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The French Alps ski specialist
Areches-Beaufort ski village
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Areches-Beaufort ski village
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Areches-Beaufort ski slopes
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Areches-Beaufort ski slopes
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Areches-Beaufort tree-lined ski slopes
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Areches-Beaufort off-piste
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Areches-Beaufort freshly groomed ski slopes
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Areches-Beaufort village luge
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Areches-Beaufort snowshoes
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Areches-Beaufort ski village
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Areches-Beaufort WoodPark
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Nestled between 730m and 2300m, Arêches-Beaufort is a typical Beaufortain village resort in the heart of the Savoie, just 20km from the town of Albertville and is definitely a 'hidden gem'.

Why Areches Beaufort Ski Resort?

  • Authentic, traditional French villages
  • Very picturesque
  • Excellent snowfall record due to its topography
  • 'Famille Plus' resort - good children’s facilities and great for families
  • Home of Beaufort cheese! (yum)

Areches Beaufort Information

Arêches is an authentic, traditional village, which is just a short walk from the Grand Mont chairlift serving Le Cuvy. The village has plenty of car parking. Further along the valley road is Le Planay, a modest ski village with a friendly atmosphere and a secure dedicated children’s area which makes it a good base for young families. The ski area has Mont Blanc as a backdrop!

Arêches is a year-round working village and has independent local businesses which include ski-hire shops and a few restaurants in the main street – everything you’re likely to need during your stay. However, if you are looking for more then the nearby town of Beaufort has a lovely historic centre plus a larger choice of shops and restaurants. 

Areches-Beaufort is known for its cheese (Beaufort!), but also has reliable powder and a great ski area without the queues, crowds or high prices of resorts nearby which makes it ideal for the budget-conscious skier. It's also within driving distance (about 30 mins) to Hauteluce for access to Les Contamines (via Belleville 1200) and Les Saisies if you want to travel about a bit. 

Located in the Haute-Savoie, Areches-Beaufort has a long heritage; a village resort with 3000 inhabitants year-round, whose history has stood up to time and change while remaining typical and artisanal. This is an ideal destination for spending time with family and friends and for sampling, of course, the regional speciality - Beaufort cheese, which is matured for over 6 months in a carefully guarded tradition. 

There are mountain restaurants for enjoying the countryside and culinary specialities at the foot of the slopes.

Areches Beaufort ski area

Due to its proximity to Mont-Blanc, Arêches-Beaufort benefits from exceptional snow cover for its altitude. Most of the slopes in the ski area are oriented towards the north side which makes it easy to conserve snow and at the same time limits the production of artificial snow. Its location, at the bottom of the valley, protects it from the winds and stops the course of the clouds which deposit their flakes from the villages to the top of the Grand-Mont.

Arêches-Beaufort consistently, therefore, receives exceptional snowfall and has one of the most plentiful annual snowfalls in the entire Alps. It is popular with sports professionals due to its 'hidden gem' status. There is a total 1300m of height difference and 50km of slopes.

There are two connected sectors (newly linked in 2021 via gondola) that start from Areches village:

The 'Grand-Mont' sector from 1080m to 2320m:

  • Accessible from the village of Areches by foot,
  • Free parking area at La Serraz,
  • Snowpark,
  • Boardercross.

There is a fast chairlift (Grand Mont) that accesses the plateau of Le Cuvy (1710m) from Areches. In addition to the alpine ski trails that start from this plateau, you can also find the Espace Ludique, WoodPark, WooDCross, BovoCross, picnic area and it is the starting point for some walking, snowshoe and cross-country trails. This is also where you will find the beginners area. There are a few reds between 2320m and 1710m. You will find a mountain restaurant l'Alpage on the Serrazine blue slope - take the Bonnets Rouges chairlift and follow the blue down a little way. 

