Skiing fanatic? Then you will already be familiar with the legendary Les Trois Vallées region in the stunning Tarentaise Valley in the French Alps – but did you know that Méribel Mottaret is the best place to stay to explore the world’s largest skiing area?
This magnificent resort is brilliantly situated right in the heart of Les Trois Vallées, so each day it is incredibly easy to get around and find all the best action (both on and off the slopes!). Les Trois Vallées boasts over 600km of superb skiing within epic natural surroundings, so any skiing enthusiast simply must make the trip to this outstanding integrated area.
Read up on Les Trois Vallées with this handy ski area profile!
On Your Doorstep
Found at a dizzying 1700m (one of the highest resorts in The Alps), you are guaranteed great snow coverage here – not to mention the incredible views! The area is sometimes considered a part of Méribel, but Mottaret is a satellite resort found three kilometres higher up the valley. The fantastic lift facilities make it simple to access the entire Les Trois Vallées region – this means that you really are spoilt for choice each morning at Méribel Mottaret.
Mottaret mainly offers ski-in, ski-out accommodation, so you can directly access the pistes and getting back to your accommodation is not too much of a chore after an exhilarating day of shredding powder.
The satellite village is divided into two separate areas which both feature accommodation and pistes at your fingertips:
Le Laitlet – The larger area to the west, which extends from 1700m to 1800m. A free cable car provides access to all residences from 08:45 to 19:30 each day, so you can ski for free in this area. There are many hotels at the base and a few residences at the top.
Le Chatelet – Le Chatelet benefits from maximum sunshine throughout the day due to its easterly position. An external lift easily connects the lower and upper areas (several residences are found near the top looking down on the village centre).
Around the village there are also a handful of cool bars, clubs and pubs, so you do not have to venture far to find a party that lasts till the early hours! There is also a cinema, tourist office, restaurants, supermarkets and various other shops.
Choose Your Lift Pass
There are excellent lift facilities and a number of different pass options for you to consider. The majority opt for a Trois Vallées pass (half day through to 14 days available) as this covers Mottaret, Méribel, Courchevel and Val Thorens. A six-day pass will set you back €260.10, but the incredible skiing opportunities will make this a worthwhile investment for avid skiers.
Tip: If you are visiting around the beginning or end of the season, you may find that discounts are available on these passes.
If the weather is not looking great or you simply fancy sticking around the Méribel area, a six-day pass costs €239. This can be upgraded to a Trois Vallées pass for one day at a rate of €33.
The nearest pass office can be found at Méribel village, but there are others at La Chaudanne, Le Rond Point and Altiport.
Les Trois Vallées is Your Oyster
In the very likely case that you purchase a pass for the entire region, you will be amazed at the skiing opportunities and how easy it can be to get around. In fact, it is quicker to reach the awesome Courchevel valley from Méribel Mottaret than it is from any of the Courchevel resorts!
Here are a few essential pistes that are sure to get your blood pumping:
- Folires (above La Tania) – Many people bestow this as the best piste in the entire Three Valleys and it is easy to see why. Starting in the forest near the ridge between Courchevel le Praz and Méribel Village, this tree-lined run offers incredible views and beautiful scenery as you are tearing through the run. You pick up speed immediately with a steep gradient, before plenty of twists and turns through the forest – be warned, this is only for confident intermediates and advanced skiers.
- Comb de Vallon (down the side of Mont Vallon) – Beneath the Mont Vallon gondola you will find this excellent wide, open red which sees you reach top speed very quickly due to its steep gradient. It is also usually very quiet, enabling you to carve over the snow at high speeds with only the amazing views as a distraction.
- Saulire (top of the cable car to the bottom of Méribel Village) – This is actually a string of pistes that has a few different routes, so be sure to consult a map and follow the signs. This epic run allows you to pick up blistering speed over the sweeping slopes as you drop down towards Méribel – take a right near the top of the Dent de Burgin chair where you can then zip through the trees at Altiport. Next comes the steep slopes into Méribel Village, where you can pause for a well-deserved pint at Lodge du Village.
With over 600km and 330 slopes to choose from, it will not be too hard to find challenging and thrilling action each day. Because of this great variety, you are likely to develop your skills and confidence after a few days.
Check out this guide to the best skiing in the region for even more insider tips.
How to Get to Méribel Mottaret
You will find yourself shredding the slopes within no time at all after jetting off from the UK. The quickest route is to fly into Chambéry (CMF), which is just an hour and 40-minute flight from London. This flight is made 8 times a week and return tickets could cost you just £110.
An inexpensive and fast way to reach Méribel Mottaret from the airport is to pre-book a private or shared Shuttle Direct transfer. This will take an hour and 20 minutes and you can simply sit back and enjoy the ride. If you let them know at the time of booking, they will also transport your ski gear for no additional fee.
Where to Stay:
Hotel Les Arolles – This affordable ski-in, ski-out accommodation is rated one of the best locations in Méribel and provides quick access to the slopes. It also offers a heated swimming pool, a sauna, sun terrace and two restaurants. Wi-Fi is free of charge and available in all public areas. This place has everything you need at reasonable prices and is found in a brilliant spot.
Residence Plein Soleil II – A holiday home that is perfect for crashing after a huge day of skiing and partying, this property is conveniently located only 100 yards from the Chalets Ski Lift and 200 yards from Aigle and Arolles ski lifts. You can save money by cooking your own food in the kitchen (complete with dishwasher!), plus there is a balcony and lounge with TV for chilling out. Wi-Fi is free and available in all areas.
Résidence Mont Vallon – With ski-to-door access and the local shops and restaurants a 350-yard stroll away, Résidence Mont Vallon benefits from a great location and low prices. All units have a kitchenette, dining area, private bathroom, balcony and lounge section with a TV. You can easily stay connected and upload your photos thanks to the free to use Wi-Fi throughout the studio apartment.
About Shuttle Direct:
Booking onwards travel from the airport to your hotel? Shuttle Direct is Europe’s leading transfer provider offering an efficient, comfortable and affordable service between airports, hotels, train stations and cruise ports throughout the continent.
They have extensive experience in winter ski transfers throughout the Alps and can accommodate all group sizes and budgets.
Book your private or shared transfer today and a friendly local driver will be waiting at the airport for you.