan Malpensa to the resort complex through the Aosta Autostazione and Pré-Saint-Didier, about 4 hours away. You may also take a train from Lyon.
There are 425 kilometers of slopes available for skiing and snowboarding, located above 2,000 meters above sea level. The resort has 264 ski runs served by 164 lifts. The high elevation of the snow fields guarantees lots of snow, covering the slopes with deep powdery trails.
Les Arcs is the most popular resort with over 2.5 million visitors annually and has an all-rounder terrain. Peisey-Vallandry is the quieter of the three, where you can enjoy uncrowded slopes.
Over 6,400 hotels in Paradiski offer a wide selection of lodging and dining options.
4 Verbier (Les 4 Vallées), Switzerland – 410 km
The Les 4 Vallées is the largest skiable area in Switzerland.
This resort complex comprises six interconnected and lift-serviced ski fields, spread over 410 kilometers of slopes and served by 93 lifts. The ski fields are:
- La Tzoumaz
Each of these resorts offers different skiing and snowboarding experiences. For example, Veysonnaz and Nendaz have gentle slopes that attract beginners and families. Advanced skiers and snowboarders, on the other hand, love the steep drops and moguls in Bruson and Tortin.
The best way to get to the resort complex is through Geneva International Airport, which is about 160 kilometers away. There are various transfer options from the airport to the resort, including shuttle buses and taxis. In addition, you can take a train ride from most cities in Europe and arrive at Le Châble station.
And with an Epic Pass, you can access all six resorts.
5 Milky Way (Via Lattea), Italy/ France – 400 km
This expansive winter sports playground spreads between the French and Italian borders. The ski complex encompasses eight villages in both countries. It has been a World Cup race venue for over fifty years, 2006 being the year of its latest event.
Via Lattea is 86 kilometers west of Turin. It is also 4.5 hours from Paris on the TGV fast train. You can take a 1.5-hour local train ride from Turin and a further short bus ride to Sauze d'Oulx resort’s slopes.
The massive ski complex includes seven world-class ski fields, with one of them, Montegenévre, being on the French side of the border. The resorts on the Italian end are:
- Sauze d’ Oulx
- Cesanana Torinese
The six resorts have 400 kilometers of slopes combined, with 70 lifts serving 249 marked runs. They have different characteristics favoring different abilities and levels. For example, Sportina has gentle beginner-friendly slopes, while Sauze d’Oulx is great for expert tree skiing. The Sansicario area offers great all-rounder terrain and was even the venue for the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics.
You must have the International Ski Pass to access all the ski areas in both countries. If your trip is short, you can get the Via Lattea ski pass, which grants you access to all the snow fields on the Italian side.
6 Matterhorn Ski Paradise, Switzerland/Italy – 360 km
The perfectly manicured slopes lying on the backdrop of the magnificent 14,692-foot high Matterhorn are a sight to behold. The Matterhorn Ski Paradise spans the Italian border on the Aosta Valley and the Swiss border.
Zermatt lies in southwest Switzerland, on the German-speaking section of Canton Wallis near the Italian border. Visitors jet in via the Geneva International Airport (about 2.5 hours away) and Zurich International Airport (3.5 hours away). You can then take a train ride on the Matterhorn-Gotthard Railway through Visp town to the resort complex or fly in via a helicopter.
Breuil-Cervinia and Zermatt create a combined 360 kilometers of slopes, with 145 runs served by 52 lifts. The Cervinia side of the resort is beginner-friendly, allowing easy cruising. It is also affordable.
The slopes are varied and dynamic, with the Swiss side having great off-piste opportunities and over 20 miles of freeriding trails. Elsewhere, the slopes are more advanced and suitable for confident intermediates, expert skiers, and snowboarders.
After a fun day of powder shredding, the two resorts have chalets and hotels with services that suit different tastes and budgets.
7 Arlberg Ski Area, Austria – 305 km
This is the largest ski area in Austria. It combines three regions and encompasses five towns, all connected by a fast and efficient lift system. The resort complex also lies in the snowiest region of Austria, with an average snowfall of 7.6 meters per season guaranteeing deep powdery slopes.
The Arlberg Ski Area is in the Arlberg area of western Austria in the Vorarlberg state. It is 5 kilometers from Lech and 15 kilometers northwest of St. Anton. The closest international airports are Zurich (200km), Innsbruck (120 km), and Munich.
