Can’t wait until next winter to hit the slopes again? We don’t blame you – but we also understand that not everyone has the means to travel to the other side of the world to take advantage of the Southern Hemisphere season. So we thought we’d suggest somewhere a little closer to home – here’s a guide to summer skiing in the fantastic French resort of Tignes.
Skiing on the Grande Motte Glacier
As one of France's glacier resorts, Tignes is one of the most snow sure resorts in the Alps so is open for skiing around eight months of the year. The summer season runs from the end of June to early August and in 2018 a summer ski pass costs around 25 euros per day. Tignes is a great summer skiing option if you like a bit of variety, with over 20km of pistes on offer during the hotter months, as well as a snow park.
Don’t forget that summer skiing is for the early bird – the glacier is open to skiers from 7.15am to 1pm during the summer. It’s also worth getting some advice from a high-mountain guide to make the most of skiing on the glacier.
© Andy Parant
Ski Schools and Courses
Tignes is a particularly great resort to head to during the summer if you’re looking to improve your technique. Many of the ski schools that operate during the winter also offer lessons during the summer (try getting in touch with New Generation or ESF). The ski training company Target offer a six day race training course in July, with help develop skiers’ performance. Meanwhile, Snoworks run five day technical ski courses throughout the summer and autumn.
© New Generation / Andy Lloyd
After a morning of skiing, when the sun starts to get stronger and the snow gets slushy, it’s lucky that Tignes offers a fantastic variety of watersports to help everyone cool down. You don’t even have to take your skis (or snowboard) off – those wishing to practise their freestyle jumps can ski/snowboard/bike/skate their way off a 35m ramp into the icy depths of the lake. Or if you prefer you can ditch the skis or board, and just slide down headfirst into the water. Plus, there’s white water rafting, canyoning, kayaking, canoeing and sailing available for watersports enthusiasts.
If jumping into a lake isn’t your thing, however, there are plenty of other, drier activities that you can try. There are lots of fantastic, scenic walks that should please even the most avid hiker, and pedestrians are able to use the ski lifts. Cyclists shouldn’t miss out on the Tignes-Val d’Isere bike park, complete with five MTB lifts, trails for all levels, practise areas and a giant air bag. Plus, there’s a multitude of other sports on offer, including beach volleyball, tennis and archery. Meanwhile, anyone who is in the mood for something a little more relaxing can play a few rounds at Europe’s highest golf course.
© Tristan Shu
Restaurants and Bars
During the winter, there are several places to enjoy a meal on the mountain, but in the summer the clear winner is Le Panoramic. Situated at the top of the Grande Motte funicular, the lovely restaurant has a terrace, where you can top up your tan and enjoy the fantastic views over the surrounding area.
Meanwhile, down in Val Claret, there are a multitude of places to head to in the evening but keep an eye out for Couloir. It’s located in the heart of the resort and is one of the coolest places to eat in town, offering excellent quality, creative cuisine. During the summer the restaurant is open Tuesday to Sunday from 7pm.
In Tignes Le Lac, Loop Bar is a great option for enjoying some food and drink during the summer with a large terrace for you to enjoy the afternoon sun. Plus, if you fancy a later night, Loop offers late night sessions with top DJs and bands so you can dance the night away, with the added bonus of plenty of great drink deals.
Posted on Thursday 19 May 2016