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“Ab Fab”
Review of La Thuile

La Thuile
Ranked #54 of 381 things to do in Valle d'Aosta
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 February 2011

Just got back from our 2nd visit to this fantastic Italian resort. What can I say - La Thuile has it all. Lots of snow, blue skies, no queues and fantastic slopes. My 14 year old son and 12 year old daughter are now mastering the abundance of black runs this extraordinary resort has to offer. I, on the other hand, enjoy the challenge of the many red runs.

Eating out is a must - there are an array of very fine restaurants which must be sampled. Not much in the way of apres-ski but as a family, who cares about that. Planibel apartments are adequate and extremely accesible to the slopes.

La Thuile really is a gem of a resort and well worth a visit. My husband and I will definitely be back.

4  Thank jhoodPeterhead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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40 - 44 of 135 reviews

Reviewed 16 February 2011

A six day pass for La Thuile, costing 171 Euros in January 2011, also covered La Rosiere over in France and permitted two days skiing at any two other resorts in the Aosta Valley. After a couple of days skiing in La Thuile and La Rosiere we ventured to Courmayeur for the day by the courtesy ski bus (approx 40 minutes travel each way) and Pila for a day on an organised tour with Inghams (approx 90 minutes each way allowing for pick ups). We spent our final day at La Thuile to go over some runs we’d missed and some favourites. This combination gave us enough skiing to keep us interested over the week.

Access to the main mountain area at La Thuile is from near the Planibel complex via the Les Suches gondola. At the base other possibilities are the Bosco Express chair which leads to some black runs and the new Maison Blanche chair which gives access to a few black runs and one blue, all of which come back to the base.

Some of the “home” black runs are partly visible from the mountain base and in sections if you are returning down the long #7 red run but otherwise the only way to discover how steep they are is to go down them which isn‘t ideal because from the base they look very steep. At the time of our visit although visibility was very good throughout (there was no fresh snow), the piste was hard packed and I only opted to do the black sections off the red #7 which were straight forward for an experienced skier. I had been told the blacks to base were “serious” and this placed an element of doubt in my mind. Amongst the other blacks I did ski was one from the top of the Belvedere lift in the mainstream area - #25 - and I found that enjoyable since at least you could see from the lift what you were facing! The bottom section of this run was closed however the red alternative which followed that down to the Fourclaz Express lift was in some parts more difficult due to conditions at the time (little in the way of grip).

For those looking for confidence building there is a large area of long blue runs covered by the La Combe and Chalet Express chairs which would keep you occupied without surprises (they stretch out below these lifts).

The red runs form the majority of routes with varying degrees of difficulty for confident intermediates. The one back from La Rosiere - #51 - looks a bit intimidating from the lift as you head over to France however is perfectly manageable - if you are less confident best not to ponder too much and just head down when the time comes - it’s not too bad when you’re on it! We found the long red #4, #6 & #7 routes back to the village were worth doing and favoured #6 out of these. Route #4 merges with #7 which then joins with the tail end of some blacks near the village and in our experience these were a bit busier at the end of the day and the piste a bit scraped. With a little fresh snow the experience would have been quite different. A number of red runs lead down to the Arnouvaz chairlift and we enjoyed that area. Alongside the Chaz Dura Express #10 was being used for races and only opened to the general public on our final day - it’s straightforward.

We found the signposts and piste map were not particularly good and are not even sure if everything is marked on the map. With fresh snow there would be loads of areas to venture off piste for some practice with easy options to get back on - during our visit the conditions did not make this possible (too hard/crusty). It was also very cold during our stay (and we ski in Scotland) so go prepared in case!

We found the La Rosiere area similar to La Thuile and had no complaints regarding the grooming - there are a number of long rolling reds to speed along and like La Thuile they are very quiet - barely another skier to be found at times! The lower areas were getting patchy and we didn’t venture down into the village. It was noticeable that there were more slow drag lifts - not least of all those returning to the Italian side. The journey back is only possible via the steepish Bouquetin run (#51) and down to Bellecombe 1 - an 8 minute tow which is not difficult but boring (of the twin tows the one on the right was quickest). This led to Bellecombe 2, a similarly long drag which we avoided by cutting off to the left and skiing down #26 to join #7 (you can also ski down to the Fourclaz Express). It’s recommended that you head back around 2.30pm - 3.00pm to avoid being stranded - the taxi fare is apparently similar to a mortgage.

