Despite the extensive snowsure pistes and great sunshine record Serre Chevalier isn’t very well known. It’s one of the more southerly resorts, with a good value friendly, laid-back, south-of-France atmosphere, and views of stunning glaciers and the border with Italy. It’s down-to-earth – the villages each have everything you need, plus attractive, rustic areas, but they’re not cute, chocolate-box ski resorts. It’s a great resort for families or mixed-ability groups, with several nursery slopes and a great variety of pistes for all, plus plenty to do other than skiing.
The resort has three villages and the 1200m town of Briançon, dotted along a valley, each with lifts into the ski area that ranges along its northeast-facing valley wall and peaks. Keen piste cruisers will enjoy the sense of travel and variety, and it’s fun to ski down to Briançon for the views over the historical town, with its Roman origins and UNESCO city walls.
Serre Che has a keen following amongst snowboarders – there are fun obstacles on piste, easy off-piste nearby, good funparks, and plenty of backcountry. The good-value, hearty food and drink in the villages helps too. Non-skiers will find lots to do, including a big thermal spa. One highlight is the Grotte du Glace, a 100m long ice cave filled with magnificent ice sculptures.