Haute Savoie / France
This once remote village on the border between France and Switzerland has been transformed by its proximity to Geneva airport, and great high-speed train links to Thonon-les-Bains and Aigle (Switzerland). But despite its popularity, it has resisted the high-rise hotels of larger resorts, favouring chalets and apartments, and has managed to retain its traditional charm.
In the heart of the Portes du Soleil area, it has links to great skiing in the winter, and walkers and bikers in the summer.
There’s a good selection of shops in the village, as well as a couple of small grocery shops. A larger Intermarche is available at La Chapelle d’Abondance. You’ll be spoiled for choice if you’re eating out, with most restaurants focusing on local specialities.
The unspoilt village of Châtel is in the heart of the Portes du Soleil ski area, which covers 12 linked resorts - eight of them French and four Swiss. You’ll have the choice of 300 ski slopes and 197 lifts, and they’re all covered by the Portes du Soleil ski pass. Those with limited mobility are covered too, with Handiski, Tandem-ski and Taxiski offered by various ski schools.
There’s night skiing at the Linga stadium, which is floodlit from 7.30-9.30pm.
There’s a Nordic and cross-country ski area at La Chapelle d’Abondance, which extends into Châtel, with trails that are also suitable for hiking and snow-shoeing.
When you stay at an OVO Network property in Châtel in the summer, there’s no end of activities to keep you busy. The mountains are a magnet for walkers, runners and bikers, but there’s so much more to discover.
Fly through the valley on a zipwire, take to the lake on a stand-up paddleboard, climb up in to the tree-tops on a rope trail or hurtle down the mountain on a summer sledge, the choice is yours.
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