And travel search engine counts down its Top 7 budget ski resortsAs ski season commences, a familiar challenge arises for many - finding a fun new destination for dashing down the slopes.
To help inspire travellers searching for their perfect snowy spot, momondo.co.uk has added ski destinations to its popular inspirational search tool Trip Finder.
Trip Finder lets users find and explore new places to visit around the world, by entering preferences, such as continent, budget and travel interests for the trip. Skiers can select criteria like “Romantic”, for example, for suggestions suited to a couples ski break, or “Family” for child-friendly slopes. Through these criteria travellers are offered bespoke suggestions of ski destinations, according to their travel needs.
The tool was launched earlier this year, initially with 182 popular global destinations. Now with the 79 new ski spots, Trip Finder includes 261 locales world-wide, with more to come in 2015. ￼
“momondo has hand-picked the most popular skiing destinations around the globe - from American resorts to budget skiing in Eastern Europe. For all skiing destinations we naturally also give information on which airport to fly to,” explains Pia Vemmelund, Managing Director at momondo.
Vemmelund adds: “We also understand the cost implications of a ski break, which can be prohibitive for some travellers. Therefore we are pleased to present our top budget European resorts here, where skiers will get more powder for their pound”.
momondo’s Top 7 Eastern European resorts for a low-cost skiing break
Whilst the pros rely on sponsors, for most skiing can be a pretty expensive holiday. However, momondo here proves the winter sport needn’t burn such a daunting hole in the pocket. With these alternative ski destinations across Eastern Europe, travellers will save on everything from ski passes to dining, without giving up on great snow.
Spindleruv Mlyn, Czech Republic
Sat snugly in the powdered peaks of the highest mountain range in the Czech Republic, Krknose (meaning The Giant Mountains), sits tranquil Spindleruv Mlyn, one of four main resorts in the area. From kid-friendly runs to a snow-stacked terrain park and miles of unspoilt cross-country trails, Spindleruv Mlyn is a serious bargain. Plus the gorgeous surrounding National Park is a UNESCO classified biosphere reserve. Head down to the charming snow-capped village, where the smell of simmering stews and piping hot pancakes lingers permanently in the air. For a new and eccentric experience, the local Novosad Brewery offers an unusual spa treatment – soaking in fizzy golden beer baths. In February 2015, accommodation in Spindleruv Mlyn starts from just £24 a night and return flights to Prague from London, from just £110, searching on momondo.co.uk.
Home to the women’s skiing events of the 1984 Winter Olympics, the resort of Jahorina attracts downhillers in search of a taste of international snowsport standards. Standing proud amongst the tallest Dinaric Alps of Bosnia, Jahorina’s wide slopes are crisp and inviting – towering over an equally charming little town of traditional chalets and foothills coated in fir trees. Only a stone’s-throw from Sarajevo and a favourite for après-lovers, this Balkan budget destination makes for a great ski and city break combination. It’s also built a glowing reputation amongst nature seekers, who flock here faithfully for the hiking, sledding and fresh alpine air. In February 2015, accommodation in Jahorina starts from just £16 a night and return flights to Sarajevo from London, from just £190 searching on momondo.co.uk.
Bialka Tatrzanska, Poland
Zakopane is Poland’s biggest and most recognised resort. However those wanting to ski on the cheap and avoid clumsy crowds, head to the picture-perfect village of Bialka Tatrzanska. The resort’s wide, sweeping, tree-lined slopes are family-friendly - best for beginners and intermediates to sharpen their skills. A taste of the local smoky sheep’s cheese with cranberries and a warm cup of rum-spiked tea work as a great midday energy boost. Night-time can be quiet in this rural refuge, but a dip in the steaming outdoor pools of the local geothermal baths is a relaxing end to the day. In February 2015, accommodation in Bialka Tatrzanska starts from just £17 a night and return flights to Krakow from London, from just £135 searching on momondo.co.uk.
One of Slovakia’s best kept secrets, nestled in the Demanovska Dolina Valley, Jasna is a real-life winter wonderland of snow flurry and pine trees, where pistes cut through wilderness, and backcountry skiing through national parkland. Whilst Chopok peak lures its fair share of adventure-seekers, with its 1,000m vertical drop and multiple freeride areas, newcomers can hit the excellent ski schools or wander off-piste with an expert Slovak guide. The après-ski scene veers on the quiet side, revolving around local brews and hot perogi dumplings, but daredevils can always brave the evening air and slice up the last of Chopok’s powder on an illuminated night run. In February 2015, accommodation in Demanovska Dolina, Slovakia starts from just £64 a night and return flights to Kosice from London, from just £340 searching on momondo.co.uk.
With the help of hefty investment in recent years, Bansko is becoming a top destination for snow lovers seeking both good powder conditions and nights that offer a lot more than cocoa by the fire. Although extremely beginner-friendly, the resort is not all bunny-slopes – the reds can definitely hold their own and riding full speed through the skyscraper spruces of the glades, is as thrilling as it is visually spectacular. Bulgaria’s biggest resort can sometimes get a little congested on the lifts, but that’s nothing a cosy late breakfast can’t solve. And sleeping in may be preferred, as Bansko’s legendary bar scene is as much of an adrenaline rush as any black run. In February 2015, accommodation in Bansko starts from just £16 a night and return flights to Sofia from London, from just £210 searching on momondo.co.uk.
Kranjska Gora, Slovenia Sitting pretty in the majestic Julian Alps and blanketed in hefty pine forest, is quiet and family-friendly Kranjska Gora. What this Slovenian resort, bordered by Austria and Italy, lacks in challenging terrain, it more than makes up for in gentle, well-groomed runs, compact nursery slopes and a stunning landscape to accompany the copious amounts of cross-country trails. It does lay claim, however, to a World Cup black run that has been testing slalom stars from around the world for more than 50 years. Despite its pedigree, Kranjska Gora is free of prestige and the prices that go with it – you don’t need to be a celebrity to get a guesthouse on the piste. In February 2015, accommodation in Kranjska Gora starts from just £29 a night and return flights to Ljubljana from London, from just £227 searching on momondo.co.uk.
Popova Sapka, Macedonia
Standing higher than most Eastern European resorts is Macedonia’s Popova Sapka, nestled in the rounded peaks of the Dinaric Mountains. The town, with its veil of white and empty streets, is in a state of perpetual slumber, perfect for those in search of a secret hideaway. The lifts may be a little old school but the smooth, unmarked slopes are definitely worth the ride. If determined to venture even further into the virgin white, Popova Sapka is home to Europe’s first and only Snowcat operation. A converted snow groomer takes skiers into the immaculate back-country to freeride to their heart’s content. Fly to Skopje from just £130 return from London, this February 2015, searching on momondo.co.uk.
Prices true as of date published and may be subject to change.