Wide view of mountain scenery with skier on piste at Hautacam.


Hautes-Pyrenees, France

A 25km drive south of Lourdes in the Hautes-Pyrenees, a region already familiar to many skiers – most of whom make for nearby Luz Ardiden and Cauterets while remaining blissfully unaware of Hautacam. Its commanding position surrounded by a multitude of peaks means that in a good season it receives copious snowfalls. It is, however, classified as medium-altitude and therefore cannot be regarded as snow-sure. If you're planning a visit, check live webcams before setting off.

Young skier among unspoilt mountain scenery with pine trees

The Ski Area

On the piste-map it might look limited, but the quality of what there is, coupled with the sensational scenery, mean that you can’t help liking this place. The terrain is laid out across two sectors - Cardouet and Naouit - divided by the Col de Tramassel. Naouit is an obvious target for confident skiers, and offers some nice Red-graded descents (plus a Blue) into the tree-line. Getting around means taking drag-lifts, for which your reward is some fine scenic cruising, particularly on Le Belvedère, a Green-graded run which allows even less-confident skiers to enjoy the panoramic views from the highest part of the mountain. Wide pistes and careful grooming complete the package.

Resort Information

Altitude : 1560m - 1800m
Pistes Total:
26 km
4 Green
5 Blue
5 Red
Ski Resort Lifts : 9
1 Magic Carpets
8 Draglifts


Ornate villa with exotic tree in valley

The Ski Village

You won’t be staying on the mountain, but from a base down in the spa town of Argelès-Gazost you can keep a watchful eye on the mountain which is home to the ski area. The drive up and down again doesn't take too long. It’s a year-round centre for tourism and its elegant assortment of privately constructed villas tells you that this has long been seen as a very desirable location. There’s a good selection of hotel accommodation, and while you might decide to give the casino a miss, the Jardin des Bains has undergone an ambitious redevelopment in response to the recent dramatic rise in popularity of the fun side of thermal spas (in addition to their traditional curative role).

Staying There

Value for Money Accommodation Dining Out Nightlife Village Charm


Family skiers beside drag-lift with wide mountain scenery

Why go skiing in Hautacam ?

Although clearly a gift for beginners, more capable skiers too will find some entertainment along the way, with sufficiently varied and unpressured terrain to allow them to refine and deploy their technique. If snow conditions are good, then family day-visitors - even those based in other ski areas nearby - will find the experience of skiing somewhere this small and friendly endearingly enjoyable. The mesmerising scenery will please back-to-nature skiers, who won’t bemoan the absence of new-generation high-speed lifts.

Skiing There

Beginners / Families Intermediates Advanced / Expert Mountain Scenery

Cross-Country Skiing

One puiste each of green, blue and red grade, classic and skating.
15km Cross-Country and Nordic Ski Trails

icon-smileyYes please...

  • Unbeatable value.
  • Other family activities.
  • Accessible to handicapped skiers.
  • Amazing mountain panoramas.
  • Friendly, informal atmosphere.
  • Easy road access.
  • You won't get lost...

icon-frowneyYes but...

  • It’s a long drive from the UK.
  • Snowfalls don’t always deliver.
  • Terrain is compact.
  • Not one for draglift-phobics.

icon-winkingOur Tips

  • If you're planning on spending a week in a nearby resort, make a point of devoting a day to discovering the great skiing here.


Practical Information

There's a good choice of hotels in Argelès-Gazost or nearby Lourdes, ideal for a short break or as a base to explore the area. For more information and some great short break offers visit the local Office de Tourisme website.

Argeles-Gazost, colourful building with balconies.

For skiers, Cauterets or Luz Ardiden are not far away. Both resorts offer a good base for a week long ski holiday.

Tried and testedHotel Beau Site

10 rue du Capitaine Digoy
65400 Argelès Gazost
Tel: 05 62 97 08 63

Appealingly traditional hotel with restaurant in the heart of the town and with splendid views over the valley. Secure ski and bike storage, garage (4€) 4mins walk. Prices start at 63€ per night for a double room with breakfast included, half-board from 48.50€ per person.

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