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La Plagne

Made up of no fewer than eleven different villages all varying in atmosphere and amenities, La Plagne offers something for every taste and budget. Seven purpose-built resorts lie at high altitude and above the tree line while four villages adapted for skiing sit at lower altitudes in the valley.

La Plagne PisteAs the name suggests, Plagne Centre is the main area where you will find all the shops, restaurants and bars you may need. It’s not the most attractive part of the resort, but ongoing developments to improve the drab shopping malls are being made. The sometimes dreary 1960s buildings which dominate the landscape also provide much cheaper accommodation than in other locations. It’s far from all being gloomy though and some recent developments are heading the right way in terms of architecture.

Plagne 1800 lies directly below the centre and it’s chalet-type buildings offer a much prettier sight for visitors. The majority of accommodation in all the higher resorts is conveniently located and most often ski-in and ski-out. All the villages have a good range of restaurants and bars to fill the evenings in, and travel is easy with free public transport links between 8am and midnight.

La Plagne SignpostLes Coches village is situated at 1450m and has been sympathetically re-designed as a quiet but modern resort. It features fast access lifts to the wider Paradiski area, in particular the Vanoise Express cable car which gives access to Les Arcs and beyond.

Montchavin is the lowest area of La Plagne at 1250m. It is an old farming village which now has many ski-in residences as well as some charming restaurants, a couple of bars, a nightclub and a cinema. With stunning views of Mont Blanc you can also partake in night skiing from this base point or use the swimming pool and spa.

The majority of La Plagne’s skiing is high above the tree line and therefore fairly snow-sure. However the wooded runs that surround the lower villages can be a good option in bad weather. These lower slopes can struggle with snowfall, but artificial snow making facilities are good enough to cope on these sheltered runs. Beginners are also well catered for with 17 free lifts to learn on. Local slopes feature good intermediate and off-piste runs, but not many challenging advanced pistes unfortunately.

La Plagne AccommodationLa Plagne benefits greatly from being part of the Paradiski area, with pistes covering a huge area and massively variable terrain. It also provides access to a vast range of off-piste which takes longer to become tracked out than in many other resorts. The chairlift system has been greatly improved recently but is still a bit shabby in places which can lead to large queues in peak season. The Paradiski area features 5 terrain parks, a half-pipe and various boarder-cross courses.

Off the slopes, another major draw of La Plagne is the bobsleigh run used in the 1992 Winter Olympics where the 1.5km track which can generate forces of up to 3g is now open for the public to try their hand at.