Wondering where to ski in the Portes du Soleil? Look no further. With 650km of interconnected ski runs across 12 resorts spanning France and the French-Swiss border, the Portes du Soleil offers an unrivaled adventure. Our concise guide will navigate you through this extraordinary circuit, ensuring an unforgettable skiing experience.
WHAT IS THE PORTES DU SOLEIL CIRCUIT?
It’s a huge loop around the Portes du Soleil ski resort. There are different variations but it incorporates some well-known resorts in France such as Châtel, Avoriaz and Morzine, as well as some quieter ones on the Swiss side. You can enjoy some of the best views of the Portes du Soleil. These include Dents du Midi mountain range and Lake Geneva. It’s best to have a look at the piste map and decide which route you would like to take. The route below takes around six or seven hours. It depends how long you stop for lunch and your number of coffee stops!
BUY A PORTES DU SOLEIL SKI PASS
You’ll need a full Portes du Soleil ski pass to have access to the whole circuit. It’s best to wait for good weather conditions as this will give you the best views. Also, you don’t want to get stuck due to bad weather. If the wind picks up and the chairlifts close, you could be a long way from home. Choose a bluebird day and get the first lift. Be sure that everyone in your group is comfortable on different kinds of lifts and runs. You’ll encounter blues, reds and flats along with button lifts and T-bars so bear this in mind and be prepared!
The full Portes du Soleil ski pass covers: Avoriaz, Les Gets, Châtel, Champery, Les Crosets, Morgins and Champoussin. The circuit can take in all of these areas on around 65 kms of adventure. Starting points include: Prodains, Super Châtel or Ardent – head for the Chaux Fleurie chairlift in the picturesque village of Linderets (the goat village).
PLAN YOUR ROUTE
Once down Chaux Fleurie make your way over to Plaine Dranse (home to the little chapel) and look for the Chaux des Rosèes lift and ski to Les Combes.
DISCOVER THE 12 RESORTS IN PORTES DU SOLEIL
You can enjoy some wide blues and there’s a red run called Linga that can be great fun. It’s sometimes icy though, there is a blue that goes around the outside which is slightly easier. Look out for a little mountain restaurant called La Ferme des Pistes.
It has a beautiful, cosy interior with an amazing fire and makes the perfect pitstop. Next up, keep a look out for the Gabelou chairlift. This takes you up and over the mountain and then look for the Portes du Soleil chairlift to the Super Châtel area. You’ll then need to find the Coqs drag lift and head for the Morclan chairlift.
From here, look for Torgon signs and follow the drag lifts. The advantage of Torgon is it’s generally a great place to escape the busy crowds during the peak season. There are some spectacular views. On a clear day you can admire views of Lake Geneva. If the snow is good and time is on your side, you can ski down to Chapelle D’Abondance. This is one of the furthest points you can reach from Morzine and Avoriaz. While in the area, look out for La Bourri restaurant, one of the best restaurants in Torgon. It serves excellent, traditional cuisine and has an authentic feel and warm Swiss atmosphere.
Next you can head to Morgins, a charming Swiss village next to Châtel. There are lots of drag lifts so just keep following the signs to Morgins. (It’s not worth going to Morgins if the snow isn’t great so double-check this before setting off.) There are some lovely red and blues runs to try out. You can also stop for a coffee or a bite to eat in Morgins. We like Chalet Neuf which you may spot while on one of the long drag lifts. Keep a look out for the stunning views of the Dents du Midi mountain range. In Morgins, walk across the road and take the Foilleuse chairlift and ski down to the Bochasses chairlift.
Les Lindarets, France
At the top of the Bochasses lift, you can ski along the blue to the Aiguille des Champeys chairlift which leads to the Pointe de L’Au. Head for Les Crosets next and you can either aim for the Mossettes chairlift and ski to Lindarets or aim for the Grand Conche chairlift and head for Avoriaz. Lindarets has some lovely restaurants to choose from, look out for Le Chaudron for traditional food served by friendly staff in a perfect setting.
If you are looking for somewhere to stay, discover Chalet la Fontaine in Châtel, France. The perfect place to explore the vast Portes du Soleil.