Overview of Baqueira Beret
Of course, it's understandably hard to fathom that Spain, with its Mediterranean identity, and reputation for sun and beaches would not only have ski resorts but also very good snow conditions as well. Although not part of the Alps, the Pyrenees mountains receive just as much snowfall as most parts of the Alps. Baqueira Beret is located in the Pyrenees mountain range on the Spanish and French border. It is widely regarded as one of Spain's most popular ski resorts and is also one of its largest. Baqueira Beret sits in the Aran Valley (Val d’Aran) at an altitude of 1,500, with slopes that climb up to 2,500 metres. It has a total of 160 kilometres of pistes which are serviced by 33 lifts made up of a gondola, chairlifts, surface lifts and magic carpets. The ski terrain stretches across the ski valleys of Baqueira, Beret, Argulls and Bonaigua ( La Bonigua). While the terrain generally favours all ski ability levels, most of the runs here are best suited to beginners and intermediate-level skiers. The terrain on the slopes is quite diverse and varies between wide-open pistes and speedy, tree-lined downhill runs. Perhaps what is most impressive ( and pleasantly surprising to some) about the terrain is the brilliant snowfall record and conditions on the pistes, which sometimes see the snow ploughs operate until late May. With uncrowded slopes and lots of powder, the resort offers a majestic skiing experience, especially on quiet days when it feels like you have the slopes all to yourself. Baqueira Beret is the ideal definition of a hidden gem for skiers from its stunning beauty to its unique charm. Across the village, the landscape features a row of ice-capped mountains which lay as a backdrop in the valley. The general vibe here is family-friendly, welcoming and rife with Spanish hospitality. It has great family accommodation and is less than an hour's transfer from Toulouse, making it great to access for a short winter escape to the Pyrenees. Whilst on the pistes, you will find several huts to enjoy a bit of rioja or tapas or both! Back at the village base, the restaurants and bars keep the evening apres-ski alive until the early hours. Keep your eyes peeled and your camera phones at the ready as you may quite possibly bump into a celebrity or two; the Beckhams and members of the Spanish royal family have been spotted at Baqueira Beret before.
Skiing in Baqueira Beret
With up to 160 kilometres of pistes to explore, Baqueira Beret has something for everyone. The resort offers fantastic skiing opportunities thanks to its reliable snowfall record and deep powder bowls. The pistes are routinely groomed every morning ensuring primed corduroy is awaiting the very first skiers of the morning. The main skiing area is Baqueira which is flanked by Bonaigua and Beret on either side of it.
Beginners have a few nursery slopes to practise on before heading off. Baqueira and Beret have the most blues in the resort, especially the blues coming down the north face of the Baqueira Mountain above the tree-line. This area is located at the top of the main gondola you would take from the village.
Intermediate skiers pretty much have the run of the mill here. There is a collection of long reds running down the south face of Cap de Baqueira at almost 2,500 metres. The Beret valley also has a number of long, open reds and challenging blues.
There are a few steep blacks above the tree-line coming down Cap de la Peulla on Bonigua but advanced skiers would love the numerous off-piste opportunities here. Advanced skiers would find some amazing off-piste terrain above Lacs de Baciver; access via drag lift from the village.
Snowboarding in Baqueira Beret
Freeriders looking for some cool off-piste to ride will be pleasantly surprised, with some great powder riding to be had well away from the chicken sticks in bad suits. Check out the areas on the Tuc De Dossal that are reached by chair lift, or hit the stuff up at La Bonaigua. Advanced riders are the ones who will be most disappointed, apart from two black graded runs there's not a great deal of testing stuff.
Freeriders would absolutely love the long reds on Baqueira and Beret. There are some fantastic off-piste areas on Tuc De Dossal and higher up on Bonaigua. The Era Marmòta snowpark has recently been remodelled with a few more obstacles, rails etc being added. The park also has different circuits ( green line, blue line and red line) to cater to all ability levels.
