A seductive resort nestled under the highest mountain in Europe, Mont Blanc
This beautiful ski resort is perched under magnificent Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Europe. The locals are friendly, the skiing and snowfalls abundant and the nightlife lively. Bordered by France on the western side of the Valle O'Aosta, Courmayeur's French ambience and Italian charm is world famous. Intermediate skiers will appreciate the wide-open slopes and beautiful vistas. There are limited runs for advanced skiers in Courmayeur. Three of the four black runs dropping into Val Veny are fairly short by European standard. The same cannot be said of the off-piste, as many days-trippers from Chamonix will testify to. Advanced skiers will find the views across to the massif simply awe-inspiring, with three cable cars servicing the ski area on the Italian side of Mont Blanc, all of which is off-piste and forbidden territory without a guide.
The descents available here include an alternative route down the Vallée Blanche, 24 kilometres long, or explore the off-piste from the Punta Helbronner 462 metres high all the way down to Chamonix, and test the descents down the side of the Toula glacier. When there are good conditions on the Mont Blanc flank, the terrain here is magnificent. It is steep, sometimes treacherous, always testing and there is the added psychological edge of knowing you're skiing on the side of the highest mountain in western Europe. Every square inch of terrain in Courmayeur that is open to skiers is open to snowboarders. In 2005/2006 a snow park and boardercross area was built.
In this traditional village, Courmayeur's narrow cobble stone streets hide a selection of smart shops, cosy bars, and fabulous restaurants that serve traditional Italian cuisine. Try Le Tunnel for its massive pizzas and pasta, Pierre Alexis for their excellent Italian cuisine, Piazzetta for pasta and seafood and visit the Vieux Pommier with its old apple tree, for some local specialities. For a more lively atmosphere visit Cocktails at the American Bar or the Guides Bar with its cosy log fire. There is also dancing on the tables at Poppy's Disco pub and Jimmy's in the Hotel Astoria. Other activities include an indoor ice rink, curling, a fitness centre, heli-skiing (which is some of the best in Europe), a swimming pool (in next village), cross-country skiing, ski touring and snowshoe walking.
|Altitude of resort:||1225 metres|
|Top elevation:||2755 metres|
|Largest vertical drop:||1530 metres|
|Total length of slopes:||100 kilometres|
|Longest run:||5 kilometers|
|Cross country trails||35 kilometres|
|Number of lifts:||30|