Fancy getting away from it all and treating the family to a super special Christmas? Book a skiing holiday! With the guarantee of snow, fun activities to do every day, and incredible food, what's not to love? Here are some of our favourite places to ski in Europe at Christmas.
Treat the family to an unforgettable Christmas in Val d'Isere. With dazzling firework displays, giant ice sculptures, and appearances from the big man himself, this popular French resort turns on the festive vibe in epic proportions. Kids big and small will be ecstatic with so many activities and snow-sure skiing.
On Christmas Eve, Val d'Isere's old town is where all the festive magic happens. Sip vin chaud as colourful parades fill the streets and cheery carols cut through the icy air. The star of the show? You've guessed it. Papa Noël! The kid's eyes will light up in awe and wonder as he glides past on a horse-drawn sleigh. Joyeux Noël!
A whimsical winter wonderland, Les Gets pulls out all the stops at Christmas. See how many ice sculptures you can find around town, and head out on an illuminated night walk - totally mesmerising.
Think you've just spotted Papa Noël swooshing down your favourite red piste? You're not seeing things, he's a big fan of skiing in Les Gets too! Visit his workshop on a guided tour through enchanted forests. The kids will have a ball helping the Elves with chocolate making.
And if all of that wasn't enough, the torchlit skiing procession and fireworks on Christmas Eve are out of this world. Oooo, ahhh!
Already stunning at the best of times, the natural beauty of Austria's Zell am See takes on a whole new level at Christmas. Golden lights drape charming cobbled streets, and the lake is illuminated with glowing white stars.
Forget chaotic Christmas shopping. This is home to one of the best Christmas markets in Europe. A bustling village centre is full to the brim with wooden trinkets, handmade toys, baked Austrian sweets and Gluhwein by the gallon. Fill your ski boots!
And on Christmas Day, head down to the water's edge to watch the annual Christmas tree dive when locals immerse a sparkling Christmas tree in Lake Zell before retrieving it again. Symbolic of lives saved on the lake, festive music, and a circle of torchlight beckon the tree back to shore. It's quite a spectacle!
Few towns look as magical at Christmas as the glamorous French ski resort of Megeve. Fairy lights twinkle, horse-drawn sleighs glide through snowy meadows, and ice figurines recreate nativity tales. The pièce de résistance? A giant sparkling Christmas tree bejewelled with festive decorations. Bel!
As for the skiing. Well, you're in for a treat. Picturesque pistes run past traditional wooden chalets and cosy mountain restaurants. Non-skiers will never get bored, either, with luxury boutique shops, deluxe spa treatments and ice skating lessons on offer. Get everybody together for fantastic French food in the evening, and remember to book early if you want all the trimmings on Christmas Day.
Santa comes to town on Christmas Eve with scrummy hot chocolate for the kids and boozy vin chaud for the parents. Santé! Or, for a more spiritual celebration, midnight mass in the historic 13th-Century church is not to be missed.
Imagine this. Charming Savoyard dwellings adorned with twinkling fairy lights and mighty snowy peaks soaring into the heavens. Welcome to Chamonix at Christmas.
With so much going on, it's hard to achieve a full day's skiing at this time of year! Head into town to discover a pop-up Christmas market overflowing with local handmade gifts and stocking fillers. Or, for a unique yuletide treat, visit the Ice Cave via the rustic pinion cog railway.
On Christmas Eve, the town comes alive with big street parades and live music. The restaurants go all out, too, serving exclusive festive menus and champagne. Want to see Santa? No fear. He usually arrives via a torchlit ski procession or on Le Train du Pere Noel. Toot, toot!
As soon as the first flakes fall in November, Zermatt transforms into a picture-perfect Christmas card scene. We're talking traditional swiss chalets, whimsical horse-drawn sleighs, lake ice-skating, and magnificent views of the mighty Matterhorn. Wow!
Zermatt's also a popular foodie destination. Take a long lunch break on the mountain to share a steaming pot of cheesy fondue. Or pop to a cosy cafe for coffee and traditional Swiss Christmas cookies. Yum!
On Christmas Day, the legendary English service at St Peter's church is divine - it's been held there every year since 1870. And a Michelin-Starred banquet at Capri or After Seven will blow every Christmas dinner you've ever had out of the water. Simply epic!