When the weather is at its stormiest, even the hardiest and happiest of skiers can find themselves in search of something else to do. And sometimes it's just fun to ring the changes.
That can be particularly true of holidays with teenage children. We know, from lots of experience in creating happy family vacations in France, that sometimes, adding some variation means everyone enjoys their ski days even more. So, here are our top tips for keeping teens on top form!
A high speed, big smile, activity which generally takes place at the end of the day les Houches after skiers and boarders have cleared the pistes – meaning you get the mountain to yourselves to discover just how fast you teenagers can make their Paret run.
These little single runner sledges have a plank for a seat and a single handle for steering. Don’t be fooled by the simplicity, these things will speed. They first came into use at the beginning of the last century as a way of kids getting to school on snow-covered roads. Pareting would certainly make it more fun even now – check out the video!
Next on our list is working with huskies and having a canine powered sledging experience. Sledging with a dog pack pulling you may look straightforward, but there is lots to learn. It can be kept simple, with an experienced musher taking the reins or expanded into an opportunity to work with a pack. It’s an extraordinary sport and discovering more about how to work in harmony with man’s best friend is something we know our guests love.
Another opportunity to take a step back in time and discover how man has adapted to travelling across the snow in the winter. All that’s needed are ski boots for this adventure which involves exploring the backcountry using horsepower and skis. Nordic in its origins, ski joëring with horses was a demonstration sport as long ago as the St Mortiz Winter Olympics and is early history dates back to 2,500 years BC. The term applies whether you are skiing with dogs or with horses.
Number 4 – Feel the Luge
This Planards-based favourite is in operation all winter. And, better yet, if you have a Mont Blanc Unlimited 6-day pass, you get a free go on the luge every day! There are 1300 metres of fun at the luge with jumps, turns and a 540° spin. What’s more, it’s weatherproof and floodlit – so fun no matter what time you get there or what the elements are throwing at you. You can ride alone or in pairs, so a terrific option for teens or families with kids of all ages.
Chamonix has a fantastic indoor ice rink which has regular and frequent openings. In the centre of town, it’s easily accessed by bus and skates can be hired on site. A great way to burn off steam. Definitely on our fun for all the family list!
Did you know that tucked in the centre of Chamonix, you’ll find a small but perfectly formed three-screen cinema? As you’d expect, there are lots of films in French, but there’s also a great line up of films in English – look out for VOSTFR which means it’s in English with French subtitles. A great way to relax and to brush up on your language skills. The Cinema Vox programme is available to download any time you want.
We know that guests of all ages love the Jacuzzi and spa facilities at BlackRock. For those who love to swim or simply fancy mucking about in hot water, then there are leisure and training pools, water jets, a Jacuzzi and a water slide too at the Centre Sportif Richard Bozon in Chamonix. You can even add on a trip to the sauna and Hammam.
No need to let snow stop play, when you rent a Fat Bike. It may be the tyres that are fat, but that’s what makes these fun. With tyres more than double the width of a standard mountain bike, you’ll be out of puff just pumping them up.
All you need to is ask us about the great activities we can arrange to keep all the family happy and we can arm you with the latest information.
Happy holidays from Lizzy and Paul