To return to the resort of Areches from Le Cuvy, you have a choice of:

  • Taking the Grand Mont chairlift back to Areches village,
  • Taking the Perches red run (snow cannons line this piste and it is fairly long) to Le Planay and then there is a blue run that takes you back to Areches or a shuttle bus,
  • Taking Le Bois gondola to Le Planay then there is a blue run that takes you back to Areches or a shuttle bus,
  • A black run (Grand Mont) under the Grand Mont chairlift.

The 'Planay' sector from 1200m to 2130m:

  • Located 3km from Arêches with free parking areas,
  • Beginners’ slopes accessible at the bottom of the “espace 1ère trace” zone,
  • A free « snow net » for the littlest ones for their first learning experience and two play areas for a change of pace (baby-boarder, Freestyle park).

The Planay sector is accessible via Le Cuvy by taking the red Perches run. Or you can start at Le Planay which is 3km from Areches (ski shuttle available). Once at Le Planay you can return to Areches via a blue run (and access back up to Grand Mont chairlift if you want). There is a beginners area at 1200m with snowmaking facilities. There are a good number of red runs and you will also find 3 out of the 4 black runs here (although shorter runs than black Grand Mont at Le Cuvy). You will also find a mountain restaurant Les Arolles at 1910m on the Grand Combe blue slope at the top of the Piapolay chairlift. This chairlift can also be taken down as well like the Grand Mont.

If you are looking for more tree-lined, forest runs (great in bad weather) then the Planay sector is perfect. You can ski down between the trees from 1900m to 1200m. The slopes between 1900m and the summit at 2130m are above the treeline. You will find the slopes at Le Cuvy are more open with forest runs only at the bottom of the blue Sarrazine slope.

Areches Beaufort skiing info

The Arêches-Beaufort ski area has two beginners' areas, one at the Cuvy plateau and one at Planay:

  • At Cuvy (1710m) there is a green run, 2 blue runs to progress to and a fun area that allows beginners to make their first tracks in complete safety and with a breathtaking view of the Mon-Blanc massif. The space also offers deckchairs, giant cushions and picnic tables,
  • At Planay the snow front also offers a green slope, a blue slope, a KidCross and a MiniPark to learn freestyle or skicross. The Espace Fripons brings together a bobsled track and a green track around a covered conveyor belt.

For intermediate skiers, the varied selection of groomed pistes includes some surprisingly steep but wide runs on which to build confidence, along with enough gentler terrain lower down to entertain intermediates still looking to develop their turns. There are blue runs from the summits at 2320m at Le Cuvy ('Perdrix') and 2130m at Planay ('Grande Combe'). These blue slopes run from top to bottom, one totalling 930m in descent. For those looking for more thrills, there are a number of red runs to keep you busy including some ungroomed runs.

Advanced, off-piste & ski touring
As well as two recently introduced ski/snowboarder cross runs beneath Col de La Forclaz, the resort has a good variety of challenging, steep runs, particularly beneath the Col des Combettes. For experts that have tired of the red runs, there are 4 black runs - 1 long run that goes under the Grand Mont chairlift and 3 shorter runs in Le Planay.

Areches Beaufort is an excellent resort for freeride skiing and snowboarding due to its privileged snow cover.

Areches Beaufort has been adopted by professional riders and video production companies for the production of their powder segments and has become a benchmark in the world of freeride skiing and snowboarding.

5 secure, patrolled but ungroomed pistes for all levels:

  • Sector Grand Mont - 'Grand Rognoux' (red), 'Bonne Combe' (red),
  • Sector Planay - 'Lac Rouge', 'Noire', 'Super noire' (all blacks).

Each year, freeriders meet in March for the Arêches-Beaufort Derby event in which they follow a series of timed runs spread over the whole area.

Locally Arêches-Beaufort has a big reputation for free-riding and ski touring – it hosts the hardcore four-day ‘Pierra Menta‘ ski touring event.

Arêches-Beaufort offers 4 permanent ski touring routes (blue, red black, 'nocturne' all a couple of km each) dedicated solely to ski touring in the ski area. The 'Traces' allow for warming up and access the top of the ski area at 2320m by walking outside the flows of alpine skiing. It is then possible to continue with classic hikes to conquer summits such as the Grand Mont, a crossing point for the mythical Pierra Menta.

