As one of the world’s largest interlinking ski areas, it’s hardly surprising that so many people head to Portes Du Soleil during the winter season. The Portes du Soleil comprises of thirteen resorts across both France and Switzerland, giving you access to over 600kms of ski slopes.
Outdoor Winter Activities in Les Portes du Soleil
While the slopes provide something for everyone from a complete beginner to seasoned skiers. Portes Du Soleil also has plenty to offer in regards to non-ski activities as well from zipling around the Alpes to taking a horse ride through the villages.
There is so much more you can do in resorts these days other than skiing. Not to mention the large selection of restaurants and pubs to cater for your needs.
Read More – Learn to ski or snowboard in London
The great thing about Portes Du Soleil area is that it offers one of the shortest transfers from an international airport Geneva, so you can catch a morning flight and be in one of the resorts by lunchtime.
Here is just a selection of non ski activities that I experience when I was not skiing.
Take a horse ride through the ski resort – Morzine
Out of the 12 resorts that make up the Portes Du Soleil ski area, Morzine ski resort is the largest and probably the most convenient in regards to resort hopping via cable car. As you guessed there are loads of non ski activities available for everyone.
⇒ Read More – A full Ski Guide of Morzine Ski Resort France
One of these non ski activities that are offered during the winter season is taking a Horse-drawn carriage ride through Morzine village and the surrounding areas. Prices and times vary depending on the route you take, from 10€ per person for a petit tour to 90€ for circuit tour to Montriond Ski Resort.
I went on the circuit tour around Morzine village and to the town of Montriond, which went for around 90 minutes. We explored all the villages and then we stopped at a local gallery owned by a lovely couple. They had some beautiful paintings and photos over the surrounding mountains.
To be honest, I think 90mintues was a bit too long especially because it was so cold. However, the tours between 30-60 would have been perfect for me. This is definitely something that is great to do as a family or a small group. I think it is a great addition to do in the afternoon after skiing.
- The carriage can fit up to 5 people (6 including the driver).
- Starting point – Across the road from the Tourist Office
- A blanket is provided when it is cold.
- Take a bottle of water along.
Other Non Ski Activities in Morzine
How about ice-skating or watching an ice hockey game at Skoda Indoor Area, which is located in the centre of town. There is also an outdoor ski rink near the Tourism Office.
Check out the Reviews on Skoda Indoor Ski Center on – Trip Advisor
Fantasticable (Zip lining across the Alps) in Chatel
The cross-border ski resort of Chatel Ski Resort France is pretty and relatively unspoiled. It definitely has a very French feel about it, especially with the chalet style hotels dotted around the resort. When it was first mentioned to me to try the Fantasticable (similar to a zip line), as one of their non ski activities I thought what is that? it sounds fun!
⇒ Read More – A winter guide to Chatel Ski Resort France
I looked it up, I thought wow that looks scary, exciting and insane, all at the same time. I also thought any adventurous person like my husband would love to do this. Strapped into a harness in a laying position you fly like a bird with speeds of between 8o to 100kmh along a line up at 240m above the hamlet of Paine-Dranse Portes du Soleil.
If you are skiing or snowboarding, then your equipment will follow you on the line in a transportation carrier. If you are not skiing or snowboarding all you need to do is catch the cable car up, which is located right next to the starting point.
Do not worry if you can’t do it in the winter season because it is also open during Summer. The best bit is it involves two lines for double the fun.
- Prices – Solo Flight from €36 – Duet Flight €72
- Only the first cable is opened during the winter period and your skis and board will be attached to you.
- Weight Restrictions – Due to safety – The minimum weight is 35kg, maximum weight is 150kg.
Taking off on the Fantasticable during Summer
Other Non Ski Activities in Chatel
If you love Wellness centres and heated pools, how about the Aquatic center Forme D’O, located in Chatel. With both an indoor and outdoor heated pool with waterfalls and bubbles bed there is something for everyone.
You can check out the Reviews for Aquatic centre Forme D’O on – Trip Advisor
Try your hand at curling in Champery
Champéry Ski Resort Switzerland is both a postcard
⇒ Read More – Ultimate Skiing Guide Champéry Ski Resort Switzerland
From my own personal experience, I really underestimated just how hard Curling was until I tried it in Champéry Ski Resort and like most people, the only thing I knew about it was that it is a sport competed at the Winter Olympics. It is definitely a game of skill and strategy but also a lot of fun.
Curling is a sport in which players slide a granite stone on a sheet of ice to get as close as possible to the target area at the end of the ice route. An intro-to-curling workshop is a great activity for family or a group of friends, especially if it is cold and snowing heavy outside.
- Groups of 7 to 50 people: 40 CHF per person for 2 hours
- Have a drink in the Palladium bar and restaurant when you’ve finished slip-sliding on the ice
Other Non Ski Activities Champery
If you don’t want to try curling, the Palladium Sports and Cultural Centre also offers a variety of other activities, like indoor ice-skating, indoor rock climbing and even swimming.
You can check out the Reviews for Palladium Sports and Cultural Centre Reviews – Trip Advisor
A relaxing day at the Spa Les Gets
Les Gets Ski Resort France itself is a traditional charming village, with cosy chalet-style restaurants and accommodation. It is a real working village that is inhabited all year round and not just for the winter season. There is nothing that beats a nice massage or a spa especially after a hard day of skiing/snowboarding or when it is cold outside.
⇒ Read More – Full Ski Guide Les Gets Ski Resort France
After my first full day skiing, I headed to the Spa Sereni Cimes which was organised by the Tourism office for an afternoon. As soon as I entered the lady made me feel welcomed. It was cosy and warm inside which immediately made me felt relaxed without even doing anything.
I was shown around the facilities and told me about their additional services. They had a wide range of massages and treatments but I opted out and headed straight to the sauna facility to enjoy some alone time. The Spa Sereni Cimes is located under the La Tapia Hotel de charme in the centre of Les Gets Ski Resort.
Guests from both the hotel Hotel La Marmotte and La Tapia Hotel, can use the spa facilities like the pool for free. However, if you are not a hotel guest you have to pay a fee.
- The hydrotherapy and spa area is open to adults aged 18+ only (or 16+ if accompanied by an adult).
- Children residents of the hotel are allowed in the pool if accompanied by their parents.
- The Spa center opens every day at 4pm.
Other Non Ski Activities in Les Gets
If you love animal then take a visit to the Grand Cry territory Refuge Des Trappeurs (Animal Refuge) on the ski slopes. Don’t worry though because you can access the area either skiing or via a cable car then it is a short walk.
You can check out more on Grand Cry territory Refuge Des Trappeurs (Animal Refuge) on – Les Gets – Tourism
Other Resorts in the Portes du Soleil
If you are interested in discovering other Ski Resorts in Portes Du Soleil ski area, you can check out my following articles. All are great options for a ski weekend trip with friends or with family.
- Morzine Ski Resort – France
- Chatel Ski Resort – France
- Champéry Ski Resort (Also known as part of the new Région Dents du Midi ) – Switzerland
- Ski Chatel Ski Resort – France
Thank you for reading this article ‘Non Ski activities across the Portes du Soleil – France/Switzerland’. I hope it helped you to decide what other activities to do, when not skiing or snowboarding.
Portes du Soleil – France/Switzerland are definitely a great all-around ski resorts that offer’s something for everyone.
Have you stayed in the ski resorts on either the Franch or Swiss side of Portes du Soleil before? I would love to hear your experiences in the comments below.
Disclaimer: Even though I was invited by the above Resorts in the Portes du Soleil. All views are my own and based on my own experience.