Mountain a new challenge this ski season

 
Melissa York
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Yongpyong Resort in South Korea
1. Tirol, Austria
White 5 pass is valid for 10 days from 1 October 2014 to 15 May 2015, for €358 per person, tirol.com
If you just can’t wait to go skiing or you want to beat the peak season rush, Austria is the perfect destination this month. The five Tirol glaciers encompass 229km of pistes, which should be enough for even the most avid skiier. The White 5 pass allows access to all five slopes, which have a number of new offerings this season, including a new ski tunnel at Kaunertal and Cafe 3440, which sits exactly 3,440m above the Alps. The two most exciting additions, though, are the opening of the Adrenalin Cup at Solden, an open skiing challenge testing 10 disciplines, and an ice cave 30m beneath the slopes at Stubai, created with the University of Innsbruck to show skiiers how glaciers are formed.
2. Yongpyong, South Korea
Yongpyong Resort and Seoul, 8 nights, including accommodation, flights with Korean Air and transfers costs £1,230pp based on 2 adults, skisafari.com or 01273 224 060
A trip to South Korea is truly a ski experience out of the ordinary, as you get to experience an ancient culture and increasingly popular cuisine in between hitting the slopes. Ski Safari is the only UK operator currently offering trips to the country, and their packages also include visits to the capital Seoul, a modern city of world famous brands like Samsung, Hyundai and K-pop, which co-exist alongside its ancient Buddhist temples. Yongpyong Resort is home to Dragon’s Peak, a 1,458m piste that will be used for the Alpine skiing for the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.
3. Les Terraces d’Helios, French Alps
Seven night’s accommodation in a self-catering apartment sleeping up to four people starts from £675 arriving on 13 December, pierreetvacances.com
If you’re fed up of resorts and want to ski your way, new five-star luxury apartments are arriving at the start of the season in the French Alps. Les Terraces d’Helios is a collection of 119 self-catering apartments in Flaine, Montsoleil. Furnished in a funky retro style, they house four to eight people and all have balconies or terraces to admire the Alpine view. The slopes, spanning 265km, are perfect for intermediate skiiers wanting to hone their skills and there’s even some off-piste skiing in the Flaine bowl for the show offs.
4. Salla, Finland
Salla is available for bookings for this December. Prices from £585 per
adult for a seven night, self-catered stay with flights from London Gatwick, crystalski.co.uk
If you’re a beginner who doesn’t want to spend the whole of your scant holiday allowance battling your way down a mountain, then try out the new Salla resort in Finland. Just north of the Arctic Circle, all of the slopes are at beginner and intermediate level. If you don’t take to the sport straight away, there’s a host of extraordinary activities to partake in thanks to its proximity to one of the world’s most impressive natural wonders, the northern lights. The resort runs snowmobile trips out to see the lights and you can also take photography lessons underneath their ethereal glow. Failing that, enroll on one of the resort’s courses and earn your reindeer license.
5. Nira Montana, Italy
Due to open on 6 December, Nira Montana is available to book for 200 euros a night, including breakfast
and wifi, niramontana.com or 00390165883125
A picturesque mountain village, La Thuile lies at the foot of Mount Blanc in northern Italy and it’s set to open its first ski resort this winter. Be one of the first to stay at Nira Montana, a 55-room luxury hotel that takes its architectural inspiration from traditional valley homes. Standing at only three-storeys high, it’s bedecked in wood, stone and other natural materials from the surrounding area, it also boasts a private spa and an authentic alfresco restaurant with views over the alps, which will be serving up hearty bowls of fresh pasta so you can refuel after a hard day hitting the slopes.