by: Travis Carpico - 3rd December 2010

  • 4
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 3All-Mtn. Terrain
  • 5Family Friendly
  • 4Nightlife
  • Terrain Park
  • Value
Mountain Layout, Views, Dining
Small

Full review

We went to Courmayeur for a week pre-Christmas a few years ago. It is a very interesting small town that supposedly is a destination for the chic / high-fashion set from Milan. The local food is great, and there are a number of interesting (mostly small) on-mountain dining options. Courmayeur has spectacular views of Mont Blanc and the surrounding peaks from nearly every spot on the mountain. There are a number of other small ski areas in the valley, but we did not try any of them. The skiing was good - the mountain is small, but laid out nicely in a way that allows you to follow the sun -- ski the front of the mountain in the morning, the back of the mountain in the afternoon. While the terrain may seem somewhat steep for beginners or early intermediates, it is somewhat benign and I think that advanced skiers looking for a week-long adventure would be bored with Courmayeur after a day. There are a number of guided trips that can be done, including crossing the glacier into Chamonix in France and returning by bus - but when we visited the snow cover was not yet sufficient to do much more than the groomed main area. The small town is a typical European Alpine town, filled with interesting shops and restaurants. Each day at happy hour, the restaurants lay out free appetizers for anyone inside (this is a typical practice in Northern Italy). As usual in Italy, the people are outgoing and very friendly. I would recommend Courmayeur for families or for anyone looking for a fun, relaxing week in the Alps -- but not necessarily for anyone looking for a hardcore ski experience.
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