(1000m - 2350m)
Avoriaz is located right in the centre of the Portes du Soleil and is perched at 1800m overlooking the nearby resort of Morzine. Portes du Soleil includes pistes in both France and Switzerland and skiers have access to over 650km of slopes. If exploration and mileage are top of your list then this is the resort for you.
- Extensive area
Resort at a glance
|Ski Range||1000m - 2350m|
Avoriaz is located at 1800m and has many excellent slopes, but some of the lower ones may suffer from poor quality snow. However not all skiing is below the village. From Avoriaz three main areas can be accessed. Firstly there is the area of Chavanette which has blue and red runs and is served by a chair lift out of the village. From Chavanette you can cross the Swiss border and ski into Champery. On the way to Champery via Chavanette you can, if you feel up to it take on “The Wall”, a black run famous for its difficulty.
From Chavanette the next sector Arare-Hauts Forts can be reached either at altitude or by taking a chair lift direct from the village. Whilst there are a couple of blue runs here, a lot of the terrain is comprised of tough red and black runs, which will eventually take you down to Les Prodains. This is a great area for expert and aggressive intermediates to explore. From Les Prodains a cable car whisks you back to Avoriaz.
On the other side of Avoriaz is the Lindarets-Brocheaux area which has some gentle runs which are great for beginners to progress on to. This sector also provides access to Chatel on the Portes du Soleil circuit. From this section a number of cruisey blues also take you all the way down to the Super Morzine gondola which provides you with access to the Portes du Soleil in the other direction. You cannot ski down into Morzine itself, but the gondola down followed by a hop across town opens up the slopes of Morzine and its neighbouring resort of Les Gets.
Avoriaz has a fairly lively apres ski scene and there are quite a few bars to entertain you, with the main square being the central hub.
Live music can be found at The Place and the Wild Horse Saloon, Shooters and The Chapka are both hip and trendy, The Yeti and La Cabane are also worth trying as is The Fantastique lounge bar.
For something a little more relaxing then try Globetrotters or the Tavaillon. For a late boogie then visit Le Yak or Le Choucas for music and dancing.
If you have skied in to one of the neighbouring Portes du Soleil resorts from Avoriaz, you can also try out some of the apres ski there and take a taxi back afterwards.
There are quite a few restaurants in Avoriaz with cuisine ranging from traditional French, Savoyard, Italian and American, prices vary from value for money to top end gourmet selections.
Let’s start with the top end - the Hotel Les Dromonts has 2 restaurants - La Réserve which is a brasserie and La Table du Marché which is a trendy, upmarket restaurant but it is more on the expensive side.
Savoyard can be found at Le Bistro, Les Fontaines Blanches and Les Intrets. La Cabane, La Trappeurs and Le Douchka are more casual and all worth a visit as is Au Briska. Pizza can be found at La Falaise, La Boule de Neige with snacks at Chapka and pancakes at Le Crepy. There is also Chez Flo, L’Igloo and Chalet d'Avoriaz.
Avoriaz is not recommended for non skiers but there are a few things to do if you fancy a day off the slopes.
You can of course try the traditional winter activities such as dog sledding, tobogganing, ice skating, sleigh rides, paragliding, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. You can also take a ride in a helicopter or hot air balloon and try diving under ice if you want something a little different.
There is The Altiform Fitness Centre which has a gym, sauna, steam room and hot tubs. The Avoriaz Spa and the Espace Thalgo in the Dromonts hotel have treatments and massages on offer. If you want a change of scene then Geneva is only two hours away.
There are a few ski schools in Avoriaz offering tuition to all ages and abilities in both snowboarding and skiing.
The ESF (Ecole du Ski Francais) does group lessons starting from €185 for 6 full days with 6 half days from €124, they also offer tuition in cross country skiing, mono skiing and telemark.
There is also Evolution 2, group lessons start from €175 for 6 half days. Private lessons start from €60 for 1.5 hours and they also do freeride and telemark tuition.
The Alpine Ski School and Snowboard School is an English speaking school and has group lessons for those looking to improve starting from €145 for 3 days with 2 hours per day, beginner prices start from €165 for 4 days with 2 hours tuition per day. They also do ‘top tips’ courses for red or blue runs with 6 hours tuition over 3 days starting from €145. Private lessons start from €69 per hour, with 2 hours from €135. They also offer off piste and freestyle tuition.