Monday, December 12, 2011

My Favorite Places to Ski & Snowboard Around the World

Sure, I love lounging on a white-sand beach, but nothing beats the feeling of cold wind on my face as I swoosh downhill, waves of powder snow parting like feathers, blue mountain sky beaming above, and of course, the spectacular scenery that surrounds you when you’re on top of a ski slope. And some of my most memorable vacations have been skiing or snowboarding in the midst of the majestic mountains, where the hills truly are alive with snow ... lots and lots of snow.
This picture-perfect postcard town about 2 hours west of Geneva is as charming a ski resort as you're likely to find. There is a wonderful selection of shops selling traditional goods and local delicacies, 5-star quality lodging and restaurants. My favorites are le Torrent, where I had the most perfect scallop dish, and Sous les Pres, a charming little hut on top of the Alpette that served up the most incredible selection of meat dishes.

Also, Hotel les Aravis, located within a walking distance from one of the main lifts, Princess is an absolutely charming hotel, and as the runs are not too difficult and wide, it makes Megeve an ideal destination for moderate skiers and snowboarders.

ASPEN, Colorado
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Colorado Rockies are filled with great ski resorts, Beaver Creek, Vail, Steamboat, Telluride, and of course, the grand daddy of them all, Aspen. While the city is famous for its glitz and glamor, the skiing is also some of the finest in the North America and offers everything that one can hope for in a ski resort.

Also, there are 3 other major ski resorts all within the same area, Snowmass, Buttermilk and Aspen Highlands, and a great shuttle/public transportation provides an easy access to all four mountains.

ZERMATT, Switzerland
Zermatt, a small village at the base of the Matterhorn, is one of the world's top ski resorts and is known as one of the most challenging places to ski in Europe. Due to its remote location and car-free environment, this bustling town which is filled with tens of thousands of tourists in any given day is remarkably peaceful.

Although the price of the lodging as well as the limited amount of mediocre restaurants in town are highly inflated, the skiing is absolutely superb, and nothing beats the feeling of starting your day on Swiss Alps, crossing the boarder on skis to Italy for lunch and returning to Switzerland for après ski.

LAKE TAHOE, California
The slopes and terrain in Lake Tahoe, Heavenly and Squaw Valley are world-class, coupled with stunning views of the lake and the mild Northern California weather. The skiing is also fantastic with large areas of widely spaced trees and fabulous fresh powdered snow.

Lake Tahoe is also great because being near San Francisco and the Bay area, it will give you a lot of options for sightseeing and other adventures. The only downside is that the hotels, condo, and vacation homes in California tend to be bit pricier than other ski resorts. Nevertheless, the skiing and snowboarding in Lake Tahoe is spectacular … the scenery alone is worth the trip.

Salzburg, Austria
The Sound of Music city and Mozart's birthplace, Salzburg is a ski destination with a difference, combining history with culture and the best of a city break, while the surrounding ski resorts, such as Zell am See, Kitzbühel, OBERTAUERN, Gastein Valley, Leogang and Schladming, provide the perfect opportunity to ski.

TAOS, New Mexico
photo courtesy of

I learned to ski in Taos, New Mexico. When my father told me that we were going to New Mexico to ski, my first thought was, “We’re going to ski in the desert?!?” Little did I know, Taos, New Mexico turned out to be one of the loveliest places I’ve ever been.

Located in the Southern Rockies of North Central New Mexico, Taos combines the lore of the European Alps with the charm and beauty of the Southwest.

A combination of world renowned terrain, amazing food, and friendly people makes Taos one of the best kept secret ski resorts in the US. Also, the cost of the lift tickets, ski rentals as well as lodging are fraction of what they are at the more well-known ski destinations, and the scenic Town of Taos, located just 15 miles down the road, is a vacation destination in its own right, including an 800 year old Native American Pueblo.

lovely little inn located beneath the Wolfsthurn Castle (Schloss Castel Wolfsthurn)
Known as the "Pearl of the Alps" and Bolzano is one of the most famous holiday resorts in the Austrian Tyrol, and Vipiteno is a charming little ski village located about an hour north. This 700-year-old village offers visitors the charm of an alpine village and a world-class on-piste terrain; thus, it’s the perfect combination of peaceful mountain charm and exhilarating skiing opportunities.
My next ski destinations:
  • PYEONGCHANG, South Korea
  • WHISTLER, Canada
  • JACKSONHOLE, Wyoming
Also, check out National Geographic's top 10 ski resorts around the world.

1 comment:

  1. really an awesome lanscape indeed..beautifull resort