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Bring your skis or snowboard on board

Want to explore the best ski resorts in the Alps but prefer to take your own skis or snowboard? We totally understand – you'll enjoy it even more with your own gear! Luckily nowadays most airlines let you check your gear in as special luggage, and it's affordable, too!

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Tips to travel with your snowboard on the plane

You've got your plane tickets, your accommodation and ski pass. Now all you have to do is get to your destination and enjoy a few days in the snow. You've earned it! If it's the first time you're flying with your skiing equipment and you're not sure how to carry it, read on because this information is useful.

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Innsbruck – the Snow Paradise

Innsbruck is the paradise of snow-sliding sports enthusiasts. Here, one advantage is that the ski runs are just a stone’s throw from the city. Indeed, enthusiasts are treated to abundant white snow and blue skies. In other words, a dream come true for any skier, freerider, snowboarder or hiker worth their salt. The nine ski resorts in the Olympia SkiWorld Innsbruck are relished by skiing enthusiasts. Here, too, lies the Kühtai ski resort which, at an altitude of 2,020 metres, is the Alpine ceiling. Fortunately, Innsbruck is not only about snow-related activities. After a day on the pistes or hiking through the mountains, there is a host of options open to you, including the Christmas markets, of which there are no fewer than six here. But, this time we’re focusing on their resorts.

The Nine Ski Resorts Around the Three-time Olympic City

Olympia SkiWorld Innsbruck features a grand total of nine ski and snowboarding resorts, from family runs to pistes designated for professionals. Here you will find the right piste for you and moving between the different ski runs is facilitated by a free, eco-friendly ski bus.

1. Nordkette

This is one of the steepest pistes in Europe, with a gradient of 70%. The descent from Hafelekar to Seegrube is an experience for any adrenaline junkie. One of the features of this resort is that it is easily accessible by cableway or funicular from the city centre. At Seegrube there is also a chill-out area for those who prefer to swank around. This piste is very complete and includes a Kids Arena for the young ones. Nordketten Skylinepark also has night lighting and a 2,000-watt, surround musical system.

2. Patscherkofel

Located south of the city, the “gentle giant” faces the Nordkette mountain range. The runs on Mt Patscherkofel are three times Olympic (1964, 1976, 2012). Skiers can reach the pistes in comfort on the Olympia-Express and Patscherkofelbahn cableway, while freeriders will discover their own winter idyll at Snowpark Innsbruck.

3. Glungezer

Situated just 12 kilometres from Innsbruck and next door to Patscherkofel, the Glungezer ski station has pistes with panoramic views over the river Inn. It boasts the longest descent in Tyrol, stretching over 15 km. What’s more, as it lies further away from the city, it is less crowded than other spots.

4. Muttereralm

The Muttereralm ski resort is ideal for the whole family and is easily accessible from both Mutters and Götzens. Its attractive, sun-drenched ski slopes provide fantastic views over the Inntal and Wipptal valleys. Here you will find MAP 6020; in other words, the longest snowpark in the Innsbruck region.

5. Rangger Köpfl

A mere 15-minute car ride from Innsbruck, the Rangger Köpfl ski station has beginner- and intermediate-level pistes. A cable car with a capacity of 8, four ski lifts and a snowpark for beginners round off the amenities for ski lovers. The Höhenweg trail also enables hikers to enjoy the restorative Alpine winter air.

6. Axamer Lizum

The Axamer Lizum ski resort stands out for the quality of its pistes. Up to 12,000 people per hour can move about it, with practically no waiting times. With its north-facing slopes, this resort is a veritable paradise of powdered snow. Those game to go there are encouraged to eat at the Hoadlhaus panoramic restaurant.

7. Kühtai

Among the highest resorts in the Alps. Far from the other, crowded stations nearer the city, Kühtai has broad pistes and a guaranteed supply of snow until well into the spring. It also has numerous ski lifts, genuine Alpine shelters and night skiing twice a week. Further, K-Park Kühtai is a thrill for freeriders, as they can ski above the treeline.

8. Schlick 2000

The Schlick 2000 resort is all the rage in Alpine sport. Here, in the Stubaital valley, you can do downhill and cross-country skiing, carving, snowboarding, sleigh-riding, as well as walk in the snow or go paragliding. In the children’s section at the Ski School Stubai, tutors take care of children from the age of 3 months.

9. Stubai

The platform on top of the Stubai glacier affords views of a hundred and nine 3,000-metre summits, as well as over the giant glacier itself. Skiers have at their disposal 110 km of pistes and 25 ski lift systems in this, the largest glacier skiing resort in Austria, while Stubai Zoo is one of the best snowparks in Europe. The resort opens from October to June.

Further information at Innsbruck Tourismus. Why wait to discover the best snow experience on the continent? Check out our flights here.

 

Text by ISABELYLUIS Comunicación

Images by Innsbruck Tourismus

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Winter Holiday at the Foot of Mont Blanc

Chamonix, the rakish star of the French Alps, is the perfect spot for a winter getaway where you can get the most out of the snow in every possible way and with splendid views of the highest mountain in Europe, Mont Blanc. Situated just 16 kilometres from Switzerland and 11 kilometres from Italy, this destination draws snow sport devotees from everywhere, as well as those eager to go on outings in the superb natural surroundings, relax in a spa and even do a spot of shopping in the town of Chamonix.

The Best Black Pistes in France

Snow sport enthusiasts will find a veritable paradise in Chamonix as they ski against the spectacular backdrops, either of Mont Blanc or the valley where Chamonix is located. The 115 kilometres of ski runs – 12 for beginners, 26 blue, 20 red and 12 black – are a delight for any skiing or snowboarding devotee. While it is acclaimed for its large number of pistes with a high difficulty rating, suitable only for the most intrepid skiers, it also has areas where young children or learners can enjoy snow sports.

The Aiguille du Midi, at an altitude of 3,842 metres, is the objective of choice for those less fearful of heights, as well as others seeking out the most precipitous down slopes which only specialists can handle safely. It is well worth going up in the cable car and overcoming one’s fear of heights, if only for the superb panoramic views of the French, Italian and Swiss Alps to be had from here. The Brévent-Flégère pistes are more accessible and also afford magnificent views of Mont Blanc.

Heady Scenery

Those less inclined to do sport can rest assured that you don’t need to ski in order to enjoy the views, which can be reached by going up the comfortable cable cars. Mont Blanc, at a stunning altitude of 4,810 metres and famed for being the cradle of mountaineering, is the main focus of attention for visitors to the area. As mentioned earlier, both Aiguille du Midi and the peak of Le Brévent are perfect vantage points for viewing the scenery. Other panoramas worth considering here are provided by the glaciers. A standout example is Mer de Glace, located on the north face of Mont Blanc, which is 7 kilometres long by 200 metres deep, making it the longest glacier in France.

De Luxe Après Ski

Unlike other Alpine ski resorts, which feature only a few villages with limited aprés ski facilities, after a long, hard day of skiing or scoping the area in search of sensations, Chamonix boasts a whole town full of amenities for rounding off your day. You can go shopping, have a drink while listening to live music, or replenish your strength by trying some culinary classics of the region of Savoy, like raclette or fondue. What more could you want?

Book your Vueling to Geneva, which lies just 88 kilometres from Chamonix, and indulge in a surfeit of snow at the foot of the highest peak in Europe.

Text by Los Viajes de ISABELYLUIS

Images by Christian Bertram

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