If you like your ski holidays to be exhilarating both on and off the pistes, Tignes is the resort for you. Forming part of what was previously called the Espace Killy ski area (now just Val d'Isère-Tignes), it's one of the largest ski areas in the French Alps. As well as having dozens of its own picture-perfect ski runs, it's linked to nearby Val d'Isère, giving you access to a whopping 150k+ square kilometres of snow sure slopes to practice your skills on!
Tignes ski resort itself is split over five villages - Tignes Val Claret, Tignes Le Lac, Tignes Le Lavachet, Tignes 1800 or Tignes Les Boisses and Tignes-les-Brèviéres - which are all connected to the same ski area. Each has its own draws - you could have a go at night time skiing under the stars, soothe achy muscles at a tranquil spa or hit up one of the many après ski bars which feature sun terraces, DJs and crowds ready to rave...
You may have settled on a ski holiday to Tignes - but where should you stay? There are five villages in Tignes, each offering up their fair share of exceptional off-piste attractions - think ice rinks, buzzing bars and fun, family-friendly activities. Access to the runs is shared by all, plus all but Tignes-les-Brèviéres are connected by free shuttle buses.
As one of the highest and liveliest villages in the region, Tignes Val Claret is a popular pick. Its pistes are set over two levels, with the lower stage offering up access to the Grande Motte Glacier (great for advanced skiing). The higher level is home to the main village where you'll find numerous bars, restaurants and two of the major Tignes nightclubs, as well as a range of accommodation to suit all budgets.
This is the original Tignes ski resort and its popularity remains strong today despite competition from newer developments. Located right next to some of the top ski runs in the region, Le Lac also has some awesome accommodation options. What's more, there's a direct bus service across the mountain to Val d'Isère.
Perfectly placed for skiing in Tignes, Le Lavachet is one of the area's more intimate villages and a great pick for smaller groups. While après ski options are available, it tends to be more relaxed and focused around food. One bonus of Le Lavachet is the free bus services to livelier Val Claret and Le Lac, the latter of which is connected to Lavachet and accessible on foot, too.
Recently renamed Tignes 1800 (a reference to its altitude), this alpine village is one of the most picturesque in the Espace Killy region. It's nestled in a peaceful spot further down the mountain from the main Tignes villages yet still within easy reach of the best runs, making it a great option for more laidback ski holidays. If you are keen for a night out, there's a free bus service to La Lac, Le Lavachet and Val Claret.
This is one of the smaller Tignes ski resort villages and the least connected due to its position below the dam. What it lacks in size, though, is made up for with its fantastic range of slopes for all abilities, including glacier runs. The village itself has old-world charm with its traditional farmhouses and rustic bars. The après ski scene is more chilled out here, with most opting for spa sessions rather than shots, although the Boot Room offers a great spot for a few beers, and a game of pool or darts. If you fancy night skiing, it's possible to ski down the easy blue run from Tignes 1800, if you're returning from an evening out in Le Lac.
If great après ski is a must-have on your next Tignes ski holiday, you won't be disappointed. The resort has an abundance of welcoming bars, delicious eateries and late night drinking holes to fill your time with when you're not gliding down glaciers.
Le Lac and Val Claret have the biggest choice of venues, with the ever-popular Loop Bar located right on the slopes and Couloir and Cocorico being must-sees for live music. The latter boasts a huge outdoor bar area with DJs on the decks everyday and homemade pizza for when you get peckish.
Want to experience an iconic alpine après spot? Head over to Val d'Isère where you'll be able soak up the electric atmosphere of the world-famous Folie Douce (located in between the two resorts) before catching the last bus back to Tignes.
There's nothing better than a hot meal after a full morning of skiing - and Tignes has no shortage of mouthwatering cuisine to tuck into. Try wholesome local dishes like duck confit and foie gras at Le Queue de Cochon in Le Lavachet, get your fondue fix at L'Armailly in Brèviéres or grab a cheap yet yummy lunch at Aspen Coffee in Val Claret.
If you want to fuel up before you hit the slopes, there are multiple places where you can enjoy a slap-up full English or lighter continental spread. Can't resist a greasy burger and chips after a whole day spent outdoors? Tignes Val Claret's Tummy Burger is unbeatable.
Those keen to slip out of their skis and straight onto the dancefloor will find no fewer than three nightclubs in Tignes. Blue Girl in Val Claret is a top choice for a classic clubbing experience and themed nights, while Avant Garde blasts out cheesy French pop tunes well into the small hours.
For three-hour-long happy hours and sets hosted by internationally renowned DJs, put the Drop Zone on your boozy bucket list. Alternatively, The Boot Room in Les Brèviéres is a more chilled out spot for some pints and a few rounds of pool or darts.
When it comes to grub options right on the slopes, Tignes is teeming with tasty bites. La Taverne de Neiges is located right at the bottom of Tignes Val Claret's pistes and has a varied menu to suit every craving.
La Fruitière (part of the Folie Douce) has an impressive menu of regional dishes made from local produce, while Le Coffee in the heart of Val Claret has (unsurprisingly) great coffee and a decent selection of food options for vegans and veggies. L'Alpage Lo Soli in Tignes le Lac, up at 2400m, offers incredible views to admire as you tuck into tasty specialties like roast suckling pig or rich lamb stew.
Even higher up the mountain on the Grande Motte Glacier side is Le Panoramic - a premium eatery with a gourmet menu and waiters who wear traditional berets. What's not to love?
Booking a group Tignes ski holiday with a few people who aren't that interested in snow sports? No worries. Tignes has an abundance of attractions for non-skiers, whether they're interested in exploring the great outdoors or resting up at a luxury health spa.
Slip your cosiest clothes on and test your skills at activities such as ice climbing, ice diving or mountaineering. A less extreme excursion is to take the funicular up to the top of the Grande Motte Glacier for 360 degree views. Alternatively, choose from dozens of indoor activities in Tignes, from family-friendly bowling and chilled out cinema screenings to workouts at the Tignespace fitness centre or swims in the amazing Le Lagon pool.
If you've got the cash to splash, there are numerous five star Tignes experiences we can organise for you which don't involve hitting the ski runs. Why not see the French Alps from the air on a private helicopter tour or whizz through forests while dog sledding? And if you don't want to miss out on the Folie Douce après experience, join your skiing mates by getting the bus to La Daille and catching the funicular straight up to the venue.
Finding somewhere to snooze after a long day on the slopes is simple thanks to the brilliant range of ski accomodation in Tignes. Large groups will be able to find something to suit their needs in all five areas of the resort, with options catering to every budget.
Val Claret is the place to set your sights on if you're after high end Tignes chalets with luxe extras like full catering and outdoor hot tubs, while Le Lac has some awesome options for particularly large groups. When it comes to Tignes apartment rentals, you'll be spoilt for choice by both premium penthouses and cheaper, more traditional picks.
Hotels are less common in Tignes, however, there are a handful of them, including all-inclusive resorts.