As much of continental Europe is covered in mountain ranges there are amazing places to ski and snowboard. Almost every country has their favorite destinations for winter. Some of the best known slopes and chalets are expensive, but there are many affordable places too.
One can easily find places where a single hotel night costs up to 300 Euro and lift pass and rental that goes for 100 Euro. Going to a lesser known facility does not mean sacrificing fun and great experiences. Many of the places we’ve visited offer first class facilities, equipment rental, great hotels, delicious restaurants and gorgeous nature. Some are better known, while others are just being discovered. When planning a winter sports vacation don’t just follow the crowds and fame. This year adventure may be calling you elsewhere and the price tag might be far lower!
Poiana Brasov, Romania
This is the heart of Transylvania with the rugged Carpathian Mountains. The town is historic and has lots to offer, a great day trip from Bucharest. There are hotels all around the slopes and a very welcoming sports school offers great lessons. The equipment rental is really affordable.
Spinderluv Mlyn, Czech Republic
Sitting around 2 hours from Prague the drive is easy and scenic. These are the highest mountains in the country and they have beautiful downhills, cross country trails and lovely homes and hotels. For a special treat drive to the town of Janske Lazne just 34km away for a fantastic spa village. Lessons are affordable and the downhills are good for beginners especially.
The Balkans of SE Europe are filled with great mountain ranges and no frills ski resorts. Logistics might be more challenging, but it is very affordable to take buses and taxi’s around the country as we did to get to Bresovica. The hills were challenging and the nature simply beautiful.
This beautiful part of Bulgaria is a throwback to a medieval town on the very massive slopes of towering mountains. There are wonderful hotels, lots of condominiums and a very well developed winter sports center.
High Tatras, Slovakia
These mountains are dotted with tons of little towns and ski trails and runs. The Kempinski Hotel High Tatras is an absolute palace with all the perks of sitting in the heart of the action. Cross country skiing here is spectacular.
This historic town with its own unique style of wooden architecture is a fascinating place to experience the Polish side of the Tatras Mountains. The town, lodging and anything related with winter sports are very affordable and the people are great. Sloes are good for intermediate enthusiasts.