Published on Friday, November 18, 2016

More ski resorts open early

As the snow continues to fall across the Alps, more and more ski resorts are opening. The Jungfrau region in the Bernese Oberland will open this weekend and every weekend until December 17, when it will stay open for the rest of the season.

Chamonix in the Mont Blanc region will also open its Grand Montets ski area for the first time on Saturday, although the rest of the resort isn't due to open until mid-December.

Last week, Cervinia and Val Senales in Italy, Lillehammer in Norway, Courchevel in France and Verbier in Switzerland were among the earliest resorts in Europe to open.

Alpe D'Huez in the French Alps has also opened three weeks early, although only part of its domaine is currently available. The resort will have three runs operational every weekend until its official opening on December 3.

Francois Badjily, tourist office director said: "The snow conditions are excellent. It's rare that we have such great conditions in order to open as early as this."

Ischgl in Austria will be one of the first resorts to open daily, from November 24.

The Austrian resort of Mayrhofen will start its winter season by hosting the 11th Altitude Festival, which has moved from its traditional spring slot, from December 11 to 17. The line-up for the comedy festival will include Zoe Lyons, Andy Askins, Daniel Sloss, Glenn Wool, Kai Humphries and the Improv Allstars.

With so much early snow, this could be the year to push pre-Christmas breaks. Pierre & Vacances is offering a 40% discount on self-catering accommodation in the French resort of Courchevel 1850 for arrivals on December 10.

Madame Vacances has knocked off 16% on selected properties for stays up to December 28.

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