La Plagne Ski Holidays

La Plagne Ski Holidays


The popular French alpine ski resort of La Plagne lies in the Tarentaise Valley adjacent to the Les Arcs resort, with the two forming the extensive Paradiski area. Spread across the four communes of Macot la Plagne, Aime, Bellentre and Champagne en Vanoise, La Plagne has 225kms of on-piste runs on a 100 sq km area. The trails are split into 10 beginner-level, 72 intermediate, 30 advanced and 15 expert runs, together with a large off-piste terrain including the north face of Bellecote mountain.

Created in 1961 as a means of ensuring the survival of the valley communities after the collapse of the mining and agricultural sectors, La Plagne is a thoroughly modern resort, home to one of the fastest cable cars in the world, the Vanoise Express. Other lifts include a second cable car, 36 chair lifts, eight gondolas and 38 drag lifts. The lowest base station, at Montchavin village, is set at 1,250m, with the highest point on Bellecote Mountain’s Glacier de la Chiaupe rising to a respectable 3,250m.

La Plagne comprises a total of 11 resorts, with the prettiest at 1,800m the former mining village now known as La Plagne 1800, set on a gentle wooded slope. Its special charm is its plethora of traditional wooden alpine chalets sporting locally quarried blue slate roofs. Known as the ‘steamer of the snow’, Aime La Plague at 2,100m opened in 1970 and features a Club Med with a design reputedly inspired by Tibetan temples. The 1,250m Champagny en Vanoise lies on south-facing sunny slopes, thus getting less snow than the rest of La Plagne.

According to the architect of Plagne Bellacote, opened in 1974 at 1,930m, the intention was for it to resemble a hydro-electric dam, while its main advantage is a direct gondola link to the top of the mountain. Montchavin, set at 1,250m in Bellentre village, has three chairlifts, and functional urban Plagne Centre at 1,950m is the original heart of the ski area. Scattered around the remainder of the ski area are the resorts of Plagne Village, Les Coches, Montalbert, Belle Plagne and the most recent development, Plagne Soleil, opened in 1990.