Avoriaz is a resort in Les Portes du Soleil ski region that includes ski zones in the Savoie Alps (France) and Unterwallis (Switzerland). The names of the most sport centers had been known long before they grouped together. Portes du Soleil today is hundreds of kilometers of groomed trails, vast virgin slopes, numerous lifts, and common ski pass.
An advantage of the region called “Gates of the sun” is relatively small height at which trails start. As all over France the system of lifts here is so well-developed that you will not waste your time waiting. There are almost no cabin and gondola lifts here, and chair lifts are a few.
Avoriaz is the most up-to-date French center in Les Portes du Soleil located in the very heart of the region at the at relatively high altitude – it is very convenient. The steepest slope in the world leads from Mur de Chavanette to Champery on the Swiss side. It is so dangerous that only a few sportsmen ventured to downhill it, though it is possible theoretically. Another black slope is Trail du Machon (3000 m, elevation change 100 m). The best way to reach Chamoissiere, the longest trail in the region, is to start from Morzine. Not far from here one of the two lightened trails is laid – Pleney (500 m, intermediate, Thursday till 23.00). Another one, La Boule de Gomme, easy trail lightened every day till 22.00 can be reached from Les Gets.
Morzine, the center of the French part of Les Portes du Soleil region, previously was an ordinary mountain village. Easy trails perfect for beginners and children start from Pleney at the altitude of 1600 m and on the sides of Ranfolly. More difficult trails are prepared at Pointe de Nyon (2019 m). Chamoissiere sides (2000 m) are perfect for virgin skiing.
Trails near Les Gets are mostly easy, that is why the whole families usually come here. The most popular ski zones are Chavan and Chery. It is better to go there early in the morning: in the afternoon the sun begins to be hot and snow becomes loose and heavy.
The best point to start getting familiar with region is Chatel on the Swiss boarder; one may get to Swiss resorts by lifts. Many people chose Les Portes du Soleil for here all the villages are interconnected that extends skiing opportunities. Alpine skiing is the main sport in the named resort, but cross country skiing is also popular. Sport clubs and centers offer various training and games. The most interesting hiking tours are organized by the tourist office of Morzine.