It is that time of year again where slalom runs and weaving your way down the piste becomes possible. There are some fantastic destinations that have forged solid reputations as being some of the best places to ski and learn to ski in the world. If you’re new to skiing you may want to hire your gear rather than rent it. There are plenty of reputable firms for ski hire such as SPORT 2000 rent, which can cater to your every need. Now we’ve established the basics let’s look at some of the best skiing destinations in the world.

Val Thorens, France

Val Thorens is the highest resort in the Trois Vallées region.  At an altitude of 7500 feet, its snowing season spans November to May which is well above average. The regions of Méribel and Courchevel valleys are big draws as is neighbouring Maurienne which provides greater skiing options.

Many stay in the 5* Altapura hotel. This features a Scandinavian luxury design and the hotel goes the extra mile by emailing visitors allowing them to purchase ski lift tickets and lessons in advance of their stay.

Verbier, Switzerland

In 2008 Verbier reinvented itself as the most luxurious skiing resort in the Alps. It is home to Richard Branson’s The Lodges, Nevaï, a minimalist hotel, and the first VIP club in the Alps the Coco Club. Despite its lofty hotels, many come just to ski in the Four Valleys and its backcountry terrain offering.

From a practical standpoint, the W Verbier is an ideal place to stay thanks to its proximity to ski school meeting points and the Médran gondola.

Megève, France

Although Megève may not offer the most challenging slopes or a reputation for up all night partying, there can be no denying the unique charm of the location. With 3 good ski runs and a car free city centre that hosts open air ice skating and horse drawn sleigh rides, this is a good option if you want your skiing trip to encompass more than downhill runs.

The Relais & Châteaux Flocons de Sel features delicious locally sourced food and is used by Parisians all the time looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the big city. Alternatively, you may want to stay in  Les Fermes de Marie. These chalets are very traditional with fur throws and wooden beamed ceilings.

Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy

Nestled in the middle of the Dolomites, this ski resort is less flashy than many but offers skiers a wonderful retreat. With above average ski runs and 50 miles of cross country skiing available this is a much sort after resort and only a few hours from Venice.

Cristallo, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa offers luxurious rooms that hark back to times past. The piano bar offers high quality entertainment for when you’re not sampling the slopes.

There are good ski resorts to be had to suit all budgets. And coupled with good quality ski hire you can embrace the sport without having to pay for equipment that you only use a few times a year.