The 10 Best Places To Snowboard In Europe [2024]

by Fraser
Updated:

Europe is literally packed with world-class ski resorts. That’s what makes it a certified snowboarding paradise! I should know, I’ve lived here for years!

With high-altitude destinations, deep powder stashes and resorts with incredible snow parks, Europe offers something for every rider.

So… in this article, I’m going to reveal the best places to snowboard in Europe. That way you’ll be ready to book your next venture!

But what’s in a name? You’re gonna need the down and dirty details. Keep reading for the full breakdown!

1. Avoriaz, France

Editor's Choice!
1. Niseko
  • Huge area to explore
  • Direct links with Morzine
  • Awesome snowparks
  • Great après scene
  • Excellent off-piste (when you know where to look)

✖️Some people don't like how the resort looks - it admittedly lacks some of the charm of older resorts

Detailed Review

Avoriaz in France is located in the Portes du Soleil, one of the world’s largest ski areas. To be more precise, it actually straddles the French-Swiss border.

It’s quite a quirky ski resort due to its architecture and car-free streets. Although this won’t be to everyone’s taste. 

It is an excellent base for exploring the Portes du Soleil, as you are on the snow as soon as you set foot outside your accommodation. The Portes du Soleil boasts 650km of pistes to suit all abilities. Thanks to the ever-improving ski lift system, you’ll be surprised how far you can travel in a super short time.

Avoriaz, France (one of the best places to snowboard in europe)

Avoriaz itself has excellent slopes for snowboarders, with lots of off-piste terrain… especially if you’re willing to hike or splitboard for it (Avoriaz is actually where I had my first ever splitboarding adventure). 

But there are also some superb snow parks. For example, the d’Arare snowpark has some awesome features that change each winter. Lower down, the Chapelle Park has features suitable for beginners and experienced shredders.

the d'arare snow park

In addition to these parks, Avoriaz is home to “The Stash”, Burton’s snowpark set in the forest of Linderets. All the jumps and rails are built from wood harvested from the forest. Sustainable snowboarding at it’s finest!

Some features are incredibly intimidating, but it’s lots of fun on a powder day if you get up early.

Fun Fact

Avoriaz used to be a cultural centre when it was first built in the 1960s, hosting film festivals and premiers. The architecture divides opinion, but it was considered chic back then. There are some pretty cool photos of Clint Eastwood walking around the snowy streets back in the 60s and 70s.

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 1800 to 2466 m
  • Trails: Over 40 in Avoriaz, but over 200 across the Portes du Soleil
  • Off-Piste: Lots… some easy to get to and some that require more effort
  • Snow Parks: 4 in Avoriaz, but there are loads within the ski area
  • Lifts: 21

Lift Ticket Prices

A full Portes du Soleil Pass is €292.50 for 6 days. However, you can buy a local pass, and there are deals for just riding the snowparks.

How To Get To Avoriaz (and Morzine)

Fly into Geneva and get a transfer or hire a car. You can be in Avoriaz in under 2 hours by road. Remember that it is a car-free resort, so you probably won’t go back to your car until it’s time to go home.

2. St Anton, Austria

Freeride Pick
St Anton, Austria
  • Reliable snow cover
  • Great lift system
  • Suitable terrain for everyone
  • Awesome variety of trails
  • Excellent backcountry and freeride terrain

✖️Crowded during peak weeks
✖️Accommodation can be expensive ($$$)

Detailed Review

Saint Anton Am Arlberg is a high-end destination that is the envy of other ski resorts. Snowboarders go there for its incredible backcountry terrain and reliable snow cover, making it a powder hound’s dream!

One of the great things about St Anton is that the terrain is varied enough to keep everyone entertained, from beginners to seasoned pros. It is also a party town with a top-notch après scene, ideal for raising a glass to an epic day on the mountain.

St Anton’s backcountry and freeride areas are extensive. Expect scary drops and tight chutes that will have you shaking in your snowboard boots.

ST ANTON AUSTRIA (IMPRESSIVE MOUNTAINS)

However, there is some excellent terrain for intermediate riders, especially those who enjoy blasting the groomers. For example, you can take on the Ski Alberg tour, which involves 85 km of riding.