The mountain restaurants were fairly basic in our experience and the pick of the ones we tried was probably “Off Shore” in the Arnouvaz area at La Thule - cosy with decent snacks (e.g. paninis).

We stayed at Le Miramonti hotel in the village of La Thuile, rather than the Planibel complex and could recommend the comfort and food. It’s a quiet place away from what little apres ski activity there is at the complex.

16  Thank Rantin rover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 October 2009

I went with my daughter on March 2009.
Ski: You start your skiing by going up either with the cable car, or with the chairlift. No real ques at the cable car,( a few minutes in the pick hour around 9:00 a.m.) but you have to take off your skis. On the chairlift we never met a ques, but it can get pretty cold, especially on windy days.
Up on the mountain, there are slopes for everyone. There was lot of snow. The slopes are wide and well taken care of.
The only down side is the wind. Two of our 6 days were windy. One of them was so unpleasant, that we skied down, and stayed on the one and only slope/ chairlift on the bottom of the mountain. After a few runs, we got board and gave up.
Rentals: We rented our skis at the bottom of the cable car. Service was good, price reasonable.
We were surprised, as it was the first time we met the option to leave our gear stored there, locked at the rental place, every evening, instead of taking them back to our hotel. It is a great advantage, and makes it very easy to move around when you finish your ski day.
Ski school: The ski school is right there at the bottom of the cable car. We booked our lesson and went up. You can book a lesson up on the hill as well. Instructors were very nice and helpful. My daughter took a couple of snowboarding lessons as the week progressed, and enjoyed them as well.
Night life: there are a few very nice restaurants in la Tuile. My daughter went out twice in the evening to a pub, but I understood it's nothing to write home about. It all surrounds the Planybell, which we tried to avoid.
Conclusion: We will return, probably this year, as the SKI is what we are going for, and the slopes are great!!!

2  Thank galy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 February 2009

Just back from a great week in La Thuile. The skiing is second to none and there are no queues to be seen. There are planty of runs that suit all levels. There was planty of snow but I would advise people to invest in a balaclava as the chair lifts can get very very cold.When the sun is out, its lovely but the wind blows right through you on the lifts.
I wouldn't go to La Thuile for the night life as we found it very quiet. One great pup in the village is Angelas but it closes around 9. Apart from that most of the night life takes place in the Planibel but its very tame compared to most other ski resorts.
Over all I would definitly return to La Thuile but this time id bring a stack of dvds for the evenings and a baleclava for the cold.

2  Thank rubylass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2009

I left a review about this wonderful town in the Aosta Valley a couple of years ago.

Have just returned and my review continues to be tops on all accounts. This time we took some other experienced skiers with us who have rated the ski slopes of LA THUILE AS NUMBER ONE of anywhere they have skied. Why?
a) the best snow in many years! There is still time to enjoy this season if you are considering a skiing break.
b) wide ski runs which are not crowded. They said this would spoil us for skiing anywhere else in the world.
c) affordability - there are a range of skipass options which can also include other ski fields in the Aosta Valley.
d) fabulous facilities - hire your gear & take it up on the cable car to the slopes with you or hire it up there and leave it there when you have finished skiing.

Getting skiiing lessons was easy to do and there are two major ski schools in town. The public transport has improved since last time with a free bus running from early in the morning to around 5.30pm to ferry skiiers to their accommodation. It would be better if the bus service ran a little later for those who need to walk uphill to their accommodation.

For cross country skiiers - there is a small circuit in town with blue level courses but this is a red level circuit just the other side of the road of this which goes for quite a distance. I haven't been on this but it is well marked and looks tempting!

Accommodation prices have remained pretty much the same since our last visit and we stayed again at Le Thovex B&B. Superb on all accounts with very obliging hosts. Food fantastic and in a quieter part of town if you don't want to listen to the people in the room next door in a bigger establishment.

The buses to other parts of the Aosta Valley run regularly so visits to Pre St Didier thermal spa, Courmayeur, Aosta or even Chamonix on the French side add to the holiday options. If you drive yourself, the roads are not crowded and are wide & well sign posted.

Our next plan is to visit this area in the spring or autumn to take in some of the magnificent mountain walks.

La Thuile - the gem of the valley!

4  Thank lizfab
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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