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Meribel in December 2019 - What weather to expect & what to do

Early-December skiing is all about fresh snow, empty slopes and the excitement of a new season

Featured in: | Caroline Sayer, Meribel Reporter | Published
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December is a very special month to visit Méribel and the first weeks of the season are treasured by locals. There’s the thrill of being back on skis and the excitement of the start of a brand new season. The virgin snow is soft and un-skied and, best of all, the slopes are empty with a total absence of lift queues. Having the valley virtually to yourself in early December is the closest you can come to owning your private ski area…

In these quiet, pre-Christmas weeks, there are always great deals to be found on holidays and flights. Why not sneak out for some early-season skiing and find out why this time of year is a favourite with those in the know?

December weather & snow conditions in Méribel

Snow has been falling regularly throughout November, and December started with a huge dump on Sunday 1st when around 25cm fell in the resort. Current snow depths are 80cm on the summits and 25cm in the resort. The forecast for the run-up to Saturday’s opening is for fine weather and temperatures sufficiently low for the snow guns to operate. Longer-term forecasts suggest more snow will fall in the first week of the season, so conditions are looking extremely promising for a great start.

Weather in Meribel

Méribel lifts opening in December

The lifts and ski runs open progressively over the first two weeks of the season. For this first week, most of the major lifts and Three Valleys links are due to open. In Méribel, this includes Tougnète 1 & 2, Saulire 1 & 2, Golf and Altiport. In Mottaret, Chalets, Plattières 1 & 3, Combes, Mont Vallon, Côte Brune, Mûres Rouges and Plan des Mains are all expected to function. More lifts and pistes generally open for the second week, with full opening expected in time for Christmas.

Lift Status Meribel

Méribel Grand Opening Party

The season starts on Saturday, December 7th with a day of entertainment in Mottaret. Pop into the Tepee Village at the foot of the slopes to sign up for a whole range of free activities in the afternoon. Don’t miss the spectacular free show in Mottaret centre from 18:00, featuring lasers, DJs and the group Light Balance, a high-tech neon and Led dance show that appeared on Britain’s Got Talent.

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Be the first to try the two new runs

Make sure you’re among the first to check out Méribel’s two new runs. The Roc de Fer area is under development in preparation for the 2023 World Ski Championships and, last year, it saw two new chairlifts while this winter it sees two new red runs: Gypaète and Daguet. Gypaète is a red alternative to the much-loved blue Choucas piste. The terrain has been left as natural as possible, with bumps, varied cambers and a series of bends that lead on to the blue Roc de Fer piste. Daguet is accessed from la Face black run. This promises to be an interesting piste, well away from the hubbub of the main ski area, crossing through virgin snowfields and forests. At the bottom, you can take either the Olympe gondola lift from le Raffort or ski to Les Allues.

Ski Pass Options in Meribel

First Tracks: breakfast on a summit and early-bird skiing

Thursday 12th and 19th of December are the first opportunities of the season to enjoy this unique early morning experience. You will take a private gondola to the summit of Saulire for breakfast watching the sun rise over the Alps, followed by a chance to ski on freshly groomed slopes in the company of ski patrollers, all before the official lift openings. 

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La Folie Douce opening party

December is a time of opening parties and the one not to miss is La Folie Douce on Friday, December 13th. Music, DJs, dancing and a brand new cabaret are on offer all afternoon!

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Make the most of Méribel’s Olympic Centre

During the dark December evenings, there’s always plenty going on at Méribel’s multi-sport centre. Pool parties, relaxing spa sessions, indoor climbing, bowling, aqua-gym, aqua-bike, paddleboard fitness, massages, beauty treatments – there really is something for everyone!

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Christmas and New Year Celebrations

Christmas is magical in the fairytale atmosphere of a snowy alpine village and New Year’s Eve is always celebrated in Méribel in style. We’ll bring you details of all the festivities a little later this month…

More inspiration...

For more happening in Meribel this December, check out our events calendar here. and start booking your early-season holidays soon!

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Events in Meribel