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Best ways to enjoy the slopes this winter

05 Jan 2023

What better way to enjoy the cooler months than having a morning swim in the winter sunshine and an afternoon skiing session, followed by an…

What better way to enjoy the cooler months than having a morning swim in the winter sunshine and an afternoon skiing session, followed by an Alpine dinner at your Parc du Cap home? Antibes is perfectly nestled between sea and mountain, and the magnificent mountain range that forms the backdrop of the Parc du Cap residence is a sight to behold in the winter months, viewable from the rooftops of our residences. So, if you prefer colder temperatures, snowfall, cosy chalets, and delicious mountain delicacies in the winter, the impressive mountain landscape of the Côte d’Azur won’t let you down.

The go-to locations

In the winter, fresh snow covers the French Southern Alps, otherwise known as Mercantour, which is around 90 km and a two-hour drive away from our doorstep, making a day on the slopes perfectly accessible. Below are our recommendations for the best ski resorts near your home.

  • Auron – A popular ski resort amongst locals, Auron has a friendly atmosphere and is dedicated to downhill skiing with 46 ski slopes. The resort is also known for the annual Chefs au Sommet gastronomic festival in January, where the greatest chefs of the Côte d’Azur serve up their culinary delights in the local restaurants.
  • Isola 2000 – At 2,000 metres above sea level and close to the Italian border at Col de la Lombarde, Isola 2000 is the summit of the Southern Alps. The ski area is suitable for all levels, with a range of green, blue, red and black slopes. Additionally, the resort offers an exceptional setting for snowshoeing, a specific technique for walking in snow facilitated by specialised equipment.
  • Valberg – This resort, located at an altitude of 1,700 metres, is considered the gates of the Mercantour National Park. Valberg is a magical location, especially for families and many activities on offer here will keep children occupied, such as learner slopes and a family snow park.

Explore the undiscovered gems

For those seeking quieter slopes, there are several ‘off the beaten snow track’ mountain villages worth investigating. For example, the picturesque Saint Dalmas Le Selvage, Saint Martin de Vésubie – Le Boréon, and Estenc Entraunes are some of the smaller resorts in the area, with fantastic sites for cross-country enthusiasts. Climb at the peak of the mountains in Greolières-Les-Neiges, to enjoy breathtaking sea views and maybe even spot Parc du Cap in the distance.

Mouth-watering mountain munching

When it comes to food in the French mountains, it is all about indulgence! From hearty style fondues and tartiflette to delicious wines and hot chocolate, Alpine dishes will certainly warm you up after a chilly day in the mountains.

  • Cheese fans will be in their absolute element with dishes like oozing fondue and dipping bread and raclette: pouring melted cheese over potatoes, cornichons, and cold-cut meats. You really can’t go wrong with either!
  • Tarte aux Myrtilles is the perfect finish to an indulgent meal. This tasty blueberry tart is one of the most popular desserts in the French Alps.
  • Top off your day in the mountains with a warm spiced vin chaud, or for something sturdier, try a Genepi, a traditional herbal liqueur.

Additional activities

If traditional winter sports are not your cup of tea, there are plenty of fun activities to experience – from the memorable to the adventurous. Here are a few of our recommendations:

  • Travel at pace over the ice and through snow whilst dog sledging in the forests of the famous Vallée des Merveilles in Casterino. A thrilling experience for all ages and especially dog lovers.
  • Take to the skies for the best possible view of the magnificent mountainous region from above. From Gap Tallard Airport, hop on a plane to go skydiving or hire a helicopter to reach more extreme skiing areas via heli-skiing. Alternatively, La Colmiane is home to the longest zip line in Europe.
  • Another popular way to explore the beautiful slopes is by snowmobile. There are various locations to rent a snowmobile or hire a guide to explore all the hidden secrets of the mountains and valleys.
  • For an adrenaline kick, Isola 2000 offers an opportunity to take a car for a spin around an ice track at a fast pace – certainly one way to test your driving skills!
  • Or, if launching yourself down slopes isn’t for you, the mountains are well-suited to taking some quality time out to relax and breathe in the fresh, icy air. Find a great spot in a cosy chalet with stunning views, and sit back with a glass of champagne!

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