The ski season is just around the corner and many of us are already wondering where we can go to enjoy that first snow. There are plenty of options for an epic skiing destination. For starters, there are the Alps in Switzerland, the Pyrenees in the Basque country and France, and the Dolomites in Italy.
But there are also a few more winter destinations with an exotic edge. These destinations are not your ordinary ski destinations, and many would be surprised to learn they are great for skiing. Before you book flights for your ski holiday, check out eDreams’ selection of the most unique places to go for ski holidays.
Skiing on the slopes of a volcano on an island normally renowned for its beaches, sun and good food, is an unforgettable experience all ski enthusiasts should experience. Just be careful: Etna is an active volcano and can erupt at any moment. In the past, lava from an eruption had damaged the ski resort, so please be careful and check out the forecast of volcanic activity before pulling out your skis!
Ski Dubai, Dubai
This indoor ski resort (the world’s largest) offers skiers 5 tracks, space for jumps and games for the little ones. This impressive resort is an extremely ambitious project that brought snow where it did not seem possible, the desert! Visitors need not worry about bringing their ski gear to a location that averages a warm 30-35 degree weather. The price of admission includes the rental of equipment and clothing.
Mauna Kea, Hawaii
Located on the “Big Island” of Hawaii, Mauna Kea is the tallest volcano in the state, reaching 4,205 metres (impressive when you consider that most of the island’s surface is underwater!). Mauna kea, which means White Mountain, not only houses the largest astronomical observatory in the world, it is also the perfect destination for skiers and snowboarders, offering one of the most unique experiences. With no ski lifts, trails or controls, a ski trip to this destination is best left to the experts.
A sport that made its debut in Afghanistan in 2010, skiing the slopes is a safe haven from the more tumultuous scene. For tourists desiring a chance to discover an unexplored territory or the anti-resort experience, this is the place for you. Here, there are no chair lifts, skiers have to hike uphill and of course, watch out for avalanches – they can happen. Eager travellers wanting to explore this region will need to take a flight from Kabul and then take quite the long road trip up.
Mount Olympus, Cyprus
After Sicily, Cyprus is one of the other Mediterranean islands where visitors can ski up in the mountains and swim in the sea, all during the same holiday, thanks to the slopes on Mount Olympus. Though the ski season is a bit shorter here than in the rest of Europe, the wonderful views are certainly worth the trip.
AfriSki is the only resort in South Africa and is located in Lesotho, approximately 3,050 metres from the Maluti Mountains, a 4-hour drive from Johannesburg. The resort easily accommodates 250 people and also offers a 1km slope for the novices who want to start practising skiing. One of the more appealing factors is the resort’s operational times. Winter in South Africa extends between June and August, a welcome break from the summer heat, if you come from the northern hemisphere.