⛷ Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc & Saint Nicolas de Véroce are another two of our family’s favourite ski areas in the area – some broad pistes, some pistes running through the 🌲fir trees, 🗻 panoramic views of Mont-Blanc, some great off-piste for experienced (and suitably equipped!) skiers in search of powder (especially around Saint-Nicolas de Véroce and Mont-Joly), some fun runs for children . . . And though ⛷ Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc & Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce are located at relatively low altitude, there are numerous snow cannons ensuring that there is good snow cover from mid-December until mid-April.
This article concentrates on the ⛷ domaine skiable that encompasses ⛷ Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce and ⛷ Megève Mont-d’Arbois; to read about the pistes in Saint-Gervais that link up with the ⛷ Les Houches ski station, and Le Tramway du Mont-Blanc, see separate MBFF article ⛷ Les Houches – Saint-Gervais Skiing.
[ see Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc website for more details about skiing options ]
⛷ Ski Pass Options ⛷
You have different ski pass options to suit your family’s needs at Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc:
- ⛷ Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc domaine skiable, includes Saint Nicolas de Véroce and Mont d’Arbois;
- ⛷ Evasion Mont-Blanc – Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc domaine skiable is also part of this extensive skiing area (445km of 219 pistes in six ski stations au Pays du Mont-Blanc), allowing you to ski in: Megève, Saint Nicolas de Véroce, Combloux, La Giettaz, and Les Contamines-Montjoie), though it is only connected directly to Saint Nicolas de Véroce and Mont d’Arbois.
➡️ for 🗺 ski pistes maps, see here;
🗺 NEW : interactive map of the domaine skiable: compose your own route around the pistes (for example, choose just green and blue pistes). You can see where the salles hors sac (indoor picnic rooms – useful when the weather turns!), WC, family restaurants and more / see here;
🎿 lockers: there are lockers at the departure of the 🚡 Télécabine du Bettex, for storage of up to 5 pairs of skis, helmets and boots / a great way to keep equipment on-site, dried, deodorised and warm for morning ski! / reserve here ;
⛷ Beginner, Nursery & Family skiing ⛷
With its mix of ⛷ green, blue, red and black pistes, Saint-Gervais-les-Bains has something for the whole family!
It is ⛷ FREE for under 5s to ski in Saint-Gervais and there is equipment in place for very young skiers at Le Bettex and in Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce.
For very young beginner skiers, Le Bettex is equipped with a special Piou Piou area and drag-lift and magic carpet.
The excellent ⛷ Chateluy green slope, running from 🚡 Bettex-Arbois back down to 🚡 Le Bettex, ambles through the 🌲 fir trees and is lovely (except at the end of season, when the spring snow has mashed potato consistency; and then, it is a bit like cross-country skiing, and HARD work!).
🌈 Charlotte la Marmotte is the mascot of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains . . . and you will see her on the pistes . . . and for more experienced young skiers, there is the ⛷ boardercross de Charlotte (coming off the Pierre green run, which descends from the Mont-Joux chairlift), which is also a lot of fun for the parents! (you’ll find small jumps, turns, arches and soft items and bells to hit! / there is also a place to film yourself!).
🌈 Village de Charlotte – Charlotte’s very own village and picnic spot facing Mont-Blanc! / you can get here on foot from the 🚡 Télécabine Le Bettex – Mont-d’Arbois, and there are lots of animations during the school holidays / learn about marmottes!
⛷ Intermediate & Advanced Skiing ⛷
There are plenty of ⛷ intermediate and more advanced slopes for the more experienced members of the family in Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc, especially around Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce, Mont-Joly and the new 6-seater Épaule chair-lift! See piste map below . . . and there is a 🏂 snowpark for jumps, under the Mont-Joux lift!
⛷ ESF Saint-Gervais & Saint-Nicolas de Véroce & Ski Lessons ⛷
For more details about 🎿 ESF (Ecole de Ski Français) Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc, ESF Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce and Piou Piou ski classes for small children see here.
There are also garderie (child care) services at Le Bettex and Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce, with a chalet proveided for snacks.
🛷 Sledging 🛷
Saint-Gervais-les-Bains has designated 🛷 sledging areas for small children at:
- 🛷 Le Bettex;
- 🛷 Plateau de la Croix (Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce);
In addition, there are a couple of longer sledging runs . . .
