Come wander with us for 9 days on a French Alps Ski & Food Trip.
We will ski and ride the “Portes du Soleil”, a collection of 12 connected ski resorts encompassing more than 600 kilometers of slopes in France and Switzerland’s Rhône-Alps region that allow for giant loops without ever skiing the same slope twice. Discover small charming locals’ resorts with excellent restaurants only accessible by ski.
The trip has a focus on food, especially the regional cheese specialties such as Cheese Fondue, Raclette, Tartiflette but also local sausages, mountain trout, crusty baguettes, pastries, and winter salads. Enjoy amazing French wines from the dry whites of the area (Vin de Savoie-Rousette, Apremont, Chignon) but also the reds of Bordeaux, Bourgogne, and Côtes du Rhone. We will stay in a spacious, luxury post-and-beam chalet with a sauna and hot tub. There is an optional 20km guided back-country descent of the Mont Blanc glacier with a delicious lunch in a stone refuge.
This trip is in partnership with Saveur the Journey, an outdoor adventure company specializing in culinary and cultural tours in France, Sweden, Japan, Italy, and the USA.
Arrival in Geneva, Switzerland where you can rest, relax or visit downtown and other sights. There will be a welcome meeting and chance to meet others on the trip followed by an aperitif and dinner.
Lodging: Hotel Ibis, Thonon-les- Bains, France.
Checkout of our hotel and travel the 1 hour to Morzine. We will pick up any rental equipment and hit the slopes of Portes du Soleil.
The day is open to ski as much as you would like. We will meet to check-in to our chalet at 4 pm. Dinner consists of an Alps specialty “Tartiflette”, a gratin of potatoes, lardons, and onions covered with a slightly aged soft cheese called Reblochon.
Lodging: Chalet Villa Solaire, Morzine, France
After breakfast, you have another morning full of skiing.
For lunch, we will do a picnic lunch from local cheese and meat specialties with fresh baguette. “Apres ski”, you can return to Villa Solaire or visit Morzine.
Dinner consists of another specialty, Raclette. The dish consists of slices of creamy melting cheese poured over boiled potatoes and eaten with cured meats
Ski Portes du Soleil “Ski Safari” followed by lunch on the slopes. You then have the rest of the day on your own.
La Tour Fromagerie. Cheese making with Jean-Paul and Karine, tour, tasting. Feternes, France followed by lunch.
Then onward to Charcuterie Simon. Feternes, France. Simon will lead tour of curing chambers with aged hams and sausages, smokehouse, and production/retail area. Plus, we get to visit his pigs.
Dinner consists of “Fondue Savoyard”, rustic bread dipped into a simmering pot of melted mountain cheese.
Optional: Guided visit to Farmers Market in Morzine from 8am-9am. We will select ingredients and plan a menu for dinner. Then you can hit the slopes or take a day off.
Lunch is on your own followed by a free afternoon. In the evening, there is an Informal cooking class as we prepare dinner from the market.
Optional trip to Chamonix/Mont Blanc. Transportation by van to Chamonix/Mont Blanc for optional descent of Vallee Blanche. For those not descending the Vallee Blanche they can take the Gondola up the Aiguille de Midi fora view on Mont Blanc and/or ski at Chamonix.
Ski Portes du Soleil (for those not going to Chamonix/Mont Blanc).
Lunch at the Refuge du Requin and dinner consisting of “Diots (local pork sausage) au vin blanc”.
Ski Portes du Soleil followed by a French ski lunch of local cheeses and cured meats/fresh baguette.
Farewell dinner out at gourmet restaurant.
Check out by 10 am Departure for Geneva Airport by van 1.5 hours drive time.
Aaron is your guide for this trip. Aaron Schorsch is the owner of Saveur the Journey where he combines his passions of food, travel, outdoor adventures, and culture. He grew up in rural New Hampshire and has lived and traveled extensively in the US and abroad. Aaron learned to snowboard while teaching English in the French Alps but later took up Telemark Skiing. While he still likes to drop a knee on occasion you are more likely to find him with fixed heels shredding the back-country or resort in a style he likes to call “joyful abandon.” Aaron is a student of food who has worked throughout the food system from growing seed and farming of vegetables, fruits, and livestock to cooking in high end restaurants and managing farmer’s markets. He loves to talk about, think about, dream about and especially, cook and eat food. He is a member of Slow Food international and has been a US delegate at Terra Madre in Turin, Italy.
