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Where would you go if you are skiing for the first time aged 38?

(43 Posts)
pixley Mon 29-Mar-10 19:50:24

The title says it all. I never skied as a child but would really like my 2 children to. My DH and I are thinking of going for a week next year without the children as neither of us have skied before. Where would people recommend?

claricebeansmum Tue 30-Mar-10 17:12:30

Alpe d'Huez and around there is lovely.

Look for a resort that has a good range of green/blue runs.

Try to find an english speaking ski instructor and shell out for private lessons. ESF are shocking.

When looking for accommodation ensure that it is ski-in/ski out.

DadInsteadofMum Wed 31-Mar-10 10:16:15

Somewhere that has a long green run back to resort - it is very rewarding to be able to do a long green run after just a couple of days and to be able to get away from the nursery slopes. I would have a look at Serre Chevalier. Would second vote for private lessons (if it is in budget) and using ESF as last resort.

Bonsoir Wed 31-Mar-10 10:22:19

We stayed here at New Year and it is gorgeous and very romantic. Gentle ski-ing for non-proficient ski-ers is easy to find, and the whole village is lovely.

stripeyknickersspottysocks Wed 31-Mar-10 10:25:38

Courcheval. Nice wide nursery slope area with easy green back to the resort.

squeaver Wed 31-Mar-10 10:26:39

I skied for the first time when I was 40, in the US (so probably not good for you). But I will give you one piece of advice: get one-to-one lessons (or maybe two-to-one). Don't join a class.

LIZS Wed 31-Mar-10 10:28:41

Depends what you want really - are you confident you will want to ski every day or are you looking for a resort with plenty of other activities, apres ski and/or traditional alpine charm (which many French resorts lack in favour of convenient skiing)? Also you may need to consider the snow record of resorts, as nursery slopes tend to be at resort level.

CaurnieBred Wed 31-Mar-10 22:35:46

Depends on budget but I too would recommend Courchevel 1850 or 1650

fluffles Wed 31-Mar-10 22:37:41

i was going to say alpe d'huez and it's the first reponse grin

the best thing about it for beginners is that there is a whole load of really easy nursery green runs in a bowl at the resort level - but it's a really nice bowl cause the resort is so high.. in many resorts the greens at the bottom are slushy cause they're too low.

Cosette Wed 14-Apr-10 14:08:49

I skied for the first time around the same age, and went to Courchevel - and would agree with CaurnieBred - both 1850 and 1650 have nice greens back to resort- and it's high enough to have good snow if you go late in the season.

cloelia Wed 14-Apr-10 22:24:32

Tignes is another good one. High and lots of open lovely runs. do NOT go to St Anton. Just been there and way harder than Tignes.

Rooble Wed 14-Apr-10 22:41:23

We've just come back from Engelberg in Switzerland which was lovely - best skiing holiday I've ever had. You need to go earlier in the year than we did (Easter) for there still to be good snow on the side of the valley with the really, really good starter slopes (Brunniberg - it's south facing, so snow vanishes quickly). It's a real village, not just a resort, so there's stuff to do other than just ski and drink. We had lessons from Swiss Ski School and our instructor was great.
Extremely accessible, too.
And not as madly busy as France often seems to be. I can recommend an outstanding accommodation if req'd!

mumof2222222222222222boys Thu 15-Apr-10 12:33:54

I would not recommend Feb half term, but early Easter should be great. I am just back from France having had a fab week with 4 children. I would recommend a smaller resort - why pay lots for a huge ski area if you are all beginners. We were mainly in Les Orres and the ski school was fab (10/15 instructors in Ski Ozone speak English) and DS (5) loved it. Not mainly English people there, but I did ask one chap why he'd chosen to come and he said it was soooo much cheaper than eg 3 valleys, and the skiing was just what he was after!

ColdBunny Mon 24-May-10 10:44:42

I skied for the first time this year in Oberau (Austria). I was 39 at the time and I loved the place. Very quiet, excellent instructors and no queues for the lift.

2cats2many Wed 26-May-10 22:12:39

Andorra- Soldeu- definately. English ski school. Nice weather. Very cheap. Nice and easy slopes. Great night life.

