ALPE D'HUEZ (GRANDES ROUSSES)
The snowsports ‘Island in the Sun’, floating high above the sea of clouds on the Grandes Rousses Massif in the Oisans district of Isère, France.
The French national weather service records an average of 300 sunny days per annum in Alpe d'Huez: with an average of seven and a half hours of sunshine per day in December, stretching to eleven hours per day in April.
Centred on a glacial peak with high-altitude slopes, this privileged climate results in snowsports' consummate combination of vibrant blue skies, perfect visibility and snow-sure conditions; often for the majority of the winter season.
This is the biggest and most important ski area in the Isère département: consisting of a large modern resort surrounded by five small traditional villages linked into the core ski domain. The area primarily appeals to, and is ideally suited to, beginners to good intermediates; but, with the huge variety of accessible terrain, there's plenty here to keep all abilities content.
Alpe d'Huez is a sprawling town with a substantial year-round population and strong commercial links with the Ile-de-France region around Paris (less than five hours away by car), so its infrastructure is extensive and its ambiance vibrant and cosmopolitan. It offers a wide range of accommodation, a good selection of shops and a plethora of bars and restaurants. The excellent municipal sports and leisure facilities can be accessed free-of-charge by all holders of a current full-area ‘VisAlp’ lift pass, and the resort has plenty of attractions and distractions for non-skiing visitors, making this an excellent resort choice for families and mixed-ability groups.
RESORT VILLAGE LAYOUT
Avenues & Alleyways
Alpe d'Huez town is split into various quartiers, each with their own access points to the slopes yet all within walking distance of the heart of the resort.
Satellite Station Villages
As well as the buzzing main resort, there are also five more tranquil satellite-station villages: Auris-en-Oisans
, Huez, Villard-Reculas
. Spread out around the base of the Grandes Rousses Massif, these offer a more laid-back holiday experience, where the pace of life is slower and the welcome is warm and homely. All are lift-linked into the core ski area, and all have home-run pistes allowing for end-of-day descents back to the heart of your chosen village (although a final short gondola ride is required to reach Vaujany).
Huez, Villard-Reculas and Vaujany offer the most authentic Oisans mountain-village atmosphere and surroundings; the latter being quite a classy little micro-resort in its own right, with fast modern cable cars linking directly into the upper Alpe d'Huez ski area almost as quickly as the main resort's lifts.
SKI AREA DATA
Statistics given are for the entire Grandes Rousses domain:
Main Resort Altitude
1860 m (6102 ft)
(ESF offices in each village)
Hands-free Lift Passes
87 in total
Total capacity =
123 in total
= 249 km (156 miles)
Tel. +33 (0)4 76 11 44 44