The Best Resorts for Glacier Skiing in the Alps

The Best Resorts for Glacier Skiing in the Alps

Skier racing down a glacier

Winter traditionally wraps up long before May, but when it comes to glacier skiing, the snow keeps the party going well into the spring, and some – right through to summer!

 While most ski resorts wind down operations by early spring, high-altitude glaciers in the Alps maintain their snowy terrain, offering a unique opportunity for skiing enthusiasts to extend their season. 

Our guide will explore the top glacier ski resorts in the Alps. Who said the slopes were only for winter?

What is Glacier Skiing?

Glaciers are formed when large masses of snow become compact and turn into ice. This is perfect for snowfall, as the snow can settle and is less likely to melt.

At high altitudes especially, the year round snowfall means the ice will be consistently replaced, allowing snow to continue settling.

These are ideal conditions for skiing. The worst situation for any holiday-goer is arriving at a resort later in the season and seeing a distinct lack of powder.

Glaciers are therefore very popular for summertime skiing – many of them, as you’d expect, are situated at some of the highest ski resorts in Europe. With guaranteed snow coverage and great ski conditions, your ski trip needn’t stay confined to the winter season.

With that established, let’s dive into our favourite glaciers below:

Advantages of Glacier Skiing

Why choose glacier skiing over traditional winter skiing?

 Unlike regular ski resorts that close their doors as spring approaches, glacier ski resorts remain open well into the spring, summer months. This means you can enjoy skiing long after the winter crowds have dissipated, enjoying quieter slopes and more relaxed atmospheres. 

Additionally, glacier skiing offers consistent snow conditions, ensuring a reliable and enjoyable skiing experience late into the season. Whether you’re a beginner honing your skills or an expert seeking new challenges, glacier skiing promises endless opportunities for adventure and excitement.

Glacier Skiing in France

La Grand Motte Glacier, Tignes:

Tignes is one of the highest ski resorts in France, and dominating the Tignes – Val d’Isère ski area, is the Grande Motte glacier standing proudly at 3,656 metres, symbolising the essence of Tignes. Accessible in just 7 minutes via the Perce-Neige funicular and cable car, it’s a must-visit destination for ski enthusiasts seeking big mountain adventures and stunning scenery year-round.

From autumn to May, the Grande Motte glacier offers exceptional skiing conditions, attracting regional and national alpine and freestyle ski teams for training sessions. Ski before the crowds on blue, red, and black runs, surrounded by panoramic views that stretch as far as the eye can see.

During the summer months, experience the thrill of “summer skiing” alongside training teams or hire a high-mountain guide to explore the magnificent vistas from 3,656 metres. Whether you’re carving down pristine slopes or soaking in the breathtaking scenery, La Grande Motte Glacier  – and Tignes ski resort as a whole – promise unforgettable moments for all who visit.

frost ski lifts in tignes mountain

You may also like: What Is It Actually Like to Go Skiing in Summer?

Glacier du Mont de Lans, Les Deux Alpes 3600:

Elevate your skiing experience in Les Deux Alpes ski resort, where the high-altitude domain reaches up to 3,600 metres. This dynamic and trendy resort offers skiing opportunities from May to July, making it one of the rare destinations in Europe for summer skiing adventures.

With 410 hectares of marked runs, Les Deux Alpes provides a paradise for skiers and snowboarders alike. From the glacier at 3,600 metres to the village of Mont de Lans at 1,300 metres, experience exhilarating vertical descents without using ski lifts.

Explore seven unmissable sectors, each offering unique ski runs, sectors, and fun zones for an unforgettable snowsports experience. Whether you’re seeking thrills on the slopes or soaking in the stunning mountain scenery, Les Deux Alpes promises excitement and adventure at every turn.

Les Deux Alpes village covered in snow

Les 3 Vallées Glacier, Courchevel:

Nestled within the world’s largest interconnected ski area, Courchevel Les 3 Vallées, offers pleasures for mountain enthusiasts year-round. Linked to a sprawling network of 600 kilometres of slopes, Courchevel provides an exceptional ski playground with breathtaking views of the Alps’ most beautiful peaks.

With elevations ranging from 1,800 to 3,230 metres, Courchevel ski resort boasts a vast ski area set against stunning alpine landscapes. Whether you’re cruising down immaculate slopes or revelling in the sense of grandeur and freedom, Courchevel promises an unforgettable holiday experience for families and friends alike.