MrsBadger Wed 26-May-10 22:37:21

Courchevel again, or Meribel

narmada Wed 26-May-10 22:48:42

ohh, booooooooooring! so many people recommending the French mega-resorts. Some non-French suggestions for a bit of variety:

Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis (Austria)

Oberlech (Austria - pricey, but not ugly and v convenient ski-to-the-door kind of place)

Corvara or Colfosco (Italy) - classy, great for beginners, good food, good scenery.

Cortina D'Ampezzo (Italy, but only if you don't mind hiring a car - and don't even think about it in April, too low down and not reliable enough on the snow front)

Are, Sweden (late feb onwards, and maybe not if you're looking for choc box alps village)

Can you go off-peak? If so, try late early or late February, or early March. I don't like skiing in April as although you get the sun, the snow is horrible, sugary mush by midday.

Ooh, makes me want to book next years holiday - but I will have a 3-yo and 5mo baby so maybe we better see how things pan out!

orienteerer Thu 27-May-10 07:39:26

Well said narmadagrin. Choose somewhere small & picturesque with more going on than just skiing.....just in case you hate it. I would go for a hotel with an indoor pool in a nice village, icing on the cake would be a village with good rail/bus access to a nearby town/city.

greygirl Tue 22-Jun-10 22:54:08

i would suggest you all take lessons in the uk - dry or indoor slope, to see what you all think. you will either a) love it and consequently all enjoy yourselves loads more on the holiday b) not love it and save the money.

ps we liked zell am see in austri and whistler in canada, but go somewhere small - you don't need big and swanky as a beginner

SnowAngelNannies Tue 06-Jul-10 09:29:50

I think its more about the instructor you get than the resort!! There are better resorts for beginners for example, Alpe d'Huez, Les Deux Alpes, Courcheval to name but a few but your instructor will make your week!!!! I can recommend The European Ski and Snowboard School in Les Deux Alpes!

t4Nanny Wed 28-Jul-10 14:00:03

Tignes is great and get lessons with New Generation see their feedback on the website it says it all. They have small groups and only 2 hours per day.

GetOrfMoiLand Wed 28-Jul-10 14:07:46

OOh Engelberg is WONDERFUL. A train ride to Zurich as well if you fancy going there for the day.

Go somewhere which has loads of other stuff to do just in case you loathe skiing.

I really wouldn't recommend 3 valleys (courchevel, meribel etc) - you won't be a good enoigh skiier to get the best out of the area anyway.

Some smaller resorts in Austria may be a good bet - go for ones with a glacier (it will tell you in Inghams brochure or whetevr if it is a glacier resort) or which are higher altitude - lots of Austrian resports which are suitable for beginners (Niederau, Oberau) are very low down and the snow is getting worse every year.

Zell Am See/Kaprun is wonderful. A really pretty town, lots of apres ski, and some lovely blues and greens.

Kitzbuhel as well - it's a proper town so lots to do as well as ski.

Or try Canada - Banff is close to 3 major ski areas all of which are accessible (by coach) with your ski pass. Mt Norquay and Sunshine Village are close by (15 mins and 30mins approx) and are good for beginners. Lake Louise is also accessible but is tricky skiing. Excellent tuition. It is more expensive to get there but cheaper food drink etc when you are in Canada.

I wouldn't recommend Bulgaria - it is as cheap as chips compatred to others however I have heard nasty thnsg about the hospital care there (you really want the best healthcare if you break something). Healthcare in Austrai fantastic (dd was stretchered off the mountain with a dislocated shoulder when she was 7, the treatment she got was excellent).

lazysod Mon 06-Sep-10 22:56:55

Zell am see, austria.

CaptainInkheart Mon 06-Sep-10 22:59:34

<<marks place>> (Thanks for thread, OP)

NickOfTime Mon 06-Sep-10 23:01:05

canada. grin

i prefer banff (so sunshine, lake louise etc) but fernie, whistler etc all good. (i don't like norquay for beginners - once you are off the first chair it's a bit narrower and tree lined, so seems steeper....)

no language issues, beautiful wide open pistes, lots of variety.

but i am biased wink

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