All you need to know about ski holidays by train

Peisey-Vallandry - introduction

Peisey-Vallandry is one of those resorts that should really be better known to UK-based skiers. It sits at the eart of the vast Paradiski area, shared with the more famous resorts of Les Arcs and La Plagne. It’s a great place to be based, both for its local slopes and as a convenient starting out point for epic days exploring the entire Paradiski area.

The first thing to understand are the names of the villages. ‘Plan Peisey’ and ‘Vallandry’ are separate villages sitting at an altitude of 1,600m and less than a kilometre apart. On one side of the resort is Les Arcs ski area; on the other is La Plagne, linked (since 2003) by the Vanoise Express cable car. This impressive double-decker lift can carry up to 200 skiers and spans the 1,800m gap between Plan Peisey and La Plagne at a maximum height of 380m above the valley floor, which it crosses in just four minutes.  The panoramic and aerial views from the Vanoise Express are quite something.

Both villages (Plan Peisey and Vallandry) are quite self-contained, with all the facilities you’re likely to need on a ski holiday including, ski hire, ski schools, shops, a small supermarket, bars and restaurant, and access to the rest of the

The two villages (Plan-Peisey and Vallandry) have a ‘traditional’ alpine feel about them (although still purpose built like the rest of Les Arcs). There is also the village of ‘Peisey’, which sits in the valley below Plan Peisey along with a selection of other small settlements known collectively as Peisey-Nantcroix.  Peisey village itself is an attractive little alpine settlement complete with Baroque church, and connects with Plan-Peisey via a quaint bucket lift - also known as the ‘lobster pots’.

The Les Arcs ski area is easy and quick either by ski lift or on free shuttle buses (aka navettes). Both Plan Peisey and Vallandry have ski lifts that start from the villages, and so there is plenty of accommodation within close access to the slopes. 

They resort’s slopes are west facing so get plenty of sun, which means the snow cover at lower levels may get a tad thin in warmer, sunnier periods, but this isn’t a major issue since the pistes above extend to almost 2,300m, and Les Arcs’ highest point is the easily-accessible and snow- sure Aiguille Rouge at 3,226m.

The two villages arguably have some of the most varied skiing of the Les Arcs ski area - there are wide, open slopes to suit all abilities as well as tree skiing for more advanced riders, and some off-piste options too. The trees in particular are a godsend in bad weather when visibility on Les Arcs’ higher, open slopes can be almost non-existent; all of Peisey-Vallandry’s pistes cut through wooded areas, which allows you to enjoy skiing when the higher slopes are socked in.

If you’re staying in Peisey-Vallandry you’ll be hard put not to fall for the temptation of hopping aboard it for at least one day of skiing in La Plagne, although this will mean coughing up for the slightly more expensive Paradiski pass. Indeed, for many visitors this link is a major attraction – the fact that you can easily access all of Les Arcs as well as be in La Plagne in a matter of minutes means that if you’re staying in Peisey-Vallandry you effectively get two ski resorts for (slightly more than) the price of one.

Both villages can be explored quickly and easily. Vallandry is the bigger of the two with a collection of chalets, shops, restaurants and bars centred around a small pedestrian area; Plan Peisey tends to straggle out from the Vanoise Express lift station a little haphazardly and is also made up of a smaller, loose collection of shops, bars, restaurants and accommodation.

Spectacular views are part of the deal when you’re skiing in Peisey-Vallandry thanks to the resort’s location on the shoulders of 2,733m Aiguille Grive and 2,488m Aigulle Rousse, with panoramas that take in the valleys of the Isere and Ponturin rivers, the peaks of the Beaufortain region to the north-west and, overshadowing all this to the immediate south, the snow draped north face of 3,417m Bellecote, which adventurous freeriders can access via La Plagne.


  • A good range of skiing for all abilities; beginners and intermediates are particularly well catered for, and it’s a great place for progressing from beginner to early intermediate.
  • Tree skiing options when the weather is bad.
  • Easy access to the Vanoise Express cable car and La Plagne.
  • Self-catering accommodation for most budgets.
  • Short transfers from high-speed rail services into Bourg St. Maurice.
  • Paradiski lift pass gives you access to one of the world’s largest linked ski areas.


  • Nightlife is pretty quiet.
  • Few black runs on local slopes, but good tree skiing.



Paradiski piste map

Ski area
Village Altitude
Ski Altitude
1350 -1650
Green Runs
Blue Runs
Red Runs
Black Runs
Total Runs 256
Terrain Park
Cabin Lifts
Chair Lifts
Drag Lifts
Total Lifts 122