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Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding in Switzerland

Downhill skiing and snowboarding remains some of the most popular activities for winter holidays, and the world-class resorts of the Swiss Alps are among the most popular places to enjoy these sports, soft powder and dramatic panoramas. While downhill skiing and snowboarding are carbon-intensive activities, one of the most effective choices you can take to really make a difference is to take the train to the slopes instead of flying, as many of the ski resorts in Switzerland are easily accessible by train.

Cost-wise there’s little difference to flying (once you’ve factored in transfers to and from airports) and travelling by train has many advantages: the check-in times are far shorter, there’s free baggage allowance for your gear and the journey has a much smaller carbon footprint.

In addition, the overnight service that leaves Paris on Friday evening and arrives early Saturday morning (returning the following Saturday evening) enables you to fit in two extra days’ skiing on the relatively quieter Saturday changeover days – without having to pay for extra nights’ accommodation.

See our Guide to the Ski Train, and below we've listed some of the best holidays for downhill skiing and snowboarding in Switzerland:

Learn new skills

Skiing in Kandersteg, Switzerland

This is a deservedly popular hotel in a village with cross-country skiing for all levels, fun downhill skiing, winter walking and much more.
From £1035 per person (including rail) based on two people...

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Skiing in Blitzingen, Switzerland

Choose this truly hospitable hotel to enjoy Switzerland’s best cross-country skiing, in a tranquil valley offering something for all levels.

From £1125pp (including rail) based on two people sharing

6 days/7 nights
20 December 2014 to 22 March 2015

Skiing in Engelberg, Switzerland

Engelberg offers excellent pistes – and delightful cross-country trails – but what really makes the place is its refreshingly laid-back atmosphere – this is the quiet side of skiing. The 3-star Edelweiss is every bit as relaxed as the village.

From £970pp (including rail) based on two people sharing

6 days/7 nights
20 December 2014 to 5 April 2015

Skiing in St-Luc, Switzerland

For relaxing but first-rate downhill skiing, the majestic and undiscovered Val d’Anniviers is unbeatable. Here, the 4-star Hotel Bella Tola offers fittingly elegant accommodation, wonderful cuisine and spa facilities.

From £1228 per person (from £1298 incl rail) based on two people sharing

6 days, 7 nights
From 20 December 2014 to 5 April 2015; start Saturday/Sunday
Learn new skills

Skiing in Kandersteg, Switzerland

This is a deservedly popular hotel in a village with cross-country skiing for all levels, fun downhill skiing, winter walking and much more.

From £1035 per person (including rail) based on two people sharing

6 days, 7 nights
19 December 2014 to 8 March 2015

Skiing in Zuoz, Switzerland

Excellent cross-country and downhill skiing for all levels, plenty of winter walking, glorious scenery…romantic Zuoz has it all.

From £1185 per person (including rail) based on two people sharing

6 days, 7 nights
From 20 December 2014 to 15 March 2015; Start any day by air; any day except Sunday by rail
Hotel le Grand Chalet Favre - dining room

Downhill skiing in St-Luc, Switzerland

For the classic downhill skiing experience from a Swiss chalet on the ‘quiet side of the mountain’, look no further than Le Grand Chalet Favre in the delightful village of St-Luc.

From £1120 per person (including rail from UK) or from £998 including flights

6 days, 7 nights
From 20 December 2014-5 April 2015