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Best lesser known resorts

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I was wondering what the best lesser known resorts in Europe are? I seem to end up and the same places every year St. Anton, Val D’isere, Merribel etc. What I’m looking for is snow sure, good off piste, some form of apres, nightlife, preferably a bit less busy on the slopes than some of the big resorts
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Apres and quiet slopes are pretty mutually exclusive, one requires large number of tourists, the other requires low numbers of tourists.
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stay In Ischgl for the night life, A short bus to Galtur, Kappl, See for a quieter Ski. or Stay in Saalbach #hinterglemm, and ski across to Fieberbrunn or leogang each morning.
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Just back from Monte Rosa ski, ticks boxes for snow sure as its high, quietest pistes I've ever seen, terrific lift accessed off piste but apres ski seemed very limited, couple of quiet pubs only.
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@mk28, Dolomites, Italy. A few places on Sella Ronda tick your boxes.
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Chaps & chappesses, have none of you heard of Andermatt, offpiste nirvana.
Have none of you heard of Engleberg, offpiste nirvana.
Head up to the top on Engstligenalp beyond Adelboden and be blown away by the possibilities for both lift and skin access offpiste!
Just a thought!
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Yes have really been considering the sella Ronda. Have heard good things about arrabba and val Gardena. Andermatt and adelboden sound great too.
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Engelberg is a beautiful village and an easy train journey from Basel (via Lucerne).
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Engelberg
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I agree with @rambotion that it's hard to get Apres and quiet slopes. However, for Andermatt and Engelberg you can get both, but at different times. Both get a lot of weekend visitors as they're accessible from Zurich, so get rowdy on the weekends, but quite during the week
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pablito69 wrote:
Engelberg is a beautiful village and an easy train journey from Basel (via Lucerne).


I love Engelberg and ski there on a fairly regular basis. But to describe it as a "beautiful village" is stretching things a little. It's very towny, to be honest, with some deeply unimpressive architecture - and hardly Swiss chocolate box. Great setting and a magnificent mountain, though! Very Happy
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@mk28, plenty of options, off the top of my head La Rosiere, La Plagne, Serre Chevalier, Portes du Soleil, Laax, Monterosa, Sainte Foy, La Grave, Val d’Anniviers
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Engelberg and Andermatt are my favourites in the alps.
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I agree, I think that Engelberg and Andermatt ticks off your criterias. Val d'Annivers is another favorite but is quite dead in the evenings. Same with Alagna although a little bit more lively during the evenings.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
I live in Genoa so go up to Artesina / Prato Nevoso along with Limone quite frequently, once a week.

Limone would be a good bet. The skiing is great, the lifts are not too bad. Apres ski, well, not a lot really but low crowding and good apres ski don't really work together as has been mentioned.

I went up to Artesina last Thursday and had the whole place to myself for an hour and a half before I even saw another skiier! I'm not entirely sure how that place manages to stay open. Artesina / Prato Nevoso both have a very slow lift system, all 2 person chairlifts, button lifts with one 6-man chair at Prato. But it's empty during the week, and I really mean empty.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
mk28 wrote:
Yes have really been considering the sella Ronda. Have heard good things about arrabba and val Gardena. Andermatt and adelboden sound great too.
?

Val G and Arrabba great but best wiki g the Dollies imho Val diFassa and Civetta
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Satellite resorts: The Guardian did a good article on these a couple of years ago, identifying resorts that were a lot cheaper to stay in with quieter local slopes, but linked to a Big Name if you wanted more extensive skiing as well. The article is about La Tzoumaz as a Satellite to Verbier, but the second half of the article lists a load of similar places elsewhere in Europe:

https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2014/dec/06/satellite-ski-resorts-verbier-four-valleys-switzerland

included are:

Stuben (Arlberg) Austria
Peisey-Vallandry (Les Arcs, La Plagne) Paradiski
Montchavin-Les Coches & Champagny
Ardent (Avoriaz, Morzine) Portes du Soleil
Orelle (Courchevel, Méribel), 3 Vallées
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Overlooked or neglected to mention val d'annivi....... not been since Grimentz & Zinal were linked.
Has to be one of the most understated areas in the alps and so close to very famous neighbors!
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Isn’t Engelberg carnage at weekends as the closest decent mountain to Zurich and Basel?