Glacier Skiing in Austria

Hintertux Glacier:

Hintertux Glacier is Europe’s only resort offering year-round skiing adventures, and one of the most popular ski resorts in Austria. Conveniently located near Mayrhofen ski resort and the Zillertal Ski Valley, this glacier promises endless snow-filled fun for ski enthusiasts of all levels.

Spanning from 1,500 metres in the valley to a staggering 3,250 metres on the Gefrorene Wand, Hintertux Glacier boasts a diverse terrain covering 60 kilometres. Most of the slopes are either on the glacier itself or are maintained by a comprehensive snowmaking system.

Intermediate skiers will find much to love here, with wide-ranging slopes catering to their skill level, and adrenaline seekers will also find steep challenges and excellent off-piste options once the snow has built up during the winter season.

Here, a skiable area spanning 619 hectares awaits, with 65 state-of-the-art lift systems offering plenty opportunities for exploration.

Special experiences await at the Hintertux Glacier, from indulging in a gondola breakfast to embarking on a fiery cave tour. Whether it’s dining in the clouds or exploring the glacier’s hidden gems, the Hintertux Glacier promises unforgettable moments for all who visit.

Pitztal Glacier:

The Pitztal Glacier is Tyrol’s highest glacier. From an elevation of 1,680 metres to 3,440 metres, immerse yourself in bright sunshine, unforgettable views, and fantastic snow conditions.

Nestled in the unspoiled beauty of the Pitztal Valley, this glacier offers an open outdoor space and far-reaching views at alpine heights. Skiing enthusiasts will find themselves in awe of Austria’s highest glacier, where ski operations run from September to May, ensuring plenty of time to enjoy the slopes.

With two ski areas – Pitztal Glacier and Rifflsee – visitors can explore a variety of terrain, from wide-open slopes to challenging runs. The X Park Pitztal offers excitement for all skill levels, while the natural jewel Rifflsee beckons with Tyrol’s most beautiful mountain lake.

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the highest vantage point in Austria – Café 3440, open year-round. Whether you’re skiing, dining, or simply soaking in the breathtaking scenery, the Pitztal Glacier promises an unforgettable alpine experience for all.

Snowcapped mountains of Pitztal Glacier, Tirol ski area

Stubai Glacier:

Just 45 minutes from Innsbruck Airport, the largest glacier ski area in Austria awaits at the Stubai Glacier. Family-friendly and boasting top-groomed pistes, this resort offers everything winter sports enthusiasts could ask for.

From autumn to spring, the Stubai Glacier guarantees snow, ensuring a fantastic skiing experience for visitors of all ages. Wide, flat slopes and children-friendly lifts make it an ideal destination for families, with children under the age of 10 skiing for free.

But the fun doesn’t end there. Experience excitement on the Big Family Fun Slope and in the winter snow park, catering to experienced ski kids and teens. After a day on the slopes, recharge at family-friendly restaurants or explore numerous freeride skiing and snowboarding options.

With snow guaranteed until May, wide slopes and top-notch facilities, the Stubai Glacier promises 100% skiing fun for all.

Glacier Skiing in Switzerland

Klein Matterhorn Glacier, Zermatt:

Perched at a dizzying altitude of 3,883 metres, Klein Matterhorn has Europe’s highest cable car station. But its appeal goes beyond height; the views of Italy, France, and Switzerland from this vantage point are nothing short of breathtaking.

The ski area on the Theodul Glacier remains open 365 days a year, with endless opportunity for snowy adventures. But it’s not just about skiing; mountaineers and hikers tackle expeditions to scale Breithorn – a 4,164-metre peak accessible via a 2.5-hour climb..

If you’re lucky, you might rub shoulders with international ski stars during the summer at this Swiss Alps ski resort. Klein Matterhorn Glacier in Zermatt ski resort is a training ground to national ski teams, attracting athletes from around the globe all year round. 

At the summit station, an observation platform, complete with a summit cross, photo point, and information panel showcases the mountain panorama. Inside the mountain, visitors can peer out over the Breithorn through an observation window.

After a day of adrenaline-fueled activities, unwind at restaurants, shopping, or catch a film at the Cinema Lounge. And don’t forget to capture the iconic Matterhorn, Breithorn, and Weisshorn in your photographs – they’re photo subjects you won’t want to miss.

