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Tag Archive for 'Alps'

Chamonix – Mont Blanc ski resort

Tourist Office

Office de Tourisme Chamonix Mont Blanc
85 Place du Triangle de l’Amitie
Chamonix Mont Blanc
Haute Savoie
France
F 74400

Telephone: (450) 530024
Email: info@chamonix.com
Website: www.chamonix.com

Description

An historic ski and climbing town on the picturesque side of Mont Blanc, by the entrance to the Mont Blanc tunnel. Chamonix offers the world’s greatest lift-served vertical drop. Away from the slopes it is very lively all year round with numerous bars and restaurants.

Review

One of the few serious contenders for the title of “World’s Most Famous Ski Resort”, Chamonix Mont Blanc (as the resort prefers to be known) has the world’s biggest lift-served skiable vertical drop of 2807 metres ( 9209 feet ), one of the world’s longest runs through the Vallée Blanche at 22 km ( 13.7 miles ) and staged the World’s first Winter Olympics in 1924. Beyond these spectacular statistics is Chamonix’s relatively undisputed status as the world’s tough mountain sports capital, the subject of endless ski magazine reports each season from editors wishing to prove they descended between the glacial crevasses and lived to tell the tale!

For lesser mortals there are plenty of on-piste kilometres to soak up, all dominated by the spectacular scenery of Mont Blanc, Western Europe’s highest peak (and Europe’s second highest after Mt Elbrus in Russia, although some dispute whether Elbrus is in Europe).

Chamonix’s history has been traced to Bronze Age times and its current status was confirmed in a report as far back as 1751 when the locals were described as “the most uncompromising men in Europe”. Ten years before that Englishmen William Windham and Richard Pococke had been on the first recorded tourist trip, reaching the Mer de Glace.

The first skis in the valley were spotted in 1893 and by 1907 one of the world first cable cars, ‘Les Glaciers’ was in operation (since removed). Six more were to follow between 1927 and 1963. The Mont Blanc Tunnel opened a few years later ensuring first rate access infrastructure in to the future. Chamonix Mont Blanc itself is a lively town with its own character, not just one created every winter season and reinvented every summer. That character reflects the attitude of its residents and of most visitors – a true love of the mountains.

keywords

Chamonix – Mont Blanc, Haute-Savoie, Alps, France

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Hart – Purgstall ski resort

Tourist Office

Gemeinde Hart-Purgstall
Prellerbergstraße 1
Hart-Purgstall

Steiermark / Styria
Austria
A 8063

Telephone: (3117) 2283
Email: gde@hart-purgstall.steiermark.at
Website: www.hart-purgstall.steiermark.at

Description

A tiny small ski with a single drag lift operating whenever conditions are adequate.

keywords

Wimmerlift, Hart – Purgstall, Styria, Alps

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Kitzbühel ski resort

Tourist Office

Kitzbühel Tourism
Kitzbühel
Tirol / Tyrol
Austria
A 6370

Telephone: (5356) 777
Email: info@kitzbuehel.com
Website: www.kitzbuehel.com

Description

Austria’s most famous resort, a lively town with chic overtones which most skiers agree has Austria’s best intermediate/expert skiing in the mountains above it.

Review

Kitzbühel is one of the best known names in skiing history and remains one of winter sports key destination resorts to this day. Residents of around 40 countries annually make the trip to the Tyrol to visit the resort marketed as ‘The Pearl of the Alps’.

Located beneath the famous Hahnenkamm mountain, it has retained its compact village centre and traditional architecture which has grown from a thousand years of history. Today the village is a mix of the liveliest and most colourful international winter sports and après ski of a modern resort, with underlying sophistication in shopping, restaurants and accommodation. In short, there is the proverbial “something for everyone” here.

One of the earliest Austrian resorts to embrace downhill skiing, the first downhill skis arrived in the village in 1892 after a resident Franz Reisch, who later became mayor, read a book from Norway about the sport. Two years later a large consignment of skis arrived from Norway to be used in the first Ski championships at the resort. At that time downhill skiing was of the basic Telemark technique, Alpine skiing developed in the early twentieth century in Austria, and the first of the famous Hahnenkamm races was staged in 1931.

keywords

Kitzbühel, Tyrol, Alps, Hahnenkamm, Kitzbüheler Horn

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Bodental ski resort

Tourist Office

Stadtgemeinde Ferlach
Kirchgasse 5

Ferlach
Carinthia / Kärnten
Austria
A 9170

Telephone: (4227) 5119
Email: info@carnica-rosental.at
Website: www.naturerlebnis-bodental.at

Description

Bodental has varied skiing with great views of Vertatscha. The resort even has a free drag lift as well as night skiing every Friday from 6pm to 8:30pm and a magic carpet lift for children.

