10 -17 February, 2018 – Saturday to Saturday
This is the arguably the best value (and most fun!) catered Half Term Family Skiing Holiday ever!
£775 for 12 years and up
£632 for children 5 to 11 or au pairs or nannies
£479 for children 3-4 years old
£165 Babies 1-2 (no child care available)
The Trip Includes:
- 7 x nights accommodation. Each family has their own en suite dormitory with 3-6 beds (there may be a supplement of £190 for 2 person families once the smaller rooms are full)
- Fully catered; Dinners, Picnic Lunches, and Breakfast
- Chamonix Valley Unlimited Ski Pass with access to ALL of the Chamonix ski lifts including La Poya, and the Grand Montet
- Self guided trips up to the Aiguille du Midi (Europe’s highest cable car) and The Monenvers Railway and Ice Caves (ski passes cover travel and all entry costs)
- Free local train/ bus pass (no car needed when you are in resort)
- La Source Hosts will chaperone children from 5-8 years old from the Ski Lessons back to the Outdoor Centre.
- Lunch time children’s activities (crafts and musical activities) from 11.30am-1pm giving parents an extra couple hours of skiing
- Yoga Class 7-8am – open to all
- Circus skills workshops by CircoRumbaba from 7.30-.8.30pm with a show at the end of the week
- Outdoor children’s activities, tabogonning and Igloo Building with Olly from 5-6pm (tobogganing)
- Daily Cinema from 4.30-6pm and 8.30-10pm
- An evening of torch lit snow shoeing
- Thursday night Raclette and Dance Party with guaranteed embarrassing parent dancing!
- Travel to resort. (See Travel Section below).
- Ski school (from 9.15 -11.30am). 10% discount off published costs if you do 1 week of ski schoo. (We will book you into the right class and team you up with others in our group if you can save costs by doing group private lessons).
- Ski or snowboard hire from the Outdoor Centre; £45 per person per week including helmets.
- Ski Insurance is mandatory. We recommend Insure and Go or for top up cover Sportscover Direct.
La Source began in 2007 as an Eco-Adventure-Yoga-Lodge based on a strong sense of Community and Sustainability. Our trips are all about connection; with each other, nature, our families and ourselves. We still run our summer trips at the original La Source Eco Lodge in Samoens, but skiing trips over peak weeks, became unaffordable. We scoured the Alps to find a queue free, affordable, quality family ski venue. Four years ago we launched our annual ‘Family Ski, Yoga and Circus/ Dance Camp’. It has a fast growing following with a group of wonderful like minded families from all over Europe!
What to Expect:
This trip is more that just a ski holiday! The half term budget ski holiday creates strong friendships amongst children and adults and can leave a deep impression.
Up to 24 families live communally for a week hosted by a group of free spirited outdoor professionals, yoga teachers, circus performers and loving souls.
The wonderful queue free ski pistes, cross country ski tracks, endless ski touring and snow shoeing are just outside the front door!
Each morning we start the day with an optional yoga class, followed by breakfast. During the day, everyone chooses what they do; skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snow shoeing, etc… Ski School and Guiding is available for all ages at an additional cost.
In the afternoon there is the chance to make the most of your Ski Pass which includes trips to visit the famous (and fast receding) Chamonix Glaciers. You can go up to the top of the Aiguille du Midi, Europe’s highest cable car at 3700m and visit the Ice Caves via the Montenver mountain train!
There are children’s lunchtime crafts and afternoon outdoor activities such as igloo building or sledging, and a children’s film most afternoons and evenings. Circorumbaba teaches us circus skills after diner. All of this is included in the price!!
We have a Thursday night raclette and dance which is always a big highlight! (Once you have seen Olly’s dancing you will know why!!)
If you would like a taste of the trip, watch this video, made by a 2013/14 guest.
Please book early as this trip sells out very quickly. The deposit is £50 per person with the balance due by the 6th December.
Buet, Vallorine, Chamonix, The French Alps, 1 hour and 15 minutes East of Geneva.
We have the exclusive use of a self contained ski-in ski-out ’Centre de Vacances’ (French Outdoor Centre) nestled into a wooded snowy paradise with exquisite views.
There are 24 rooms and each family has their own simple en suite dormitory (with comfy but by no means luxury nor glamorous 2m long bunk beds) that sleep from 3 to 6 people. The rooms are not particularly cosy. There is however storage space and most rooms have a table and chairs. Sheets, pillows and duvets are provided. We make our own beds on arrival and strip them on departure. The bins are emptied and the shower rooms and w.c. are cleaned daily, but we are expected to keep our own rooms clean and swept. The showers are ‘army-styly’ to save water… i.e.. you have to hold up the shower head. The water is plentiful and deliciously hot!
There is a communal dining area where we all eat breakfast and dinner communally. Lunch is a picnic which we can eat on the mountain or at the Outdoor Centre. If we have lunch at the Outdoor Centre we are expected to clear up after ourselves.
There is a lovely open fire in the open plan lounge and bar.
There is a separate yoga room and movie room and downstairs there is a vast kids playroom with table tennis and baby foot.
Also downstairs is the ski hire and the ski and boot room.
The week is fully catered from dinner on Saturday evening to breakfast on Saturday morning.
Breakfast is a choice of two cereals, hot chocolate, coffee or tea, yogurt, and bread and jams. We recommend bringing your own favourite cereals, seeds, nuts, fruit, hard boiled eggs and milk alternatives if you wish to!
