is a small, typically French ski resort on the edge of
the ‘Forêt Blanche’ ski area comprising
five small valleys high up on the edge of the Queyras National
Park, between Briancon and Gap. The ski station is at 1850m
and enjoys an enviable snow record as well as lots of sunshine.
There are 180km of pistes from 1650m to 2750m and each
of the five valleys has a different character providing ‘new’ discoveries
every time you return. This year we had thigh deep snow
off piste and beautifully groomed easy snow on piste. Anyone
can ski when the snow is this good! I specialise in guiding
groups and finding hidden corners of the mountain, which
would take you years to discover.
Our chalet Joie de Vivre in Risoul
sleeps 20 in 8 bedrooms with 3 bathrooms and is on the
edge of the piste and only
150m from the village centre. As the pictures show the chalet
provides a comfortable and relaxed base to enjoy this resort
with its lively bars and numerous places to eat. The chalet
is fully catered using our popular experienced, entertaining
chef – me! On two nights, the first and last we visit
a local restaurant, ‘Les Ecureuils’, where you
can enjoy steaks, pizzas, ‘tartiflette’ or ‘pierrades’.
Self-catering is available if you prefer and the village
has numerous take-away options.(
Vars is the much bigger resort centre
with lots of hotels, apartments and shops. All the lifts
radiate from the centre
of the village including a fast bubble up to the ‘Flying
Kilometre’ and the snowboard areas, which were used
for the 2003 Nokia World Cup Competitions. Great fun even
In Vars we use the 2 star Hotel ‘Les Escondus’ www.hotel-les-escondus.com
in Vars Les Claux. Les Escondus is in the resort centre just
adjacent to all the lifts and boasts a lively ‘piano
bar’, games room with pool. The village centre is nearby
and has a Fitness Centre with sauna and massage options.
For those that don’t want to ski or just to ski a
little the area has several mountain refuges and cafés
some of which can be reached on ‘racquettes’ (snowshoes).
There are a number of easy cross-country forest trails and
we can arrange husky dog expeditions or ‘randonnées’ on
snowmobiles. Some just like to soak in the sunshine and relax
looking at the views across the Alps.