En-route & Stop Offs

En-route & Stop Offs
En-route & Stop Offs

En-route & Stop Offs

August 2007

Most skiers driving to the Alps can complete their journey from Calais or Dunkirk in 8/9 hours depending on the route and how fast they drive! For example, by using the French peage system from Calais you can reach the nearest French resorts in the Tarentaise in approximately eight hours if you travel at the legal speed of 130km/ph (81 mph).

Even the Swiss border at Basel is only seven hours driving time and then approximately one to two hours further to the nearest Swiss resorts If you are heading to Bavaria (southern Germany) ski resorts are 10 hours distance on (free) motorways via Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany whilst Austrian resorts are around 11 hours distance.

Much depends on where in the UK you are setting out from. For example, London and the south east is approximately one hour from the Port of Dover; the Midlands around three hours and Manchester and the north of England about six hours.

If you are heading to Austria or Italy and coming from the north, you might wish to take a longer overnight crossing over the North Sea. If you live in Wales or the west of England, you may prefer a P&O ferry out of Portsmouth.

If your journey to Dover and ferry to Calais or Dunkirk takes half a day or longer, you will probably consider a stop-over en route in France or Belgium, depending upon your final destination. There are numerous hotel chains throughout France such as Climate or Mercure or Formula 1 which are available on the internet. There are Premier Travel Lodge venues in and around Dover (see box advertisement) and these can be contacted prior to departure.

Some motorists prefer to see how far they have driven before deciding on an overnight and quite often you could not do better than to pull off the main highway into a small village and find a small guesthouse/pension. These are usually near to the local restaurant giving you the opportunity to sample some excellent local cuisine before continuing to your ski resort.

The choice is considerable and much depends on personal preference. If you are a family with young children, then Formula 1 or Climate hotels are ideal as they charge by the room with breakfast extra. If you are a group of adults you might prefer to find an idyllic country stop-over where you can also enjoy a meal and a glass of wine.

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