Day Trip to the Ski Slopes
From Nice you can go from seashore to ski slopes in less than 2 hours.
In 2023, the Nice-Matin newspaper surveyed local skiers on their favorite ski resorts, and why. Here are the, sometimes surprising, results…
…And the envelope please…
#1 The winner of best overall ski resort according to the locals, is Auron, due to its killer combination of great skiing/well maintained slopes nicely counterbalanced with a charming village full of amenities. Auron is one of the biggest resorts with 16 lifts and the most kilometers of ski runs, including the most black runs by far.
Accessible from Nice with SkiBus #91 Auron for 6€ each way
#2 Valberg–Beuil was a close second overall, but won hands down the category of best village ambience. Best for families, lots of non-skier activities, and 23 lifts with well-maintained slopes for every level, even beginners. Also the town seems to blessed with a lot of great restaurant choices: everyone had their favorite, but the top picks were widely and evenly distributed.
Accessible from Nice with Zou Bus #670 Valberg for 2.50€ each way
#3 Le Val d’Allos ranked high on the quantity of ski runs, particularly for its wide open spaces and uncrowded ski runs, probably due to its total lack of access from Nice via public transportation.
Insider tip: on weekends you can usually score a carpool ride from Nice with BlaBlaCar, a ride-share service which is kind of like Airbnb on wheels. Read all about it first on their global site in English, then go the French Bla Bla Car site to sign up for France; even though it’s in French, it is very intuitive and easy to sign up and navigate even for non-French speakers. Oh, and favorite restaurant at Val d’Allos: Le Juls.
#4 Isola 2000, with the highest altitude in the region (hence their name), was overwhelmingly voted as having the best snow, with not only the most frequent fresh powder but also exceptionally dry and fluffy. With clientelle trending to the young and sporty, it’s one of the 2 largest resorts and has the most ski lifts (20) and an impressive variety of ski runs (120km). Restaurants most often mentioned were La Fromagerie and Le Vieux Chalet.
Accessible from Nice with Ski Bus #92 Isola 2000 6€ each way
#5 La Colmiane ranked best for quality/price with lift tickets well below the larger resorts. It is great for families due to its manageable size with 7 lifts and lots of intermediate slopes, far less crowded than the larger resorts, and with a small charming village. Le Petit Alpin was often sited as the best place to warm up with a hot spiced wine or hot cider.
Accessible from Nice with SkiBus #90 La Bolline 6€ each way
#6 was Limone, which is a small but super friendly and utterly charming Italian ski resort, just over the border from France.
Accessible from Nice with a train to Ventimiglia, then a direct train from Ventimiglia to Limone. Here’s the Italian train site in English to check schedules and buy tickets, or you can just do it via TrainLine.
See related page on How to take the Ski Buses with all the details on where each one leaves from, the prices, links to schedules, and how to buy tickets depending on if it’s the city sponsored ski bus or a regional route.
And if you are not looking to ski but just want to see some incredible scenery and visit some picturesque mountain towns, here is a page on Taking the Mountain Trains from Nice.
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