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Gstaad is a picturesque German-speaking village nestled within the Bern area of Switzerland. Not only is the town itself wonderful to behold, but Gstaad is known as attracting rich and famous skiers from all across the world. Some of the world-class hotels to be found here include the Alpina Gstaad, Gstaad Palace, Hotel Olden and the Grand Hotel Bellevue. Most notably, Gstaad is also home to what is considered to be the largest skiing area in the Alps. It currently offers 220 kilometres of slopes. Besides skiing, there are many high street shops found within the town such as Hermes, Louis Vuitton Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs. So, enjoying a bit of shopping while hitting the slopes could not be easier.
Gstaad is unique in the fact that it is the only resort within the Bernese Oberland region of Austria that possesses ongoing glaciers. This allowsskiers and snowboarders to enjoy perfect conditions from October until well into the month of May. Still, no less than 60 per cent of all of the slopes are equipped with snow cannons when they may be required. There are 22 ski lifts in total, 10 gondolas, 17 chair lifts and four fully-equipped cable cars.
Gstaad has always been known for its ability to cater to the needs of the family. It provides 10 different schools devoted to a variety of winter sports as well as 8 slopes specifically intended to be used by toddlers. Three different snow parks offer a variety of conditions for novices as well as those with an intermediate level of experience.
In terms of difficulty levels, 58 per cent of all slopes are rated as “blue” trails. 27 per cent are deemed as “red” and 15 per cent are considered “black” for professional skiers.
Finally, Gstaad provides the ability for enthusiasts to enjoy skiing during the night and into the wee hours of the morning. Thanks to massive floodlights found at the Wispile and Rinderberg hotels, daylight hours are no longer important for anyone who wishes to take a late-night outing with friends or loved ones.
Gstaad is also very famous for its endless hiking trails. There are guided tours, multi-day routes and themed trails. The diversity of the landscapes to be seen here is truly breathtaking and many regions offer some amazingly gorgeous panoramic photo opportunities. For example, Fondueland Gstaad provides visitors with the opportunity to dine on tasty fondue while experiencing the backdrop of nearby mountains. Some trails also provide a unique glimpse into the history of this region. The Alpeness Trail is said to the the most challenging in terms of hiking although the reward is the ability to partake in what can only be called some of the most beautiful locations within all of the Alps
Most will choose to arrive here between October and May but thanks to the serpentine hiking trails, it is also possible to arrive here during the summer months. Booking accommodations and tickets will in advance of a departure date is the best way to save a significant amount of money.