Snowcapped peak of Klein Matterhorn

Saas-Fee Glacier:

Nestled in the Saas Valley, Saas-Fee ski resort boasts an enviable position on a high mountain plateau at 1,800 metres, earning it the nickname “Pearl of the Alps.” Surrounded by peaks towering above 4,000 metres, including 13 of them, the village offers a breathtaking backdrop for winter sports enthusiasts.

As one of the first European ski resorts to open each year, usually in July, Saas-Fee beckons skiers to its Allalin glacier, set amidst some of the highest peaks in Europe. Beginners and intermediates can enjoy long, quiet runs to practise their turns, while snowboarders flock to the high-altitude terrain parks for thrills.

The village itself exudes a charm reminiscent of Zermatt but with a quieter, slower pace. Car-free streets wind through traditional chalets, leading to cosy après-ski bars and family-friendly restaurants. Electric buses and taxis provide convenient transportation options for exploring the village’s narrow streets and soaking in its alpine atmosphere.

Titlis Glacier, Engelberg:

Ascend to 3,020 metres above sea level to Titlis Glacier in Engelberg aboard the cable cars, a thrilling ride that culminates with the world’s first revolving cable car, the Titlis Rotair.

Once atop the peak, prepare to immerse yourself in a winter wonderland, regardless of the season. Titlis Glacier offers non-stop snow-filled fun, making it a highlight of Central Switzerland.

For those seeking thrills without skis, the Titlis Cliff Walk, Ice Flyer, and Glacier Cave provide unforgettable experiences. Meanwhile, the Trübsee Snow Park offers opportunities for snowboarding and other snow-related activities, ensuring there’s something for everyone to enjoy amidst the pristine alpine landscape.

Glacier Skiing in Italy

Presena Glacier, Ponte di Legno:

Presena Glacier in Ponte di Legno ski resort stands as one of the most renowned Italian ski resorts, captivating mountain enthusiasts year-round. Winter transforms the landscape into a snowy paradise, offering four distinct ski areas – Ponte di Legno, Passo Tonale ski area, Presena Glacier, and Temù.

With a total of 41 slopes ranging from 1,121 to 3,016 metres above sea level and 28 modern ski lifts, Pontedilegno-Tonale, also known as Adamello Ski, boasts an impressive array of facilities for winter sports enthusiasts. Legendary scenic slopes like the Pista Paradiso black run and the Presena Glacier beckon skiers to experience adrenaline-pumping alpine skiing and freeriding adventures.

But the excitement isn’t limited to skiing alone. Ponte di Legno Glacier offers a plethora of activities for non-skiers, including snowshoeing, dog sledding, snowmobile tours, and fat bike excursions. Whether you’re carving down pristine slopes or exploring snow-covered trails, Ponte di Legno Glacier promises unforgettable adventures for all who visit.

Glacier skiing in Ponte di Legno

Val Senales Glacier:

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Val Senales Glacier, where winter adventures await. As the resting place of Ötzi the Iceman for over 5,300 years, this glacier region offers a unique blend of history and outdoor excitement.

Glacier skiing at altitudes over 3,000 metres, cross-country ski runs, and thrilling toboggan rides await winter enthusiasts, ensuring endless fun for beginners, pros, and families alike. From the panoramic views atop the Iceman Ötzi Peak to the crystal-clear mountain air, every moment at Val Senales Glacier is a reminder of nature’s breathtaking splendour.

With ideal conditions extending from September to May, Val Senales Glacier promises an extended snow season, allowing visitors to indulge in their favourite winter sports for longer. Whether you’re gliding down the slopes or embarking on a glacier hiking adventure, Val Senales Glacier offers an unforgettable alpine experience for all who seek adventure in the mountains.

In conclusion, the allure of glacier skiing in the Alps is undeniable, offering thrilling adventures and breathtaking scenery year-round. From the iconic peaks of Zermatt’s Klein Matterhorn Glacier to the dynamic slopes of Les Deux Alpes 3600, each glacier resort presents a unique opportunity to experience the magic of the mountains.

Ready for Some Glacier Skiing?

At this point, we’re pretty certain you’re in the mood for skiing this summer. So pick your glacier, book your transfer with Alps2Alps to get your holiday off to the best start possible, and enjoy some of the best ski resorts in Europe!

With comfortable and reliable transfers, we’ll ensure your journey is as smooth as your skiing experience. Don’t wait, book now and start your alpine adventure with Alps2Alps!

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