The Val Cenis ski station at the foot of the Col du Mont Cenis mountain comprises the villages of Lanslebourg (1400 m), Lanslevillard (1460 m) and Val Cenis Le Haut (1500 m). The historic mountain is not just the central point of the Val Cenis Vanoise ski area but was also at one time the destination for numerous historic figures such as Hannibal, the Emperor Constantine I, Charlemagne and Henry IV on his journey to Canossa. Once the resorts of Lanslebourg and Lanslevillard became one connected ski area in1967, Val Cenis developed into a modern winter sports resort – though still managing to retain all the authentic charm of a traditional Savoyard mountain village. Holidaymakers staying in Val Cenis can enjoy all the convenience of a free shuttle bus service which links the two villages to the large gondola stations.
A series of chair-lifts take skiers straight from Lanslevillard und Lanslebourg to the Val Cenis Vanoise ski area. Since 2008, when two new chair-lifts were added to connect the Val Cenis ski area with its neighbouring station Termignon, the entire linked ski area now provides 125 kilometres of terrain and a total of 56 pistes.
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Located at heights of between1,300 and 2,800 metres the pistes can be reached by means of 26 lifts. There is something here for every skier, whatever his/her level of ability. Beginners should definitely head for the “Escargot”, Europe’s longest green run, whilst ski pros will relish the challenge of the “Michèle Jacot de la Met” black run which starts at a height of 2,800 metres.
Other winter sports are also available here – there are two snow parks for keen snowboarders and 27 kilometres of trails await cross-country skiers. The resort is also great for families and offers several ski schools, excellent crėche facilities and kids’ clubs as well as special family tariffs.
As well as superb skiing in the area around Val Cenis, the resort itself offers a wide range of leisure activities to suit every taste. Take a stroll round the picturesque narrow streets of the two villages, go on a toboggan ride or a snowshoe hike – or, for a really special experience – try a dog sled ride through stunning mountain scenery. Then after a busy day out on the slopes, what better way to relax than with a visit to the Aqua Spa Institut, a 150 m² spa complex with a sauna, hammam, jaccuzzi, heated outdoor pool plus a wide range of spa and beauty treatments? Val Cenis also has its own ice rink and bowling alley.
To bring their day to a relaxing close, holidaymakers in Val Cenis can take their pick from the many restaurants, bars and clubs in the resort and should definitely not miss the opportunity to sample some of the delicious local Savoyard specialities on offer. And those looking for some night-time après-ski, Val Cenis also has its own disco where those with the energy can dance till the small hours!