Rustic French resort in heart of Portes du Soleil ski area which offers extensive, pretty, intermediate skiing
Châtel is one of the French resorts that make up the vast Portes du Soleil ski area, one of the biggest ski domains in the world, not just the Alps. The whole region boasts 650km of pistes, and there is something for all abilities. Chatel itself is a pretty, very French Alpine village rather than big tourist resort and is a good, intermediate, family-friendly destination, with plenty of blues and reds, three ESF schools and an English independent ski school too. It is surprisingly good for off-piste too, while Super-Châtel is perfect for beginners and intermediates but also has some great, uncrowded off-piste. Pré la Joux is excellent for all abilities and takes skiers up to Avoriaz, the heart of the Portes du Soleil, in 20 minutes.
Châtel is an excellent spot for non-skiers. There is a farmer’s market in town every Wednesday, a wonderful thermal spa with outdoor pools and treatments at Lavey Les Bains, a day trip away, plus the charming medieval village of Yvoire nearby which has lots of arty shops. Non-skiing guests can even spend the day shopping in Geneva or else try out any number of alternative snowy activities such as cross-country skiing, snow-shoeing or husky rides down in La Chapelle. There is even ice skating at the top of the village or cheese farm tours.