Courmayeur is an Italian resort village that has developed a fine reputation for skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports. It is, after all, located on the Italian side of the base of Mont Blanc. Most people associate this beautiful peak with France and the ski resort at Chamonix, but with almost 65 miles (100 kilometers) of pistes, Courmayeur offers just as much as Chamonix. Some of its visitors might even say that Courmayeur is better than Chamonix – it’s sunnier, the pace is less hectic, and the crowds are smaller.
The Courmayeur ski resort is a charming little place that’s become famous not just for its winter sports activities, but for its friendly hospitality too. The locals are always ready to answer travelers’ questions and most Courmayeur hotels are family-owned. They don’t give you that impersonal corporate flavor that the big chain resort hotels so often have. Instead, the people staffing the accommodations at the Courmayeur ski resort happily go out of their way to be friendly and helpful. As a result, the service at Courmayeur hotels is almost always outstanding.
But besides sightseeing (Mont Blanc is stunning) and trying your hand at skiing or snowboarding, what is there to do at Courmayeur? Especially during the summer, when the skis usually stay stacked in their racks?
Well, there’s always hiking or biking along the area’s many mountain trails. You’d see some beautiful Alpine meadows and valleys, rushing mountain streams and lushly green forests. And you can always hunt for interesting items to buy in the village’s charming little shops. But what about trying something different? Something not too many people connect with a trip to Courmayeur? How about a round of challenging golf? You couldn’t ask for a more spectacular backdrop for a game, although California’s Pebble Beach and New Zealand’s Cape Kidnappers might give the Courmayeur course a run for its money.
That’s right – you can golf at Courmayeur. Not right in the village, of course, but not far away either. The course is called the Golf Club Courmayeur and Grandes Jorasses and it’s located in the nearby Val Ferret. Constructed back in 1930, it’s a 9-hole course that’s open year-round and offers both men’s and ladies’ tees (go around twice and you’ve got your 18 holes). It has all the amenities you’d expect from any golf course you’d want to play: clubhouse, locker rooms, bar, restaurant, pro shop, driving range, golf cart rental, caddies, rental clubs, putting green, pitching green, practice bunker, and lessons by a teaching pro.
The course is open seven days a week, but you’ll need to book a tee time in advance. Softspikes are required and cell phones aren’t permitted on the course.Google+