Meribel, a part of the Vanoise National Park, was orginally discovered back in 1936 by Scotsman, Peter Lindsay. After the war, with the help of French Architects Paul Grillo and his partner Christian Durupt the development of Meribel really got under way. Les Allues the original old village, was part of the commune of the Savoie département of France, Moûtiers. They made sure the new Meribel ski resort was developed in similar true Savoyard style with lots of wood and stone used in the construction. Hence its beauty that remains today. In the 1992 winter Olympics (Albertville) it was host to the ladies downhill race and the ice hockey. This brought the Tarentaise ski regions to world attention.
The main town is only 20 minutes up the mountain from Moutiers rail station. Les Allues village is just 15 minutes up the valley while Mottaret is about 30 minutes. The snow trains and Eurostar from London & Paris arrive weekly during the winter season at Moutiers rail station via Chambery and Albertville. Flights for Meribel land at Geneva, Lyon, Chambery or Grenoble. Transfers are about 2-3 hours.
Meribel consists of various villages. Meribel Village (1500m), built for the Olympics, Les Allues Village (1300m), the original ancient village, Meribel Mottaret (1750m), built in the 70’s. Meribel Morel (1600) & Rond Point (1700m) are located higher than the main town (1400m).
Being in the very centre of Les Trois Vallées Meribel is a fabulous ski resort for intermediates. One of the very best in France. It is also excellent for beginners and advanced skiers. There are over 10 English speaking ski schools for all levels of skiing. Even the French schools all have English speaking instructors.With over 600km of pistes and 180 ski lifts in the three valleys, there is skiing for everybody here. There are also some wonderful cross-country ski routes.
Off-piste skiing is also extremely challenging with a wide choice of mountain terrain to choose from. There is normally very good snow off-piste from January till April above the gondola mid-stations.
Skiing The Three Valleys in Meribel
From the Chaudanne ski lift centre, you can reach Courchevel in 15 minutes and just 20 minutes for La Tania. Les Menuires can be reached in 20 minutes & Val Thorens in 45 minutes. The lower villages of La Praz and St Martin De Belleville can also be reached well within the hour. Meribel Les Allues village can be skied to most of the winter season. Snow conditions are usually good until mid-March for all the lower resorts in the Trois Vallees. Even in April skiing is still great above the middle gondola stations. The ski lifts open in early December and operate till the 3rd weekend of April.
All in all, Meribel is one of the very best choices in the French Alps for a skiing or snowboarding holiday due to its largest ski area.
For more interesting information on this fabulous ski resort follow the link to Wikipedia.
For more further information on Meribel you can also visit the Tourist Office web site.
However I do think you should find what you want somewhere inside Unplugged. If not just e-mail me. I am always happy to help new visitors.