Snow Conditions in Baqueira Beret
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Apres Ski in Baqueira Beret
Baqueira Beret (as well as its neighbours in the Aran Valley; Arties and Vielha) has a varied nightlife and apres-ski that is quite different from traditional resorts in France, Austria, Italy and Switzerland. This is in part because the daily Spanish timetable in Spain largely differs from that of the countries mentioned above. Lunchtime in the Spanish Alps could be anything from noon until 3 pm and dinner is served from 7 pm until 10 pm in some places. This means bars and restaurants stay open until quite late in the evening. The apres-ski scene is generally lively during the week and gets a lot busier come the weekend with a large influx of skiers coming up from Madrid and Barcelona. Baqueira and Arties draw a lot of traditional ski tourists while Viehla attracts locals and younger crowds. The resort has a good range of bars and clubs that suit and cater to all types; from relaxed and chillout spots to party-fuelled bars and clubs.
Tiffany’s is one of the resort's most popular nightclubs, attracting a large number of party-goers all through the skiing season. A very fashionable and trendy nightclub, it is very well known for hosting events and brilliantly themed parties over the course of the season, which also feature some of the hottest DJs both local and nationally known in Spain. The lively atmosphere is bound to catch you when you’re at Tiffany's; whether you are table dancing on the terrace outside or on the dancefloor inside next to the DJ booth. If you are in the resort in December, look out for the festive parties around Christmas and the fantastic new years eve party. Tiffany’s is perfect for skiers looking for a night of partying and dancing until the early hours of the morning.
Moet Winter Lounge
Located on the slopes, the Moet Winter Lounge is a great place to start off your apres ski evening. Open every day until 5 pm, the Moet Winter Lounge has undergone a recent refurbishment which has seen its terrace expanded to add a dining room. It's a great place to have a post-ski meal and a glass of champagne. It's absolutely brilliant on a sunny day and its location next to the Jorge Jordana chairlift makes it quite easily accessible on foot.
One of the best apres ski spots on the slopes, Bar 1500 ( located at 1,500 metres as the name implies), is the perfect piste party location in the area. It has a large terrace and open space where you can not only enjoy the sun but also coffees and tapas as well when you stop on your break mid-ski. You can also enjoy beers, spirits and a large selection of cocktails from the bar's very extensive cocktails menu. Bar 1500 also hosts live music events with visiting groups and popular DJs performing on Saturday when the resort is busiest. Certainly worth a stopover.
One of Baqueira Berets' most prominent landmarks, Hotel Montaro offers partying skiers in the ski resort a fantastic selection of different experiences. Home to the Restaurant Wine Bar Viña Pomal, Montaro Piano Bar and the Drinkery Sports Bar. Open until 11 pm every day the Viña Pomal wine bar has an extensive wine menu featuring a selection that includes local and international wines. It also serves quality dishes and fantastic meals to go with your meal. The Piano Bar is an elegant, tranquil haven. Away from the noise and rowdy bars and clubs, it is the perfect place to meet up and enjoy a lovely conversation over cocktails while being warmed by the open fire. Skiers looking for a sports bar should visit the Drinkery and catch up with all the live sports. Featuring a very trendy and modern design, it is a few screens showing multiple sporting events from around the world.
Facilities in Baqueira Beret
As one of Spain's largest ski resorts, you can expect the facilities in Baqueira Beret to be very good; and indeed they are. The resort has a modern lift infrastructure in place, very good accommodation options and several restaurants, cafes and shops selling essential goods.
Ski Hire in Baqueira Beret
There are a number of ski hire shops in Baqueira Beret, however, we would always recommend hiring your ski equipment from us directly if you are booking your ski holiday through us. This saves you a great deal of time and hassle upon arrival at the resort, especially when you are trying to hire ski equipment for yourself as well as your travelling group of family or friends. Hiring your ski equipment from us is quick, easy and perhaps the most convenient method of hiring your ski equipment. We have solid and trusting partnerships with some of the Alp's most prominent ski hire stores, thus making your ski hire with us even smooth in transition. After making your online equipment hire booking, all you need to do upon arrival at the resort is to visit our ski hire equipment partner where you will be presented with hired equipment: ready and waiting for you.
