Family holidays in Les Arcs
Discover insights about Les Arcs family holidays
Whether you come to Les Arcs in the winter or summer, you and the kids are sure to leave with a big smile on your face. From world-class skiing to rafting, biking, hiking and climbing, there are loads of things to do as a family here.
Why Les Arcs is good for families
- The resort is split into four distinct areas, some of which are quieter and well suited to families
- There’s lots of childcare available
- The summer climate is great for kids - warm but not scorching in the day and cool at night
- From nursery slopes to some of the best skiing in the world, Les Arcs has terrain to suit skiers of all abilities
Accommodation for families
If you’re coming for a ski holiday with a young family, look for accommodation near any of the lifts. The fewer steps your little people have to take in ski boots, the better (for all concerned!).
Les Arcs is made up of four distinct holiday villages. Arc 1600, Arc 1800, Arc 1950 and Arc 2000 are all pedestrianised and offer direct access to the ski slopes. There are also three outlying villages within the ski area - Plan Peisey, Vallandry and Peisey Nancroix. These are smaller, traditional villages that offer a more tranquil ski holiday.
Wherever you stay in Les Arcs, make sure that your accommodation, ski hire and ski school meet-up points are all in the same locality.
Arc 1950: you'll find modern five star spacious accommodation here (all with access to swimming pools), baby equipment on request, childcare from nine months, and a good selection of daily family-focused entertainment.
Arc 2000: smaller and quieter, it's linked to Arc 1950 by a short gondola ride and offers alternative activities such as the Igloo Village and outdoor ice rink.
Arc 1800: most lively of the resorts and home to the Mille8 leisure complex, which features an events venue and a wonderful aquatic centre. There are also great nursery and beginner slopes.
Arc 1600: quiet place to stay, with fewer facilities than the neighbouring villages.
Plan Peisey, Vallandry and Peisey Nancroix: for chalet accommodation you will most likely find what you need in these three outlying villages. All three are quiet villages with a traditional feel, and all are connected to the main ski area by ski lift.
Lift passes for families
Lift passes make up a significant portion of the cost of a family holiday to the mountains, so it pays to check you’re buying the right ticket for your group.
Here in Les Arcs there are various concessions to help you keep your costs down, such as:
- kids under 5 use the lifts for free
- kids between 5 and 12 pay a reduced ('youth') rate
- there are reduced-price ski passes if you only want to use the beginner areas
- you can buy a pedestrian pass - if maybe you or your partner don’t ski, but you still want to go up and watch the kids
You can buy half day lift tickets if a full day on the mountain seems too long for the little ones. It’s not a lot cheaper than an all day ticket, but it’ll save you a little bit.
Lift passes in Les Arcs for families of four or more
If you're a family of four or more, you'll be able to save money on the regular ticket price by buying a 'family lift pass'. With one of these every member benefits from a discount per person.
Ski schools for families
If you have designs on raising the next Shaun White or Chemmy Alcot, then getting your children into ski school will be a priority!
The main ski schools cater for young children, offering:
- full and half-day sessions
- English speaking guides
- children have a dedicated area where they can learn how to snow plough, stop, turn and glide safely
Ski schools usually take weekly bookings, so if you’re only here for a few days it’s good to check if there’s any space for your children.
What age can children start ski lessons
Ski schools will take them from 3 years old. At this age, the focus is on having fun in the snow, so there are normally inflatables and games to play.
Most beginner areas also have a ‘magic carpet’ travelator (a bit like the ones you get at airports) to get kids and beginner adults to the top of the slopes without having to contend with lifts.
Whether you’re a kid or an adult, half-day lessons are normally more than enough if you’re a novice.
What’s included in the price of a lesson
The price you pay for a ski lesson is for tuition only. Ski passes are not included.
So for kids aged 5 and over, you’ll need to make sure they have:
- a valid ski pass (you can get discounted passes if you're only using the nursery slopes)
- skis, helmets, goggles - you can hire these from one of the many ski hire shops in the resort
- appropriate clothing, like salopettes and a jacket, warm layers and gloves
A ski pass isn’t necessary for those under five, but you'll still need to buy a hands-free card for them to use on the turnstiles. You can get one of these from any lift station, take ID to prove their age.
Ski areas for families
A decent mix of terrain should keep all the family happy.
Each village has its own beginners areas with gentle slopes and slow drag lifts
With the lowest nursery areas being at 1,600m, you are guaranteed good quality snow to learn on.
Les Arcs forms a part of the famous Paradiski ski area, with over 425km of pistes, a modern ski lift infrastructure and superb snow parks.
Activities for families
Les Arcs is a year-round resort, and it’s a great place to come whether it’s winter or summer. It all depends on what you love doing.
If you’ve got children, here are a few things you might want to try.
|Time of year
|What it is
|called Rodeo Park, 3km with banked turns
|Arc 1800 and Arc 2000
|Both feature amusement arcades
|Ice skating (outdoor)
|Outdoor rink with skate hire
|Complex with restaurants, swimming pool, fitness centre
|Access included in lift pass
|Arc 1800 - by the tourist office
|Shows films in English (look for VOST)
|By the tourist office
There are several options for childcare.
Arc 1950 probably has the most inclusive childcare in the resort, with its Cariboo Children's Club. But each village has good childcare options, children's ski schools operate in each resort and independent nanny agencies are also available.
If you're here during summer
You may find that the main sports centre of each town host a kids club during the summer holidays, with activities such as swimming, climbing, tennis, basketball, ice-skating, etc. and organised hikes and picnics.