We will refund you the difference plus an extra 5% discount off your stay. Contact us on 0203 475 4756.
- If you find the exact same product (same dates, same residence, same type of accommodation, same reservation conditions) on sale elsewhere cheaper than we offer, we will refund you the difference.
- To qualify for this reimbursement, the offer price seen elsewhere must be recorded at the same time as booking with us, and you must send us proof of the price seen elsewhere (screenshot or scanned document).
- Offer only available on destinations directly managed by Madame Vacances.
- Reliable snow throughout the winter season (early December to late April)
- Great range of off-mountain activities and apres-ski
Alpe d'Huez was one of the first purpose-built, commercial ski resorts to open in the 1930s, and continues to thrive today, with some of the original buildings still in place in its oldest quartier (district). The massive Alpe d'Huez ski area covers five resorts and two villages, and with 250km of pistes to explore the region offers so much in terms of skiing and winter sports. A popular family resort, Alpe d'Huez has an incredible range of activities for those moments spent off the mountain, from thrill-seeking activities to comfort-seeking spas. Being one of the liveliest resorts in the French Alps, it's also great for aprés-ski.
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Nestled in the centre of the French Alps, Alped'Huez makes up the largest resort in the Grandes Rousses Massif. Lying at 1860 metres above sea level, the resort has been nicknamed the Island of the Sun due to its south-facing aspect, rewarding it with an average 300 days of sunshine a year. Team this with consistent snowfall and Alpe d'Huez makes for fantastic skiing, with 250km of runs and an altitude range of 2230m from the summit of Pic Blanc to Enversin d'Oz. The closest airports to Alpe d'Huez are Grenoble (1hr 45), Chambery (2 hours), Lyon (2 hours), and Geneva (2hrs 45) airports.
Things To Do
As one of the largest ski resorts in France, with some 250km of pistes, the ski area links the main resort of Alpe d'Huez to the smaller satellite resorts of Vaujany, Villard Reculas, Oz and Auris. From the numerous green runs lining the sunny bowl which surrounds the village, to the extensive off-piste opportunities from the summit of the Pic Blanc cable car at 3330m, there is a wide range of first-class skiing available to suit all levels. There are two dedicated beginner areas, as well as a large network of cruising blue runs or more challenging reds for intermediates. The vertical descent stretches over 2200m, providing some impressively long runs and a variety of terrain, from high alpine steeps to tree runs and everything in between! The lift system in Alpe d'Huez is second to none, with a number of high-speed cable cars linking all the key areas of the ski area.
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Alpe d'Huez plays host to the infamous Sarenne piste, the longest black run in Europe, descending 16km and joining the Pic Blanc and the Sarenne Gorge. Most of the off-piste routes start here, and for the even more adventurous, the run can also be skied by moonlight (accompanied by a guide)! The five resorts and two villages that make up the ski area also include a snow park for freestyle enthusiasts, a boardercross run, a piste open for night-skiing, plus a 1200m toboggan run.
Eating and Drinking
As one of France's largest ski resorts, there are seemingly endless opportunities for dining out in the resort. Traditional cuisine is largely based around melted cheese, with many fondue, raclette and tartiflette restaurants serving delicious and hearty rustic meals.
For something a little lighter, there are plenty of Italian restaurants to choose from, or a spicy tex-mex fix to warm your bones at the popular burger cabins. As well as restaurants in the resort, Alpe d'Huez offers many mountain restaurants to stop off for a hot chocolate or beer mid-ski and warm frosty toes.
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After a hard day's skiing, Alpe d'Huez doesn't disappoint with its aprés-ski options. Lively clubs are full of euphoric revellers, and bars and pubs offer live music most nights, which are the perfect place to relax with a drink, rest weary legs and chat about the day's conditions.
As if that's not enough to keep visitors busy, the resort also includes an indoor swimming pool and an outdoor ice rink, access to which is included with a 6-day lift pass. For activities off the mountain, there's a sports centre with a gym, aqua classes, badminton, basketball, squash, tennis and archery, plus a climbing wall and bouldering room. Respite can be found in the form of a relaxation centre, with several spas offering treatments, yoga courses, and book in sessions with a physiotherapist.
Outdoor activities also include excellent hiking trails, paragliding, dog sledding and trips by skidoo (a type of snowmobile). Indoors, there is a library, cinema, many shops and even an ice cave with sculptures to explore.
The Alpe d'Huez ski season generally runs from December through to April, with lifts running from 9:00 until 16:30-17:30, depending on the period and weather
Ski and Lift Passes
One lift pass gives you access to the 85 lifts linking the entire ski area. Adult, Child and Senior options are available to book with Madame Vacances for any duration to suit your stay and don't forget that you get a 5% discount if you book in advance with us (our adult 6 day lift pass is Eu242 reduced from Eu255). The lifts accessing the designated beginner areas are free and under 5s and over 72s can also access the entire ski area for free.
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Lessons and Ski Schools
The resort contains five ski schools to choose from, speaking English and French, and all fully qualified to teach complete beginners to top-up lessons for experienced skiers with a range of classes including one-to-one and group tutorials.
Childcare and Facilities
If parents fancy a break, the resort offers a range of childcare, with skiing and boarding lessons for ages 3 and upwards and a kids' club. For younger children, there are activities and games run by professionals, and multiple babysitters and creches to leave youngsters with. There's even an indoor version of Go Ape for children to let loose on.
Parking and Access
If you decide to drive, there are nine free outdoor car parks, and six indoor paid ones. During the skiing season, it's worth calling ahead to reserve a parking space as it gets very busy and ticket wardens do patrol! The distance from Calais to Alpe d'Huez is approximately 930km, taking around 8-9 hours to drive.
When parking outside, it's useful to park facing downhill, with the wheels turned into the kerb to act as a brake. Remember where you parked, and be prepared to dig your car out after a snowfall!
Planning to visit Alpe d'Huez during the summer season? Read our summer guide to find out more about the many alpine activities on offer.