by: Patrick Thorne - 21st January 2007

  • 4
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 4All-Mtn. Terrain
  • 3Family Friendly
  • 2Nightlife
  • 3Terrain Park
  • Value

Full review

Originally two villages, the natural advantages and resulting popularity of Crans and Montana led to the two villages joining under one name in the 1960s. Those advantages begin with the resort's wonderful location, on a sunny terrace of lakes and woodland with views across the Rhone Valley and out towards the mountain peaks of the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc. A large, cosmopolitan resort boasting over 80 international restaurants, an excellent range of shops, lively nightlife and culture, a comprehensive program of activities and a wide-ranging choice of sporting activities beyond skiing. Crans Montana's main skiing is divided in to three areas although they are all well lift-linked to one another and by five different gondola lifts from various parts of the resort itself. The biggest is Cry d'Err , the second Violettes - location of many of the resort's tougher runs, and the third Aminona above the purpose built centre of the same name. There is a huge amount of terrain on south-facing slopes and the ski range is from 1,476 metres - a better height than most major resorts in the Alps for resort-level snow cover. The runs reach up to 3,000 metres, crowned by the Plaine-Morte glacier. The resort was the location for the 1987 World Alpine Skiing Championships and the World Alpine Ski Cup Finals of 1992 and 1998. Every year a number of FIS World Cup events are also staged here including men's and women's downhill, super-G, giant slalom and slalom.
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