🛷 LaLuge Princesse – new in 2017, this 🛷 3km piste du luge opened at 🚡 La Princesse in Megève!!! The piste commences from the 🚡 summit of Mont d’Arbois, with a route through the forest of sapins (fir trees) and then opens out towards La Princesse mid-station. The sledge (only the authorised sledges are allowed) and a helmet (obligatory) are provided when you buy your ticket / for all, 5+ years (5 to 10 year olds must be accompanied by an adult, and alone 11+ years) / price: 1x descent luge 7€ (access 🚠 remontée mécanique included) / many of the forfaits ski also include a free descent! / ☕️ escape from the cold: not far from the arrival point is Café Woody (address: chemin de l’Encraty, 74120 Demi-Quartier);
🛷 Descente en Luge 4km (Oxygène Glisse & Aventure) –
You’ll descend on a tri-skate Stiga sledge (with a foot brake!) on this green piste, which leaves from the summit of 🚠Télécabine Bettex-Arbois / when? on Thursday 13th February, Tuesdays 18th & 25th February and Thursday 5th March at 17h15 (duration 1h30) / for 10+ years / reservations: 06 74 21 32 15 / each person will be equipped with a sledge, a fluorescent gilet and a head-torch / you need to have a forfait de ski du jour or a montée simple Télécabine du Mont d’Arbois (11,70€ adults, 8€ childdren) and you’ll need to provide a helmet, gloves and snow boots (NOT ski boots!) / insurance recommended! / cancelled in the event of bad weather / price: 25€;
❄️ Snow-Shoeing Trails ❄️
There are several ❄️ snow-shoeing trails leaving from Le Bettex and Saint Nicolas de Véroce, with one recommended for families is the parcours de Charlotte la Marmotte en hiver, which leads to les Communailles from Le Bettex, with 6 informative panels to learn about the mountain terrain / duration: 1 hour / more information here;
☕️ Eating Options ☕️
You have a full gamut of choice at this domaine de ski, which is huge as it includes Megève and Saint-Nicolas de Véroce . . . from picnic tables, to salles hors sacs, to foodtrucks, to fabulous rustic restaurants on the pistes . . .
☕️ salles hors sacs (indoor picnic rooms):
- ☕️ Télécabine Bettex – Mont d’Arbois;
- ☕️ 1st Floor of Le Schuss restaurant at the Plateau de la Croix (Saint Nicolas de Véroce);
- ☕️ La Terrasse du Freddy – if you buy drinks, you are allowed to picnic here (Bettex-Mont d’Arbois arrival), and you can also get snacks / this is a favourite spot for our family and friends;
[ see here for locations on the interactive map ]
- Rosalita Casual Food – is a foodtruck located in the ⛷ Mont d’Arbois ski area of Megève, and it is easily accessible from Saint-Gervais, by following the green pistes Lanches OR Alpage / food served: on the menu is local cuisine, NO HAMBURGERS, but ✅ YES to frites, paninis, sandwiches, local diots, poutine, tartiflette, soup of the day, waffles, muffins and donuts, and a wide selection of soft drinks, beer and coffee! / menu / website / FB page / 🗺 location: Les Lanches d’Arbois, Mont d’Arbois, 74120, Megève;
- Cerf Blanc igloo – is a food hut on the Saint-Gervais ski pistes, at the top of the Télésiège Croix, with a cosy transparent igloo to keep you warm on-site! / food served: burgers and more, Marmotte beer;
☕️ restaurants d’altitude – see website for full list of options here;
And for 🍰 cake at the end of your ski day . . .
☕️ Armancette hotel restaurant and 🍰 tea room – NEW for this winter season, MBFF has tested the tea room and it is delicious, friendly and COSY! / in the heart of the cute Saint-Nicolas de Véroce, accessible from blue piste retour village!
If you are stopping off for 🍰 tea and cake in Saint-Gervais town centre, you have several great options:
- 🍰 Le Mazot du Boulanger – we regularly stop here for cake at this cosy independent boulangerie / patisserie! They also have HUGE meringues!
- 🍰 Aux Petits Gourmands – the little brother of the Chamonix chain, this salon de thé overlooks the beautiful church! / delicious cakes and chocolate! / FB page;
- 🍰 Bistrot Sérac & SéracGourmet – this is a superb lunch and dinner venue, and it also has a salon de thé for cakes (15h until 18h) and SéracGourmet, for goodies to take away! The Mont-Blanc dessert is one of my all-time favourite desserts (for fans of white chocolate and raspberries!)! / FB page and website / address: 38 avenue du Mont Paccard, 74170 Saint-Gervais-les-Bains / tel: 04 50 98 43 35;
🚗🚡 Access & Parking 🚡🚗
🚡 Bettex télécabine (Saint-Gervais) – you can park for FREE either at the Télécabine de la Bettex departure station or up at Bettex arrival station;
🎿 Saint-Nicolas de Véroce chairlifts – new Chattrix 6-seater! Not so old school anymore . . .
🚡 La Princesse télécabine (Demi-Quartier) – this is the most ideal departure point and car park if coming from Sallanches, Domancy, Combloux, Cordon or Demi-Quartier – my discovery last winter season was that La Princesse was our closest télécabine to home! (and not the Bettex, as I’d always assumed!) / FREE parking;
🚡 Mont d’Arbois télécabine (Megève) – this is an underground car park and you need to pay;
Saint-Gervais Mont-Blanc website for more details;
[ good to know – look out for the Ambassadeurs de Combloux (blue jackets), who will be on the pistes to answer any of your questions! ]