If you are a beginner rider or just fancy taking it easy, St Anton has some lovely runs with gentle gradients at lower altitudes. These are ideal for honing your skills and progressing to the steeper stuff when ready.

Fun Fact

You may be lucky to be there when the “White Thrill Race” is on. This is an epic race where hundreds of skiers and snowboarders hurtle from the top of the Valluga cable car to the bottom of the Galzig gondola. If you are brave enough, you can enter (or watch from a safe distance from one of the many bars facing the mountain).

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 4,278 feet (1,303 m)
  • Trails: (189 miles) 305km 
  • Off-Piste: Dreamy
  • Snow Parks: 1, but it is amazing!
  • Lifts: 88

Lift Ticket Prices

St Anton has a seemingly endless list of options for lift tickets. Therefore I recommend you check out St Anton’s website for great deals and the perfect option for you and your group.

How To Get To St Anton

Most of St Anton’s visitors arrive via Innsbruck airport, which is roughly 100 km away from the resort. Alternatively, people fly into Zürich airport, just under 200 km away.

3.Verbier, Switzerland

Biggest Area!
Verbier
  • Huge ski area (massive!)
  • Lively après scene
  • Great food options
  • Awesome backcountry guides
  • Excellent off-piste terrain accessible from lifts (if you know where to go)

✖️It can get busy
✖️It ain't cheap!

Detailed Review

Verbier is regarded as one of the best places for snowboarding in Europe. This ski resort sits in the 4 Valleys, the largest ski area in Switzerland!

Snowboarders are attracted to Verbier for its world-class terrain, both on and off-piste. Some of my best European powder days were courtesy of Verbier!

verbier switzerland

The bustling village blends traditional style with contemporary. Unlike some large ski resorts, Verbier has managed to retain its charm and be aesthetically pleasing. It is genuinely a nice place to be.

One of the advantages of going snowboarding in Verbier is that it gives you access to the rest of the 4 Valleys. This means you get 410 km of pistes to charge around and experience the area’s extensive freeride terrain. Therefore, if you are an advanced rider, you will have plenty of opportunities to find some fun freeride zones.

verbier mountains

The freeride terrain in Verbier is one of the resort’s main attractions for advanced riders. The only thing is you need to get up early to be at the front of the lift queue to claim fresh tracks.

However, if you don’t know the area, it is challenging to find the good stuff. With this in mind, we recommend that you book a guide who will show you the best places to go!

Freestylers can have fun in the air at the snowpark at Le Chaux. This snowpark has a wide range of features, including jumps, rails, and boxes. One of the outstanding elements is its airbag, so you can practice your jumps in relative safety.

Fun Fact

Verbier is on the freeride world tour circuit, where you can see some of the world’s best freeriders take on the gnarly face of Bec De Rosses.

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 4,921 feet (1,500 m)
  • Trails: 255 miles (410 km) 
  • Off-Piste: Epic
  • Snow Parks: 1 incredible one
  • Lifts: 74 

Lift Ticket Prices

An adult day pass will cost you CHF 80; a child’s pass is CHF40, but kids under seven can shred for free.

How To Get To Verbier

Most people arrive in Verbier via Geneva airport. From here, you can get on a private or shared transfer to Verbier or even take the train. Another way to get to Verbier is to fly into Sion airport, about an hour away by road.

4. Livigno, Italy

Livigno, Italy
  • Excellent varied terrain for all levels of rider
  • Superb freestyle scene
  • Not too expensive
  • The food *chef's kiss*
  • Great snow cover!

✖️It's often quite busy
✖️On-piste riding is limited for advanced riders.

Detailed Review

Livigno is one of the best places to snowboard in Europe, thanks to its freeride terrain and snow parks.

It also has meticulously maintained slopes and a vibrant nightlife and après scene. On top of all this, Livigno’s varied slopes and reliable snow cover make it an excellent option for riders of all levels.

