Beginner

When you’re a beginner, the prospect of braving the ski terrain amidst all the seeming “experts” whizzing by you can be downright scary.  Not only will the trails look intimidating, but the overall environment – the ski equipment, the ski lifts and so many other factors can sometimes be off-putting.

The best way to learn to love the sport is to first choose a ski resort that caters to the needs of the beginner.  That way, the novice will not be discouraged and will not give up he learns about the sport and as his skills improve.

For a first foray into the world of skiing, you need not go to the most expensive ski resorts or the one with the best trails, as you may not be able to ski along these trails at this point in time.  What you should look for are ski resorts that have a lot of beginner (green) slopes and wide nursery runs.  The ideal ski resort should also have an excellent ski instruction program, with the teachers speaking English fluently.

Choose a ski resort that offers a good beginning-to-ski package, with a lot of discounts and freebies thrown in.  Usually, ski resorts would like to encourage first-time skiers to give it a go and eventually develop a love for the sport.  Look for one that specifically caters to the needs of beginners, so that you do not feel uncomfortable and embarrassed, which will likely happen when you’re in the company of a lot of people who are “experts”.

Here is a list of ski resorts for beginners:
-    Niederau, Austria: Beginner packages include lift passes, ski instruction and equipment rental.
-    Passo Tonale, Italy: This resort offers wide, blue runs that would be an ideal for those who are just starting out and want to develop their self-confidence in the slopes.
-    Les Arcs, France: Each of the main villages belonging to the resort has a lot of nursery slopes.  It also boasts of an excellent ski school (Vallandry’s New Generation ski school) and a free beginner’s lift.
-    Saas Fee, Switzerland:  This place has a fine ski school, as well as an excellent nursery area which contains a number of blue and green runs.
-    Bansko, Bulgaria: This is where you go to find superb skiing value for your money.  It has a good set of beginner slopes with the backdrop of the fabulous mountain that made this a World Heritage Site.
-    Arinsal in Andorra: This has plenty of easy and beginner slopes, along with lots of English-speaking ski instructors.
-    Other places you should look into would be Tremblant (Canada), Cortina (Italy), Borovets (Bulgaria), Killington (United States), Cervinia (Italy), Yllas (Lapland), Soldeu (Andorra), Poiana Brasov (Romania), Lech (Austria), Tignes (France) and Wengen (Switzerland).  The ski resorts found in this area offer excellent ski instruction as well as a wide range of green and blue runs.

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