With winter upon us, many of you are probably thinking about planning your ski trips for the season. But with so many awesome ski resorts around the world, it’s hard to decide where to go.
With this in mind, we’ve created a list of the top 12 best ski resorts for female travelers. We picked each resort on our list based on accessibility, lodging, restaurants, safety and the quality of the ski terrain. Bring on the powder!
1) Palisades Tahoe, California
Located in Olympic Valley, California, Palisades Tahoe Resort is one of the largest ski areas in the United States and was the host site of the entire 1960 Winter Olympics.
Palisades Tahoe is the perfect destination for ladies looking to fine-tune their skills as this mountain offers beginning and advanced snowboard parks, perfect for learning how to jump jumps or learning how to ride boxes and rails. And during the spring season, the pool at midway is open, so you can enjoy cocktails poolside at the bar, surrounded by snow!
Lake Tahoe is also an incredible place with great restaurants in Truckee and Tahoe City and is easily accessible by car from anywhere in Central or Northern California. If you are in Southern California or anywhere else in the United States you can fly into Reno Airport, rent a car and then it’s an easy 45 minute drive up to Lake Tahoe.
Where to Stay at Lake Tahoe
2) Saalbach, Austria
The Skicircus Saalbach-Hinterglemm/Leogang is a magical ring of 2,000m peaks and is one of the biggest ski areas in the Austrian Alps with 167 miles of slopes, accessed by 70 lifts. It boasts one of the most sophisticated lift systems in Austria and is perfect for beginning, intermediate and advanced skiers.
There are 86 miles of green, 69 miles of blue, and 12 miles of black slopes making up one of the most diverse and best ski areas in the Alps.
Where To Stay In Salbaach
Our favourite place to stay in the Salbaach area is the Hotel Forsthofalm where we hosted our Austrian Alps Ski Retreat. The hotel is an eco friendly ski-in, ski-out resort right on the slopes. The owner lives on site and will ensure that your stay is simply perfect. We loved that this resort combined luxury with eco-travel and we wouldn’t hesitate to go back!
3) Queenstown, New Zealand
Queenstown is the perfect adventure lovers ski and snowboard destination! The mountain is easy to reach and just 20 minutes from town making it great for girls who want to ski or snowboard, without the hassle of a long trek to the mountain.
If you get tired of the slopes, there is plenty of adrenaline-fuelled activities off the mountain, including white water rafting, bungee jumping and jetboat rides. Time your trip to coincide with the annual Queenstown Winter Festival in June, this is a fun 3-day event that takes place around the city with a variety of parades.
Where To Stay In Queenstown
You can either stay in town or you can pick a resort that is closer to the mountain. I personally stayed in town and drove up to the mountain to ski, many locals who live in the city do it this way but if you plan to ski a lot it might be worth selecting a resort closer to the mountain.
The Heritage Queenstown is a lovely luxury option that offers stunning views of Lake Wakatipu and is decorated in traditional alpine style, the resort is just a 5 minute drive from the town centre.
4) Zermatt, Switzerland
Zermatt, Switzerland is set with incredible views of the Matterhorn and is a great resort for an experienced skier. Narrow cattle runs challenge your skills and abilities, and you will find fewer snowboarders on the slopes.
As one of the more expensive ski options, be prepared to spend more getting here and whilst at the resort which is oriented to luxury travellers. This is the perfect choice for a luxury girl’s ski trip and I highly suggest visiting at New Year when there are fun parties all over the town and everyone takes to the streets to celebrate at midnight!
Where To Stay In Zermatt
In Zermatt, I suggest being as close as possible to one of the lifts or the main town when selecting a resort or cabin to stay at, and if you can get a ski-in, ski-out resort even better!
The town center has lots of lovely shops and restaurants so being close to them is a must in my opinion. The CERVO Mountain Boutique Resort is a great choice for a girl’s getaway ski trip, with a beautiful terrace overlooking the mountains where you can enjoy hot wine whilst wrapped in a cosy blanket.
5) Meribel, France
The French Alps are a British ski and snowboard favourite. Of the several resort options here, Meribel is a great choice if you are looking for a fun ski resort where you can party after a day on the slopes in Troise Vallees.
Where to Stay In Meribel
There are plenty of resorts and cabins to choose from in Meribel, so we suggest exploring Booking.com to find something that will suit your group. One of our favourite luxury options is the Maeva Particuliers Résidence.
The resort is modern, with rooms that the resort that are tastefully decorated. There is a beautiful spa and pool, with hot tubs, a Turkish bath and a sauna. The ski lifts are just 550 yards from the property.
6) Park City, Utah
Plan your trip to Park City at the time of the Sundance Film Festival. During this time the city is alive with activity, so you can spend your days on the wide-open slopes (perfect for beginners), and your evenings at the movies and after-parties that are happening all over town.
Where to Stay In Park City
My favourite place to stay is the Westgate Park City Resort which is a 5-minute walk to the lifts! There are great amenities at the hotel, including help with bringing your skis over to the lift (even though its so close), large heated pools and hot tubs and huge suites so that you can share rooms with a group of friends.
7) Northstar, Lake Tahoe, California
Set in beautiful Lake Tahoe, on the border of California and Nevada, Northstar offers a vast array of green and blue runs making this the perfect resort if you are just learning how to ski or snowboard. This is also a great place for a family vacation because in addition to easy runs they also have an awesome ski school!
Where to Stay In Lake Tahoe
Steps from the Gondola, or nestled away in the woods – Lodging at Northstar offers an array of lodging options at the base of the mountain.