One of the cool things about the ski area is that the marked slopes are long and wide. Therefore, if you like to charge on the groomers, this Italian ski resort is one of the best places to go.

But you can also have a lot of fun in the backcountry areas, some of which are easy to access. You can reach some of them straight off the lifts or after a short hike.

livigno Italy

Livigno also has a significant freestyle scene thanks to the 3 excellent snow parks. They are world-class and often attract pro riders training on the bigger jumps in the Mottolino Park.

However, if you’re a beginner freestyler, head to the San Rocco Park before graduating to the intermediate features of the Carosllo Park.

Fun Fact

The Mottolino Park has won multiple awards for the quality of its features and how well they are maintained. It has also been used for the Burton European Open, where Europe’s best riders compete head-to-head. 

Even funner fact… I landed my first invert in Livigno!

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 5,958 feet (1816 m)
  • Trails: 71.5 miles (115 km)
  • Off-Piste: Lots, but book a guide
  • Snow Parks: 3 excellent ones
  • Lifts: 31

Lift Ticket Prices

An adult day pass costs between €31 and €59. Kids can ride for a day for €15. Not bad right?

How To Get To Livigno

If you fly into Italy, you can get to Livigno via Milan and Bergamo airports. However, you can also get there via Zürich in Switzerland. Flying into Milan is the easiest option as you can get to the resort via shuttle buses, car or train.

5. Laax, Switzerland

Laax, Switzerland
  • The huge ski area
  • Great lift system
  • Reliable snow coverage
  • World-class Snow Parks
  • Training ground for pro riders
  • Excellent après scene

✖️Can be expensive (very)
✖️Park can be intimidating for beginners - although there is an awesome smaller section

Detailed Review

Laax is regarded as one of Switzerland’s best ski areas. It is also one of the largest, with an excellent lift system. You will enjoy lots of terrain, including challenging backcountry and leg-burning runs. But many snowboarders head to Laax for its impressive snow parks. Seriously impressive!

You can catch some serious air in the superpipe and colossal snow park. Additionally, you can ride from the glacier at 3000 m to well below the tree line both on and off-piste.

Fun Fact

Laax is where the Professional Snowboard Freestyle Academy is located. Snowboarders visit it from all over the world to perfect their freestyle skills. Grab a beer and watch some park laps. It’s like watching the Olympics!

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 3,445 feet (1,050 m)
  • Trails: 140 miles (224 km)
  • Off-Piste: Vast and brilliant
  • Snow Parks: Oh yeah!
  • Lifts: 28

Lift Ticket Prices

It will cost an adult at least CHF55 to ride for a day, but the prices fluctuate throughout the season. Kids’ prices start from about CHF 19, but kids under six can ride for free!

How To Get To Laax

Most people fly into Zürich airport to get to Laax. From here you can transfer from the airport via train, car or bus.

Some Laax Footage

6. Tignes, France

Tignes, France
  • Expansive ski area with diverse terrain
  • Reliable snow coverage
  • World-class snow parks
  • Vibrant après-ski scene
  • Connected to Val d'isere (another legendary resort)

✖️Longer transfer times
✖️The architecture is not pretty (though the landscape certainly is!)

Detailed Review

Tignes is renowned for its vast ski area, reliable snow conditions, and excellent terrain. It offers an extensive network of lifts and pistes. The terrain caters to snowboarders of all skill levels, from beginners to seasoned pros. It is a perfect spot for learning and pushing your limits.

The off-piste opportunities in Tignes are spectacular. You can expect vast, brilliant backcountry terrain suitable for adventurous riders seeking untouched powder and challenging descents.

Additionally, Tignes has some great snow parks, so whether you’re an aspiring freestyle enthusiast or a seasoned pro, you can catch serious air and perfect your tricks.

Fun Fact

The original village was built in the valley below the resort. But the whole place was intentionally flooded when the hydroelectric dam was built in 1952. You can see the old village once every 10 years when the water is drained for maintenance. It’s like Atlantis!

