Top 9 Must Ski Destinations Around the World

John Cunningham | | Industry NewsIndustry News

Snowy plane

Who doesn’t love a good destination ski trip? Anticipation levels are sky-high while planning your travel, from finding accommodation to checking out local dining options. The immediate thrill when arriving in a unique winter paradise accompanied by friends, family, or your own good fortune. There are not many feelings quite like it.

Each year, TripAdvisor puts together a list of the best places to ski worldwide that receive exceptional reviews for their hotels, dining, and things to do. From the Swiss Alps to Lake Tahoe, northern Italy to British Columbia, the 2023 ‘best of the best ski destinations’ are some absolutely breathtaking destinations.

#9: Lake Tahoe, California

This majestic alpine lake offers sensational skiing and snowboarding all throughout the surrounding mountains. Boasting 300 days of sunshine and 300-400+ inches of annual snowfall, the contrasting snowy mountains, beautiful lake, and bright blue skies create the perfect winter utopia. Take in the views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and Lake Tahoe from 10,067 ft, the highest lift access in the region, before wandering between California into Nevada at Heavenly Ski Resort. Head to Palisades (home of the 1960 Olympics) or Kirkwood for big mountain bowls, cliffs, chutes, and some of the best advanced and expert terrain around Tahoe. The après scene is all-time, with four casinos, a brand new event center on the south shore of the Nevada Stateline, restaurants in and around the mountain villages, and live music and good vibes flowing abundantly in the California sun. Drive about an hour from Reno-Tahoe International Airport into the Tahoe Basin to choose from almost a dozen fabulous ski resorts.

Image: Heavenly Mountain Facebook

#8: Anchorage, Alaska

Gorgeous mountains stand thousands of feet above sea level in the vast Chugach Mountains of Alaska. Take a train or drive roughly 40 miles south from Anchorage International Airport to Alyeska for a world-class mountain adventure. With an outrageous 650 inches of legendary ‘steep and deep’ coastal powder annually, the skiing and riding are truly unique. Try your skills on over 2,000 ft of vertical drop, including North Face, the world’s longest double black diamond run, or take in the remarkable scenery showcasing glaciers, the ocean, and mountain views on rolling groomers. Relax and rejuvenate after a long day on the mountain with hot pools and a cold plunge, a steam room, and several styles of saunas at Alaska’s first Nordic spa. Several casual and fine dining options are located within the resort, so bring your appetite for delicious seafood and snowy Alaskan spines.

Image: Alyeska Resort Facebook

#7: Park City, Utah

Immerse yourself in rustic downtown Park City after exploring over 7,000 acres of terrain at Park City Mountain Resort or the more “private” nearby Deer Valley, one of just three skier-only resorts left in the states. Coined ‘The Greatest Snow on Earth,’ the cold, fluffy powder in the Wasatch Mountains results from dry, desert air pulling the moisture out of the snow. Lake effect often enhances storm-totals, for close to 280” of annual snowfall, and even more at neighboring mountains Brighton and Snowbird. The Town Lift starts in the heart of downtown and gives you quick access to incredible intermediate and expert terrain. Choose from hundreds of different bars and restaurants to enjoy après on and around Historic Main Street. Home to the 2002 Winter Olympics, Park City is under an hour’s drive from Salt Lake City International Airport.

park city
Image: Visit Park City Facebook

#6: Trento, Trentino-Alto Adige, northeast Italy

On the border of Austria and Switzerland in the northern Italian Alps, the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Dolomites shows off other-worldly limestone peaks. Just outside of Trento, Campiglio Dolomiti di Brenta, the largest ski area connects three top-rated resorts for 93 miles (150 km) of incredible skiing. Ranging from 2,800-8,200 feet (850-2,500 meters), enjoy unbeatable sunrise, sunset, and night skiing while gazing off at the Brenta Dolomites and Val Rendena Valley. Amazing snow-making systems paired with over 110 inches (287 cm) of annual snowfall keep the slopes in constantly pristine, groomed condition. The close proximity to the border provides mouthwatering cuisine with German, Austrian, and Swiss influence, catering to a perfect Alps-style après combo of delectable food and wine. Innsbruck Airport is the largest, most convenient place to fly into, just about two hours north of Trento.