Other activities offered include snow shoeing and 10 km of skating and classical cross country ski courses running through the snowy Bodental natural landscape.

keywords

Bodental, Ferlach, Carinthia, Alps

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Sauze d’Oulx ski resort

Tourist Office

APT Agenzia Turistica Locale
Via della Torre, 11
Sauze d’Oulx
Piedmont / Piemonte
Italy
I 10050

Telephone: (122) 850380
Email: info@comune.sauzedoulx.to.it
Website: www.comune.sauzedoulx.to.it

Description

Renowned for its lively atmosphere (although now quieter than it used to be) and high-value skiing, Sauze d’Oulx is also at one end of the rather tenuously linked Milky Way Circuit. Conditions permitting it is possible to ski all the way to Montgenèvre, France. Sauze d’Oulx claims to be the birthplace of Italian skiing, dating back to 1899.

Review

Sauze d’Oulx, pronounced “Sow-zee-doo” was one of the most successful Italian ski resorts on the 1970s and ’80s, expanding rapidly. Located on a high sunny ‘balcony’ in the Susa Valley, the resort is surrounded by larch forest above. The trails cut down through this natural amphitheatre have an excellent snow record. Its success resulted from its large and varied ski area, linked to Sestrière, its lively night life and reasonable prices. The resulting growth has led to the construction of a large number of rectangular concrete apartment blocks, mirroring its French partner, Montgènevre, now lift-linked to Sauze at the other end of the long Milky Way circuit.

Although Sauze still has a delightful ancient heart of stone buildings, narrow streets and a cobbled square with water fountain, as well as locals prepared to dress in traditional attire for ancient festivals, these are all somewhat swamped by the newer developments all around. In recent years Sauze d’Oulx has matured to some extent, and although the resort is still one of the liveliest ski centres in the world, the occasionally unpleasant ‘rowdy’ element has moved on. It remains a very popular destination none the less, with most of the major international tour operators including it in their resort lists.

Skiing has been popular here for over a century and world champions like Piero Gros, a gold medalist of the 1976 Olympics, have been based here. Skiing first began on the local slopes at the end of the nineteenth century when a Swiss engineer, Adolfo Kind, taught skiing to locals and guests using wooden boards strapped to the feet.

keywords

Sauze d’Oulx, The Milky Way / Voie Lactée / Via Lattea, Piedmont, Alps, Italy, Grande Galaxie

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Villars ski resort

Tourist Office

Office du Tourisme
Rue Centrale
Villars sur Ollon
Vaud
Switzerland
CH 1884

Telephone: (24) 4953232
Email: information@villars.ch
Website: www.villars.ch

Description

A pretty traditional Swiss resort on a sunny south-west facing plateau above the Rhone Valley. The large ski area reached by funnicular will suit most skiers, with a link to the glacier of Les Diablerets.

Review

Located on a sunny, south-west facing plateau above the Rhone, Villars has been a famous health resort for many years, with visitors arriving by rail in large numbers since the start of the twentieth century. The village’s importance was secured with the decision to stop the Orient Express in the area en route through the Simplon Pass in to Italy.

Today the resort continues to stress both its family-friendly skiing credentials and its decision not to do battle to be the best in any one area, but instead to endeavour to offer its guests the highest standards in all the aspects which make up a wonderful holiday. For Villars that means good quality, good service and good value in accommodation, resort facilities, and on the slopes.

Marketed with its smaller neighbour, the village of Gryon, Villars also has an unusual reputation – as a centre of educational excellence – there are no less than five establishments offering courses in languages, sports and all other academic disciplines.

keywords

Gryon, Vaud, Diablerets, Les Diablerets, Ollon, Villars, Chamossaire, Alpes Vaudoise, Chaux de Conches, Croix des Chaux , Alps, Switzerland

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Montreux ski resort

Tourist Office

Montreux – Vevey Tourisme
Rue du Théâtre 5, Case Postale 1451
Montreux 2
Vaud
Switzerland
CH 1820

Telephone: (21) 9628484
Website: www.montreux.ch

Description

A cosmopolitan town with a population of over 20,000 and a lively leisure scene. Much of the skiing takes place below the 2045 M Rochers-de-Naye and at Les Pléiades reached by funicular railway from the town centre.

keywords

Les Pléiades, Montreux, Rochers de Naye, Caux, Vaud, Vevey, Switzerland, Alps

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