Scenary, skiing, lift system, variety, prices, people, Bagneres-de-Bigorre, Bareges
crowded car parking, La Mongie buildings
La Mongie is one of the two entrances to the "Domaine Du Tourmalet " ski area, the other is Barèges.
It is based around a valley and mountain pass, the "Col Du Tourmalet", famous as a mountain climb on the Tour de France. Basically you have skiing on both the La Mongie side, and can take a lift to the top and ski down the Bareges side, or vice-versa.
La Mongie is above the tree-line, whereas Bareges has tree-lined runs (glade skiing).
It is a great resort for up to advanced skiers, experts may find the runs limited - unless they decide to go off-piste. The off-piste skiing is amazing as there are almost no restrictions. However you are advised not to ski if the risk is 4 on a scale of 1 up to 5, so it is at your own risk when it is level 3!
Prices are MUCH lower than in the alps. Lift passes are very reasonable, especially if booked in advance, as is ski rental. On mountain prices were about 2.5 Euros for a coffee, 3.5 for a decent sandwich, not bad considering you are up the mountain.
The ski school prices are not too high and very friendly.
The runs are very beautiful. As regards where to stay, Barèges is a traditional mountain village whereas La Mongie is a purpose built ski station. This does mean facilities are of a very high standard, if not particularly beautiful, though the station does not dominate the resort in views, etc.
If you want the best of both worlds; a lovely spa town and great skiing facilities, then stay down in Bagneres-de-Bigorre (plenty of reviews on tripadvisor) and do the 20km drive up each day, it is easy.
Bagneres has a great spa, "Aquensis", which is open during the ski season.
it is also worth going up to the Pic di Midi (it takes two cable cars to reach from La Mongie), advanced skiers can ski off-piste from the observatory, experts can abseil unto a super black run.