Top 50 ski resorts in the world for Brits this winter

If you’re looking forward to winter sports season but are stuck for inspiration on where to go, we have the solution. We’ve ranked the world’s top 50 ski resorts for Brits to visit by weighing up factors including prices, Google review rating, number of social media posts, and annual visits by UK residents to give us an idea of where British snow lovers adore visiting the most.

From the unspoiled eco-system of Canada’s Banff to the lofty peaks of Spain’s Sierra Nevada, our definitive list is designed to make your next skiing holiday a memorable one.

Spain's Sierra Nevada ranks top, France dominates top 10

Spain’s Sierra Nevada resort is the best place in the world to hits the slopes if you’re a Brit, according to our index. Its strong rating, high number of social posts, and low flight costs help it take the title.

French hotspot Chamonix has been beaten back to second place, but all isn’t lost for our friends across the Channel; 70% of the world’s top 10 resorts are in France. Spain also has another showing at number three with Baqueira Beret, while Whistler in Canada takes 10th spot.

Top 20 snow resort highlights

Can’t pick which snow holiday resort you like the look of most? To make choosing easier, we’ve profiled the top 20 and highlighted what makes each one so essential.

1. Sierra Nevada, Spain

Proving there’s more to Spain than sun, sand, and sangria, Sierra Nevada tops our list of world-class ski resorts. Home to mainland Spain’s highest peaks, the popular tourist destination boasts snow-capped mountains and picturesque villages aplenty. With budget-friendly flights, meals, and overall spend per holiday, Sierra Nevada attracts a huge number of thrill-seeking Brits each year.

2. Chamonix, France

Action-packed après-ski? Check. Michelin-star restaurants? Check. Iconic mountain ranges? Check. Chamonix has everything you could need for the perfect skiing holiday. The popular resort clocked up close to 6m visits from Brits in 2018 and scores an impressive 4.7 rating on Google, helping it to sit proudly at number two on our coveted list.

3. Baqueira Beret, Spain

With peaks that reach the lofty heights of 2,510m and no less than 99 pistes to enjoy, it’s no wonder that Baqueira Beret is often cited as one of Europe’s most breath-taking ski resorts. Add to this the budget-friendly prices associated with eating out, flights, and total spend, and you have a Spanish resort with plenty of allure.

4. Val D'isere, France

The natural beauty of the French Alps coupled with endless snow-covered runs for both beginners and seasoned pros has made Val D’isere a magnet for ski-seeking Britons. Highlights here include Courchevel, which is perched at one end of the world’s largest lift-linked ski zones.

5. Morzine, France

The Insta-worthy Alpine town of Morzine has plenty to attract visitors all year round and has been a go-to winter sports destination for many Brits since Edwardian times. A resort that caters well to both families and those seeking a lively après-ski scene, Morzine is also great for ice skating, tobogganing, and even biking during the summer months.

6. Meribel, France

Famous for its welcoming village atmosphere and postcard-perfect wooden chalets, Meribel sits pretty in the heart of France’s beloved Tris Vallees ski area. With over 600km of snowy pistes to discover, it’s yet another French favourite that skiers and snowboarders find irresistible.

7. Val Thorens, France

Val Thorens position as Europe’s highest ski resort guarantees generous snow cover for visitors between November and May. Offering panoramic views of the Belleville Valley and beyond, it’s also one of the most visually stunning resorts in the French Alps.

8. Les Arcs, France

The seven resort bases located in Les Arcs (a figure which is doubled when you add the nearby resort of Paradiski) have made it the go-to resort for skiers who like variety. Favoured by both beginners and intermediates for its vast amount of red and blue runs, more advanced skiers tend to look to neighbouring La Plagne to get their kicks.

9. Courchevel, France

With six resort villages and a good mix of terrain to suit skiers and snowboarders of all levels, Courchevel is yet another gem in the French Alps tourists always come back to. Visit the rustic village of Courchevel Le Praz and you can see the ski jumping hill that was built for the 1992 Winter Olympics.

10 - Whistler, Canada
Synonymous with Canada’s skiing scene, Whistler’s mixture of magnificent mountain ranges, legendary après-ski, and European vibe have made it a favourite among Brits. It also happens to be one of the most Instagrammed resorts in the world, according to our stats, and would rank much higher on our countdown if the costs associated weren’t so steep.

11 - La Plagne, France
La Plagne is a hugely popular family resort thanks to its 452km of gentle runs that cater to beginners and intermediate skiers and boarders. The resort is also home to a 1,500km long Olympic bobsleigh track that boasts no less than 19 bends.

12 - Bankso, Bulgaria
While the Bulgarian resort of Bankso offers limited slopes by Alpine standards, it does offer some pleasant runs that showcase the beauty of the pretty Pirin National Park. Bankso also hosts some World Cup skiing and snowboarding events and is an excellent choice for those looking for good quality food and accommodation that won’t break the bank.

13 - Grand Massif, France
Situated right in the centre of the Alps in between Chamonix and Geneva, the Grand Massif has a broad appeal thanks to its 142 slopes which are served by 67 ski lifts. There’s plenty to do here aside from skiing, such as rail tobogganing in Les Carroz and snowshoe hiking in Samoëns.

14 - Livigno, Italy
A versatile resort close to the Swiss border, Livigno perfectly balances an ultra-modern ski area with the beauty and charm of its three traditional villages. Horse riding and husky sledding are also possible, while an impressive spa and duty-free shopping offer plenty to do away from the slopes.

15 - Megève, France
Megève is the last of 10 French ski resorts in our top 20, but it’s still one of Europe’s best. Its clientele is largely made up of France’s rich and famous, but its uncrowded slopes and charming medieval centre make it perfect for Britons who want to immerse themselves in French culture.

16 - Sölden, Austria
Sölden remains something of a hidden gem as far as European ski resorts are concerned, which is largely since only a few UK travel companies operate here. Regular visitors will tell you it is blessed with reliable snowfall and a livelier après-ski scene than neighbouring resorts. Sölden was also used as a filming location for the Bond movie Spectre (2015), which is showcased in a themed exhibition on the mountain used in the picture.

17 - Banff, Canada
As Canada’s first national park and part of UNESCO’s Canadian Rocky Mountain World Heritage site, Banff offers the kind of natural beauty that requires no filter. Home to one of North America’s longest ski runs, Banff can also pull in the summer crowds who come for mountain biking, climbing, and photography. Much like Whistler, it’s an expensive place to ski, but offers an unforgettable experience for those that do.

18 - Cervinia, Italy
With an abundance of gentler slopes that go on for miles, Cervinia is ideal for the less experienced skier who just wants to soak in the scenery. However, the Italian resort is also famous for its 11km red run, which even the most seasoned of pros will struggle to negotiate without stopping at least once. Something for everyone.

19 - Lech, Austria
With a Royal guest list that has included both Diana and Princess Caroline of Monaco, Lech is home to more five-star accommodation than most European ski areas. As well as having the opportunity to ski among royalty and the rich and famous, visitors can relish in up to twice the amount of snow found in the French Alps.

20 - Zermatt, Switzerland
If you’re willing to pay more than double to dine out than in most of France’s best-loved resorts, then there’s a lot to love about Zermatt. Home to 200km of pristine Swiss pistes, visitors can also jump on a ski lift that takes you into the Italian resort of Cervinia.

That’s the top 20, but our whole top 50 list is stacked with perfect winter holiday destinations, too. You certainly wouldn’t be unhappy with a trip to Aspen, in the US, or to St Moritz, Switzerland. In fact, you might be able to find your next ski holiday with our help.

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