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Family holidays in Alpe d'Huez

Discover insights about Alpe d'Huez family holidays


Whether you come to Alpe d'Huez in the winter or summer, you and the kids are sure to leave with a big smile on your face. From world-class skiing to rafting, biking, hiking and climbing, there are loads of things to do as a family here.

Why is Alpe d'Huez is good for families

  • Alpe d'Huez is only and hour and half from Grenoble airport - which means fewer shouts of "are we there yet?"
  • The resort has been awarded the 'Famille Plus' certificate which means that much of the accommodation, restaurants, sports shops and activity companies are specially set up with families in mind
  • There's lots of childcare available
  • The summer climate is great for kids - warm but not scorching in the day and cool at night
  • From nursery slopes to some of the best off-piste in the world, Alpe d'Huez has terrain to suit skiers of all abilities

Why  is great for families winter 2018/19 double bedroom

Best place for families to stay in Alpe d'Huez

If you’re coming for a ski holiday with a young family, look for accommodation near any of the lifts. The fewer steps your little people have to take in ski boots, the better (for all concerned!).

Alpe d'Huez is popular with families because it has:

  • a good mix of terrain for people of all abilities
  • ski-in/ski-out accommodation around the Bergers district and by the Rond Point up by the main DMC lift
  • lots of family-sized accommodation
  • a good selection of bars and restaurants
Why  is great for families this winter 2018/19

Lift passes for families

Lift passes make up a significant portion of the cost of a family holiday to the mountains, so it pays to check you're buying the right ticket for your group.

Here in Alpe d'Huez there are various concessions to help you keep your costs down, such as:

  • kids under 5 use the lifts for free
  • kids between 5 and 12 pay a reduced ('youth') rate
  • there are reduced-price ski passes if you only want to use the beginner areas
  • you can buy a pedestrian pass - if maybe you or your partner don’t ski, but you still want to go up and watch the kids

You can buy half-day lift tickets if a full day on the mountain seems too long for the kids. It's not a lot cheaper than an all-day ticket, but it'll save you a little bit. 

Lift passes in Alpe d'Huez for families of four or more

If you're a family of four or more, you'll be able to save money on the regular ticket price by buying a 'family lift pass'.

Why  is great for families this winter 2018/19

Ski schools for families

If you have designs on raising the next Shaun White or Chemmy Alcott, then getting your kids into ski school is going to be a priority!

The ski schools all:

  • offer full and half-day sessions
  • have English speaking guides
  • will take your kids to a dedicated area where they can learn how to snow plough, stop, turn and glide safely

Ski schools usually take weekly bookings, so if you're only here for a few days it's good to check if there's any space for your kids.

What age can kids start ski lessons

Ski schools will take children from 2.5, which is quite young when compared to other ski resorts who normally take them from 3. At this age, the focus is on fun in the snow, so there are normally inflatables and games to play.

Most beginner areas also have a 'magic carpet' travelator (a bit like the ones you get at airports) to get kids and beginner adults to the top of the slopes without having to contend with lifts.

Whatever age, half-day lessons are normally more than enough if you're a novice.

What's included in the price of a lesson

The price you pay for a ski lesson is for tuition only. Ski passes are not included.

So for children aged 5 and over, you'll need to make sure they have: 

  • a valid ski pass (you can get discounted passes if you're only using the nursery slopes)
  • skis, helmets, goggles - you can hire these from one of the many ski hire shops in the resort
  • appropriate clothing, like salopettes and a jacket, warm layers and gloves  

For those under 5 years old a ski pass isn't necessary, but you'll need to buy them a hands free card to use at the turnstiles. You can get one from any lift station, you'll need their passport to prove their age.

Why  is great for families this winter 2018/19

Ski areas for families

A decent mix of terrain should keep all the family happy.  

The ski area in Alpe d'Huez is well suited to beginners and the nursery slopes can be accessed without a lift pass so you can build up your confidence without having to commit to buying a pass.

Once you feel happy to try some higher runs, buy a beginners ski pass and explore some of the lovely wide green runs off the Rif Nel, Grand Nif Nel, Sagnes and the Ecole 1 drag lifts. Find out more about the beginners ski areas.

For more advanced skiers, you have the whole of the Alpe d'Huez Grande Domaine to explore. With 249km of pistes spread over six resorts, there is terrain suitable for everyone.

There are two snow parks in Alpe d'Huez, the larger one being beside the beginner runs above 1,800, most easily accessed from the DMC 1st station. Although this is a big park in size, it's very beginner friendly, with a number of small features providing a gentle introduction to park riding. The other snow park is in Montfrais, and is on the whole for more advanced skiers and snowboarders.

Top 10 things to do for non-skiers in Alpe d'Huez this winter 2018/19

Activities for families

Things to do in Alpe d'Huez with little kids
Activity Where Time of year What it is Cost
Sledging Under DMC1 or Les Bergers Winter Sledging Under DMC1 - charged. Les Bergers is free
Ice skating (outdoor) Avenue des Jeux Winter Outdoor rink with skate hire Rent skates, get one free skate in your six-day pass
Husky dog sledding Centre équestre Winter Dog sledding -
Cinema Palais des Sports All year Shows films in English (look for VOST) -
Swimming (outdoor) Avenue des Jeux All year Outdoor heated pool One free visit in your six-day pass
Swimming (indoor) Palais des Sports All year Sports centre One free visit in your six-day pass
Activities Palais des Sports All year Squash and tennis courts, climbing wall, mini golf and ball pit for very little ones One free visit in your six-day pass

Why  is great for families this winter 2018/19

Baby equipment

You can hire just about anything you need for children in Alpe d'Huez.

Items such as high chairs, pushchairs, cots, baby carriers and playpens can be rented in resort. Check with your accommodation provider, for high chairs and cots especially.

All the ski shops in Alpe d'Huez offer a kids ski pack rental as well. Most will also rent you sledges, strollers and sledge-strollers - look out for the 'Famille Plus' logo.

Baby changing facilities are available by the SATA boxes at the Rond Point des Pistes, at the outdoor pool, at the ice rink, in the Palais des Sports, and at the tourist office.

Why  is great for families this winter 2018/19

Childcare services

There are several options for childcare in Alpe d'Huez. You can contact the local tourist office for a list of available babysitters.

If you're here during summer

The sports centre of each town sometimes hosts a kids club during the summer holidays, with activities like swimming, climbing, tennis, basketball and ice-skating.