Sainte Foy is a hidden gem nestled deep in the Tarentaise valley. This lesser-known resort is far quieter than its neighbours Tignes, Val-d'Isère and Les Arcs; meaning it also benefits from being more affordable and having cheaper lift passes.
Perfect for families or those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of the bigger resorts, visitors can enjoy uncrowded slopes, luxurious chalets and the charm of a peaceful Alpine village. The ski area is also known to be one of the ultimate off-piste paradises in the Alps.
Resort Altitude: 1,500m
Resort Skiing: 2,620m
Blue Runs: 15km
Red Runs: 20km
Black Runs: 7km
The Sainte Foy ski area is small, with a total of only 42km of slopes ranging from 1,500m to 2,620m. Whilst this is enough for beginners to get their ski legs, intermediate and advanced skiers will quickly get through this ski area. However, Sainte Foy is known for its extensive and unspoiled off-piste; if you are a freeride skier then this resort is a paradise, with a plethora of huge powder bowls, tree runs and fantastically snowsure slopes.
Beginners will enjoy a fantastic range of blue runs to enjoy, which are perfect for mastering the basics on. There aren't a vast amount of slopes for more advanced skiers, however, those looking to explore territory off the piste will be spoiled for choice. Get a guide and head up one of the four chairlifts and then make your own way down the off-piste areas; you’ll find it hard to suppress the smiles after a day skiing here.
Beginner and freeride boarders will benefit most from this area. Snowboards were created for areas like this and you won't find better off-piste anywhere in the Alps. Explore endless options; from the tree runs into Villaroger to the exciting climb up to the top of Grand Col.
For the size of the resort, there is a good choice of ski schools including ESF and Evolution 2. Both have stellar reviews and are consistently well-regarded for their excellent, English speaking instructors.
There are a few nurseries in the resort, with many of the hotels will offering childcare services for children as young as 12 weeks. For children who are older than three, ESF have a Piou-Piou club which will help them take their first steps towards learning how to ski.
For a small resort, Sainte Foy has a lot to offer in terms of its quantity and quality of restaurants. For a real rustic atmosphere the Chez Merie, an old barnhouse restaurant, offers fantastic traditional cuisine in a truly beautiful setting.
On the slopes, it is well worth visiting Les Marquises for a lunch-break. They have a great choice of hearty Alpine cuisine at modest prices.
Sainte Foy doesn’t have a huge amount of nightlife options, but its only a short commute to the likes of Val d'Isère and Les Arcs if you're looking for a party. Yeti Boots is a popular venue in the centre of the resort with a happy hour and Le Monal is a great restaurant and wine bar with a sociable, laidback scene.
There are lots of activities for non-skiers who are a bit adventurous, including parapenting, snowshoeing, dog sledding, ice driving and even ice diving. You can also rent out ski scooters which can be taken out on the mountain. For non-skiers looking more for a more leisurely choice, there are a number of spas and restaurants as well as a few shops; or there is the option to commute over to Val-d'Isère or Les Arcs for more activities.