I spent months debating which ski resort to spend a week at- and I’m so glad we ended up in Courchevel Moriand (or 1650), part of the largest ski area in the world! Though it has a reputation for being pricey (which it lived up to when I paid €6 for a tiny bottle of water in 1850) we stayed in a catered chalet, making it pretty affordable, and lift passes for a week were only €270 for all three valleys. I’m not sure the chalet had ever experienced a rowdy group of Americans, as it definitely catered to British package holiday bookers but it was a blast to hang out with our friends and to meet all the new people in our chalet. With a standard catered chalet, the chalet hosts cook breakfast, dinner and afternoon snacks, and you’re on your own for lunch. Ours also included unlimited wine. 😉
This was my first package holiday and I have to say I can see the appeal. The chartered flight, easy transfers and one stop shopping were great. Chambery airport however remains the worst airport I’ve ever been to. Once you’re through security there are only vending machines and a snack bar with a very long line. And they ran out of bottled water!
Courchevel itself had a good mix of blue and green slopes, with a few reds mixed in for good measure. This made it perfect for our mixed ability group which ranged from someone who hadn’t really seen snow before to people who like it steep and powdery. I fall somewhere in the middle, and thoroughly enjoyed being able to ski across all three valleys on red runs. We spent most of our time in Courchevel and Meribel, and one day ventured all the way to the farthest resort, Val Thorens, with navigational help from a couple in our chalet. It took a while to figure out the rating system, as in America red runs are non existent. They seem to be equivalent to difficult blues or easy blacks, whereas blacks in the alps are more like difficult or double blacks.
The views from the peaks were amazing and I only hit one icy patch all week- a huge change from skiing in New England. The other great thing was the lack of lift lines, there are so many lifts that I only waited once, and it was for about 5 minutes. It was a great week spent with friends and I definitely hope to ski Les 3 Vallées again soon!