The 'Trace' routes (see piste map) are open at the same times as the ski area (except the 'Trace' Nocturne which is open one night per week). In the event of danger (snow, weather, avalanche, etc.) they are declared closed by the piste service. Two ski touring passes are sold in resort.

There are freestyle and boardercross areas, however, there are a fair few draglifts which may not be ideal for some less confident snowboarders (individual preference!).

Areches Beaufort mountain fun zones

Ski cross
The Bovoland, created in the Grand-Mont sector in honour of Arnaud Bovolenta (a renowned ambassador of the resort), brings together 4 spaces (Bovocross, Woodcross, Kidcross, Boardercross) dedicated to the discovery and practice of skicross, an extraordinary discipline highlighted by the triple French victory at the 2014 Olympics: Jean-Frédéric Chapuis, Arnaud Bovolenta and Jonathan Midol.

  • Bovocross - along the Rognoux chairlift, at an altitude of 2,050m, a challenging course with 10 banked turns and 9 modules: 5 jumps and 4 series of whoops (level: red/black),
  • Woodcross - at the top of the Bonnets Rouges chairlift at 2050m of altitude, a playful course traced between mountain pastures and forest with whoops, moguls and sharp turns (level: blue/red),
  • Kidscross (Planay) - 1,200m altitude, accessible via the draglifts Pauses and Tronchet, with banked turns and small bumps to start getting the feel in complete safety (level: green),
  • Boardercross - in the snowpark, with banked turns, whoops and a small table to discover the practice (level: green).

Designed for all levels, try the snowpark opposite the Cuvy draglift ('WoodPark') at Arêches-Beaufort for thrills and spills! You can improve your technique hitting those jumps, slider bars and kickers! Situated near to the ski lifts, it is extremely easy to access. The zone is 1.3ha, 300m long and 50m wide with 50m in height. You will find green, blue and red levels. Big air bag available.

Areches Beaufort nordic skiing

Try cross-country skiing at Arêches-Beaufort with more than 30km of marked slopes over two sites: Beaufort-Marcôt and the Cuvy plateau:

The Domaine de Marcôt at 730m in Beaufort village (access via shuttle bus from Areches) offers 6 loops that wind around lakes and rivers. An idyllic setting for learning to nordic ski, to improve your skills or simply to take in nature:

  • One beginner’s slope 1 km,
  • 3 green trails - Discovery trail 1.8km with artificial snowmaking, The Pump trail 2.5km, The Glieres trail 5km,
  • 1 blue trail - The Marcots 8km,
  • 1 red trail - The Grovire 14km

Plateau du Cuvy in Areches at 1710m with 9km of trails accessed via the Grand-Mont chairlift (20m from lift).

Passes can be bought in resort.

Areches Beaufort ski hire & lift passes (pre-bookable)

Pre-book your 6 day+ Areches Beaufort ski hire and/or Areches Beaufort lift pass with Peak Retreats.

To download the ski extras form see 'Helpful links' further down the page. Please note that prices are for indication only. They will fluctuate based on Euro/£ exchange rate. Please call us for the latest prices.

Other lift passes are available to buy in the resort such as half or full-day passes (for those who only wish to ski the odd day) or one-use lift passes for pedestrians. Some resorts also offer specific beginner area passes and cross country passes.

There are also two beginners passes (pay locally) if you prefer:

  • 'Espace premiere trace' - valid in zones 'première trace' du Planay (drags Pauses and Tronchet, carpet Fripons) and Grand-Mont (drags Lutins and Cuvy) with access via chairlift Grand-Mont or gondola Bois,
  • 'Espace Fripons' - carpet Fripons in Planay.

Areches Beaufort group ski school (pre-bookable)

Ski school for children is available to book from 3 to 12 years, in Areches Beaufort, with Peak Retreats. 3 to 4 year olds will go into the Ski Kindergarten (Piou Piou) lessons. Children can learn to snowboard from 10 years+.

