The health benefits of Morgins, with its clear mountain air and iron-rich waters, have long been recognised. In fact, as long ago as 1820, the resort was welcoming the first tourists coming to this delightful Swiss ski resort, close to Lake Geneva, to ‘take the cure’. By 1845 Morgins had its first hotel.
But it was not until around 100 years later that this tiny village, located in the east of the vast Portes du Soleil ski area, became a winter sports resort. The resort’s first chair-lift was opened in 1947 and this led to the opening up of the slopes around Morgins. Since 1961 the original spa resort, then the first Swiss resort in the Portes du Soleil ski area, gradually connected up with the neighbouring French resorts until eventually it became part of the whole giant ski region. Although Morgins is very much known these days as the gateway to one of Europe’s largest ski areas, the resort has managed at the same time to maintain the unique charm of a traditional spa.
But Morgins is not just a stylish resort with an invigorating climate - it also provides the best conditions for a skiing holiday à la carte. There are in fact 3 ski areas for winter sports fans to choose from, offering something for everyone.
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The ski area comprising the 4 Swiss resorts Champéry, Les Crosets, Champoussin and Morgins is ideal for beginners and families and offers a total of 100 kilometres of pistes, connected by a series of 34 lifts.
Skiers looking for even more choice can head to the “Domaine Evasion”, which comprises the Swiss resorts Torgon, Morgins and Champoussin and the French Super-Châtel and Chapelle d'Abondance. Here, as well as 150 kilometres of pistes of varying levels of difficulty and 60 lifts, skiers can enjoy breathtaking views of Lake Geneva as they navigate the pistes.
As a the third option for holiday skiers in Morgins there are, of course, all the slopes in the Portes du Soleil ski area across its total of 14 French and Swiss resorts. A network of almost 200 lifts makes it easy to access the entire ski area, opening up 650 kilometres of pistes and almost 300 downhill runs.
Whichever ski area in Morgins skiers decide on, both getting onto the piste and the return trip after the lifts have closed for the day could not be easier. Chairlifts at each end of the resort, one at Foilleuse and the other at Corbeau, are available to take skiers back to the resorts of Les Crosets and Châtel. A free shuttle bus which runs throughout the day connects the two chairlifts. And after a busy day on the slopes guests staying in Morgins will appreciate being able to ski right down into the resort.
The different ski areas also have lots to offer snowboarders, including a total of 10 snowparks within the vast Portes du Soleil ski centre. But boarders will also find plenty to enjoy in the smaller resorts, including the Superpark in Les Crosets, one of Switzerland’s best snowparks. Morgins itself even has its own snowskatepark at the valley station of the Foilleuse chairlift.
Within the Portes du Soleil ski area, Morgins is regarded as one of the best destinations for cross-country skiers. 3 trails covering a total of 20 kilometres, including 2 kilometres of skating trails, wind their way through the beautiful countryside around Morgins, at times following the course of the river and passing through beautiful forest.
For a really special skiing experience, why not try some night skiing? On Wednesdays and Saturdays the Foilleuse piste is floodlit until 9pm which means skiers have plenty of opportunity to enjoy their sport beneath the stars.
Morgins also makes an ideal holiday destination for younger skiers and complete beginners. Its very own snowpark, situated on the western edge of the resort, provides a safe and relaxed environment for those taking their first steps onto the piste. As well as a conveyor lift, there are also two small ski tows on which to practise before going up in a chair lift to the higher levels. The children’s ski school and the kindergarten are also here, located in the neighbouring sports centre, and parents can watch how their little ones are getting on as they relax in the centre’s restaurant.
From 5pm the Morgins snowpark is the scene of yet more fun activity when the slope near the Géant ski tow is transformed into a Déval cart track for racing unmotorised go-carts.
Those looking for something a little less hair-raising also have no excuse to be bored. An total area of 80 kilometres is just waiting to be explored, either on a snowshoe hike or on horseback, or you can play tennis in the sports centre or take a turn on the ice at the village’s open-air ice rink. You may even like to try your hand at snow boules or perhaps just spoil yourself with a visit to one of the two spas in Morgins. In the evenings there is no shortage of après-ski entertainment with a good choice of welcoming restaurants and bars as well as a disco.