The site of several events from the 1984 Winter Olympics, Jahorina is pretty well-known to skiers from the Balkan countries yet has remained off the radar of all but the most determined British snow lover. The resort sits 28km from Sarajevo on the slopes of Bosnia’s second-highest mountain. It’s not big, but it has night skiing, generous off-piste, ski touring and enjoyable après ski. Brand new company Ski Sarajevo is taking the strain out of organising a holiday there by offering five-day trips starting from £269pp on a bed-and-breakfast basis, including transfers (ski-sarajevo.com).
BRUSON, VERBIER, SWITZERLAND
Verbier’s high prices and fearsome reputation have had a tendency to put some skiers off. But 2014 sees the opening of a new gondola linking the tiny resort of Bruson to Verbier’s Médran hub in 20 minutes. Long regarded as the go-to place by locals in search of great powder, empty slopes, tree runs and fantastic skiing on bad-weather days, Bruson had always remained somewhat overlooked owing to its previous complicated access. Now those looking for spectacular skiing and reasonable prices can stay in Bruson and ski the rest of the 4 Valleys. Chalet Bruson, a recently completed labour of love by three Swiss brothers, is available for hire from £857 per week (mybruson.ch).
BRECKENRIDGE, COLORADO, USA
Breckenridge is so well-known that it’s difficult to see how the Rocky Mountain resort could come up with anything new. Enter Peak 6, the much-anticipated expansion of the resort’s inbounds off-piste. The addition will provide 400 acres of new terrain served by two new lifts and 143 acres of hike-to terrain. The plan is to give skiers more of a wilderness feel and the new bowl will help intermediate skiers find their way through the powder plateau. Igluski has seven night’s accommodation at the four-star Beaver Run Resort for £1,080pp including return flights from Manchester and airport transfers (igluski.com).
ST FRANCOIS LONGCHAMP, FRANCE
British skiers love France, with more than a third of us heading that way last season. So finding a resort that is not only little-known but also has new accommodation opening is pretty rare. St François Longchamp has direct access to Le Grand Domaine’s 165km of piste and specialises in gentle skiing perfect for families and beginners. It’s not charming, with its purpose-built architecture a far cry from chocolate-box chalets. But the prices are affordable and the views more than make up for it – the Col de la Madeleine offering up great panoramas over to Mont Blanc. Peak Retreats has added St François to its itinerary this season, offering seven nights’ ski-in/ski-out self-catering accommodation at the 4 Valleys from £117pp (peakretreats.co.uk).
SAINTE FOY, TARENTAISE, FRANCE
Mega-resort Tignes is opening its new pedestrianised ski village, Tignes 1800, this season, complete with Alpine architecture and traditional feel – a far cry from its big brother Tignes Val Claret. But while Tignes and Val d’Isère hog the spotlight, farther down the valley Sainte Foy has been quietly cementing its credentials as the place to go for superb powder and charming boutique accommodation. Première Neige is throwing open the doors of its luxury addition, La Marquise, for the first time. If you’re looking for beautiful simplicity and no lift queues, but still want access to the terrain of the Espace Killy, Sainte Foy remains the best kept-secret of the Alps. Seven nights’ full-board accommodation from £905pp (premiere-neige.com).
Well worth checking out if you’re keen for a hearty and traditional atmosphere as well as a chance of glimpsing the Northern Lights, Pyhä is situated just north of the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland. Its slopes offer great options for beginners and intermediates, and if you’re after silence and a winter wonderland, it’s pretty difficult to get anything better. Inghams is offering Pyhä for the 2013 season with packages that include accommodation in traditional log cabins complete with private saunas just a quick step from the centre of the village. Seven nights’ self-catering from £588pp, including return flights to Kittilä from Gatwick and airport transfers (inghams.co.uk).
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