Lunch is a sandwich, 2 snacks, a bag of crisps and a piece of fruit. Again bring your own snacks if you have particular tastes!
Dinner starts with a soup or salad followed by a simple main course and a pudding. Dinners may be lasagne, shepherds pie, roast chicken, and one evening we have a raclette. (The food on this trip is basic and far from cordon blue. If you are a real foodie you may prefer our Summer trips!).
Vegetarian meals and any dietary requirements must be requested in advance on the on-line booking form. Please let us know if you have any allergies or complex dietary requirements as you might well need to bring some of your own supplies.
Teas, herbal teas and coffees are available most of the time. Bring some of your favourite herbal teas to share!
Hot Chocolate and cake is offered at about 4pm.
Half Term travel is notoriously extortionate. In keeping with our philosophy, we have devised a cunning communal and sustainable travel plan! (See Below).
Share a Mini Bus
We can put you in touch with other families to share the hire of a mini bus. A 16 seat mini bus, with with 3 or 4 other families sharing the drive will cost around £85-£100 per person return for 15 people.
The next best option is to drive. It will cost around £450 all in – tolls, ferry or eurotunnel, and fuel. It should take around 9.5 hours to drive to Vallorcine from Dover, Kent.
We strongly encourage train travel as it is very ecological. You can only book train tickets 3 months before the trip. The cheapest option, if you can find a place to park in Paris, is to drive to Paris… and take the train to Saint Gervais Les Bains – Le Fayet. From there, there is a local train which leaves every hour and takes 1.20 minutes (€10) to our stop, Buet.
We recommened setting an train ticket sale alert with https://loco2.com/
Our Outdoor Centre is 5 minutes walk from the Buet Train ‘Station’ and we can come and pick you up from there.
If you fly, you must get to Geneva Airport and then get a transfer (budget €70 per person return for the transfer). Book flights as early as possible! If you hire a car, make sure it is from the SWISS side not the French side.
We recommend http://www.chamexpress.com/ for transfers. They cost €30 per person per trip. Do phone them as Buet is off their standard route.
Lift Passes/ Ski Areas
Our trip includes a wonderful Chamonix ski pass which gives us free access to just about every ski lift and cable car between Vallorcine and Chamonix including the Grand Montet, Aiguille du Midi, Les Houches, etc…
La Poya is our local ski in- ski out area which is perfect for beginners and children wanting the freedom to ski with their friends.
There is a free train 5 minutes walk from the Outdoor Centre which takes you to all the larger Chamonix lift stations. One of Chamonix’s best ski areas Le Tour/La Balme is a sweaty 10 minutes ski-skate from our door, or a 5 minute train ride. We love this area as it has all levels of terrain and is queue free. Alternatively, you can get the train to Argentiere, or any of the other Chamonix ski areas.
The trains leave hourly so don’t miss it! There are also more frequent buses.
The friendly Vallorcine ESF Ski School operates from La Poya, right outside our Outdoor Centre. Their rates are published on their website here. We all get 10% off these rates if you book a week of group lessons. We will coordinate these to ensure you get the best deal.
If you are accomplished skiers, but still want lessons, you will be taken to the higher slopes at La Balme/ Vallorcine.
You will pay the ESF directly at the beginning of the week. They accept bank transfer, cash or credit cards in their office in Vallorcine.
By popular request, we will arrange for one of our hosts to chaperone all the children from ski school at La Poya back to the Outdoor Centre for lunch to give parents an extra couple of hours on the slopes. Ski School is from 9.30-11.30 for 6 and unders and 9.15 to 11.45 for 7 and ups. Our hosts will chaperone, supervise and entertain the 5 to 8′s until 1pm. Older children are welcome to join in the craft and musical activities.
Families are welcome to bring au pairs. We offer a reduced rate for au pairs or nannies.
The Outdoor Centre hires its own ski and snowboard equipment at the amazing rate of £45 p.p.p.w. including helmets. This is exceptional value but in return the shop has little flexibility with only one slot a day for changes and adjustments.
The quality of the equipment is very good, but if you want more flexibility or to buy anything (googles, gloves), you can go to the local ski hire shop near by who have everything you will need.
Please let us know if you would like skis or snowboards when you book, including your approximate shoe sizes. We will add the £45 cost to your bill.
Ski Clothes Hire
We recommend buying ski gear from Ebay (there is no point buying lots of expensive kit for 1 or 2 weeks a year!) If you are in the UK, you can usually get low cost essentials from shops like TKMaxx or Sports Direct. We recommend good googles (cheap ones fog up) and mittens (as they are much warmer than gloves). You will also need good thermals, a fleece, ski socks, balaclava or a Buff and ski trousers and a jacket. It can get very cold! Avoid cotton as if you sweat and it gets wet, it takes a long time to dry and you can get very cold.
If you have fast growing children or you are beginners you may want to hire your ski clothes. Ski Stuff was recommended to us by some of our guests.
How to Book:
Please consider your travel options and then fill in a booking form asap by clicking the BOOK NOW button below. We will then send you a deposit invoice for £50 per person. When we receive your non refundable deposit we will hold a room for you. If you need to cancel before the balance is due (6th December), we will put your deposit towards any other La Source trip in the future.
If you have to cancel 10 weeks or less before your trip, we will only be able to refund £145 per person. If you cancel 2 weeks before the trip, we cannot refund anything. Ski insurance should cover this in emergencies. You can read our full T&C’s here. We are a limited company and all money paid to us goes into a trust account which is not touched until after the trip which is in line with the Package Travel Regulations.
We look forward to meeting you!