This post is brought to you in partnership with Niseko Powder Connection who specialise in accommodation, snow travel and experiences in Niseko, Japan.
The end of the year in Australia means warmer weather and beach time. Though, not everyone gets excited by these summery days. Some will dust off the surf board and head for the waves, while others will keep their snowboards or skies close by and head offshore to follow the slopes. These alpine aficionados are in search of the endless winter, and the beauty about living in the southern hemisphere is that you can achieve just that – once winter is over, simply book a ticket to north of the equator and resume the winter lifestyle. If you’re a snow bunny who’s in search of the endless winter, then here are some destinations that will definitely pique your interest.
Banff in Alberta, Canada
The Canadian Rockies lure many from all over the world, and Banff is one town that draws in the visitors. There is an abundance of things to do in Banff, even for those who aren’t keen on the snow, from hiking to mountain biking and sight-seeing including the stunning azure depths of Lake Louise and the cut-glass peaks that orbit this wondrous outlook. The town of Banff is quaint and homely, and neighbouring natural hot springs can offer a comforting post-ski soak for those aching muscles. The region is zoned a national park because of its gorgeous, rugged woodlands; home to wildlife such as lynx, elk and grizzly bears. Some of the popular mountains include Cascade Mountain, Mount Rundle and Mount Norquay.
Niseko in Hokkaido, Japan
Niseko is located on Japan’s northern island Hokkaido and home to some of the best powder snow our planet can offer. The area attracts an average of 14 metres of light, dry snow and brings in the most enthusiastic of avid winter sport lovers. Towering, picturesque mountain ranges, unspoiled nature and clean, crisp air all punctuate Niseko, offering serene walking trails during the warmer months and a snowboarder’s playground in winter. Local Japanese cuisine also keeps the visitors nourished and it’s a great way to sample the region’s delicacies. The snow season for Japan usually starts in early December and runs until late April – an abundance of time to satisfy anyone’s penchant for snow. When planning your visit to Niseko, consider visiting Niseko Powder Connection for booking accommodation, transfers, snow experiences and more.
Briançonin in the Provence-Alpes-Cote-d'Azur, France
Sun and snow can be a snowboarder or skier’s dream. The snow areas blanketing around Briançonin, the European Union’s highest city altitude-wise, boast generous sunshine throughout the year, and the Le Grand Serre Chevalier range brings in the winter sporters. The range’s adventurous terrain exudes an exciting mix of gullies, open tree-lined areas and dips to give boarders and skiers alike an adrenalin-packed snow experience. Further afield, less popular areas for snowboarding and skiing can still be found, offering secluded spots and serenity. Visitors can also wander through the town of Briançonin to view its engaging fortified presence that tells the town’s story from its centuries-old history.
St Anton in Tyrol, Austria
The European skiing and snowboarding experience can continue throughout the region and another popular spot is the rugged beauty of St Anton in Austria. St Anton offers easy access to the Tyrolean Alps for skiers and snowboarders, and are just as popular among mountaineers and trekkers. The region is perfect for alpine skiing and deep snow runs tracking along hundreds of kilometres attract many seeking snow-capped fun. St Anton is also proud to boast its long skiing history, and is credited for being the home to some of the first ski instructors to have emigrated to the U.S. and helped build the sport there.
Åre in Jämtland, Sweden
Jet further from the well-worn tracks throughout Europe and head abroad to the wonders of Nordic parts of Scandinavia. Åre in Sweden is one such destination that is steeped in 1000-year old Viking history. Vikings inhabited the foothills of Mount Åre and Åre Old Church was erected here in the 12th century by Saint Olaf the Holy. Fast-forward to 2014, Åre’s pristine landscapes and thick forests set the scene for those flexing their alpine sporting prowess and piping-hot Swedish saunas, local bars, clubs and restaurants await anyone staggering off the slopes at the end of an energetic day. Snow cover is around until May and longer daylight hours in the warmer months means more time to coast the slopes and making a trip to Åre worthwhile.
Are you a keen snowboarder or skier that’s in search of the endless winter? Where are your favourite snow destinations around the world? Share some of your favourite alpine destinations you’ve discovered in your search for the endless winter.