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SeeValdIsere

Family holidays in Val d'Isere

Discover insights about Val d'Isere family holidays

Updated

Whether you come to Val d'Isère in the winter or summer, you and the kids are sure to leave with a big smile on your face. From world-class skiing to biking, hiking and climbing, there are loads of things to do as a family here.

Why Val d'Isère is good for families

  • dedicated ski and play areas for children
  • free lifts for beginners to use on the nursery slopes
  • plenty of childcare available
  • the summer climate is great for kids - warm but not scorching in the day and cool at night
  • from nursery slopes to some of the best skiing in the world, there's something to suit skiers of all abilities

Amelie Chalet, Le Fornet

Accommodation for families

If you’re coming for a ski holiday with a young family, look for accommodation near any of the lifts. The fewer steps your little people have to take in ski boots, the better (for all concerned!).

Val d'Isère is a popular destination with families, with areas to consider including:

Val d'Isère: the liveliest place to be, and the main meet up area for the ski schools is here

La Daille: better value accommodation, just five minutes on the free bus from the main resort

Le Fornet: quieter, more charming village further up the valley, with direct access to the ski area

If you plan on enrolling in ski school, find out where your meeting point will be so you can make sure you have good access to get there is the morning. The main meet up area is at the bottom of the Solaise lift, where you will find the main nursery slopes. 

A family posing for a picture in the snow with a mountain in the background

Lift passes for families

Lift passes make up a significant portion of the cost of a family holiday to the mountains, so it pays to check you’re buying the right ticket for your group. 

Here in Val d'Isere there are various concessions to help you keep your costs down, such as:

  • children under 8 use the lifts for free
  • children between 8 and 18 pay a reduced ('youth') rate
  • there are free passes if you only want to use the beginner lifts
  • you can buy a pedestrian pass - if maybe you or your partner don’t ski, but you still want to go up and watch the kids

Family discounts are available on the Tignes-Val d'Isère pass only, with a purchase of a minimum of four lift passes up to a maximum of seven. They need to be of the same duration and validity dates. 

You can buy half day lift tickets if a full day on the mountain seems too long for the kids. It’s not a lot cheaper than an all day ticket, but it’ll save you a little bit. 

Lift passes in Val d'Isere for families of four or more

If you're a family of four or more, you'll be able to save money on the regular ticket price by buying a 'family lift pass' as long as two passes are for children aged 8 to 18.

What's on in Val d'Isere for winter 2018/19

Ski schools for families

If you have designs on raising the next Shaun White or Chemmy Alcot, then getting your kids into ski school will be a priority!

The main ski schools that cater for young children all offer: 

  • full and half-day sessions
  • have English speaking guides
  • will take your kids to a dedicated area where they can learn how to snow plough, stop, turn and glide safely

Ski schools usually take weekly bookings, so if you’re only here for a few days it’s good to check if there’s any space for your kids.

What age can children start ski lessons

Ski schools will take children from 3 years old. At this age, the focus is on having fun in the snow, so there are normally inflatables and games to play. 

Most beginner areas also have a ‘magic carpet’ travelator (a bit like the ones you get at airports) to get kids and beginner adults to the top of the slopes without having to contend with lifts.

Whether you’re a child or an adult, half-day lessons are normally more than enough if you’re a novice.

What’s included in the price of a lesson

The price you pay for a ski lesson is for tuition only. Ski passes are not included.

So you’ll need to make sure they have: 

  • a valid ski pass (you can get discounted passes if you're only using the nursery slopes)
  • skis, helmets, goggles - you can hire these from one of the many ski hire shops in the resort
  • appropriate clothing, like salopettes and a jacket, warm layers and gloves  

A ski pass isn’t necessary for children under eight, but you'll still need to buy a hands-free card for them to use on the turnstiles. You can get one of these from any lift station, take ID to prove their age.

What's on in Val Thorens winter 2018/19

Ski areas for families

A decent mix of terrain should keep all the family happy.  

Solaise

  • The main nursery ski area for children and beginners is at the bottom of the Solaise lift. Here you will find several free ski lifts; it's also where most of the ski schools meet up. 
  • Another beginner area can be found at the top of the Solaise lift, with several nice green runs to enjoy at high altitude.
  • Over to the top of Bellvarde ski area you'll find long green runs on wide rolling pistes. You may well want to take the cable cars back down at the end of the day as the home runs can be tricky for beginners.

La Daille

  • There is a nursery area with a free lift in the village of La Daille. 
What's on in Val d'Isere in February 2018

Activities for families

Val d'Isere is a year-round resort, and it’s a great place to come whether it’s winter or summer. It all depends on what you love doing.

If you’ve got children, here are a few things you might want to try.

Things to do in Val d'Isere with children
Activity Where Time of year What it is Cost
Sledging By the Savonette lift Winter Sledging Free
Sunny Ride slope Top of TC10 Solaise Winter Children's snow workshops, machine room visit, piste patrol sledging and more Some fees
Ice skating (outdoor) Town centre Winter Outdoor rink with skate hire and cafe Fee to skate
Skate hire is available 
Cinema Centre All year Shows films in English (look for VOST)  
Sports Centre Town centre All year Indoor swimming pool, climbing wall, gym and sports hall. Fee
What's new in Val d'Isere winter 2018/19

Childcare services

There are plenty of specialist tour operators and chalet companies who cater for families and have in-house nannies to help with the childcare.

If you're here during summer

You may find that the main sports centre of each town host a kids club during the summer holidays, with activities such as swimming, climbing, tennis, basketball, ice-skating, etc. and organised hikes and picnics.

Events