The best and quickest transfer option from the airport is by private means. However, you may opt for cheaper public transport via shuttle busses or a train ride. The train travels on the Innsbruck-Zurich line to either St Anton or Langen am Arlberg Bahnhof station.
The resort complex is made up of the following ski areas:
These three snow areas offer 305 kilometers of skiable slopes, served by 88 lifts. Experts love the thrill of the storied Weisse Ring and a great alpine experience.
When you are ready to retire or recharge after an awesome time on the slopes, you can head over to St. Anton for a great après ski or Stuben town for a more relaxed atmosphere.
8 Val d’Isere-Tignes, France – 300 km
Formerly known as L’Espace Killy, this is a world-renowned haven for experts and intermediates. 60% of its slopes are above 2,200 meters above sea level, ensuring great seasonal snowfall.
It was named after Jean-Claude Killy, a local hero who grew up in Val d’Isere. In 1986, he swooped medals in that year’s Olympics. It links the villages of Val d’Isere and Tignes via lifts and pistes.
The ski domain is located in the Tarentaise valley, south of France, in the Rhône-Alpes region. It lies 5 kilometers from the Italian border. The closest airports are Chambéry (2.5 hours), Geneva (3.5 hours), and Lyon Saint Exupéry (3.5 hours). There are many airport transfer options, including shuttle busses and rental cars.
The two ski areas, Val d’Isere and Tignes, make up 300 kilometers of skiable terrain, with 75 lifts serving its 159 runs. Grande Motte Glacier at Tignes is great in summer, with its 12 miles of well-groomed runs. Expert skiers and snowboarders love La Face, where they enjoy schussing down the steep slopes at great speed.
9 Whistler Blackcomb, Canada – 253 km
Whistler Blackcomb is a great winter holiday destination, just 25 miles from the Pacific Ocean and nestled in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia. It is the largest ski area in North America, sprawled over the Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. The two mountains are interconnected by pistes and efficient lifts.
The ski resort is located two hours north of Vancouver, Canada. It is within the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District, near Canada’s west coast. Visitors arrive via the Vancouver International Airport and then rent cars or take shuttle busses to the resort.
The resort’s location near the Pacific Coast Mountain Range guarantees a good amount of seasonal snow. It receives an impressive seasonal average of 9 to 13 meters, covering the terrain with regular fresh powder.
The two snow areas comprise 253 kilometers of skiable slopes, with over 200 runs accessed via 37 lifts. Revelers love the knee-deep Canadian powder and beautiful Douglas Fir-lined runs. The resort has a diverse terrain that ranges from gentle beginner runs to steep alpine bowls, couloirs, and tree skiing for experts.
10 Park City, Utah – 265 km
This resort is nestled in Utah’s Wasatch Mountains, about 30 miles from Salt Lake City. Park City is the largest ski area in the United States. It has a family-friendly atmosphere, with gentle to medium slopes. The 2002 Winter Olympics put the ski resort complex on the world map.
The Park City snow area is massive, with 265 kilometers of slopes and 341 runs served by 41 lifts. The resort complex comprises two ski fields - the Deer Valley Resort and the Park City Mountain. Deer Valley has higher-end and luxurious facilities, with powdery, well-groomed slopes. Park City Mountain is more accommodating, with many green and blue runs ideal for beginners and families.
Visitors ingress via the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC), then take an Uber or Lyft to the mountain from the airport. The city’s downtown is walkable and has a free in-town transit system, eliminating the need to rent a car. In addition, shuttle bus services take you to various parts of the city.
Park City has some of the most luxurious accommodation options in the US. Many facilities exist on the historic Main Street, including bars, restaurants, art galleries, and high-end shops. And with the town so close to the ski fields, skiers and snowboarders have plenty of lodging and dining options.
Find the Best Destination for Your Next Skiing and Snowboarding Getaway
Every winter sports lover dreams of schussing down virtually endless slopes with great powder. And there are so many skiing and snowboarding destinations in the world, from mega snow resort complexes to single-run ski fields.
We’re sure you’ve already picked a great destination in our top ten list. And if you need to know more, Brealpa has curated a treasure trove of useful information to help you pick and make the best of your winter holiday destination. From our website, find out more on:
- Resorts that are less crowded
- Ski fields that are family-friendly and with activities to keep your entire family engaged
- Where to find pocket-friendly or upscale lodging and dining options
- Activities you can take part in various ski fields