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 5,085 to 11320 feet (1,550 and 3,450 m)
  • Trails: 186 miles (300 km)
  • Off-Piste: Vast and brilliant
  • Snow Parks: 2
  • Lifts: 39

Lift Ticket Prices

An adult lift ticket typically costs around €63 a day, and prices may vary throughout the season. Children’s tickets start from approximately €53, and kids under six can ride for free.

How To Get To Tignes

Most visitors to Tignes arrive at Geneva International Airport or Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport. You can reach the resort by car, private transfer, or bus from the airport.

7. Ischgl, Austria

Ischgl, Austria
  • Huge and diverse ski area
  • Reliable snow cover
  • Awesome lift network
  • Suitable off-piste terrain for all abilities

✖️Can get busy during peak weeks
✖️Advanced riders may find the groomed slopes a little too easy

Detailed Review

After many years of riding in Ischgl, I still can’t pronounce the name! But that won’t stop me from going back. 

Ischgl is incredibly popular for snowboarders who like a party atmosphere. But the ski area is enormous as it links with the neighbouring Samnaun ski resort.

It has many north-facing slopes, so the snow cover is maintained. Still, there are some tremendous sunny pistes suitable for beginners and intermediates too.

You will find some superb beginner slopes and a couple of snow parks to play in. If you’re a more experienced rider, you can head out into the backcountry and more remote areas for challenging terrain.

Fun Fact

Ischgl is known for its extravagant opening and closing parties of the ski season. World-renowned artists and bands have performed at these events, turning the resort into a make-shift concert venue amidst the stunning alpine scenery.

Take it from me, it’s a great way to welcome in the season!

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 4,518 feet (1,377 m)
  • Trails: 124 miles (238 km)
  • Off-Piste: great, but you need to make an early start to get ahead of the crowds
  • Snow Parks: 2
  • Lifts: 74

Lift Ticket Prices

There are many options for lift passes, but an adult should expect to pay about €67 for a day pass.

How To Get To Ischgl

You can get to Ishgl via the airports at Munich, Innsbruck in Zürich. Munich is three hours by car, Zürich two hours 35 minutes, and Innsbruck just over an hour.

8. Val Thorens, France

Val Thorens, France
  • Extensive ski area with lots of variety
  • High altitude guarantees excellent snow conditions
  • Extensive off-piste
  • World-class snow parks for freestyle enthusiasts
  • Super efficient lift system

✖️The altitude can make bad weather days pretty miserable

Detailed Review

Val Thorens is nestled in the heart of the Three Valleys ski area in the French Alps. As the highest ski resort in Europe, it guarantees fantastic snow conditions throughout the season.

The Three Valleys is one of the largest ski areas in the world. Snowboarders of all levels are spoilt for choice, with a variety of terrain for all abilities.

val thorens, france

Val Thorens often boasts one of the longest ski seasons, allowing you to enjoy riding on the slopes well into late spring or early summer.

Off-piste enthusiasts will find themselves in heaven with the extensive backcountry options available. You will also find top-notch snow parks with a wide range of features.

Val Thorens is also home to the infamous on-slope après spot, La Folie Douce.

I remember my first time there… Maybe it was the altitude, or perhaps the drinks were too strong. Either way, the next thing I knew I was dancing on the table until the lifts closed. The journey down was eventful. Don’t drink and ride kids!

Fun Fact

Val Thorens is the highest ski resort in Europe, situated at an altitude of 2,300 meters (7,546 feet). Because of its high-altitude location, Val Thorens often has a longer ski season compared to other resorts, and it usually enjoys excellent snow conditions.

The resort is part of the world’s largest ski area, Les Trois Vallées (The Three Valleys), which offers extensive snowboarding opportunities for all levels.

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 7,454 feet (2,300 m)
  • Trails: 370 miles (600 km) for the whole 3 Valleys
  • Off-Piste: Great, especially if you know what you’re doing
  • Snow Parks: 1 huge one, but there are many others throughout the area
  • Lifts: 183 covering the whole 3 Valleys

Lift Ticket Prices

An adult lift pass usually costs around €60-€70 per day, and prices may vary during the season. Children’s tickets are typically available from €30-€40, while kids under five can often ride for free.

