I went skiing in Morzine and I liked it!
An adapted song lyric that I heard ringing around this French ski resort more than once, this Morzine mantra mostly seemed to emanate from the infamous Folie Douce – a bar notorious for its bench dancing, champagne cheering, cheesy pop fun brilliance.
And, in a way, this sums up Morzine – a lot of fun, in a good-natured, well-meaning and largely harmless way.
Harmless until the Folie Douce closes for the evening and everyone has to ski home… but that’s a different matter!
And in a way, this showcases yet another plus point of Morzine – namely that this is a ski in, ski out resort – 100% free from vehicles and largely, negative vibes too!
Morzine is the place you come to feel good, and boy does it do that.
Ok, so quick confession here, before we go any deeper – I’ve only been to Morzine, in fact I’ve only been skiing once, so don’t expect this article to be some fully-fledged pro rundown on the nature of the slopes here, the various types of snow and the best red runs to take.
It won’t be that. I’ll be lucky to tackle the blue ones quite frankly!
So if you are looking for a technical ski report about the slopes of Morzine, you’re best to move on now – this ain’t gonna be it!
What this post will will be however, is a handy guide to this resort, with all the key info you need to plan, prep and enjoy a trip here.
From location and transport to accommodation lift passes and eateries, ski schools to beginner lessons, I’ve got you covered with my full guide to everything I think you need to know before you go skiing in Morzine.
So let’s get stuck in…
- Where to Find the Best Hotel in Morzine
- Ultimate Ski Trip Packing List
- The Ultimate Apres-Ski Massage… in London!
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So the first thing it’s probably very useful to know before you dive into the world of Morzine ski holidays is, where is this resort!
Situated in the French Alps – no surprise there – Morzine is located in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, at a height of 1000m in the north of the Alps, just 80km from the Swiss city of Geneva.
A small town – Morzine only has a year round population of less than 3000 people and no train station, only a bus station.
But what does make the Morzine name far bigger than the town is the fantastic ski resort that sits above it.
Avoriaz is world famous and, located on a shelf above Morzine, this town revolves around the stunning landscape and fun outdoor activities this huge alpine area provides.
In the winter that is of course snowboarding and skiing, whilst in the summer it’s mountain biking, cycling and camping that take over.
Either way, Morzine is perfectly located to exploit the stunning French Alps and is a delightful retreat away from the overcrowded and over-egged resorts of Chamonix and Val-D’Isere.
The nearest airport is Geneva – book your shuttle transfer here – otherwise, for those eco travellers among you, it’s also easy to get to Morzine via the Eurostar from London St Pancras and then head down on a train to either Cluses, which is 30km away, or Thonon-les-Bains, which is 33km away.
From here, a bus ride will take you to the gare routiere in Morzine, from where you can easily and quickly hop on the free shuttle to your accommodation, or even walk if you’re staying in the centre of town.
Morzine Ski Resort
So yes, as I mentioned the Morzine-Avoriaz ski resort is part of the larger ski area known as Portes du Soleil.
This is one of the largest ski resorts in the French Alps, boasting 580km of runs that provide a huge variety of slopes and scenery.
So big is this resort in fact, that you can ski all the way to the Swiss border in the morning, have lunch and then turn around and come back in the afternoon!
The variety of runs and sheer volume of choice here is just one of the reasons many people seem to return to Morzine year after year.
The resort is adorned by loads of fabulous bars, cafes and eateries, that make the perfect stop-off zone while you admire the view and take a rest from the slopes.
Lifts are easy to catch and well maintained, with updated status on the weather and slopes being posted regularly via the Chilly Powder app.
There’s a regular shuttle bus (which is free) and runs from the centre of Morzine to the cable cars that get you up to Avoriaz.
Otherwise, you can stay somewhere closer to the lifts than town, or even up in the resort itself – but more on that later!
2 main sets of lifts head up to Avoriaz from Morzine too, which means you can generally avoid any morning rush and also choose where you want to head depending on your mood or where you’re staying!
Morzine Ski Pass
It’s good to know that you can get Stay Passes that give you access to the whole Portes du Soleil resort, granting you the ultimate ski freedom for between 5 and 15 days.
Switzerland for lunch anyone?!
You can also get Group Passes that give you a 10% discount when 4 or more people buy Stay Passes for the same duration of time (starting from 4 days).
Or there are Season Passes that give you access to the whole area until the end of the snow. These are generally on sale each year until mid-November, when you can get 10% off for the upcoming season.
Season ski passes usually cost just over 1000€ and include a free child with an adult pass.
