The Espace Killy is a huge ski area, with over 300km of pistes shared between Tignes and Val D’Isere. There’s a lot to explore and it can be daunting when you first arrive trying to decide what to try first. With that in mind, we’ve put together a quick guide to some of the runs that really have to be ticked off your to do list!
The Palafour chairlift is located right in the centre of Tignes Le Lac, opposite the Aeroski lift near the tourist information office. It’s a great way to start the day, with wide open pistes and great views across Tignes. It’s a firm favourite with locals because of the numerous sidehits to be found which help make it one of the funnest runs in the area. So whether you’re just looking to get back into the swing of things or get some air off some fun little jumps it’s a winner!
Heading over toward Val D’Isere and stepping things up a bit, there’s the Orange run. This is a red run accessed via the Marmottes chairlift. The run starts at the Rocher De Bellevarde, at 2827 metres and heads all the way down to La Daille at the bottom of the valley.
At the start, it’s wide open, fast pistes which are usually well groomed to allow you to really build up some speed before it turns into the tree lined runs that lead down to La Daille. You can even stop off at Folie Douce for a quick pit stop if that’s your kind of thing!
Grande Motte to Val Claret:
This is a run to really test both your skill and your fitness. You can pretty much guarantee that your legs will be burning by the time you reach the bottom!
Head up the Grand Motte glacier and get the cable car right to the top. Take a moment to look around at the views – at 3456 metres it’s the highest point in the whole Espace Killy. While there, also take the time to catch your breath as you’re going to need it.
The run drops all the way to Val Claret, at 2100 metres. This means that there is an impressive 1356 metres of vertical descent. From the glacier, you descend onto the red Double M red run. The run is almost exclusively in the shade and holds the snow well.
If you can do the entire run without stopping to rest then it’s pretty much guaranteed that your legs will be burning by the time you get to the bottom and you’ll need a good rest – and maybe a glass of vin chaud!
Glacier Du Pissaillas:
If you’re staying in Tignes then you will quickly become familiar with the Grand Motte glacier. However, if you head over to Val D’Isere there’s another glacier that you should check out.
The Glacier Du Pissaillas is the highest point in Val D’Isere at 3140 metres. It borders both the Vanoise National Park and the Italian Grand Paradiso National Park. This means that it has some of the most incredible views to be found in the whole ski area.
Sitting at the far end of the Val D’Isere ski area, it is often overlooked. This means that it is often quieter than some of the other, more well known, areas. It’s quite a trek from Tignes, so it’s a good circuit to choose for a full day on the mountain and to feel as though you’ve really covered some miles!
Aiguille Percee to Les Brevieres:
Aiguille Percee offers one of the most iconic views in the area – the “eye of the needle” rock. It’s possible to get all the way down to the village of Brevieres, at about 1500 metres, on blue runs so it allows less confident skiers to get a good amount of skiing in and see a good amount of the ski area. Expert skiers can also consider some of the off piste itineraries of La Sache which can be found up there, some of the most challenging in the Espace Killy!