To download the ski extras form see 'Helpful links' further down the page. Please note that prices are for indication only. They will fluctuate based on Euro/£ exchange rate. Please call us for the latest prices.

Areches Beaufort private lessons (not pre-bookable)

Private lessons with an instructor can only be arranged directly with the ESF ski school. Peak Retreats cannot pre-book these. Private lessons are usually around €40-60 per hour (depending on resort, time of day and period) and becomes cheaper the more hours you take and the more people you have to share the hours with i.e with family members or friends. Some resorts insist on a minimum of 3 sessions to be booked at once.

Contact ESF Areches Beaufort for private lessons - 0033 4 79 38 64 90

Areches Beaufort childcare (not pre-bookable)

Areches Beaufort has acquired the Famille Plus label for its childcare facilities. Please view here for more information on the Famille Plus label.

If you are after non-skiing childcare for 12 months-6 years, the ESF run 'Les Ptites Frimousses' will cater for your needs. Open Sunday to Friday. Located in the residence Le Cle des Cimes.

Please contact ESF direct as we cannot pre-book this kids club - 0033 4 79 38 10 99. 

It is advisable to book before you go and in good time as spaces get filled quickly, especially in Peak times. A childhood vaccination record will be needed. 

Babysitters (not pre-bookable)

A list of babysitters is available from the tourist office.

Top snow activities to experience in Areches Beaufort

Please note Peak Retreats do not book any activities and most activities are payable therefore the below is just for information. More detailed information and how to book can be found on the tourist office website.

There are 4 areas to experience the luge (toboggan) in Areches-Beaufort:

  • At Le Planay - near to the slopes and childcare centre
  • At Le Solaret - in the heart of the village of Areches (west facing)
  • On plateau Cuvy - accessible via Grand Mont chairlift
  • In the village of Beaufort by the start of the cross-country area Marcot

Plenty of walking trails on the ski area. Passes available in resort.

25km of marked routes from 2km-6km. 6 routes, 4 on Curvy plateau, 1 on the Planay and 1 via car at The Bersend. There is a lovely wooded snowshoe walk from the sunny plateau at Le Cuvy (at the top of the Grand Mont chairlift) down to Areches village. The mountain scenery here is fantastic in any season. Map available from tourist office. 

Snowshoeing (for kids!)
In the forest near to the village of Areches, come and discover the life of mountain animals and look for clues of their travels or play in an igloo. Everyday from 6pm-8pm for 5-12yrs.

Ski touring at night - Areches Dynafit experience
Discover ski touring under the stars. Accompanied by a mountain professional, you will learn how to use the bindings and the use of skins. Open to juniors/teens, 3rd star level. One night per week.

Yooner rental

Mountain bike on snow
Supervised by a qualified mountain bike instructor who will give you all the advice you need to practice the activity in complete safety, equipped with superb electrically assisted "snow tires". One evening per week.

With an easy take-off and landing, on foot or on skis, the flight is accessible from 7 years old. Accompanied by a professional instructor State Certified.

Top activities to experience in Areches Beaufort

Please note Peak Retreats do not book any activities and most activities are payable therefore the below is just for information. More detailed information and how to book can be found on the tourist office website.

The Dairy cooperative of Beaufortain
Beaufort is a mountain cheese, like gruyère, produced in the alpine regions of Savoie - Beaufortain. Visit the milk cooperative, cheese dairy and cellars, exhibition and a new sensory visit... You can watch the Beaufort being made and taste it, and buy it! Free visit every day 9am-12pm and 2pm-6pm. Manufacture of Beaufort visible from the circuit every morning from 9am to 12pm.

Free visits to baroque churches and chapels

  • Araches - every day from 9am-6pm
  • Beaufort - every day from 9am-6pm

There is a market in each village:

  • Areches - local produce market every Monday until 4-7pm during the winter season
  • Beaufort - local produce market every Wednesday morning from 8am-12.30pm

Areches Beaufort Resort News & Events

What's new for 2023/24 season:

  • New lift linking the 2 areas of Areches - The Le Bois gondola will depart from Le Planay (1200m) and end at the Plateau du Cuvy (1736m). This new lift will transport 2800 people p/h, with 10 people per cabin and a journey time of only 6 minutes.

