Visit Alpe-d'Huez (Rhone-Alpes, France)
Alpe d'Huez is an important ski station in the Isère department of the Rhone Alps, at one hour from Grenoble and almost 1900 metres above sea level. First developed as a resort in the 1930's it is the central resort of the Grandes Causses ski region, and is also famous for being a challenging cycling climb.
There are a few original villages in the region that are now more or less part of the Alpe d'Huez resort including Villard Reculas, Auris en Oisans, Vaujany and Oz-en-Oisans.
Alpe d'Huez ski resort and outdoor activities
The mountains around Alpe d'Huez are a very popular - and very extensive - winter ski and winter sports resort. The resort is well known for the off-piste opportunities it provides through the dramatic mountain scenery although the slopes are also very popular with those learning to ski and the less experienced.
There are more than 250 kilometres of ski-runs reached by 80 ski lifts, and the 120 pistes include 38 green, 32 blue, 34 red and 16 black runs (including sarenne, the longest ski piste in the world). There are also a snowpark, half-pipe and other related snow activities.
The resort itself is extensive and offers a wide range of accommodation, and all facilities including ample aprés-ski bars and restaurants to keep you entertained. It is open from early december to the end of April.
Other activities in the region during the summer are numerous as you would expect of an attractive mountain destination and include hiking, mountain biking, canoeing and rafting. If you have a head for heights you can try rock-climbing or paragliding, and if you have a large wallet you will enjoy taking a helicopter ride over the surrounding region.
And if you are a lot more brave than me you can even try ice-diving near Alpe d'Huez - diving under the ice of Lake Besson to admire an underwater spectacle of fabulous ice-formations (so they tell me)!
Cycling the Alpe d'Huez
The road ascent to Alpe d'Huez appears very often as one of the mountain stages in the Tour de France.
The ascent by bike covers approximately 14km and Tour de France leaders complete it in around 40 minutes. A mere 21 hairpin bends and a trifling average gradient of more than 8% make it one of the grand challenges of the Tour de France, and one of the best places to watch a stage of the race if you are in the region. The names marked at the hairpin bends are the previous winners of this arduous mountain stage.
A lot of cyclists like to cycle the Alpe d'Huez climb because of this fame - rest assured, it is a long difficult climb even if you are an experienced cyclist. All the same more than 1000 enthusiastic amateurs cycle up the mountain each year.
Remember also that the weather at the top of the climb can be very different to that at the bottom so you should carry something warm with you.
Photos taken within 10 km
Address: Huez, Bourg-d'Oisans, Grenoble, Isere, Rhone-Alpes, 38750 || GPS: latitude 45.05, longitude 6.03333
Map of Alpe-d'Huez & places nearby
Highlights close by
La Grave 21km
Suggested tourist attractions to visit near Alpe-d'Huez, France
- Parc du château de Vizille - remarkable garden (21km)
- La Grave - most beautiful village (21km)
- La Meije - site of natural beauty (22km)
- Col de la Croix-de-Fer - site of natural beauty (24km)
- Jardin alpin du Lautaret - remarkable garden (24km)
- Aiguilles d'Arves - site of natural beauty (25km)
- Grenoble - town of art and history (29km)
- Jardin du musée Hébert - remarkable garden (29km)
- Parc du château du Touvet - remarkable garden (35km)
- Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne - recommended detour (35km)
The French version of this page is at Alpe-d'Huez (Francais)