The resort with a red pompom hat
La Plagne’s multiplicity is reflected in the mosaic of altitude and village sites spread over a huge area set between 1250m and the glacier at 3250 m. The sports-oriented, family-friendly resort is part of Paradiski, the world’s second largest ski area. Its après-ski offer is another asset with a wide range of activities, including the one and only Olympic bobsleigh track in France, open to the general public for descents.
1 resort = 10 destinations
Plagne 1800, Plagne Centre, Plagne Aime 2000, Plagne Bellecôte, Plagne Villages, Plagne Soleil and Belle-Plagne are all situated above 1800 metres.
The “altitude sites”, as they are known locally, are all ski-in, ski-out and were built progressively between 1961 and 1990 on an unspoiled area. A real winter sports museum of architecture, each destination tells the story of an era and has its own atmosphere.
The architect Michel Bezançon designed almost all of the buildings.
The resort also includes the village sites that have a more traditional, family-friendly atmosphere, like Plagne-Montalbert, Montchavin-La Plagne and Champagny-en-Vanoise. All 3 already existed before the resort was built and were linked in to the ski area at the start of the 70s.
The valley, the entranceway to the resort, is an integral part of La Plagne, with a life year-round based on heritage and culture.
A report in April 2016 by Laurent Vanat, an independent management consultant, confirmed the resort’s status as the world’s most visited resort with 2.5M visitors over the past few seasons.
Along with this distinction, La Plagne is also pronounced to be the favourite resort of both French and European visitors, according to the results of a survey carried out by tour operator SnowTrex with 40 000 clients from 8 countries.
Geographical location: Savoie – Tarentaise valley
The red hat logo is a symbol strongly linked to La Plagne’s identity. Created in 1966 for the French television show “Interneiges”, the logo still contains a red hat to this day.
The high altitude resorts
You can ski directly from all the high altitude resorts, which are linked by a free shuttle bus from early in the morning until midnight, so you can enjoy an entirely car-free holiday. The first of them having been built in the ‘60’s, the style is functional and resolutely oriented towards mountain activities. The altitude of 2000m guarantees the snow coverage thanks not only to an artificial snow system which links all the resorts, including the villages, but also to the direct access from Plagne Bellecôte and Belle Plagne to the glacier at 3250m. The après-ski atmosphere is provided by a choice of late night bars, concert evenings, happy hours, bowling, wine bars etc. This great big snow sports playground enjoys a great reputation for its dynamism and its large palette of cultural and sporting activities.
The village resorts
The 4 village resorts have been able to retain the charm and authenticity of the traditional Savoyard hamlets that they are. Their trick is to blend beauty and tranquillity with one of the world’s biggest ski areas – Paradiski which combines la Plagne and Les Arcs. These villages play the family and congeniality cards by offering a wide range of activities. The sizeable investments made over recent years in artificial snow and new ski lifts proved their worth last winter. Here’s to tradition, conviviality and great skiing.
Champagny en Vanoise, a charming village with such a sparkling name, is to be found at the heart of a stunning preserved natural landscape. Originally made up of three hamlets scattered around its baroque church, the village turned resort has developed slowly whilst always remaining faithful to the mountains and to tradition. The reredos in the church is listed and the « leaning » aspect of the bell tower gives it a rather amiable look. Above the village and beyond the gorges, the Champagny le Haut Valley reveals the profile of an old glacier valley stretching as far as the Vanoise National Park. A top spot for Nordic skiing with more than 22km of pistes, the Valley is also internationally renowned for its ice climbing. You can indulge in ice climbing in the valley’s natural sites and on the 22m high ice tower. Anybody can take part in this sport which broadens the range of activities open to non-skiers. At the end of January, everybody gathers here for the famous “Gorzderette” –
Montchavin was the old village of mountain shelters belonging to the farmers of the village of Bellentre. The residents who renovated the village at the end of the 70’s did so in keeping with the original style, retaining the charm of the narrow lanes typical of Savoyard villages. Some of the farms are still active and the delightful lanes have become playgrounds for the chickens! Wholly pedestrianised, Montchavin is the ideal place for children to venture onto skis for the first time. The kindergarten is at the bottom of the chairlift, at the foot of the pistes under the apple trees. Les Coches, 200m higher at 1450m, was built at the beginning of the 80’s. The car-free style and congenial atmosphere of Montchavin are reflected in Les Coches, to create a delightful resort in wood and stone on a “human” scale.
Since December 2003, Montchavin-Les Coches has been at the heart of the Paradiski ski area. In a single chairlift ride, you’re opposite Peisey-Vallandry and les Arcs, ready to take the famous Vanoise Express.
Plagne Montalbert is a charming Savoyard village that has grown up around the square “Aux Vieux Garçons” and the recently renovated chapel. Its past is overflowing with legends and local tales which are related on heritage tours and on the surrounding footpaths. In days gone by, the paths were inhabited by gnomes, fairies and trolls, each one of whom had his own version of history to relate – the watch word here is congeniality. Every day is a holiday with theatre troops, Savoyard evenings, children’s parties and free entertainment. Nor do you want for activity with dogsled rides, snowshoe outings and the freestyle zone where you can discover the new wave of snow sports (snow trike, SMX, airboard, snakegliss, monogliss etc.)