Skiing and snowboarding getaways in Europe for International Teachers
Taking a UK teaching job has several benefits, from discovering a new country and a fresh syllabus to taking in a new culture, tucking into new food and seeing new ways of working in action.
Britain also has fantastic connections to the European mainland, providing ample opportunities for international teachers to embark on a skiing or snowboarding getaway when they want to enjoy some time outside of the classroom.
Europe is packed with exciting resorts and destinations that are popular with skiers and snowboarders alike. So if you have a teaching job in the UK, here are a few of your options…
Whether you’re perfecting your snowboarding at Penken Park or enjoying its 142km of pistes, Mayrhofen has something for everyone. Found in the province of Tyrol, it’s also home to Austria’s steepest ski slope, known as the Harakiri Piste, with an incredible 78% gradient! You’ll also find the popular Snowbombing festival here every year, where you can mix partying with time on the slopes.
An incredibly popular resort with Brits, Tignes is renowned for both its ski and snowboarding and for its après offering. At 2,100 metres, the resort’s height means it’s a snow-sure destination. If you fancy a challenge, hike to the Chardonnay Bowl and the steep slope below it – but be warned, it’s not for the faint-hearted!
Named the Best Ski Resort in Europe in Conde Nast Traveller’s Readers’ Choice Awards for 2019, the Swiss resort of Gstaad is like something out of a fairy-tale. Expect to find an array of slopes for all skill levels – there are 77 runs in all – alongside charming chalets and exceptional cuisine.
Up there amongst Europe’s elite for snowboarding, Verbier has numerous steep runs and ample off-piste terrain where you can hone your skills. The alpine village, with striking views of the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc, has all the infrastructure you need and is less than two hours from Geneva Airport.
Val Thorens, France
As the highest ski town in Europe, Val Thorens sits firmly at the summit among the continent’s best resorts. Popular with people of all ages and abilities from all around the world, it provides a unique mix of leisure, relaxation, shopping and wellbeing. The resort itself is car free, and with 150km of local slopes, there’s plenty to get stuck into. The resort is also part of the 3 Vallees, the largest lift-linked ski area in the world with a whopping 600km of slopes.
Arguably one of the best resorts in Europe for snowboarding, Avoriaz was one of the first resorts to have areas dedicated to the use of one board. Just two hours from Geneva Airport, the resort is connected to the Portes du Soleil area and more than 650km of marked pistes. On top of this, there’s three major parks for snowboarding and a super-pipe, as well as a host of off-piste terrain to explore. Neighbouring Morzine is also renowned for its après scene, meaning you shouldn’t be short of things to do.
If you’re planning a getaway from your UK teaching job for a few days and want to keep the costs down, then Bankso could be your answer. Regularly named among Europe’s cheapest ski resorts, it’s just a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Sofia airport and is home to 75km of slopes across two mountains. Add in a wild après scene and it’s easy to see why this resort is such a popular option.
In the shadow of Mount Blanc, the highest summit in the Alps, you’ll find Chamonix – one of France’s oldest ski resorts. Found near the border with Switzerland and Italy, the region is renowned for its skiing and has slopes for all abilities, as well as plenty of ski lifts to get you there!
Having the freedom to travel is definitely a perk of being an international teacher, and taking a UK teaching job could mean you have all of these fantastic resorts within easy reach!
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