For a taste of skiing in unspoilt France, try Val Cenis

28th February 2014, by Abi Butcher

Lanslevillard, Val Cenis, in the unspoiled Haute Maurienne valley

Lanslevillard, Val Cenis, in the unspoiled Haute Maurienne valley

This spring, Peak Retreats is encouraging families to venture to the unspoilt French ski resort of Val Cenis, with some tempting offers on lift passes for both adults and children.

Val Cenis comprises two mountain villages, Lanslebourg and Lanslevillard, in the unspoiled Haute Maurienne valley. The fair-sized ski area packs a lot of variety — and with a wide range of comfortable apartments, many of them conveniently placed at the foot of the slopes, this good-value resort is a top choice for families.

Though modest compared to the neighbouring Three Valleys, Val Cenis Vanoise ski area is the largest in the Haute Maurienne with 125km of slopes. Nearly half of these are gentle greens and blues, conveniently placed between Lanslebourg and Lanslevillard and perfect for children taking their first turns. The Ecole du Ski Français runs a ski and snowboard school in Val Cenis with 120 instructors for all abilities and ages — and there is the longest green in Europe, the 10km L’Escargot, for newcomers to enjoy.

For intermediates, the terrain is varied, with 42% of the pistes marked as reds — with plenty of the picturesque tree skiing we all love. There are few on-piste challenges for the more adventurous, but there is a lot to do off-piste — and snowboarders are well served with two terrain-parks.

Though the villages are not chocolate-box pretty, they are traditional and offer plenty of off-piste activities for families. The Centre des Glieres in Lanslevillard has an ice rink, swimming pool and whirlpool, and is great value for money. When booked through Peak Retreats, at Les Balcons du Village and Les Balcons en Haut receive free access. Alternatively, the Les Chalets de Flambeau, also available through Peak Retreats, has its own leisure facilities, including indoor swimming pool, Jacuzzis, saunas, steam rooms and fitness room.

Val Cenis also offers low prices by French standards — scoring 80 on Where to Ski and Snowboard’s Resort Price Index (RPI), with plenty of places to eat out in the villages and on the slopes.

To add to that value, Peak Retreats is offering one free adult (for ages 12 to 64 years) six-day Val Cenis lift pass worth £143 per booking in Les Chalets de Flambeau for the weeks of 29 March and 12 April. *

On top of this, Peak Retreats is offering one free child six-day lift pass worth £115 between 29 March and 20 April when two adult six-day passes are bought at least seven days in advance.

For more information, and to book accommodation, visit

Ts & Cs apply.

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