Top 5 Reasons to Visit Val d’Isere in Summer
When the summer months arrive Val d'Isere comes into its own with a diverse selection of summer activities
Located at the end of the Tarentaise Valley, Val d’Isère is one of the most popular ski resorts in Europe with guaranteed snowfall every year. However, when the summer months arrive, this stunning resort comes into its own with a diverse selection of summer activities available. From cooling off in Alpine rivers to climbing mountain faces, a summer holiday in Val d’Isere is a holiday never to be forgotten.
1. Summer Skiing
Dreaming of the next ski season already? In Val d’Isère you won’t have to wait for the winter months to arrive before hurtling down the piste! Thanks to the altitude of the Pissaillas Glacier, summer skiing in Val d’Isère is possible with slopes open in the morning between 7 am and 12 pm. With the temperature rising as the day progresses, head up the glacier early to avoid slushy snow conditions and make the most of uncrowded slopes and cheaper ski passes starting at EUR 28.50.
For further summer skiing, the Grand Motte Glacier in the neighbouring resort of Tignes is also open, so you can explore an additional 20 km of runs at an altitude between 3000 and 3456 metres.
Enjoy the stunning scenery as you take on the challenging mountain roads that make up some of the most gruelling sections of the Tour de France. Whilst cycle routes have been graded from beginner to advanced, the thinner mountain air and high summits mean that even the beginner routes can be rather challenging.
Val d’Isère, however, is also a fantastic summer mountain biking resort with a bike park as well as a huge range of mountain bike trails. With a summer Bike Park Pass, sporting enthusiasts can use the five lifts operating in summer or take the bus from Les Brevieres. From beginner runs to cross country trails and enduro runs, Val d’Isère has something for every level.
For those new to mountain biking or advanced riders looking to discover the best of the local trails, mountain bike guides and instructors are ready to meet your needs, from family lessons to backcountry single track guiding.
3. Glacier Walking
For a unique experience, clamp on your crampons and hike on one of the Espace Killy’s Motte or Pissaillas Glaciers. Choose from a number of glacial hikes ranging in difficulty or have a mountain guide take you on an organised excursion with the possibility of crossing the Valle Blanche via Italy. This is the perfect activity to discover the breathtaking views of Val d’Isère, with spectacular crevasses making for an incredible adventure.
Those looking to discover the resort by foot in summer can also use the lifts free of charge with plenty of walking routes to choose from, including family walks and challenging hikes for the more active walker. Val d’Isère has some incredible lakeside walks including Lac de Sassiere, a family hike along a mountain stream winding along a pretty little valley, as well as the challenging Col de la Lose hike with frequent sightings of chamois and marmots.
4. Via Ferrata
Experience the joy of scaling a mountain in a different form. Invented by early Alp explorers and during the Second World War, the Via Ferrata way of climbing was used by Italian and Austrian soldiers in the Dolomites to scale faces easily so that they could quickly find the highest observation points. With the added security of being roped up, this popular sport makes the thrill of mountain climbing more accessible for children and beginners who want a bit more security when they climb.
With an experienced guide, you will follow marked routes through the mountains with a series of steel rails, cables, pegs, bridges and steps implanted into the rock to mark the climbing route. Carefully embedded in mountains across the Alps, Via Ferrata is the perfect activity for those looking to push their limits.
5. White Water Activities
A refreshing summertime activity, canyoning is a combination of hiking, climbing, abseiling and swimming. Using the riverbed as a natural obstacle course, plunge yourself into mountain streams with a series of abseil descents, natural water slides and jumps. Choose from half-day initiation and discovery sessions to full-day experiences with optional jumps of 9 metres and a succession of 12 abseils between 12 and 27m.
Also on offer is the new extreme water sport of hydro-speeding. This half-day excursion involves using a large float to surf the water movements, overcoming obstacles and waves as you make your way down white water rivers. Accompanied by an instructor, you will be guided along the water, with the opportunity to learn 360 spins as well as how to ride swells and eddies.