Events taking place in the 2023/24 season:

  • Christmas Market - 26th December 2023 - 2nd January 2024
  • 20th Comedy Festival 25th - 27th January 2024 - 3 evenings of comedy show to discover the young talents and renowned artists of the current French scene
  • 38th edition of the Pierre Menta - 13th - 16th March 2024 - La Pierre Menta is THE international ski mountaineering competition running over 30 years which brings together the elite of the discipline each year around a major competition, recognized as being the quest for the holy grail for athletes. This extraordinary race is similar to a peak marathon. It's the biggest ski mountaineering event in the world! 
  • Alta Festival - 28th March - 1st April 2024 - dance festival in Areches

More information can be found on the tourist office website:

Areches Beaufort après-ski, restaurants & bars

Various restaurants, including 3 mountain restaurants, and a couple of bars.

l'Alpage (mountain restaurant)
The restaurant is located in the middle of the slopes and welcomes you inside, on the terrace or on the snow front in the deckchairs for a drink. It is accessible via the Bonnets Rouges chairlift.

Le Panoramique (mountain restaurant)
At the arrival of the Grand Mont chairlift (pedestrian access is also possible), either on the terrace or inside, Stéphane will welcome you with homemade cooking from local products.

Les Arolles (mountain restaurant)
Les Arolles dominates the valley of Arêches, on the slopes of Planay. Enjoy the aerial terrace, the splendid view and the hearty dishes served up there.

Other restaurants include Le 1947 (offers takeaway), Les 9 Neves and La Fringale (takeaway and pizza).

Areches Beaufort amenities

Sports shops, bakery/butchers, gift shop, tabac, dairy co-operative, tourist office, post office, hairdresser, mini-market, pharmacy (Beaufort), laundrette.

Supérette Proxi
Route du Grand-Mont

Vival Casino Michiardi Josiane
Route du Grand-Mont

Cashpoint in Areches is under the Tourist office.

Petrol stations
There are two petrol stations:

  • Areches - Munier Bernard (Garage des Carroz)
  • Beaufort - Sarl Garage Avocat (La Marsellaz)

Getting to Areches Beaufort, France

By road:
Driving distance from Calais to Areches Beaufort is 578 miles (approx 8hrs30). Autoroute A43: exit at Albertville and follow D925 direction Beaufort. Turn right in the centre of Beaufort for Arêches and the ski area. Listen to Autoroute FM (107.7 FM) for traffic news in English.

By rail:
Take the Eurostar from London St Pancras (or Ashford, Kent). See our train services page for more information. The nearest train station to Areches Beaufort is Albertville.

By air:
4 international airports nearby. See our flying page for information on airlines (however we don't book flights).

Chambery Savoie Mont Blanc Airport to Areches Beaufort is roughly 50 miles, approximately 1hr 15 mins
Lyon-Saint Exupery Airport to Areches Beaufort is roughly 96 miles, approximately 1hr 45 mins
Geneva Airport to Areches Beaufort is roughly 95 miles, approximately 1hr 40 mins
Grenoble Alpes Isere Airport to Areches Beaufort is roughly 100 miles, approximately 1hr 45 mins

Private taxi transfers:
Private taxi transfers from airports and train stations are pre-bookable with Peak Retreats. See our airport & station transfers page for more information.

Bus transfers:
Altibus/Bens Bus/Snow bus (and the likes of) offer shared bus lines from French/Swiss airports and some SNCF train stations to ski resorts. We don't book these (or have any affiliation with), we invite you to do your own research.

Accommodation in Areches-Beaufort

What our clients say

This is a small very French resort - which we wanted. The ski school was excellent geared up for small kids, great wine shop and cheese shop in town.

Mrs S February 2024
More client reviews
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