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Winter bunnies rejoice – ski season is finally here. TNT gives you the lowdown on the best European runs you can get to by train.

They’re a different breed to the sun-worshippers;  waiting for winter to come so they can hit the slopes. So if you get your kicks out of hurtling down the side of a mountain on two planks of wood, or with your legs strapped to aboard, the wait is over. Ski season is here. Got your ski suit, wrap around sunnies, thermal gloves, chapstick and a tube of SPF30? Now, how about your train ticket?

Yep, finally the ski crowd are starting to come round to the idea of travelling to the snowy slopes by rail rather than by plane. After all, it makes sense. Rail travel is carbon-friendlier than flying. You get to skip those mind-numbing waits at airport customs (and you won’t be forced to stuff your deodorant and contact lens solution into a miniature sandwich bag). A train cabin is infinitely more comfortable than a cramped plane seat. And best of all, if you take a sleeper, you can arrive early, ready for a full day’s skiing, and save yourself the cost of a night’s accommodation. Need we go on?

Dan Thomas, founder of, a one-stop site for everything you need to know about travelling to the slopes by train, adds the clincher. “Once I’m sitting up there at the top of a mountain, I like to think to myself: Well, thank god I’m not on the Tube…” Amen to that. You can travel to all these star skiing locations in a matter of hours.

Les Arcs, France

From London to the slopes in: 8 hours

Daredevils and death wishers flock to Les Arcs to get their extreme snow sports fix. There’s top-speed tobogganing, and ski joering, which involves being pulled over the snow behind a horse. But if you’re seeking a canon-blast of adrenaline,you just have to give speed riding a go. Part-paragliding,part-skiing, this experience is about as exhilarating as it gets. Those who prefer to keep skis firmly on the snow will still find plenty of intermediate slopes to suit in the Paradiski area, which links to neighbouring La Plagne by the biggest cable car in the world: the Vanoise Express.

Apres Ski: The nightlife isn’t quite as amped-up as the skiing, but there are plenty of spots to enjoy a civilised bevvy such as Red Hot Saloon at happy hour. 

Recommended Route: Depart St Pancras on the 10am Eurostar Ski Train, arriving at Bourg St Maurice at 6.51pm,then it’s a seven-minute ride by funicular train to Arcs 1600.


Short Break: Hit the Slopes
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