The ski season is not limited to Europe, with a number of ski fields dotted all over the world to ensure skiing is possible around the year and around the globe. When the sun goes down on the season in the Swiss Alps, there’s no need to panic – it just means it’s rising on a ski field on the opposite side of the world. Tired of the same north American ski fields? Simply head south to the slopes of Argentina. There’s always an alternative to ensure you can ski around the world, throughout the year. So ditch the beach holiday for a ski break at an exotic destination. Here are our top 3 suggestions!
1. Queenstown, New Zealand
European and North American skiers, rejoice! There’s no need to long for snowy winter days when you can head down to join the Kiwis during their ski season. Hit the slopes of New Zealand’s adventure capital during its ski season, which runs from June to September. As well as the exceptional skiing available at Cardrona, Coronet Peak and the Remarkables (which are named after their beauty), Queenstown also offers sophistication with a side of stunning mountain views from almost every corner. Chic bars and restaurants line the streets of the CBD, and the town is surrounded by an abundance of world-class vineyards (tasting the local Pinot Noir is a must!). Queenstown offers avid skiers a vibrant, international ski town with a distinctive Kiwi flair.
2. Niseko, Japan
Japan’s ski season runs from December through to April, giving avid skiers almost 5 months to experience the season, Japanese-style! The best place to head is Niseko Village, set at the base of the stunning Mount Niseko Annupuri. At the picture-perfect foothills of Hokkaido’s mountains are a dizzying choice of luxury ski hotels that attract winter sports enthusiasts from across the globe thanks to sublime powder and world-class facilities. From here you’ll be at the epicentre of four interlinked ski areas, boasting over 2000 acres of terrain. After a day skiing, you can head to one of the many spas in nearby Lake Toya, relax in the hot springs of Onsen or enjoy a geisha banquet, where genuine geisha perform.
3. Ushuaia, Argentina
This Latin American nation doesn’t just offer a world-class city in Buenos Aires and the best steak on the planet – it’s also a dreamland for ski lovers. Prodigious mountains run down the spine of Argentina, providing a number of ski destinations that get started around mid-June and last well into October. Enjoy a stay in Mendoza that will have you nestled between the Andes and the Argentine wine region, allowing you to hit the slopes by day and enjoy the region’s fine wine by night. For a truly remarkable ski experience, head down to Patagonia for a wild, untouched landscape that features undiscovered pistes. It’s all based around Ushuaia, the world’s southernmost city, which offers a slice of Argentine culture with a backdrop of the seriously picturesque Patagonia.
Filip Boyen is Chief Executive Officer of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
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