Ski Passes in Baqueira Beret
You can get your Baqueira Beret ski pass from the lift machines at the resort or you can also order it directly from us online as part of your overall ski holiday package to Baqueira Beret. Simply select the ski pass option on the ski extras page while in the process of booking your ski holiday and add it to your overall booking. One of the advantages of ordering your ski pass ahead of time is that it allows you to avoid the long queues at the ticket machines and ticket offices. It also allows you to take advantage of any early bird discounts and online-only sales. Feel free to contact us directly if you need any additional information.
Spa and Swimming Pools in Baqueira Beret
Unwind after a long day on the slopes with a relaxing spa and swimming pool session in any of the resort's quality hotels. Soothe your muscles and joints in a steam room or Finnish sauna and get fully rejuvenated and ready for your next runs on the slopes. There are a number of hotels in Baqueira Beret that are well equipped with swimming pools and spa facilities. Hotel Montarto perhaps stands out for having one of the best wellness facilities in the area. It houses a 150-square foot centre that includes 2 Hydra spas, 1 Finnish sauna, 1 steam room, Scottish shower, Polar and pebble walk, and an ice fountain. It also offers an extensive list of beauty and massage treatments. The services at the Hotel Montarto spa are not exclusive to guests at the hotel as reservations can be made by visitors to the facility on the day. There are a number of other hotels offering similar services across the Aran Valley as well.
Shopping in Baqueira Beret
The Baqueira Beret shopping experience is a much simpler affair than the glamorous malls and designer boutiques found in the ski resorts of Austria and Switzerland. Here, the shops are more essential and generally range across grocery shops, ski and snowsports equipment retailers, cafes, restaurants and pharmacies.
Facilities for Children in Baqueira Beret
Baqueira Beret is a visiting ski family's hidden gem. It offers great value for money in comparison to Europe's popular ski resorts and has less traffic allowing families with young children to feel a lot more at ease on and off the slopes. It also, in particular, has a very welcoming family-friendly atmosphere with excellent children's play areas and nursery slopes providing exciting entertainment both on and off the slopes.
Ski Lessons in Baqueira Beret
There are a number of ski schools at the resort where children can be enrolled on ski lessons, however, if you are visiting the resort in the coming season, you can also very easily book your children's ski lessons with us directly as part of your overall ski holiday booking. We have established partnerships with some of the Alp's most reputed ski schools which have very experienced instructors. By securing your children's ski school with us online, you are not only placing yourself at the front of the queue ahead of your arrival, but you are also cutting out the hassle of trying to find a ski school when you get to the resort. With us, it's super easy to sign up and you rest assured that your children will be receiving the best possible ski instructions available at Baqueira Beret.
Entertainment for children in Baqueira Beret
There is a lot to get up to with the children over the ski season at Baqueira Beret. Just off the gondola mountain station in the village, there is a children's play area for ages 3 to 7 which has swings and slides. With most ski lessons for children ending at about midday, there is a lot of time to explore the village and enjoy some family time. While you are outside in the snow, you can opt to take family rides in a horse-drawn carriage in and around the village. You can also go snowshoeing or even have fun on the toboggan; when you do get tired of the outdoors, take the kids swimming in any of the hotel swimming pools in the village. In nearby Vielha, there is a leisure centre with an indoor swimming pool and an ice skating rink.
Childcare in Baqueira Beret
You can get day and evening childcare in Baqueira Beret. There is also a kindergarten for children aged 3 to 6 and a creche for children from as young as 3 months and up to 3 years old. Most ski schools also offer childcare options as well. We would suggest checking with local tourist offices or additional recommendations.
The ski areas in Baqueira Beret are well laid out and serviced by a swift and modern lift system. The skiing is spread across Baqueira, Beret, Bonaigua and the basin of Argulls which has undoubtedly the best-preserved snow in the area. Most of the skiing takes place above the tree line with the majority of the pistes on south-facing slopes.