Fun and family-friendly ski resorts in France this winter

Last updated 8th November 2017

France is covered in mountain ranges and, come winter, you can ski just about anywhere from the Côte d’Azur to the Jura Alps. Finding the right resort, in the right area, that works for your family ski-holiday can take some time. So here are five Family Traveller favourites for this winter to give you a head start.

1/5  Flaine, Haute-Savoie: Grand Massif ski area

Flaine won’t stun you with heritage charm, but it’s one of the leading ski-in-ski-out resorts in France, and completely car-free, which goes a long way to compensate for the purpose-built design. It’s also right in the heart of the Grand Massif ski area, so if you want a touch of fairy-tale prettiness, there’s no shortage of traditional villages nearby to go gaze upon.

Good for families

  • Long, snow sure season, and over 50% beginner runs.
  • Ski-in-ski-out hotels and apartments.
  • École du Ski Français, lessons from age five, 75 multi-lingual instructors.
  • Club Piou Piou fun intro to skiing from age three.
  • Childcare from six months to 12 years.
  • Lively resort centre with dozens of family restaurants.
  • Beginners’ lift system.
  • Aquatic Centre, indoor climbing centre, ice-rink, cinema, bowling.
  • Big Snow Bag, snowmobiling, snow-kiting, ice quad bikes.
  • Traditional Christmas and New Year celebrations.

Where to stay

Les Terrasse d’Hélios Residence

How to get to Flaine

Direct flights from UK to Geneva Airport, one hour and 35 minutes.

Flaine is one hour and 22 minutes drive from Geneva.

2/5  Les Gets, Haute-Savoie: Portes du Soleil ski area

A Famille Plus resort, Les Gets is great fun for kids, and comes good on enchanting village looks too. Expect truly magical at Christmas with Santa in an Enchanted Forest, torchlight ski-parades, and a two week long activity and entertainment programme. It’s also one of the most accessible resorts in the Portes du Soleil area for UK families, at just under an hour’s drive from Geneva Airport.   

Good for families

  • Famille Plus resort, over 40% beginner runs.
  • Club Piou Piou from age three: 50% ski instruction/50% playtime.
  • Dedicated kids’ ski area for beginners.
  • École du Ski Français from age five, multi-lingual instructors
  • Childcare from six months to 12 years.
  • One of the smallest and most authentic Portes du Soleil villages.
  • Dog sledding, snowmobiling, snow-shoeing, sledging.
  • Ice rink, music museum, bowling alley.
  • Mont Chery Snow Park.
  • Kids activity, events and entertainment programme.

Where to stay

Hotel Marmotte

How to get to Les Gets

Direct flights from UK to Geneva Airport, one hour and 35 minutes.

Flaine is 55 minutes drive from Geneva.

3/5  Saint-Lary-Soulan, Hautes-Pyrenees: Val d’Aure ski area

One of the largest resorts in the Pyrenees, Saint-Lary-Soulan is great value, offers a wide range of snow-sure runs, and still manages to fit in authentic Pyrenean charm.

It’s very popular with French families, so there’s a good chance kids will pick up some of the language, as well as ski skills here.

Good for families

  • 100km of runs, 45% beginner.
  • Club Piou Piou for ages three to five.
  • École du Ski Français from age five, multi-lingual instructors
  • Sensoria Rio, family thermal spa and pool complex.
  • Childcare from 6 months; on mountain and in village.
  • Snow Garden, Kid Snow Park, and Mogul Park.
  • Snow-shoeing, dog sledding, tobogganing.
  • Ice rink, bungy-trampoline, Lary 1700 kids luge runs.
  • Bear Museum, cinema, Christmas event programme.

Where to stay

Cami Real Residence

How to get to Saint-Lary-Soulan

Direct flights from UK to Lourdes, one hour and 55 minutes.

Saint-Lary-Soulan is an hour’s drive from Lourdes.

4/5  Tignes 1800, French Alps: Espace Killy ski area

Les Tignes is almost always the first French resort to open, and last to close. Linked to Val d’Isère, it’s one half of the enormous Espace Killy ski area, and home to the famous Grand Motte glacier.

Tignes 1800 is the newest Les Tignes village. Designed with families in mind, it’s authentically Alpine looking, lively enough to be fun, but significantly more peaceful than the party-loving neighbours.

Good for families

  • One of Europe’s largest linked ski areas.
  • Club Piou Piou for ages three to five.
  • École du Ski Français from age five, multi-lingual instructors
  • Beginners ‘1,2,3, ski’ area, progresses kids quickly and safely.
  • Childcare from 6 months.
  • Snowboard and freestyle parks.
  • Bun-J-Ride, bungy trampolining, dog sledding, snowshoeing.
  • Le Lagon Aquatic Centre, ice rink,
  • Cinema, bowling alley, games arcade.

Where to stay

Residence Kalinda

How to get to Tignes 1800

Direct flights from UK to Chambéry, one hour and 45 minutes.

Tignes 1800 is two hours drive from Chambéry.

5/5  Megève, Haute-Savoie: Mont Blanc Massif ski area

Megève in Haute-Savoie is a charming mountain village in its own right. So the fact that it’s also part of the Mont Blanc massif, and included on the extensive Ski Pass Mont Blanc, is almost icing on the cake.

It’s not the best resort for teenagers or lively après-ski activity. But the historic town centre with its ancient buildings, horse-drawn sleighs, and cosy winter markets, is charming and younger kids love the fairy-tale prettiness at Christmas.

Good for families

  • Included on the Ski Pass Mont Blanc.
  • Club Piou Piou for ages three to five.
  • École du Ski Français from age five, multi-lingual instructors
  • Easy access to resort activities at Avoriaz, Flaine and Les Arcs.
  • Childcare from 6 months.
  • Aquatic Centre, indoor climbing, ice rinks
  • Horse-drawn sleigh rides, dog sledding, family snowshoeing.
  • Meg Loisirs Day Camp for three to 12 year olds.
  • Local museums, Reindeer Farm, Christmas events and markets.

Where to stay

Les Loges Blanches

How to get to Megève

Direct flights from UK to Geneva, one hour and 35 minutes.

Megève is an hours drive from Geneva.