How to get to Val d'Isere
Discover the top ways to get to Val d'Isere
With a nearby train station and several airports within 3 to 4 hours, there are plenty of options for getting to Val d'Isere.
Together with Tignes, Val d'Isere makes up one of the largest ski resorts in Europe. It has more than 300km of pistes and some great off-piste.
The easiest way for most international visitors to get here is probably to fly to Geneva.
Val d'Isere is definitely doable by train too. Bourg St Maurice railway station is about an hour away by local bus, which is less time than it takes to get from any of the closest airports.
If you're driving, it's straightforward as far as Bourg St Maurice. The road gets increasingly twisty after that.
So given the options, what’s the best way to get here?
Flying to Val d'Isere
Flying to Geneva is probably the fastest way to get to Val d'Isere for most international visitors.
The only trouble with flying anywhere is the environmental cost. Driving, coming by coach or catching a train are usually better options if you want to reduce CO2 emissions.
Flying to other airports
Lyon or Grenoble are options for Val d'Isere if you can’t get a flight to Geneva. Both are about the same distance away (220km) and transfers take upwards of 3 hours.
Chambery is actually closer than the three airports already mentioned, but it's a lot smaller and not as many airlines fly there. But if you can get a flight and a transfer, your journey time to the resort should only be 2 hours or so.
We wouldn't recommend trying to get to Val d'Isere from Turin or Milan - even if they look close on the map. It usually takes a lot longer to get to the resort, and you'll often have to rely on pricey private transfers.
Getting from the airport to Val d'Isere
There are several ways to get from the airport to Val d'Isere. If your transfer only takes you as far as Bourg St Maurice, you can catch a local bus to the resort. This should only take an hour.
|Flying to||Best option||Journey time|
|Chambery||Private transfers to Val d'Isere
Regular bus services via Bourg St Maurice on weekends during the winter season
|Geneva||Airport transfer to Val d'Isere||3h|
|Grenoble||Private airport transfers to Val d'Isere||3h 45|
|Lyon||Private transfers to Val d'Isere
Regular bus service to Val d'Isere via Bourg St Maurice
Train to Val d'Isere
Getting to Val d'Isere by train may involve a few changes, which can be tricky with baggage or kids. But:
- it's the most environmentally-friendly option
- you get more leg room than on a plane or in a car
- you normally won't have to pay extra for luggage
- journey times can be similar to driving or flying if you're doing a trip like London to Val d'Isere
Which train station is closest to Val d'Isere
Val d'Isere doesn't have its own train station, but Bourg St Maurice SNCF is only 30km away by local bus. That means you can be in resort within an hour, saving several hours over the airport transfer time.
You can get fast (TGV) trains from Paris and many other cities to Bourg St Maurice. The Eurostar Snow train also stops here.
If you're coming to Val d'Isere from the UK
London to Val d'Isere by train takes 10 to 12 hours.
Driving to Val d'Isere
Being a good 3 to 4 hours from the nearest airport, Val d'Isere is one resort where driving perhaps makes more sense. That said, you won't need your car once you're in resort.
If you're using the French autoroute, the journey as far as Bourg St Maurice (the nearest town to Val d'Isere) is straightforward. The final 45 minutes is a little more arduous as you wind your way up the 32km stretch into Val d'Isere.
This road is cleared every day during winter, but it's not a trip for nervous drivers - especially in bad weather.
Remember too that if you're coming here for a ski holiday, you'll need to fit winter tyres or keep snow chains in the boot of your car.
Driving to Val d'Isere from the UK
It takes about 10h 30 to drive from Calais to Val d'Isere - a distance of around 1000km.
Unless you're driving an electric car to the Alps however, driving isn't very environmentally friendly.
Coach to Val d'Isere
Getting to Val d'Isere by coach takes longer than flying. It's usually cheaper though, which makes it a good option if you're on a budget.
It's also a relatively environmentally-friendly way to travel.
Coaches from London to Val d'Isere
There's a direct overnight coach from London to Val d'Isere that runs once a week during the winter. The coach stops in Bourg St Maurice - the closest town to Val d'Isere. From there you can hop on to a local bus for the last 32km.
Total journey time is about 20 hours.
Reduce your environmental impact
We know flying is often the most convenient way to get to Val d'Isere, but we'd encourage you to look at alternatives.
A good option is to take the train as far as Bourg St Maurice do the last leg by bus. This allows you to minimise your carbon footprint while still getting to the resort in good time.
|Mode of transport||CO2 per km per person|
|Electric car with 4 passengers||13 grams|
|Diesel car with 4 passengers||43 grams|
|Petrol car with 4 passengers||48 grams|