Vail Ski Holidays

USA Holidays

Expert Opinion Our Expert
Luke Dorking

"One of the most famous resorts in the world, Vail has a lovely town and a great ski area with fabulous back bowls. It is a ski holiday paradise for intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboarders."

Resort Info

  • Resort Scorecard
  • Beginners: 7/10
  • Intermediates: 9/10
  • Advanced: 9/10
  • Families: 8/10
  • Nightlife: 9/10
  • Village Charm: 10/10
  • Affordability: 4/10
  • Non Ski Activities: 8/10
  • Sustainability: 7/10

Season: Nov - Apr

Nearest Airport: Denver or Eagle Vail

Transfer Time: 2½ hours/ 35 mins

Transport: Car Hire or Transfer

Elevation: 11,570 ft

Vertical Drop: 3,450 ft

Avg Snowfall: 30 ft

Ski Area: 5,289 acres

Ski Lifts: 31

Runs: 193

Grade: 53% advanced
29% intermediates
18% beginners

Why Vail?

Vail is arguably one of the most famous ski resorts in the world. With the largest single mountain in North America, it is a skier’s and snowboarder’s paradise. You can't beat the modern, high-speed lifts, endless rolling groomers and some of the most highly regarded alpine bowls in the world. The town consists of a thoughtfully designed, European-style village and is brimming with excellent bars, restaurants and fashionable shops. We cannot recommend highly enough that everyone experiences Vail at least once in their ski career.  

The Skiing

There is quite simply masses of skiing for all abilities on Vail mountain. For beginners, Vail has an internationally acclaimed ski school and the nursery area is on the mountain so perfect for mixed groups. For intermediates, the tree lined trails of Blue Sky Basin are a dream and it is possible to go up and down the Eagle Bahn gondola area for hours without repeating a run. For advanced and expert skiers the choice is endless. There are so many bowls and steeps to choose from. All you have to do is pick your area based on the conditions and then go and play! Vail is also a popular holiday choice for snowboarders thanks to the wide gladed runs as well as the terrain park and super-pipe on Golden Peak. 

For more information please see the Vail Trail Map and Back Bowls Map plus some ideas on the ‘Our Tips’ page.

Off the Slopes

Vail has a big selection of restaurants, bars and is well-known for its nightlife. There is everything from the Red Lion for comfortable, relaxed après to karaoke bars and exclusive clubs where the very rich come to party. Shopping is also taken to a new level here. With more designer boutiques than the Kings Road, if nothing else it is a fantastic place to window shop. There is also a good selection of non-skiing activities from sleigh rides to hot air ballooning.


Due to its exclusive nature, the accommodation in Vail is not for the super budget conscious.  However there are some great early booking deals to be had so the trick really is to book early. The more reasonably priced accommodation tends to be clustered around the Lionshead base area with the swankier properties being in Vail Village. There is a good range of hotel and condo options and if you are looking for a luxury property for a special occasion then you really are spoilt for choice. The standards of service and elegant opulence of the hotels will make for an unforgettable stay.

More Skiing?

Vail is included on a number of different Colorado lift passes so you can also ski Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone and Arapahoe Basin during the course of your holiday. Alternatively why not look at combining Vail with Aspen or Steamboat on one of our Colorado Ski Safaris. Or for something completely unique, how about adding on a stopover in Iceland and maybe see the Northern Lights. For more details please click here.

Ski Safaris Combine Vail with other Colorado ski resorts in one holiday.

Northern Lights Experience this natural phenomenon with a stopover in Reykjavik, Iceland

Ski & Sun Love the snow but need a little more time to relax on your holiday?