Price of this trip is $3150* (double occupancy) or $5800 for a couple.
*No discounts from Big Fat World Tours are eligible for this trip.
Who is this trip right for: Must be at least an intermediate level skier/snowboarder that is very comfortable with intermediate (blue) slopes and able to ski advanced (black) slopes. Must have a good level of fitness. If you are a beginner skier we can arrange for 3 or 6 half-day group lessons along with equipment rental for an additional $200 (3 day) or $350 (6 day).
Typical days might mean getting up at 7 am so that we can have breakfast and get on the slopes early. In the evening we will have time to relax and experience French mountain towns before eating large amounts of cheese in various forms. Bedtimes could run late. If you are not comfortable skiing/boarding all day and eating cheese all evening then this is not the trip for you. We will have a rest day built in and there will be the option to skip a day of skiing.
Deposit Requirement: 10% deposit is required immediately with each booking request. A booking cannot be guaranteed without a deposit.
Deposits can be paid by check, Venmo or credit card.
Trip Costs: This trip must be paid in full prior to 2 months start of trip. Trip will be invoiced by Saveur the Journey.
Tour Cancellations & Refunds: If you need to cancel a trip that you have already booked and it is at least 90 days before the start of the trip your deposit is fully refundable. Final payment for the trip is due 60 days before the start of the trip. Cancellations between 30 and 59 days before the of start of trip that cannot be filled are 50% refundable, if your spot is filled then it is 25% refundable. Cancellations less than 30 days are non-refundable (100% of booking cost). For this reason, we recommend you consider purchasing travelers insurance, (try World Nomads) which will cover the cost of your trip in extenuating circumstances.
Must be at least an intermediate level skier/snowboarder that is very comfortable with intermediate (blue) slopes and able to ski advanced (black) slopes. Having off piste experience is recommended.
No! French language proficiency is recommended but not required. Even if the only French word you know how to say is croissant you will be fine. We will help with translations and in ski towns many people speak English.
Accommodations will be in a beautiful mountain Chalet (a light and airy post and beam luxury Chalet) in the mountain town of Morzine, and one day in a hotel in Thonon-Les-Bains on arrival.[/tg_accordion]
Most meals, lift tickets (6 days), transportation within France and Switzerland, tours and tastings, and all accommodations are included. Airfare, rental equipment, alcohol, gratuities, and travel insurance (highly recommended) are not included.
If you have equipment that you really love and are comfortable with then I would suggest bringing it. Ski/snowboard rental is quite affordable in France (probably around $250 euro for the week). A good compromise is to bring you own boots if you like them and then rent the rest.
Our groups are relatively small (around 12 people total) but this is usually too large a group to try to keep together on the slopes. Generally we will break into smaller groups so that we don’t have to wait as much. We can show you some great spots or you can explore on your own.
This trip is focused on skiing so we will be hitting the slopes early with the aim of catching the first chairs. There is public transportation from the Chalet to the slopes, so if you feel like a slow morning you can join whenever you like. Same goes for the end of the day, if you want to head back to the Chalet early for a glass of wine and a swim or nap it is no problem!
“Our “Saveur the Journey” experience exceeded our expectations. In short, the skiing was amazing, and the Vallée Blanche descent was a once in a lifetime experience. Aaron and Francois toured us throughout the enormous Portes du Soleil ski resorts knowing where to find the best runs and the terrific lunch stops. The accommodations, local tours, food, trip organization, and laughter were all reflective of a tour leader who genuinely cares and wants to share his love of France. “Saveur the Journey” is an experience that is reflective of Aaron, his enthusiasm for life, and his fixation on cheese!”
-Scott & Sue Shepler-Denver, CO
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