In our opinion, Chatel is the Jewel in the Portes du Soleil crown. 625km of pistes to ski, particularly well suited for beginners and intermediates, it is one of the charming French ski resorts of the alps. Chatel won't be to everyone's tastes, it is more regional than other neighbouring resorts, but if you love french resorts and the french way of life, this is possibly the resort for you.
Skiing Chatel and Portes du SoleilWhilst the Portes du Soleil skiing is not at the challenging end of the spectrum, it is more than reasonable in our view for the majority of visitors that will be drawn to this beautiful ski resort for its sunshine, great French food and character.
Part of the Portes du Soleil ski network, Chatel boasts access to over 240 pistes, and eleven other villages nestled at the bottom of the slopes. As we have indicated earlier, its skiing is best suited for beginners and intermediates, although the world famous Wall is a close by and whilst limited, the off-piste in the right conditions is good enough for all but the most competent of extreme skiers.
But where Chatel and the Portes du Soleil stands out, is its access to the slopes and great cruising skiing. For mixed ability groups and family ski holidays this is one of the best places to ski in our view. 217 blue and red pistes ensure that everyone has somewhere to ski and are not going to get bored easily. Well groomed and wide, they allow beginners and intermediates to really develop their skills in the right framework, building confidence and technique we believe faster than those visiting the better known ski haunts.
Most of the skiing is around the 1,500m and 2,400m mark and therefore it is also a good call in the colder weather and with lots of tree line skiing, bad weather days too.
We love Chatel and we think you will too.
Chatel VillageI know we shouldn't have favourites, but in the Portes du Soleil Chatel holds special favour with us. It will not be to everyone's tastes of course, its beauty will I'm sure be universal, but its attraction to us is that it is still very French. Lunches are slow affairs, great food and value too.
We have Chatel high on our list for one of the best ski resorts for family ski holidays. Chocolate box charm in the resort itself, friendly instruction, great nursery skiing and ski slopes on its doorstep, and great deal to do afterwards. As we have covered before, Chatel has 217 beginner and intermediate slopes, 105 being blue, so even the younger members are well looked after. As they grow and progress 117 red runs keep even the most energetic youngsters entertained.
Family Ski Holidays Chatel
Other activitiesFor such a small ski village you maybe surprised to find Chatel has a great deal to do away from skiing and sowboarding. At the Lac de Vonnes you have the opportunity for ice diving. Under controlled conditions dive under the iced surface to experience the calm and beauty that lays below.
If something above ground is your preference, tandem paragliding is available. But one of the miost popular activities is the sledging on airboards. Think water parks but on snow and slightly faster!