- Overall Rating 5
- Family Friendly 5
- All-Mtn. Terrain 3
- Terrain Park 3
- Nightlife 4
Date Visited: Feb 20, 2008
We went to Geilo three years ago - it seemed like a good bet for three children aged 6 to 12 who had never skied before, and it was.
It is the most relaxed, friendly place you could hope for - the Norwegians are charming and speak beautiful English. The skiing is brilliantly well organised, fast lifts, no queues (this was at half-term!) and always a smile from the attendants. The ski school is outsanding, and makes lessons as fun as they are instructive. On very cold days, they fed the children hot drinks at regular intervals.
The skiing is easy, with plenty of wide open runs - nothing in the league of an Alpine black run, but some very enjoyable intermediate reds, with very few people on them - I was the first to ski one run, and I am not an early riser! The terrain doesn't have the drama of the Alps, but there is lots of dreamy skiing through trees, perfect for cloudier days, and it is so easy to get around.
There are some wonderful mountain restaurants to be found, and the food is good everywhere - they eat an awful lot of cold meat and fish in Norway! The town is pleasant, a real place rather than just a resort, not picturesque, but a good place to be. The hotel bars and lounges are packed with a mix of holidaymakers and locals in the evenings. For other activities, there is a large cross-country ski area, and you can go out on a husky dog sled on the lake and feel like an Arctic explorer for an hour or so.
So, for a first, second or third ski holiday, I do not think you can do much better - especially if you like a relaxed atmosphere. Sometimes the big Alpine resorts can seem a bit relentless, with everyone skiing as hard and fast and aggressively as possible, fighting for a place in the queues, bagging tables in restaurants and so on. As an antidote to that, Geilo is perfect. Don't expect demanding skiing, but do expect a very good holiday.