Serre Chevalier Ski Resort

The Serre Chevalier ski domain runs the length of the Guisane valley. Known for its sunshine, pretty villages and treelined slopes, the 250kms of groomed pistes are a perfect cruising ground for beginners and intermediates, whilst experts will want to venture off-piste.

Situated in the Guisane valley in France's Haute Alps region, and close to Le Parc des Ecrins, the Serre Chevalier ski domain has three major ski villages – Le Monetier-les-Bains (1500m), Villeneuve (1400m), Chantemerle (1350m) – plus the historic town of Briançon (1200m), which is more of a working town with a ski lift than a ski resort. And these are just the main places to stay, because there are another nine tiny villages lining the 14km road, and a couple of small purpose-built developments sited half-way up the mountain.

The mountains might be typically alpine, but the valley below often feels more like rural Provence, despite the busy main road and the large complexes close to the lifts. Walk beyond these and you will find stone churches, old farmhouses, quaint bridges, historic fortifications, natural hot baths, traditional markets and lots of sundials and fountains – and these, plus the sunshine and the small family-run hotels, give Serre Chevalier a very different ambience to the other large French ski areas. 

Obviously sunshine in a ski resort is a double-edged sword, but the slopes are all on the North-East facing side of the valley, the upper slopes are quite high (the top lift rises to 2,730m) and the lower runs are shaded by the trees. The pistes predominantly suit intermediates but there are good nursery slopes and cheap passes for beginners as well. Advanced skiers should try the off-piste, which includes both open bowl skiing and routes through the trees. There is also a wide choice of ski schools and guides for those who want to learn, improve, or explot the off-piste safely.

Given what’s available in “Le Grand Serre Che” most skiers will stay in the area, but for experts the legendary off-piste at La Grave is only about 30 minutes’ drive from Monetier. Montgenevre, the start of the large Franco-Italian Via Lattea (“Milky Way”) ski area is even closer to Briancon, and this can be useful if Serre Chevalier has poor snow, because it's exposed to different weather systems. Most ski passes cover a day in each of these resorts and also Les Deux Alpes, Alpe d’Huez and Puy St Vincent as well.

Ski & Board Hire in Serre Chavalier

There is a good range of equipement rental shops in the valley, with most of the outlets concentrated in Briancon and the major villages. Prices are quite high if you simply walk into the nearest one and try to negotiate when you're inside the shop. ALPINRESORTS.com works with several ski & board hire shop across the whole of the ski area and can secure discounts of up to 60% if you book online in advance here. SKISET also has outlets in all the major resorts and will give discounts of up to 50% if you book online in advance here. 

Serre Chevalier Pros & Cons

+ Big enough ski area for most people
+ Authentic charming old villages
+ Combination of sunny south-facing villages and high north-facing slopes
+ Good mix of tree runs and open bowls
+ Nice, small, inexpensive hotels
+ Good off-piste if La Grave included

- Noisy, busy congested main road
- Long transfer times
- Quiet nightlife
- Very few steep pistes
- Snow cover can be thin at start and end of season

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Serre Chevalier Rating

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  • Intermediates star rating
  • Beginners star rating
  • Ski Lift System star rating
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  • Scenery star rating
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Serre Chevalier Statistics

  • CountryFrance
  • RegionHautes Alpes
  • Base 1,200 m
  • Peak2,830 m
  • Vertical1,630 m
  • Ski Area4,768 ha
  • Beginner32 %
  • Intermediate32 %
  • Advanced13 %
  • Longest Run8 km
  • Ski Lifts66 
  • Cable Cars
  • Gondolas
  • Chair Lifts21 
  • Surface Lifts35 
  • Riders per hour 77,373 

5 Day Snow & Weather Forecast

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  • 25th OccLightRain 24° 13° Patchy rain possible New Snow 0cm
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