Why you should take an afternoon off skiing…
Why you should take an afternoon off skiing during your holiday…
We love making the most of our time in the mountains, so of course you can find us on the slopes as often as possible, carving up the pistes or playing in the powder. (And yes, sometimes even stopping for lunch!)
However, we also firmly believe that skis or a snowboard are not always the best way to really appreciate the beauty of our surroundings. For that, you need to unclip from those bindings and spend a couple of hours adopting a much slower pace…
Follow in the footsteps of local wildlife
All around St Martin de Belleville you’ll find lovely paths that wind along scenic forested tracks, criss-crossed with the footprints of hares, foxes, deer and wild boar. It’s an incredible feeling to imagine the creatures who have shared your path in the early hours of the morning while you were still cosily tucked up in your chalet bed!
You’ll pass tinkling streams meandering gently through the blanketed rocks and stroll under trees laden with snow. It truly is a fantastic way to open your eyes to the majesty of the mountains and connect with nature.
How to explore the roads less travelled
There are numerous ways to access a bit of wilderness during your ski holiday; all you need is a good pair of grippy, and ideally waterproof, boots. You can access some lovely local walks without needing snow-shoes. If you’re nervous about ice then it’s wise to take ski poles with you, just in case. (They’re also a good way to work the triceps of course!)
Should you fancy venturing further from the well-trodden tracks and walk through fresher, deeper snow, then pop into our local hire shop and borrow some ‘raquettes’ (snow shoes) which you can easily fasten to your boots. The shop staff will show you how you can adjust them to clip onto your heels, or loosen for steeper walks.
The tourist office has some information on walking paths, and there are maps available to take with you on your walk. Otherwise, simply ask Daisy when she visits your chalet, as she’s an expert on the local tracks having walked them in both winter and summer with Balloo, her gorgeous dog!
If you feel cautious about going solo then do ask us about guided snow-shoe walks: we can organise for you to join a walk during your stay and you’ll see views that you’d never notice when whizzing around the slopes.
Don’t forget to refuel!
If you have a lift pass then you can use the lifts without skis, or for those who aren’t skiing at all then it’s possible to purchase either a daily or weekly pedestrian ‘pieton’ pass which is a great value way to take in the views above the village and to meet up with others in your party at one of the mountain restaurants.
>>Click here for more information on lift passes
>> Click here for our favourite mountain restaurants
The journalist Rebecca Woollard from Delicious magazine visited us last year and enjoyed a snow-shoe walk to La Transta, a local dairy farm that offers tastings to visitors. Again, we’re more than happy to organise this for our guests who fancy trying something a little more cultural during their trip to St Martin.
>> Read Rebecca’s article here
We hope you’ll agree that taking some time away from the ski slopes is a worthwhile activity and really helps you to see our incredible scenery from another viewpoint. There’s so much more to St Martin than whizzing around the pistes so we would wholeheartedly recommend taking a morning or afternoon away from the slopes to appreciate your surroundings on foot.
>> Read more on St Martin de Belleville for non-skiers