Griment/Zinal and Alagna (Monte Rosa) tick your boxes. Maybe Courmayeur too - Hellbronner is awesome for off piste
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Nauders, Silvretta Montafon
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@BobinCH, re: Engelberg, yes! Took me two seasons to work out it's worth going (really quite a bit) further away to get twice as much actual skiing time as opposed to queuing time Embarassed

Definitely not lesser known locally...
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Engelberg is great but it is a snow bum hotspot (particularly with the scandis) and is very well know for the quality of the off piste - you will have plenty of competition for tracks on a powder day.

If you really want somewhere little known - check out Solda / Sulden am Ortler in Sud Tyrol
Wonderful - high, spectacular, great off piste and touring and hardly anyone has heard of it (in the uK anyway)
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Soll in Austria has a very good Apre and good skiing but isn't too crowded in my experience
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Fieberbrunn in Austria, had a long weekend there earlier this year, highly recommended. One of the few resorts on the freeride world tour, and unlike your usual suspects does not get tracked out anywhere nearly as quick. I've skied Engleberg a number of times, and Fieberbrunn is way better on pretty much every level unless you live in Zurich.
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@adie, Agreed, it’s generally relatively quiet over in Fieberbrunn, and it doesn’t take long to get over there from Saalbach or Hinterglemm (in each case two lifts to get you to the bottom of the TirolS gondola, which takes you up the Reckmoos Sud side of Fieberbrunn).
As Bob suggested above, a good plan would be to stay in either of the bigger villages for the apres and to ski over to Fieberbrunn for the quiet slopes.
Staying in Saalbach would also give easy access to the 7km Viehhofen Abfahrt (piste sixty-eight), which is invariably idyllically deserted.
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I skied Baqueira-Beret this season. Fantastic resort - albeit made awesome by large quantities of fresh powder so I could be biased - that I’d never heard of before. What I particularly enjoyed is that it feels genuinely Spanish rather than as if it’s been taken over by Brits and outsiders. They have some genuinely challenging off piste and itinerary runs there as well as loads of great cruisers too.
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The Baquiera story amuses me so much. Without doubt it is a little known gem to British skiers en masse.
My first trip was 1989 I've been half a dozen times since. If you want to unravel the history, ring Ski Miquel and talk to Richard Johnson, I do not know when their patronage of the area began.
I have a very good friend who joins a local guide for freeride camps and training sessions. Admittedly my mate speaks fluent Spanish which may make life a little easier.
No question Baquiera is a Gem!
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Quote:

Baquiera is a Gem!

The first resort I took my children skiing to (with Ski Miquel). Not a massive area but good for a week - positive memories of it.
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Another vote for Baqueira. First visit last season and loved it.
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Rogerdodger, mrs U did a couple of seasons in Baqueira early 90s staying with one of the managements’ family. They rented one of their apartments to SkiMiguel.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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@mk28, snow sure at what time(s) of the season are you thinking?
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Out of the Dutch holiday season Gerlos would work.
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If looking for some nightlife give Arabba a miss.

Les Contamines is a hidden gem but again limited nightlife.
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San Martino di Castrozza
Madesimo
Solda
Trafoi
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and on to Austria..... schruns, Gargellen and Galtur. The latter is a serious option from which to ski Ischgl.
Phenomenal area with ski touring options.
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There are roughly 3000 ski resorts in Europe and Russia, so one's choice is practically limitless.

Best to tickoff the top 50 European stations, like Zermatt, before exploring the smaller resorts that you ski out in a day or two.

This is a good summary.

https://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/outdoor-activity/the-50-best-ski-resorts-in-europe-8493936.html
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Andermatt has a great snow record, loads of off-piste, and fairly quiet. Alagna and the Monterosa has great terrain but conditions are more variable. Sainte-Foy has some great runs, and generally good conditions but is smaller.
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@Whitegold, interesting summary of the ‘50 Best Ski Resorts’ in that Independent article.
As far as I can see, nowhere on the Sella Ronda circuit mentioned. Very little in Italy generally.
Yet the Cairngorms, Helvellyn, Bangkok and Soldeu all rated in top 50.

Nevertheless, highlights most of the top resorts.
snowHead
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@PeakyB, I , for one, am not a fan of these single sound bite, resort lists and descriptions, which give the impression that the author has never been to most of them and is relying on, frequently out of date, hearsay. About as much use as “Brexit means Brexit”.
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@tatmanstours, I agree, but guess we have to put up with these lists. OK as long as taken with a pinch of salt.

Bangkok?? rolling eyes . That must be my best predictive text typo.
Meant to be Bansko! Surprised that’s listed as one of top 50 in Europe. More snow than Bangkok though.
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