Looking for a challenge this winter? One of the joys of going on a skiing holiday or snowboarding adventure is testing the limits of your capabilities. Whether it’s hurtling down a black run at speed or riding the bumps of a mogul field, there is plenty on the mountain to test the ambitious skier or snowboarder.
As an enthusiastic advanced or expert skier, where do you head? We highlight the most exciting and challenging advanced ski resorts in the world, suitable for you:
ST. MORITZ, Switzerland
Best for: High Altitude Skiing
St Moritz has an idyllic location in Switzerland, Engadine valley and is one of the most recognised resorts in the world. With more than 155 kilometres of runs close to home at Corviglia, many skiers and snowboarders are happy to remain on the local slopes for the duration of their stay. Others will want to see what other temptations the areas have to offer. For non-skiers, there’s a wide array of activities including more than 200 kilometres of scenic cross-country tracks and miles of winter walking trails.
St Moritz is a gem for the foodies, with an array of restaurants from Michelin-star spots to cosy alpine restaurants, you are truly in for a treat here. If you're after live music and a great atmosphere, then the Stübli Bar is a good bet - it's popular with tourists and locals alike.
If you’re looking for a break from the slopes St Moritz is a shoppers paradise, it has some of the biggest names in high fashion lining the streets, as well as hand crafted souvenirs, jewellery stores and sporting shops. After a hard days skiing (or shopping) relax in Hotel Monopol's welcoming atmosphere, the roof top sky bar perfectly captures views over the elegant St Moritz and provides a sophisticated setting for a drink.
Best for: Scenic skiing on tough terrain
Arguably, the home of the Alpine spirit, Chamonix is renowned for having some of the steepest and most challenging skiing in the world. Combine this with dramatic, breath taking mountain scenery and the result is one of the most attractive resorts for advanced skiers.
Among the rock spires, and in the looming shadow of the colossal Mont Blanc, skiers encounter the renowned, deep powder of Chamonix. The expert ski terrain extends to the top of the high altitude Grand Montets cable car. Here you can ski along the thrilling, ungroomed black pistes of the Point de Vue and the Pylones, both offering spectacular views of the glacier.
The diverse off-piste terrain includes the legendary Vallée Blanche, a 20km long off-piste route, perfect for a guided ski touring experience. The superb views along this route are made even more enjoyable by the fresh powder you'll encounter.
The fantastic location of Hotel Pointe Isabelle in the centre of Chamonix will appeal to both keen skiers and those interested in the culture and activities of Chamonix. The sunny terrace adjoining the bar is one of Chamonix’s favourite spots for enjoying the mountain scenery and soaking up the resort atmosphere
St Anton, Austria
Best for: All-round excellence
An epic destination for all kinds of advanced skiing. The resort offers an incredible range of challenges. The slopes around Valluga attract expert skiers wanting to experience the famous snow bowls and powder fields, as well as the steep descent to Zürs.
Expert skiers will relish the opportunity to ski the off-piste Valhalla Couloir. Accessed only by rope – the couloir connects St Anton with the Lech side of the Arlberg.
You don’t need to ski off-piste in St Anton to experience challenging terrain. Tricky runs criss-cross the lower Galzig, Kapall and Gampen mountains.
Disconnected from the main Valluga ski area, skiers often overlook the smaller area of Rendl. This is a shame. The Rendl mountain attracts incredible, deep powder. The wide area is often challenging and frequently quieter than the main ski area.
Chalet Albona is located a 15 minute walk downhill to the resort centre, the four Mountain Lodge chalets share an excellent wellness area with a sauna, steam room, and relaxation area. The indoor plunge pool with whirlpool jets is the perfect place to chill out after a day on the slopes.Find out more about St Anton >
Best for: Advanced Skiing
Méribel is set in the centre of the Three Valleys, Europe's largest linked ski area with endless skiing opportunities. It is considered one of France's most attractive ski resorts and one of the most popular. It boasts of endless skiing opportunities with easy access to Courchevel and Val Thornes.
While Méribel has potential for all abilities its advanced skiing is the focus here. There is a range of challenging slopes in the Three Valleys which contains 33 black runs including the famous un-groomed 'face slope' used in the 1992 Winter Olympics.
With a accommodation ranging from, beautiful wooden chalets, premium apartments and traditional hotels, it makes this resort an excellent all rounder that offers something for everyone. Not forgetting a great selection of bars and restaurants including the legendary La Folie Douce.