Worldwide Ski ResortsFranceBareges

Ski insurance for winter sports enthusiasts travelling to France

Overview

Barèges is an old spa village and the second oldest ski resort in France. It is part of the Tourmalet ski resort; the largest in the French Pyrenees. Skiing in the Pyrenees is a well kept French secret here you can roam through kilometres of beautifully looked after piste set in fantastic unspoilt scenery, without the crowds or the cost of what you would pay in the Alps. The resort has over 100km of runs, with 69 pistes and 43 ski lifts, and is situated between 1250 and 2500m altitude. The resort of Barèges/La Mongie is largely unspoilt perfect for those who love France, but fed up with the impersonal approach of the Alps. Overall, travel can be a slight problem — Lourdes (one hour’s drive away) does have an airport but Toulouse is the nearest major one some three hours away.

Profile

Unlike the rather unwelcoming approach of many Alpine resorts, the people here are incredibly friendly and far less concerned by the financial side of skiing. Prices are amazingly cheap as a result. The resort has free parking, both in the village and just up the road at Tournaboup, where the main lifts depart. During the majority of the season, you can ski to the village at 1250m through a pretty blue run through woodland or there is a green run which follows the Bastan River. Outside the school hols in Feb, the resort is really quiet and you can often cruise a whole run to yourself!

Mountain Information

The skiing is particularly good for beginner and intermediate skiers, with gentle nursery slopes and beautiful wide runs giving access to every area of the resort, but the season is comparatively short, with plenty of sun and rain. In Ayre, there are some good off piste runs for advanced skiers, whilst for snow boarders there are specialist facilities at La Mongie, as well as some challenging off piste potential.

The runs are very well maintained and there is something for all abilities. There are plans for a six man chair out of the village within the next couple of years but in the meantime the ski bus runs every ten minutes in high season. The local instructors are quick to tempt you into exploring off piste, and the Pic du Midi lift is open to groups who have a guide who would like to ski the descent from the observatory at 2877m down into the resort at La Mongie.

Apres Ski

There is an ice rink and a sports centre in the village; paragliding is also available for the more adventurous! Numerous walking trails abound and offer spectacular views of the surrounding unspoilt scenery. There is a nightclub and seven restaurants, serving good local fare, as well as the traditional après ski tipple!!

Resort Information • Bareges

Resort Height Resort Height 1250m
Top Station Top Station 2345m
Bottom Station Bottom Station 1250m
Vertical Descent Vertical Descent 1095m
Drag Lifts Drag Lifts 19
Chair Lifts Chair Lifts 4
High Capacity High Capacity 2
Opening Dates Opening Dates Dec-April
Rating Expert Rating Expert 7
Rating Intermediate Rating Intermediate 7
Rating Beginner Rating Beginner 7
Apres Ski Rating Apres Ski Rating 7
Snow Reliability Snow Reliability 7