THINKING of planning a ski trip for the first time? The experts at Crystal Ski Holidays have put together their top five resorts for beginners to help you on your way.

These snow-capped spots are ideal for any age as each of the five destinations in Andorra, Austria, France and Slovenia offer quality tuition and can-do slopes.

Choosing the right resort as a beginner is vital – slopes close to a centre with easy-to-use lifts and some blue runs are a great place to start.

You should also choose a place that has plenty of amenities, such as snowmobiling, ice skating or simply a swimming pool and sauna to allow you to take a day off.

Arinsal in the tiny principality of Andorra has been a firm favourite with Irish holiday-makers for decades.

It is great value for money and boasts one of Europe’s best ski schools. This is a fantastic place for first-time skiers, with plenty of wide open slopes, and the resort links to Pal and Arcalis for a wider choice of runs.

(Best price: Depart January 14, stay at the 2-star Hotel Arinsal on a B&B basis for seven nights, from €427pp based on two adults sharing.)

Niederau, Austria is another picture postcard ski resort. Complete with plenty of nursery slopes, it’s the perfect resort for beginners.

Its ski school is well-known as one of Austria’s best and Crystal’s Pepi Penguin Childcare is ideal if you are travelling with kids. There are plenty of activities like tobogganing and sleigh rides for all the family to enjoy too.

(Best price: Depart 17 March, stay at the 3-star Hotel-Pension Hannes, on a half-board basis, for seven nights, from €633pp based on two adults sharing).

Alpe d’Huez in France (nicknamed the ‘Island in the Sun’ for its 300+ days of sunshine) offers access to one of Europe’s largest ski areas and has slopes to suit all levels.

There are lots of nursery slopes for beginners and easy blue and green runs close to the resort centre. There are plenty of choices for those who want a break from skiing, with a large apres ski scene, an outdoor swimming pool and an ice skating rink.

(Best price: Depart 13 January, stay at the 3-star Les Melezes Apartments, on a self-catering basis, for seven nights, from €552pp based on two adults sharing.)

La Plagne, France, is another excellent choice for first-time skiers. The mix of nursery slopes, an excellent ski school and a 425km ski area has made it one of France’s most popular ski resorts. Made up of various villages, La Plagne offers something for everyone.
(Best price: Depart 13 January, stay at the three-star Constellations Apartments, Belle Plagne, on a self-catering basis, for seven nights, from €518pp based on two adults sharing.)

Kranjska Gora, Slovenia, is another beginner-friendly resort. This small resort has an excellent ski school and plenty of nursery slopes.
Although a small village, it offers a good apres ski scene and plenty of accommodation choices from traditional Slovenian pensions to top-class hotels with spa facilities.

(Best price: Depart 13 January, stay at the four-star Hotel Kompas, on a half-board basis, for seven nights, from €546pp based on two adults sharing.)

 

All prices quoted are from Crystal Ski
Holidays. To book, call 01 433 1080,
visit www.crystalski.ie, or contact
your local travel agent.

Kranjska Gora, Slovenia