Tignes has long been a favourite amongst us Brits, and around a quarter of all visitors are British – which just goes to prove what excellent taste we have as a nation! To say Tignes is a safe choice is a bit of a disservice but it ticks all those boxes when trying to pick a resort. Snowsure? Tick. Big area? Tick. Good parties? Tick.
- Highest Point: 3,568m
- Descent: 2,298m
- No. lifts: 39
The villages, however are ugly as sin – no matter how much lipstick you put on them, they’re still pigs. There are lots of high-rise apartment blocks, which stick out of the landscape like the proverbial sore thumb.
What it does mean is that the villages (Val Claret, Tignes-Le-Lac and Le Lavachet) are pretty compact, and less expensive than Val D’Isere in the next valley. You can ride here almost all year, and the winter season is long – kicking off at the end of November and lasting until May. In the summer and autumn, a sizeable area on the glacier remains open.
The Parks – 3/5
The quality of the parks at Tignes has always been a bit of a rollercoaster. The main park, served by the Grattalu chairlift, features a number of small 2m-to-5m kickers and jibs. Their ‘Shoot my Ride’ system records your run with a number of cameras, so you can later download it… or delete it as quickly as possible!
On the run back to the resort you can either drop into the full-sized halfpipe, or head for the airbag to practice getting inverted without breaking your neck. Access from Val Claret is a breeze, but if you’re staying in one of the other villages then you can still get there quickly by taking the free shuttle bus to the foot of the Tichot chair.
A better option for those wanting to take their riding to the next level is the very well-maintained Val Park. There are a couple of ways to get there, the quickest being via the Aeroski that’s right by the main square in Tignes-Le-Lac. The jumps are bigger (8-15m) and the rails more technical, plus the park is serviced by its own tow rope to ensure you get plenty of fast laps in. However, you’ll need the full Espace Killy pass to access this area, and since it’s operated by Val d’Isère we’re not going to award Tignes the credit!
On the edge of Tignes-Le-Lac is the Gliss’Park, a small beginner terrain park served by the Millonex tow.
If you’re heading out for a summer glacier trip, they build a park towards the top of Grand Motte and install a couple of tows above the Stades T-bars. It features both intermediate and advanced lines of kickers and numerous jibs, and is shaped daily.
“There are few places more snow-sure than Tignes, and pow days are frequent“