Geneva: A Winter Sports Haven

There are many reasons to visit Geneva in winter/spring, when a dusting of snow can make the place look like something out of a fairytale or off the front of a chocolate box. Views across the snowy Alps make braving the lower temperatures worthwhile, and you can always warm yourself up after any sojourn with a well deserved fondue.

Certainly all of Geneva’s usual attractions are equally appealing during these seasons — losing yourself among the narrow streets of the Old Town, indulging in some world-class shopping, viewing the Jet d’Eau or exploring a museum or gallery — but there are certain activities which are actually enhanced by Winter’s embrace. Just picture taking the Saleve cable car, with its stunning view of Mont Blanc, wrapped in a thick shroud of snow. And if you are a fan of winter sports, then you certainly wouldn’t consider visiting Geneva at any other time of year.

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For it is during the winter and early spring that the ski resorts of this region come into full swing with reliably excellent conditions, good coverings of snow and crisp, clear mornings to enjoy. Geneva is one of the best bases into which to fly in order to access resorts in Switzerland as well as in France and Italy. It is just a short transfer away from a whole host of first-class places in which to indulge your passion for all things ski and winter sports.

Just an incredible one hour drive away from Geneva’s airport, you can find yourself in the French town of Chamonix — a historic ski resort on the prettiest side of Mont Blanc. In terms of ‘apres ski’ its bars and restaurants are lively year-round and it even boasts the world’s best lift-served vertical drop. It is open until May. Also within an hour’s drive from Geneva and within Switzerland itself, is the lively resort town of Montreux where the excellent pistes are reachable from town via funicular railway. And there are a multitude of other options in the immediate vicinity of Geneva, including Rochejean and Flumet among many others.

If you are prepared to go a little further afield then the various resorts of France’s Grand Massif area will be at your disposal (just an hour and a half from Geneva), and within just two hours other top-notch French skiing destinations such as the modern facilities and extensive pistes of ideal family resort Valmorel.

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Just three hours travel will take you to fine Italian resorts such as Monterosa or even to Switzerland’s Zermatt, regarded by some as the finest ski destination in the world with its glacier and epic views of the Matterhorn.

In short, those arriving in Geneva in winter/spring will find themselves spoilt for choice whether they intend to indulge their passion for winter sports, or simply enjoy the view.