Spain: Ski With The Sun In The Pyrenees -
Spain is home to almost 1000 kilometres of ski runs and 36 resorts. Spanish ski areas mean mild temperatures with plenty of sunny days throughout the winter months. Many of them are small resorts with easy runs, perfect for family ski holidays.
The major resorts are found in the Spanish Pyrenees, extending along 450 kilometres of peaks reaching heights of 3000 metres. The Spanish Pyrenees comprises a total of 16 resorts dotted across the Catalonia and Aragon Pyrenees.
The Catalonia Pyrenees is home to Baqueira-Beret, Masella, La Molina, Espot Esqui, Boi Taull, Port del Compte, Tavascan, Rasos de Peguera, Vall de Nuria, and Vallter 2000.
Baqueira-Beret is one of the most famous Spanish ski resorts. It has wide gentle pistes ideal for beginners as well as highly demanding runs for experienced skiers. With its 500 snow cannons it guarantees snow all winter. Apres ski in Baqueira-Beret features plenty of gastro restaurants and lively bars.
The resorts of Masella and La Molina are linked via a cable car and share 100 kilometres of runs. Masella is set at 1600 metres and offers a maximum skiing altitude of 2535 metres. The resort is famous for its spectacular views over the Cerdanya Valley.
Neighbouring La Molina installed the first ski lift in Spain back in 1909 and has been a popular resort ever since. Set at 1700 metres, it offers 53 kilometres of skiable terrain reaching a height of 2445 metres. You’ll also find dog-sledging excursions and snow bikes here. Apres ski Masella and La Molina are relatively laid back offering a selection of bars and restaurants.
Espot Esqui is set at the gateway to the Aiguestortes y Estany de Sant Maurici National Park. it offers 23 kilometres of skiing at 1500 metres, reaching a maximum altitude of 2500 metres. It is particularly popular with skiers wanting to escape the crowds. The northeastern slopes offer some of the prettiest views over the surrounding woodland.
In the heart of the Pyrenees is the Boi Taull resort. It has the highest skiable area in the Pyrenees with a maximum altitude of 2751 metres. Its 44 kilometres of Alpine skiing is covered in high quality snow throughout the season. You’ll also find 1200 hotel beds, ski and snowboard equipment hire, and ski schools.
The neighbouring resorts of Port del Compte (1700), Tavascan (1750), Rasos de Peguera, Vall de Nuria (1964) and Vallter 2000 are situated within easy distance of Barcelona and Girona airports. They share a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. Port del Comte is known for its idyllic slopes flanked by a huge black pine forest, Tavascan is ideal for downhill and Nordic skiing, and the resorts of Vall de Nuria and Vallter offer high-altitude skiing with slopes at 2252 and 2535 metres.
The Aragon Pyrenees is home to the ski resorts of: Candanchu (1530), Astun (1658), Cerler (1500), Formigal (1510) and Panticosa (1500). Candanchu offers 42 kilometres of pistes as well as an international cross-country skiing circuit and a very reputable ski school.
Astun is located at the heart of the Aragon Valley and offers a wide choice of pistes for all levels reaching a height of 2300 metres. Cerler boasts the highest peaks in the Aragon Pyrenees with a maximum height of 2630 metres. Formigal and Panticosa are neighbours in the Tena Valley with more than 100 kilometres of combined pistes.
The Sierra Nevada, set in the Penibetic Mountains, is Europe’s southernmost ski resort. Set more than 3000 metres above sea level, it is bathed in Andalusian sun. Its 91 kilometres of skiable terrain are suitable for all levels. It is also popular for its cross-country skiing, snow park with half pipe, dogsled rides, and night skiing. Also in the Penibetic Mountains is the resort of Puerto de la Ragua, offering a maximum skiing altitude of 2200 metres.
Other ski areas in Spain include: Valdezcarray in the Iberian Mountains; Sierra de Bajar-La Covatilla, La Pinilla, Puerto de Navacerrada, and Valdesqui in the Central Mountains; and Valgrande-Pajares, Alto Campoo, San Isidro, Leitariegos, and Manzaneda in the Cantabrian Mountains.
Spain has a network of international airports with direct flights to the main cities around the world. The ski airports include Barcelona, Madrid, Granada, and Girona.