Lift count : 2 x Cable-cars 3 x Gondolas 23 x Chairlifts 12 x Drag-lifts
Pass (Low/High Season) : £40.06 Day, £182.32 Week
Ischgl easily ticks pretty much every box required for a top-notch holiday - snow-sure, big area, super lift system, crazy nightlife. Job done.
Situated in Western Tyrol, not too far from its après compatriot St.Anton, is the Paznaun Valley, along which lie the resorts of See, Kappl and Ischgl & Gaültur. They are all within a 20 minute drive/bus of each other, offer something different to Ischgl, and optionally can all be on the same lift pass.
It used to hit the headlines with its extravagant opening and closing events featuring the likes of Kylie, Muse and Rihanna. Today they are a little less internationally focused, and the big pull is the resort itself.
Back to the box ticking.
Snow-sure. For a non-glacial resort, few can match a season that starts in November and finishes in May, and we're not talking a few pistes with artificial snow. Almost all of the pistes are between 2000-2800m, you only need to dip below that when making the mad dash back to the resort at the end of the day.
Big area. There are 238km of pistes which link to sleepy Samnaun in Switzerland, and if you tire of those, then get the valley lift pass and visit the others. Piste-bashing is almost an art form here, and although it is very much suited for intermediate riders, beginners will find some areas easy to navigate, and there are few genuinely steep runs for more advanced riders. There is plenty of easily accessible off-piste, some of which doesn’t get tracked out too quickly, especially off the Piz Val Gronda.
Super lift system. Ischgl is unparalleled when it comes to the continual investment made in their lift system. Over 270million euros have been invested over the last 10 years, and although some of the queues in the morning can look quite scary, it takes a fraction of the time it used to to get up to the main area. From then on in you'll rarely be queuing again, and flying up the mountain on state of art heated luxury.
Crazy nightlife. Ischgl has a well earned reputation of being a party town. It's a blessing in disguise that there's a distinct lack of drinking establishments on the mountain, as the town more than makes up for it. You can have your apres served cheesy, sleazy, rocky or posy, and then it all kicks off again until the early hours in the number of nightclubs. In 2016 in a bid to try to clean up its apres image they introduced a 2000 euro fine if caught stumbling through town with your snowboard/skis after 8pm.
Obviously there's always a cost to this, and Ischgl isn't the cheapest resort to visit, but with the cost comes some top-notch places to stay and eat, and a time that will live long in the memory.READ NEXT: Freeriding, terrain parks and Pistes