This hostel is in a great location just a two minute walk from the centre of town. Special buses run from right outside to hostel for UCPA residents only to the local ski areas. UCPA concept; prestigious resorts, excellent instruction, comfortable accommodation, abundance of food, great quality equipment and a sociable and fun atmosphere at a fraction of the cost of comparative ski holidays.
Within the building is the sports bar, nightclub, kit room, large drying rooms, large dining room and plenty of social areas.
This centre is one of the best in UCPA, and is excellent for those who want to enjoy some of the best skiing in Europe, whilst staying in the centre of a vibrant and lively town. All rooms have shower and sink ensuite with toilets a few steps away in the corridor.
The UCPA staff lay on an entertainment program each week. It's certainly not Butlins and there is no pressure to take part - all quite low key. Typical programme would include stretching in the early evening, crepe making, quiz, sketch evening, karaoke and some evenings a live band. Equally in the town there is a great selection of bars & nightclubs to suit all tastes.
UCPA is more than 40 years old, and was originally set-up by the French government to encourage young people to enjoy the outdoors. It is now a "not for profit" organisation with all profits being put back into refurbishing the centres. The ethos of sport is still first on the agenda, but the instructors and centre staff don't forget that it is still your holiday.
There is a special bus chartered every morning to take you directly to the slopes without any queuing. There's limited parking on site, but you can park for free within a few minutes walk.
Action Outdoors' prices at UCPA include:
- Lift Pass
- Ski / Board Hire
- Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Do the sums - a lift pass alone costs more than 200€, ski hire 100€ and instruction more than 250€!
There is a bar and nightclub within the hostel.
The food is served buffet style each day. Breakfast is yogurts, cereals, fruit juice, coffee and bread - don't be surprised to see that the coffee, tea or hot chocolate is taken French style - a soup bowl !
Typically lunch is a DIY picnic made up at breakfast time (great choice of breads, meats, cheeses, pasta, salad, fruit, sweets etc). The picnic lunch means maximum time on the mountains without spending a fortune on expensive mountain side restaurants. Note that beginners will often return to the centre for a hot lunch.
Dinner is a 4 course buffet - typically a salad bar style starter, choice of 3 or 4 main courses - most often including fish, cheese selection, fruit, dessert and ice-cream freezer. Any special dietry requirements should be made known to reception staff at check-in. Generally vegetarians will find a wide enough choice within the buffet.
You’ll need to book your own transfers, when staying here. Your main options are shared or private transfers, but consider whether you would prefer a door-to-door service or a (generally cheaper) “communal” drop-off point at your destination.
Also see: Transfers to Chamonix, France
Chamonix is a bustling little hub in the centre of the valley that has everything you need within walking distance; you'll find shops, bars, restaurants and cafés dotted all around the pedestrianised heart of the resort. Lakes, forests and hiking trails surround the area making it easy to find tranquillity just a few minutes from the lively town centre. One of France's oldest ski resorts, Chamonix has plenty of character and traditional charm.
Chamonix's restaurants offer something for everyone, from Michelin starred gourmet cuisine to takeaway burgers. The central square is lined with fondue restaurants and pizzerias serving a good range of local and international dishes, as well as a couple of fast food shops. The bars and hotels on Avenue Michel Croz offer a good choice of tasty and well-priced food, whereas the Rue de Moulins is an excellent choice for a special night out. Venture in the opposite direction and you'll find more choices around the Aiguille du Midi/Chamonix Sud area, ranging from hearty pub grub to high class dining.
Also see: Restaurants in Chamonix - Centre, France
No visit to Chamonix is complete without a trip up the famous Aiguille du Midi on the world's highest vertical ascent cable car. From its summit at 3842m you can enjoy spectacular 360 views of France, Italy and Switzerland whilst watching roped-up mountaineers embark on expeditions. Another must-do is a visit to the Mer de Glace glacier on the Montenvers train along a rack-and-pinion track that winds up the side of the mountain. Once there you can visit crystal caves and enter the glacier to see sculptures carved into the ice. Both attractions are open year-round, check our opening/closing page for details.
Also see: Sights in Chamonix - Centre, France
The nearest golf course to Chamonix centre is the Golf Club de Chamonix, an 18 hole course in Chamonix Les Praz, near to the Flegere lift station. It has a driving range, club house and pro-shop where you can stock up on all the essentials. They hold regular competitions throughout the summer, the course is closed in winter.
Also see: Golf Courses in Chamonix - Centre, France
Chamonix has two lift stations that are directly accessible from the town centre - Brevent and Aiguille du Midi. The Brevent lift station is located behind the tourist office just a few minutes walk up a short hill, or you can catch a bus. The high-speed gondola takes you up to the main ski area at Plan Praz (2000m), where you can connect to a large cable car that goes all the way to the top at 2525m - the only route down from here is a black run but it's worth going up for the stunning views, you can get the cable car back down again if you're not confident enough to tackle the piste. Brevent is linked by another cable car to the nearby Flegere ski area, both are included on the same lift pass making it a great option for a full day on the slopes. Aiguille du Midi is one of the most popular tourist attractions in France and if you venture up, you'll see why. The cable is split into two sections and you change cars halfway at Plan de l'Aiguille, a popular hiking destination in the summer. The top of the second section sits at 3842m and is engulfed in snow all year round. Numerous viewing platforms look out on to breathtaking views of the surrounding peaks, you can see France, Switzerland and Italy in one turn of the head. The Aiguille du Midi is also the start of the Vallée Blanche, one of the world's most famous off-piste runs. The ever-changing nature of glacial terrain makes it dangerous to attempt without local knowledge though, so be sure to book a qualified mountain guide before setting off.
Also see: Ski Areas in Chamonix, France
Avenue Michel Croz is at the heart of the winter apres-ski scene, with live music and DJs playing at a variety of bars. If you prefer a more civilised drink that doesn't involve dancing on the tables, then head to the Rue des Moulins for chic wine bars and excellent restaurants. Chamonix Sud also has a cluster of bars that attract the younger crowd and seasonal workers. Chamonix has three nightclubs, one on the Rue des Moulins and another two in Chamonix Sud.
Also see: Bars in Chamonix - Centre, France
Location: Chamonix - Centre
Star Rating: 2 Star
Catering Basis: Catered
Property Style: Dormitory | Hostel | Hotel
Bookings For: Lift Passes | Ski / Snowboard Hire | Ski / Snowboard Lessons | Transfers
Transport: Ski shuttle (complimentary)
Room: Ski / Boot Room
Entertainment: Restaurant | Drinks bar
Spa & Fitness: Sauna
View: Mountain view
Open Seasons: Winter
Address: 131 Rue du Lyret, 74400 Chamonix Mont Blanc, FranceChamonix - Centre |