Les Carroz d'Arâche
Les Carroz is one of the five connected villages with Flaine, Morillon, Samoëns and Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval that constitute the 265 km slopes long Grand Massif ski resort. The access to the Carroz at 1200m altitude is very easy and just a short distance from the motorway. Last winter in 2017 was not very cold, the snow being scarce for early march at lower altitudes as you can see from the picture below.
View on Les Carroz d'Arâche from Les Timalets. There's very little snow in the village.
One great aspect in going to such resort is to benefit from a very large domain to ski on and that you'll always be able to find some snow. I managed to ski a large part of the Grand Massif even though the link with Flaine was closed for two days due to the strong winds. Overall I had better impressions and enjoyed more the slopes of the Massif (Les Carroz, Morillon and Samoëns) rather than Flaine and the long waiting lines at the Grandes-Platières lift. Opened since 2017, the new Tête de Saix lift is apparently a huge improvement to link the two sectors. As it was my first time here, I can't really judge but would still recommend you check the paper maps as I was given one from 2016 that stated two lifts that have been dismantled since then. Nothing very dramatic but annoying when you don't know. LOL.
View on the slopes (Les Combes) from Les Carroz
Snowstorm at the Tête des Saix
Blizzard in the Grand Massif
Restaurants on the slopes
I'm not an advanced skier and enjoy taking my time. Wintersports have to be without stress and should be relaxing. There's nothing better to go for a nice lunch after having skied a few hours in the morning. Down in Les Carroz a few meters from the Kedeuze lift, I liked very much Le Tire Fesses, a small bar-café with a good atmosphere. However, Le K, at the Kedeuze arrival isn't worth a penny. You'll be standing there in the line for hours and the food isn't really good. My favourite place on the slopes in Les Carroz is L'Anfionne, a little restaurant right down under the Plein Soleil chair lift and right at the start of the Timalets red slope going to the village. Get the house salad (Salade de L'Anfionne) which was very nice.
Gondolas of the Kedeuze
Finally some snow in the village
In the village
Les Carroz is a nice mountain village with shops and many places to go out, but I would have preferred seeing it with more snow. I had rain almost all week but one good snowfall made it up to take a few nice pictures. I stayed in Les Tavaillons down the village. You won't find many English-speaking tourists there but the lodging was spacious and next to a swimming pool and fitness center. Access to the village center is about 10 minutes walk but there's also a practical bus passing every 15 minutes taking you up to the Kedeuze lift. As for the restaurant, just avoid.
In the village itself there are much better places to eat. For a pizza, I had a preference for Il Piccolo over L'Agora for the thinner dough and fresher ingredients even if the place is less cosy. For a cheese raclette or fondue, try out Le Refuge 1100m. The place is small so don't forget to book a table in advance.
My last recommendation is a 10-minute drive from Les Carroz, up on the road to Flaine right down the Molliets and Tête des Saix chair lifts. The Chalet des Molliets is a typical restaurant from the Savoie region. I discovered the reblochonnade, a delicious melted cheese plate you eat with baked potatoes. Give it a try if you like reblochon cheese!
Getting near Morillon
Samoëns is a few minutes down
The Mont Blanc
The Roof of Europe
Flaine and its forward thinking architecture
Beaufort and reblochon pies
Inside the Chalet des Molliets
Baked potatoe for the reblochonnade
As a conclusion
I love going to the mountains in the winter for skiing. It's never easy to find the ideal resort but the Grand Massif is a good place to go. The slopes were great and the view over the Mont Blanc spectacular. I only missed a bit more snow in the village but will keep good memories from my stay there.
And yourself, do you know the Grand Massif? What are your plans for next winter? Don't hesitate to leave a little comment below and I hope you liked reading my first article in English on VosVacances.
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