Les Arcs' vast ski reserve combines a great snow record with sumptuous north facing snow fields. The impressive Vanoise Express cable car provides easy access to a further 225km of pistes in neighboring La Plagne. Choose between three villages; Arc 1800 has an activity area comprising of aquatic centre, toboggan runs, fun trail, beginner's area and children's practice area, adding to its popularity with families and beginners. Arc 1950 is a pretty car free village with excellent restaurants, bars, shops and a spa, plus good access to the slopes. Intermediate and advanced skiers are attracted to Arc 2000 with its proximity to the Aiguille Rouge Glacier and fantastic doorstep skiing.
Drag lifts 43, Chairlifts 58, Cablecars 4
Things to do in resort
Restaurants, food and drink
Les Arcs is an excellent ski resort for eating out with a wide choice of restaurants both on and off the mountain. Up in Arc 2000, the rustic Chalet de L’Arc is one of our favourite mountain restaurants. The prices can be expensive but the traditional atmosphere is highly recommended – especially the strong smell of reblochon and other French cheeses.
The French flavours continue off the mountain. In the centre of Arc 1950 the popular Le Mazot restaurant specialises in traditional Savoyard cuisine, such as fondue and tartiflette. Tables book-up quickly and we suggest booking in advance for your evening meal.
Just around the corner from Le Mazot, Le Vache Rouge is also highly recommended. This quirky restaurant greets outside visitors with a large red cow and the cow theme continues inside, both with the funky interior and on the menu. Beef steaks and burgers abound, but again it is the fondue (with meat platter) that makes us want to go back!
Tucked away in a quiet corner of Arc 2000, the delightful Au Refuge Gourmand is as cozy as it is charming. A very small restaurant – what it lacks in size it makes up for in friendly service and delicious food and drink.
Finally, if you’re looking for a quick snack in Arc 2000, it’s hard to find many better restaurants than the Bois de L’Ours, which specialises in delicious sandwiches, burgers and cakes. The chicken kebab is easily our favourite sandwich, and we’re a fan of the BMD and Les Meillures burgers. We hear the Pulled Pork burger is a fine choice too!
Après, bars, clubs and nightlife
There are plenty of bars dotted around Les Arcs. The main après scene is in Arc 1800 and revellers head to Bar King Mad (known as BKM) at the end of the ski day. We recommend first stopping off at the Igloo ice bar in Arc 2000 for a cheeky vin chaud blanc. The pounding dance music and neon clad ravers will certainly get you in the mood for a party!
Later in the evening partygoers head from BKM to Red Hot Saloon. Just a few doors down in the Arc 1800 village, this bar has a large terrace, which is an excellent place for chilling out on a bluebird day. Live music inspires crazy dancing until late into the evening.
At the top of resort, Arc 2000 has a great variety of après destinations. One of our favourites is the Bowling Arc 2000 – a fabulous mixture of bowling lanes, pool tables, arcade machines and, of course, a cocktail bar. The expert mixologists will even deliver your drinks to your bowling game – we love it!
Also in Arc 2000 is the popular Whistlers bar, a welcome retreat for many off-duty seasonaires. Whistlers has a charmingly grungy vibe and has a tendency to get very loud and lively in the evenings.
Clubbers are also welcomed in Arc 2000. Latino Loco is the go to destination for late night dance music and DJ sets.
Arc 1950 has a much quieter après scene, but we’ve had loads of fun at Les Belles Pintes Irish pub, dancing to cheesy eighties pop music until late into the evening. The piste side terrace of Chalet de Luigi Bar is frequently heaving at the end of the ski day and George’s Wine Bar is an excellent, friendly spot for a chilled après session.
Shoppers should head to Arc 1950. There is a strong variety of sports equipment shops – from upmarket boutiques to specialised children’s sports retailers like Les Petits Troubadours.
Amongst the many equipment shops there are also a several places to buy gifts. Cascade Sucre, as the name implies, sells anything sweet, and has an excellent range of chocolates. There is even a little stall where you can buy ice cream.
You can also buy traditional Savoyard products, from ornaments to fine cheeses and liquors, at regional produce shops in both Arc 1950 and 2000. They make an excellent gift for friends and family who sadly couldn’t join you on your holiday.
Supermarkets are easily found across the resort, with one of the largest located in Arc 1950.
Spas and relaxation
Les Arcs has a fabulous range of spas and leisure facilities. The Cinq Mondes spa in Arc 1950 is a luxurious swimming pool complex and wellness centre. The indoor swimming pool is particularly impressive with grand chandeliers and rock features.
In Arc 1800 both the Hotel Eden and the Hotel du Golf have their own spa and relaxation facilities. And the state of the art Mille 8 complex has a stunning aquatic centre, just off the slopes and overlooking Mont Blanc. The exciting slides and water features are perfect for children.
Visitors to Arc 2000 have a fine choice of spas too. The Paradiski’s first ever 5 star hotel, the luxury Taj I Mah has a large spa area and indoor pool complex. Guests have access to saunas, steam baths, sensory showers and a solarium. Massages and beauty treatments are also available to buy locally. It’s the perfect place to unwind after a long day spent skiing.
Arts, culture and events
The winter season begins in Les Arcs with the yearly Les Arcs European Film Festival. Ten feature films go head-to-head to try to win the coveted Crystal Arrow – awarded by a prestigious jury of filmmakers.
Festive celebrations run throughout mid-December into the New Year, including a torch lit descent, fireworks and dancing at the Place Olympique on New Years Eve. A few days into January, the ‘nocturnal ski touring race’ La Pierre Blanche departs from Arc 1950 and races to Arc 1600. This one’s for fans of gruelling physical exertion in the dark.
Freeride Week takes place in Arc 1950 towards the end of January and offers a week of competitions to freeriding skiers and snowboarders from across the globe. The event includes the Freeride World Qualifier and the Freeride Junior Tour as well as talks on skiing safely off-piste.
Finally, Les Arcs turns into a home-away-from-home on the last week of March when The Great British Celebration arrives in resort. The whole resort is decked in Union Jack bunting and a series of events are hosted to celebrate all things British.
For more information on travel and transport visit our Les Arcs page