The largest resort within ‘The Three Valleys’, which is renowned for some of the best skiing in Europe.
Courchevel is situated right in the heart of the Three Valleys skiing domain, also known as Les Trois Vallees. This is one of the largest skiing territories in France, offering 600kms of purpose made skiing pistes, as well masses of off-piste terrain.
Corchevel is actually a group of villages spread out over four different altitudes: Courchevel (Le Praz) 1300, Courchevel 1550, Courchevel (Moriond) 1650 and Courchevel 1850. Each location is unique and comes with its own style and merits. Whichever location you choose, you can easily get around all 4 levels thanks to the free shuttle bus which links them all together.
This is the largest of the 4 villages, which sits on a large flat ledge of the mountainside – making it very easy to get about. It is probably the prettiest level – a real working Alpine village, with very few modern buildings. Over 2,000 residents live here and as a result, it has a strong community feel to it with some traditional village shops in its centre. The evenings have a busy social scene, with some great bars and restaurants to choose from.
This is the quietest of all 4 villages with a more relaxed feel to it than its higher neighbours. With reasonably priced accommodation and eateries, this level tends to be more popular with families and groups looking for better value. However, this location does offer great access to the upper slopes, with a high speed gondola taking you up to Chorchevel 1850.
Despite being just a 5 minute bus ride away from Courchevel 1850, Courchevel 1650 is a much quieter resort and offers better value for money. It has some great ski runs, plus a busy village centre with great shops, restaurants and bars for the evenings.
This level is well known as the up market location within Courchevel. It tends to be more expensive than its lower level neighbours, with some of the most luxurious accommodation – most offering the ski in / ski out facility. The nightlife in Courchevel 1850 is buzzing with a huge range of bars, restaurants and nightspots.
Skiing In Courchevel
The skiing area immediately surrounding the Courchevel area is hard to beat and offers ideal terrain for all ability levels. For those who want to venture further out, Courchevel offers brilliant access to the Three Valleys and 600km of pisted area.
Courchevel has a set of ‘Zen Zones’, also called ‘Beginner Improvement Zones’ which are located in 1850, 1650 and 1300. These pistes were especially designed for learner skiers and those less confident on the snow. Here, novice skiers will find gentle slopes that are well maintained and perfect for practising on. They will also find lifts which are much easier to access.
This level of skier will find an endless number of pistes to keep them occupied. Newer skiers may wish to ski locally and practice on the many blue and red runs around the resort of Courchevel. The more adventurous will be ready to head further afield and link up with the pistes within the Three Valleys skiing area.
More advanced skiers will want to spend most of their time out on the Three Valleys skiing territory where they can ski amongst stunning scenery – from the Mont Blanc massif in the north to the Les Ecrins massif in the south. It is here that the more experienced skier can also enjoy some fantastic off piste skiing.
If you prefer snow parks, try the snow park at Le Plantrey. Here you will find a baby pipe and a range of modules for practising fun jumps. Alternatively, try the canyons and dunes at Les Verdons for a wide range of jumps and turns on the slope. Mogul fans can also spend some time on the Hoops at Biolley.
On each level of Courchevel you will find a cafe, bar, or late night club to suit everyone. However, if it is the trendiest and busiest hot-spots you are after, head for the top of the mountain at Courchevel 1850.
You are truly spoilt for choice in Courchevel, with each level offering an excellent selection of restaurants. However, if it is the ultimate Alpine gourmet experience you are looking for, ‘Le Bateau Ivre’ is often reviewed as one of the finest in the French Alps.
Courchevel offers a lot of non-skiing activities from ice-skating, bowling, tobogganing and skidooing. Those with a bit more nerve can try ice climbing or hang-gliding – all available within the resort.
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