Or you can get a border ski pass for under 500€.
There are also passes that cover just the Morzine and Les Gens area if, like me, you’re not planning on skiing that far!
Again these are available in Stay Pass, Group Pass and Season Pass options.
Stay and Group Passes can be bought for periods of 4 or 5 -12 days.
Season passes cost around 750€, but again you can get a discount (usually 20%) by booking before the season starts.
Compare these to the rates of some of the more popular ski resorts and you’re likely to be amazed what good value they provide!
The best prices and easiest booking options can be found online here.
Otherwise, your accommodation may also be able to sort your passes out for you (they may even be included in your package.)
Beginner Skiers at Morzine
So a choice of life passes, as well as the diversity of different runs (including nice greens and blues) are just 2 of the reasons Morzine is a great spot for beginner skiers.
I learnt to ski here myself and can certainly attest to the fact this resort provides a great place to start out – there’s tons of different places to find your ski feet, and then loads of great runs to go off and test yourself after.
Ski lessons can also be booked – I advise doing so at least a couple of weeks before your trip – and I highly recommend Avoriaz Alpine Ski School who I learnt with and who I thought were amazing!
Thanks to Pierre who really put up with my nerves that seemed to set in like crazy on day 3 for some reason!
Morzine Ski Schools
There’s also plenty of action for the kids too, so if you’re skiing as a family it seems Morzine is a great spot to come as well.
Ski schools proliferate if you want to stick the kids in there while you get on and hit the slopes and many accommodation providers, such as Chilly Powder where I stayed – actually provide their own ski school as part of the deal – what a winner for parents!
Where to Stay?
There’s no question that I have to recommend Chilly Powder as THE place to stay when you go skiing in Morzine.
Given it’s the only place I’ve ever stayed when skiing and that they gifted my stay – I am, of course, a little biased, but I genuinely thought this place was incredible and had the best time!
I really loved how easy Chilly Powder made everything, especially for beginner skiers, and how cosy, down-to-earth and friendly they were.
The food was delicious, nothing was too much trouble and I met some great people.
It was not pretentious at all, which I really liked too and was definitely the sort of place you could enjoy a beer in the hot tub or go to breakfast in your pyjamas!
Learn more in this full review article I wrote about my stay there, but the long and short of it is that their bar tab system is lethal!
Where to Eat?
As you know if you’ve nipped across and read my review, one of the things I loved most about Chilly Powder was the food (takes a lot for me to say that!) and the fact the hotel was fully catered, so I literally didn’t have to think about anything!
So nice, because skiing really took up a lot of my brain energy!
Anyway, if you’re not so lucky where you’re staying, or you’re in a chalet with self-catering and therefore want to go out on a couple of evenings for food, then rest assured Morzine has some fantastic options.
Fitting the bill perfectly for me was the relaxed local brewery – Bec Jaune – a fab local haunt that served lots of excellent beer (obvs) and some nice lowkey international and veggie-friendly food options.
If you want something a bit more traditional however, check out Le Grillon for great regional cuisine, such as raclette and pierrade, or the highly rated French food restaurant, with influences from the southwest of the county, at Le Clin d’Oeil.
You can also find Italian food in Morzine, including excellent pizzas, at La Rotonde.
And it’s not just restaurants you’ll find in the centre of town.
No, this well-service spot also has a heap of shops, a couple of good supermarkets for you to stock up at, a tourist office, a bank and some other key facilities you might need.
The town is so small that it’s easy to find your way around and walking, or getting the shuttle bus, are definitely the best transport options.
How to Book Your Morzine Ski Holiday?
Have I convinced you that your next ski trip should be to Morzine yet?
I certainly hope so!
If yes, then why not get in touch with Chilly Powder and see how they can help you arrange the best ski holiday possible – no matter whether you’re looking for catered or self-catered accommodation they have you covered.
With great connections across Morzine, from gear rental to lift passes and even transfer from Geneva, they can sort everything for you, so all you need to do is turn up and get ready to have the best time.
Honestly, my trip to Morzine absolutely sold me within just a week and now I’m a huge fan of skiing and can’t wait to go again next year.
And no prizes for guessing where I’ll be going!
It’s the Morzine ski life for me!
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SAVE IT TO PINTEREST!
So there you have it, my complete guide to Morzine skiing.
Giving you the full lowdown on the hows, whys and wherefores of enjoying a ski holiday here I hope it’s answered all the questions you have.
If I have missed anything though, please don’t hesitate to drop your questions into the comments box below and I’ll get back to you!