What Leysin lacks in kilometres of slopes it more than makes up for with it's incredible scenery, views and sunny climate. Obviously, if it's masses of pistes that you're after then you'd be better clocking up the mileage at a bigger resort, but for those after somewhere quiet and a bit different, Leysin is definitely worth a look. With around 65km of pistes on offer there is just about enough to keep most intermediates happy for a week, and with the majority of slopes being blue and red it mainly suits that mid-level of skier too. It's part of the Alpes Vaudoises ski area, so anyone who's worried that they'll have done all that Leysin has to offer halfway through their holiday could always travel to some of the other areas nearby, such as Villars, Les Diablerets, or even slightly further afield to Gstaad.
The scenery down at resort level is great but the views from up at the 2048m revolving restaurant are amazing. The restaurant is called Le Kuklos, a modern glass building built between two mountains - la Tour Mayen and la Tour d'Ai. With the wide vistas and panoramas you can see why they built it - with views stretching right down to Lake Geneva and the mountains beyond.
As well as the beautiful scenery, one of the other main draws of Leysin is it's great sunshine record, particular for visitors in the summer months. The 'Swiss Riviera' is only just down the valley, and is quite aptly named, not only because of it's waterside location but also for it's sunny climate. Leysin and the surrounding area also benefit from this, and the surrounding area can lay claim to having one of the best climate's in the Swiss Alps.
No live-streams are currently available for Leysin.
A list of webcams for Leysin and the surrounding area.
Well, anywhere as quiet as Leysin has to be considered relatively family friendly. With it's five international schools and colleges, the resort has quite a young feel to it, and this lends itself to a certain friendliness. Leysin also has a great tobogganing centre, an ice-rink, swimming pool and sports hall, which may all appeal to those travelling with children.
As with nearby Les Diablerets, the scenery at Leysin really surprised us with just how spectacular it was. It helped that the sun was shining and the skies crystal clear, but it really showcased what a lovely little area this is - a real hidden gem. The scenery down at resort level is great but the views from up at the 2048m revolving restaurant are amazing. The restaurant is called Le Kuklos, and is a modern glass building built between two mountains - la Tour Mayen and la Tour d'Ai. With the wide vistas and panoramas you can see why they built it - with views stretching right down to Lake Geneva and the mountains beyond.
Information on the Swiss ski area Alpes Vaudoises, including links to the surrounding resorts, webcams, slope information and lift details.
Let's make one thing clear from the outset - the scenery for those skiing on the slopes above Leysin is simply fantastic. From the amazing glass revolving-restaurant building "Le Kuklos", to the beautiful views to Lake Geneva, and the incredible rocky outcrops of Tour d'Ai and Tour de Mayen, there is some great alpine scenery for those lucky enough to be holidaying here.
The area's highest point is Chaux de Mont, there's a freestyle park just below the summit and a black piste coming down below the face of Tour d'Ai towards Tete d'Ai. From the chairlift station at Tete d'Ai there are a number of slopes slopes down toward the village, the majority of which are blues but there are also a couple of reds and a shortish black slope. There are a series of pistes from the revolving restaurant as well, a couple of blues, a red and another shortish black. These runs come down to the area below Tete d'Ai and link in nicely with the slopes heading to the village.
Going down the other way towards Les Fers and Solepraz, there are yet more blues and an easy red - the area is ideally suited for beginners and early intermediates to build their confidence on.
A list of piste-maps for Leysin and the surrounding ski areas.
Webpage containing official Leysein-Les Mosses ski maps.
Downloadable pdf piste-map of the slopes around the ski resort of Leysin.
The 2016 Les Diablerets Film Festival will be the 47th running of one of Europe's largest events dedicated to films centred around the mountains. Centre piece of the festival is a giant screen showcasing the latest action from some of the world's top outdoor film directors, including some free-riding features. There also climbing walls and exhibition stands to visit.
When it comes to ballooning, the Swiss resort of Chateau-d'Oex is the Alpine capital, and this is the festival to celebrate it. The 2016 festival will be the 38th in the history of this renowned international event, and will feature about 100 balloons, including 10 special shaped ones, from over 20 different countries. The highlight for us though has to be the fantastically named event - "the David Niven Long Distance Hare and Hounds Competition" !
As the festival normally runs in the last week of January it's possible to combine a visit with a skiing holiday in the area - Chateau-d'Oex is situated in the Pays-d'Enhaut region (between Lausanne and Interlaken) and there are a number of other ski resorts close by, including Gstaad for the millionaires amongst you.
If you want some further information on Leysin, then you might find these links to other sites useful...
Leysin hotels and chalets.