The best places in Europe to ski: mountain ranges & countries
For many, the arrival of the European winter means one thing: that ski season is here! But, where exactly are the best places in Europe to ski? Is there a unanimous best ski destination in Europe? In this guide to the best ski areas in Europe, you can read up on the different mountain ranges and countries worth considering and why different types of skiers might have different preferences.
Which country has the best European skiing?
First of all, it should be stated that you’re already off to a good start if you’re looking for the best ski destinations in Europe, because this continent is the king of winter sports. Then, it’s simply a matter of which kinds of mountain ranges you prefer, which countries have a culture you appreciate and which ski resorts are the easiest for you to get to.
In this list of best ski places in Europe, four mountain ranges in four different countries are discussed. By visiting any of these sites, you’ll be sure to have a memorable winter sports experience.
Best ski places in Europe: The Pyrenees of Andorra
The Pyrenees mountain range will always feature high on any list of the best ski destinations in Europe, and no wonder. Not only are some of the best ski slopes located in the Pyrenees, but the scenery and the panoramic views of this part of the world are special too, particularly in the Andorran part of the Pyrenees. For example, the viewpoint-sundial located on the peak of Peyreguils is a must if visiting Andorra.
With Andorra Pyrenees skiing, there are many top-quality ski resorts packed into a small area, in this tiny country of only 468 square kilometres. Andorra is considered one of the best European skiing locations because many of its slopes open early and stay open late, providing flexibility. The terrain also provides flexibility as many different disciplines of skiing and even snowboarding can be practiced here, with Andorra often referred to as being a paradise for skiing freeriders due to its off-slope skiing.
Best ski places in Europe: The Pyrenees of Spain
The Pyrenees stretch well beyond the microstate of Andorra, with the snowy peaks reaching out across France and Spain too. In terms of the Spanish slopes in the Pyrenees, there are some impressive valleys to the east of Andorra, with the Aran and Àneu Valleys in Lleida among the most famous.
Another famous ski spot in the Spanish Pyrenees is actually called Alp, though that’s not to be confused with the mountain range of the same name. There are also some impressive ski valleys in the High Aragon part of the western Pyrenees, where the awesome mountain of Aneto, the Pyrenees’ highest peak, is located.
Best ski places in Europe: The Alps of Switzerland
As the highest and most sprawling mountain range of the continent, the Alps are also one of the best ski areas. Europe wouldn’t be what it is without the Alps, as this mountain range covers parts of seven different countries, namely France, Switzerland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany and Slovenia.
Regular skiers of the Alps will each have their own preferences for the best zone, but many agree that the Swiss Alps come out on top as this is where the largest amount of snowfall is located. That is, though, reflected in the more expensive price of Swiss ski resorts.
Best ski places in Europe: Finland’s Arctic Lapland
Of all the best places in Europe to ski, few of the most-mentioned are located in Scandinavia. Perhaps it’s because this part of the world is more difficult to get to, but the northern location means that there is a lot of snowfall, good quality snowfall and, most importantly, earlier and later snowfall. That is certainly the case in Lapland in Finland, meaning the resorts there may open early and even stay open until the middle of the typical European summer.
Still, whichever of these European ski mountains or countries you opt for, all are capable of producing the holiday of a lifetime.