Image: Campigliodolomiti Facebook

 #5: Livigno, Lombardy, northwest Italy

Tucked deep in the heart of the Italian Alps close to the Swiss border, Livigno Mountain Resort is located in a natural valley, surrounded by desolate forest and the snow-capped Dolomites.  More than 62 miles (100 km) connect between two sides of Livigno, the west slopes of Carosello 3000, and Mottolino to the east, accounting for endless terrain and views from over 9,000 feet (2,800 meters). Additionally, guided skinning and heli-skiing tours further expand the exploration of these captivating mountains’ 190+ inches (482 cm) of annual snow. Treat yourself to duty-free shopping, tasty local-inspired cuisine, or a relaxing time at the spa after a day on the slopes. Known for Mottolino’s professional snowpark, Livigno will be hosting the freestyle and snowboarding competitions and Olympic Village at the 2026 Winter Olympics. Arrive at Zurich or Innsbruck Airport and drive 3-4 hours to this quaint, culture-rich destination for an incredible vacation. Bellissimo!

Image: Livigno Facebook

#4: Chamonix, France

In France, right on the border of Switzerland and Italy, Mont Blanc towers a staggering 15,774 feet (4,807 meters) above sea level. Ski resorts at the foot of Mont Blanc offer a whopping 93 miles (150 km) and an annual 377 inches (9.6 meters) of annual snowfall. Le Brevent and Le Grand Montet serve up a variety of breathtaking terrain for any and all skill levels. For advanced and expert skiers, hiring a guide is recommended to see why Cham is the birthplace of free skiing. Unmatched après is everywhere, starting while on the slopes, sometimes going until the wee hours of the morning! Just don’t forget to eat some yummy fondue and a plethora of authentic French dishes in the midst. Geneva Airport in Switzerland is just over an hour’s drive from Chamonix, home of the first-ever Winter Olympics in 1924.

Image: Chamonix-Mont Blanc Facebook

#3: Zermatt, Switzerland

Sticking straight out of the clouds with its jagged, pyramid-like peak, the Matterhorn in Zermatt is known and admired worldwide. Navigate almost 139 miles (360 km) around Zermatt and year-round skiing thanks to Matterhorn Ski Paradise. Sitting at over 13,000 feet (4,000 meters) high, with a massive 7,200+ foot (2,200 meters) vertical drop, Europe’s highest lift-accessed peaks receive almost 400 inches (10 meters) of snow a year. Ideal for cruising along and taking in the spectacular views and endless groomers, backcountry and freeride skiers will also rejoice for the incredible off-piste terrain that awaits. Finish the day with some of the best on-mountain après, gourmet dining options, including Michelin-starred restaurants, and of course, a Swiss favorite, raclette cheese. Fly into Geneva or Zurich Airport and drive or take a train approximately four hours to Zermatt. No cars are permitted to the public in town, so plan accordingly.

Image: Zermatt Matterhorn Facebook

#2: Jackson Hole, Wyoming

The awe-inspiring Grand Teton, at a sky-high 13,775 ft, is the magnificent centerpiece of the Teton Mountains. Nearby Jackson Hole Mountain Resort boasts a serious 4,000 ft vertical drop and 450+ inches of annual snow across 2,500 acres of inbounds terrain. In just nine minutes, 100 skiers and riders can ascend in “Big Red,” the aerial tram, to the summit at 10,450ft. Like the snow quality in Utah and the Colorado Rockies, the dry, fluffy “cowboy powder” blankets the Tetons creating any mountain-lovers dream day on the slopes. Famous for Corbet’s Couloir and 3,000+ acres of backcountry access, there are also intermediate areas to cruise corduroy while taking in the jaw-dropping scenery. Start your après in Teton Village with live music and cold drinks before heading to the must-see Million Dollar Cowboy Bar in Jackson Town Square. Fly into Jackson Hole Airport, the only commercial airport in a National Park, and drive a short 40 minutes or less to a western winter wonderland.

Image: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Facebook

#1: Whistler, British Columbia

When thinking of the ultimate, quintessential day in the mountains, Whistler and Blackcomb are understandably at the top of every skier’s list. These two monumental ski resorts (home of the 2010 Winter Olympics), connected over Fitzsimmons Creek by the Peak 2 Peak Gondola, service 8,171 acres of colossal, big-mountain riding for all abilities. 450 annual inches of coastal, cold smoke snowfall makes for tons of powder days and undeniably some of the best snow and skiing in the world. With the second-highest vertical drop in North America, plunge 5,280 feet from the lift-accessed summit of 7,494 feet at Blackcomb through what feels like infinite terrain. From the beginner and intermediate wide open groomers to gorgeous glades or ginormous glacial bowls, this immense winter playground has it all. Backcountry skiing is another huge draw, providing freeriders with mesmerizing, untracked powder stretching miles in every direction. Refuel and take in the views at 4 different on-mountain dining options, or call it a day and let the après begin in the Whistler Village. Vancouver International Airport is about a two-hour drive from the world’s most unforgettable, unrivaled ski getaway.

Image: Whistler Blackcomb Facebook

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