8) Mammoth Mountain, California
Just a five-hour drive from LA, Mammoth Mountain is one of the most accessible mountains in California, making it easy to hop in the car with your girlfriends and go for a long weekend getaway. This massive resort offers 2,500 acres of skiable terrain with 28 lifts, as well as tons of affordable ski chalet options.
Where to Stay In Mammoth Lakes
Located in Mammoth Lakes town center, Cinnamon Bear Inn is a cute B&B is just 1 mile away from Mammoth Mountain Ski Area. It features an on-site hot tub, ski storage and serves a full daily breakfast.
9) Courchevel, France
Courchevel 1850, in the French Alps, is the ultimate luxury ski destination! Europeans know how to do Après-ski right and Courchevel does it the best, offering extravagant lunch parties, five-star resorts and world-class dining options.
But it’s not all about the partying here. The French Alps offer extraordinary skiing. This is the perfect destination for a fun ski weekend with your girlfriends.
Where to Stay In Courchevel
If you are on a budget, stay at Hotel Les Flocons in 1550. (1850, 1650 and 1550 are the main areas and refer to the altitude of each little town). Built in 1977, Les Flocons was one of the original Courchevel hotels and has remained in the family since. It is a cute, clean and charming little chalet, conveniently located at the base of the main gondola, connecting you – in a few short minutes – to all the luxuries Courchevel 1850 has to offer.
If you prefer luxury accommodations, stay in Courchevel 1850. There are many exquisite hotels but La Sivoliere offers a nice ski-in, ski-out option.
10) Vail, Colorado
Vail sets the standard for ski resorts in North America. Established more than 50 years ago, Vail offers world-famous skiing, and five-star accommodations, attracting celebrities from around the globe. Vail is the perfect trendy town to enjoy a luxury ski trip with your girlfriends!
Where to Stay In Vail
Offering spa services and an onsite restaurant, Grand Hyatt Vail is located in an excellent location in Vail and is just a 5-minute drive from Vail Village and Lionshead Village.
11) Sun Valley, Idaho
Sun Valley is a resort town in Idaho known for its cute, upscale town and its resorts, Bald Mountain and nearby Dollar Mountain. Bald Mountain is a more advanced mountain better for intermediate and advanced skiers and Dollar Mountain is offers gentler slopes and a great ski school for kids.
The main town in Sun Valley is Ketchum and both resorts are just a few minutes from the downtown area which offers an array of high-end restaurants, bars and shops. Sun Valley is also very accessible from most places in the US. You can fly in Friedman Memorial Airport and then its a short, flat, easy drive to Ketchum.
Where to Stay in Snow Valley
11) Saint Anton am Arlberg, Austrian Alps
St. Anton is an Austrian village in the Tyrol region of the Alps. It’s known as a gateway to the Arlberg ski region and is often called the “cradle of alpine skiing” for its role in inventing the sport. St. Anton is breathtakingly gorgeous and is a great spot for intermediate or advanced skiers but the terrain can be quite difficult so it’s not recommended for beginners.
The village is also known for its lively après-ski scene! I stayed here with one of my girlfriends for a long weekend and we had the best time. The village also felt very safe for female travelers on their own.
Where to Stay in St. Anton
What To Bring With You On A Ski Trip
Now that you know our top 10 favourite ski trip destinations for female travellers you will want to start booking your trip! Make sure to plan well in advance and use our ski trip packing guide for a list of all the essential equipment you need to bring with you!
Bonus Tip: Get Travel Insurance With Ski Coverage
It is really easy to forget to check your insurance coverage when you are caught up in the excitement of booking your ski trip, but this is something you definitely should not overlook! Buying the new pair of ski goggles because you forgot to bring yours is possible, but getting insurance after a ski accident is not.
Travel Insurance is something you should never leave home without and in fact something you should purchase as soon as you book your trip should unforeseen circumstances stop you from going on your trip.
Our recommendations for insurance coverage are:
- World Nomads: We have used World Nomads for many years for long term travel coverage and short trips and have had the need to make claims with them and found the process easy and quick.
- Safety Wing: The world’s first International Travel Medical Insurance developed to meet the needs of entrepreneurs and remote workers travelling or living abroad. Coverage with Safety Wing starts at US $37 for four weeks and since it is subscription-based you won’t forget it when you travel!
- Insure and Go: If you are based in the UK, Insure and Go is a great choice for annual travel insurance. Our founder Becky van Dijk, had coverage from Insure and Go at the time of her ski accident and they were very helpful with organising repatriation back to England. With the annual annual Gold coverage this also included coverage for a plus 1 to come and help getting your home.
- Camera Coverage: If you are carrying lots of photography equipment we highly recommend getting separate insurance for your electronic and photo gear – especially if you are taking them with you on the mountain! We have been using Photoguard for a few years and love that you can build your insurance based on the value of your exact set of photographic equipment, but suggest checking specific insurance coverage for your region.
Editor Note: After having a major ski accident which required me to be picked up off the slopes, be taken to hospital and then flown home (requiring three seats) which added up to thousands of dollars, I would never consider going on a vacation or a ski trip without insurance!
What are your favourite ski resorts? Please share your own tips with our readers in the comments below!
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Read More About Skiing
- What To Pack For A Ski Trip
- Top 10 Ski Resorts For Female Travellers
- 10 Things To Know Before You Ski
- A Newbie Guide To Skiing
We Are Travel Girls Founders Becky van Dijk and Vanessa Rivers
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