How To Get To Val Thorens

Most visitors arrive at Geneva International Airport or Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport. You can then easily access Val Thorens by car, private transfer, or bus.

9. Davos-Klosters, Switzerland

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland
  • Fantastic terrain, both on and off-piste
  • Above-average snowfall
  • Great for people who like long runs
  • Quiet on a powder day

✖️An ageing lift system
✖️Slightly lacking in Swiss charm

Detailed Review

Davos-Klosters is a premium ski resort frequented by the rich, famous, and royalty. But anyone can enjoy the extensive ski area that incorporates six separate resorts. This large area gets above-average snowfall, making the freeride terrain fantastic.

Much of the slopes are above 1900 m, so the snow quality is preserved. It’s also great if you are a fan of long runs, as there are a few over 12 km long. It’s worth noting that there are a few flat sections and lots of drag lifts, so complete novices may struggle.

Fun Fact

Davos-Klosters is the highest city in Europe, sitting at 1560 m (5100 feet) above sea level. The altitude makes the air in Davos quite dry, so it became a haven for tuberculosis sufferers. Don’t worry though, they’re clear now!

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 5,118 feet (1,560 m)
  • Trails: 186 miles (300 km)
  • Off-Piste: Fantastic and easy to access
  • Snow Parks: Head to Jakobshorn for jumps
  • Lifts: 54

Lift Ticket Prices

An adult day pass for the entire area costs between CHF 70 and CHF 82. A child’s pass will set you back from CHF 28 to CHF 33, but kids under six can ride for free.

How To Get To Davos-Klosters

You can reach Davos-Klosters via the fantastic Swiss railway system. It takes 2 hours 30 minutes from Zürich airport by rail, but only 2 hours by car.

10. Sestriere, Italy

Sestriere, Italy
  • Reliable snow conditions
  • Excellent backcountry for advanced riders
  • Quiet slopes during the week
  • Good value lift passes

✖️Not many beginner slopes
✖️Slopes can be busy at weekends

Detailed Review

Sestriere was established in the 1930s, making it one of the first-ever purpose-built ski resorts. It is a high-altitude resort, so you can expect a long winter season and excellent snow conditions.

On top of this, it’s linked to neighbouring resorts of Sauze d’Oulx and Cesana-Sansicario, creating the Via Lattea ski area.

You’ll find some fantastic tree-lined runs at lower altitudes and some leg-burning pistes suitable for more experienced riders. In addition, the ski area gives you access to some challenging backcountry that stays relatively untracked.

Fun Fact

Sestriere is one of the best places to go Heliboarding from.

Essential Stats

  • Elevation: 6,677 feet (2,035 m)
  • Trails: 248 miles (400km )
  • Off-Piste: 3 freeride zones and some forested terrain
  • Snow Parks: 1 small one, but it’s good
  • Lifts: 69

Lift Ticket Prices

To ride in the Via Lattea Area costs an adult around €44 a day. However, you can pay €53.50 if you want to ride in Montgenevre over in France (which is well worth doing for at least one day).

How To Get To Sestriere

Sestriere is about 100 km from Turin, which is the closest airport. Still, you can also fly from non-European destinations to Milan Malpensa and Lyon in France.

Why Listen To My Opinions?

I’m not just a tourist; I’m a local who’s made the snow-capped peaks of the Alps my home and playground. Living here has allowed me to explore and experience a huge number of resorts, diving deep into what each one offers.

My snowboarding adventures are backed by extensive, hands-on experience, providing a wealth of practical knowledge.

So, why listen to me? Because when it comes to snowboarding in Europe, I’ve lived it, breathed it, and am here to give you the real, unfiltered lowdown.

Disagree with my choices? Let’s battle it out in the comments!

Final Thoughts

These are some of the best places to snowboard in Europe. I chose them for their reliable snow cover, how well they accommodate snowboarders, and how easy it is to have a good time.

If you’re planning a European snowboarding trip, I highly recommend checking out these excellent destinations.

If you’re tempted to travel further afield, I also recommend exploring the world’s best ski resorts.

Happy riding, amigo!

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