At 2100m, Tignes ski resort is one of the most reliable destinations in the French Alps in terms of abundant, good quality snow cover. With its neighbour, Val dâ€™IsÃ¨re, it comes under the banner of the renowned Espace Killy area, which encompasses a vast and diverse range of terrains to thrill intermediate and advanced skiers.
If youâ€™ve done your research and decided on Tignes ski resort for your next winter sports break, the hard part is over. But thereâ€™s still the matter of where exactly youâ€™ll choose to stay. Tignes 2100, as it is collectively known, comprises five separate villages at varying altitudes.
Val Claret (alt. 2100m)
Grand Motte casts its long shadow over Val Claret and the village is one of the three at this high altitude. If youâ€™re deadly serious about your snow sports, this is the one that will probably suit the best, giving you immediate access to three different directions of non-stop adventure: up Grand Motte, the Col Du Pallet and La Daille, in the direction of Val dâ€™IsÃ¨re. Like most of Tignes, ski-in ski-out accommodation is plentiful and thereâ€™s a fairly healthy aprÃ¨s and nightlife scene, although itâ€™s more common for hardcore revellers to jump on the free 24-hour bus to Le Lac.
Le Lac (alt. 2100m)
While thereâ€™s not officially a centre of the resort, Le Lac is the closest thing to it. Named for its picturesque lake, it offers superb access to the lifts, with most accommodation just a short walk away. Itâ€™s a little cheaper to stay than Val Claret and many of the most popular bars and restaurants are here. In terms of access to the slopes, the main lifts travel up both sides of the valley, or to Val Claret for those heading up Grand Motte. For anyone who likes to mix things up with some other activities, this village is a good choice.
Le Lavachet (alt. 2100m)
Originally one of the four quadrants of Le Lac, situated furthest from the lake, Le Lavachet is now considered its own separate village. This little hamlet is quieter and more laidback than the rest of the resort, so is ideal for those who want to ski all day and cosy up in the chalet at night. There are a few bars and restaurants, but itâ€™s certainly not party central. In terms of skiing, there are several lifts straight out of the town or you can take the bus to the other villages, depending on your choice of slopes.
Les Boisses (alt. 1800m)
A little lower down the mountain and set back from the road, Les Boisses (aka Tignes 1800) is considered the quietest place to stay. With the recent investment in renovations, itâ€™s not quite as budget beating as it used to be, but it is still on the slightly cheaper side. Despite being at lower altitude it still offers great access to the main slopes, with the Boisses gondola waiting to whizz you up the mountain to connect with the entire Espace Killy region. For aprÃ¨s there are a couple of quiet bars and restaurants, but youâ€™re better off hopping on the free 15-minute bus ride to Val Claret.
Les BrÃ©viÃ¨res (alt. 1550m)
The prettiest of all the villages, Les BrÃ©viÃ¨res is also the oldest (dating back to the thirteenth century) and still retains its Savoyard charm. In contrast to the purpose-built accommodation of the others, its charming streets are lined with traditional stone houses and quaint shops. The bubble lift takes you all the way up to the main area, and at the end of the day you can ski right back into the village along the tree-lined slopes. Picture perfect.
Wherever you choose as a base in Tignes, ski enthusiasts will find something to love about each of the distinctly different villages.
Belinda Smythson works for Ski Amis, a specialist ski travel agency and booking service that has been helping avid skiers craft their perfect winter holiday for over a quarter of a century. With a range of accommodation options in resorts such as La Plagne, Les Menuires and Tignes, ski enthusiasts looking for a holiday of a lifetime are never disappointed by the team’s expert knowledge and recommendations.
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