Last year we caught up with Daniel Elkan, a freelance journalist and creator of Snowcarbon and he gave us his insight into travelling to ski resorts in The Alps by train in his blog called “7 Best Rail Journey’s To The Alps“. We recently caught up with Daniel again to find out the best ways to access some of Europe’s other best resorts by train from the UK. Here is what he had to say…
The Eurostar Ski Train is a great way to get to the Alps. But when it’s sold out, or if you want to reach resorts that it doesn’t access, or travelling on a Sunday, there are alternatives to keep you on track. The new NightJet sleeper train can get you to the Austrian Tirol overnight, while you can reach an array of ski resorts in France and Switzerland by combining a Eurostar to Paris with a fast, comfortable TGV train from there. Here are some of the best resorts that you can visit and the best ways of getting to them by rail.
Set in the amazing Espace Killy ski area, the French ski resort of Tignes is one of the best known resorts in the French Alps. Tignes has one of the highest glaciers in Europe so offers skiing pretty much year round. The resort is made up of different villages, each at different altitudes and each with their own characteristics.
There are a number of great luxury Chalets in Tignes but one of the most popular is Chalet Opale which is set in Tignes Le Lac. This chalet can be booked on both a catered and self-catered basis and has easy access to this amazing ski area.
Example Saturday journey: Depart St Pancras on the 07:52 Eurostar to Paris-Nord, change station to Paris-Lyon and take the 12:45 TGV to Bourg St Maurice, arriving at 17:48. From there it’s 45 minutes by taxi.
Example Paris stopover, depart Saturday – arrive Sunday: Depart London St Pancras 17:31 by Eurostar to Paris-Nord; take a taxi (or Metro) to a hotel by Gare de Lyon; next morning take the 07:49 TGV, arriving 12:51; from there it’s 45 minutes by taxi.
The Austrian resort of St Anton has rapidly become one of Austria’s most popular ski resorts. People are drawn to the resort by the amazing apres ski on offer as well as the chance to explore the rest of the Arlberg ski area which includes the affluent resorts of Lech and St Christoph.
There are now an abundance of luxury chalets in St Anton. A popular chalet is Chalet Narnia. This privately owned and ran property offers high levels of service with a personal feel. It is particularly popular with those looking for a luxury family ski holiday in St Anton.
Example journey via Paris (runs everyday): Depart London St Pancras on the 18:01 Eurostar to Paris-Nord; stopover in Paris and take the 07:23 TGV from Paris-Lyon, changing in Zurich to the 12:40 RailJet arriving at St Anton at 15:03. The train station is in the resort.
Example journey via Brussels (runs everyday): Depart London St Pancras on the 15:04 Eurostar to Brussels, arriving 18:05; take the 18:25 ICE from Brussels to Cologne, arriving 20:15; then take the 21:21 NightJet sleeper train to Innsbruck, arriving 09:14; then take the 09:48 RailJet to St Anton, arriving 10:55. The train station is in the resort.
The resort of Serre Chevalier has more than 250km of pistes and covers 13 villages. The ski area is fantastic and particularly appeals to freestyle riders as the area has some great snowparks, freestyle courses and snowcross runs. There is also a vast array of properties.
One of the best luxury chalets in Serre Chevalier is Chez Bear Ski Lodge. This old traditional building offers a great and cosy home for your luxury ski holiday. Although beautiful throughout, the stand out feature of the chalet has to be the games/cinema room. This vast room houses a projector screen and pool table in a cave like setting.
Example journey (runs everyday): Depart London St Pancras on the 09:24 Eurostar to Paris-Nord, change station by taxi and take the 14:41 TGV from Paris-Lyon to Oulx, arriving at 19:23. From there it’s 45 minutes by taxi.
Known as one of the most snow sure resorts in the French Alps, Avoriaz is part of the large Portes Du Soleil ski area. The Portes du Soleil covers resorts in Switzerland and France and is the largest ski area in Europe covering over 650km of slopes. The resort particularly appeals to families, this is mainly due to the fact that nearly every property is ski-in, ski-out and you also have the Aquariaz indoor water park.
A chalet that is great for small families is the No 2 Penthouse. This property sleeps up to 4 people on a fully catered basis and is in a great position in the centre of the resort.
Example journey: Depart from London St Pancras to Paris Gare du Nord by Eurostar at 07:55 to Paris-Nord and then take the 12:11 TGV from Paris Gare de Lyon, changing at Bellegarde to arriving at Cluses at 16:35; from there it’s 50 minutes by taxi.
Example Paris stopover, depart Saturday – arrive Sunday: Depart London St Pancras 17:31 by Eurostar to Paris-Nord; take a taxi (or Metro) to a hotel by Gare de Lyon; next morning take the 10:11 TGV train, arriving Cluses station at 14:49. From there it’s 25 minutes by taxi or bus.
Most Swiss villages have an abundance of charm and the ski resort of Saas Fee is no exception. This pedestrianised resort offers some of the best, yet also coldest, skiing in Europe. The landscape is stunning and the resorts tends to attract avid skiers from all over the World.
One of the best luxury chalets in Saas Fee is the ski-in, ski-out Chalet Annapurna. The chalet is offered on a fully catered basis and even includes electro-taxi journeys around the resort.
Example Paris stopover, runs everyday: Depart London St Pancras on the 17:30 Eurostar to Paris-Nord, arriving 20:47; stopover in a Paris hotel and then take the 07:57 TGV from Paris-Lyon to Lausanne, change there and take an, Intercity to arrive Visp at 13:24; from there its 50 minutes by connecting bus.
These are just a handful of the ski resorts that you can access by train. Snowcarbon and Ski In Luxury we would be more than happy to pass on which other ski resorts you can access by train and some other great tips on travelling to the Alps by train. For more information on any of the resorts or chalets in this blog you can contact us on +44 (0)1202 203650 or you can send us an email.