Top 5 Apres Bars in France
1. Rond Point, Meribel
The Rond Point is a fantastic place to spend an afternoon, with a huge sunny terrace jumping with live bands and an outdoor bar, providing a real buzz after a day of skiing. Save money and time at the bar by getting involved with 'pichets' of lager (if that is your tipple). And if you’re feeling the chill once the sun goes down, sample the famous toffee vodka to warm your cockles. A short blue back to the town centre (or hop on the bus) to return home.
How to get there: it's on the piste close to the mid-station of the Rhodos lift, a few hundred metres above the village centre
Le Rond Point - Meribel
2. Dick’s Tea Bar, Val d’Isère
Dick’s opened on New Year’s Eve 1979, and although it’s been redecorated several times, it still retains that same, well-known 'Tea Bar' atmosphere. Now with several Tea Bars across the Alps, Val d'Isere is just one resort where you can enjoy the familiar formula of live music, questionable DJs and infamous opening hours until 4am, all or which will stretch your stamina and push your ski boots and legs to the limit!
Despite it being open all afternoon, Dick’s is more nightclub than après-ski bar. But the beer is cheap and with lots of free seats, it is a must-visit for sure.
How to get there: follow the searchlight going straight up into the night sky
3. Folie Douce – Meribel
Just before the pistes split to return to the higher base of Mottaret or Méribel’s central village, you'll find the notorious Folie Douce. A branch of the Val d’Isère institution, which opened in 2012, this party on the slopes runs every day from 3pm until 5pm with live DJs, singers, dancers and saxophonists that entertain a vibrant crowd in this spectacular setting.
If you’d prefer a lift down after dancing the afternoon away you can scramble up the bank to the Saulire lift, which will take you down to the Chaudanne main lift station (and to more apres-ski bars).
How to get there: Before the piste splits right to Meribel village keep left and follow the sound of the music! (particularly useful in low light or fog!)
La Folie Douce, Meribel
4. Pano Bar, Les Deux Alpes
The on-mountain party starts at Pano Bar in Les Deux Alpes, at the altitude 2,600m lift-station midway up the Jandri Express gondola. Expect a DJ every afternoon and plenty of on-table ski boot dancing (which seems to be customary in many apres-ski bars the world over!). For the determined take the 1,000m vertical downhill back to resort. The new Jandri blue run to the village makes it easier to get back down for après. It’s a welcome alternative to the other options – steep blacks or an overcrowded green run.
How to get there: Look for the Altitude 2600m lift station, the Pano Bar is right next door.
5. The Red Hot Saloon Bar, Les Arcs
Arcs 1800 is definitely the liveliest village in the Les Arcs complex with a large choice of both bars and restaurants. Known locally as the ‘Red Bar’, this lively joint is one of the most popular in Arcs 1800, which has a large selection of 34 bars (not bad for a village!).There are often live rock bands or a DJ and the place gets packed to the rafters guaranteeing a great apres-ski atmosphere.
How to get there: The Red Bar is in Galerie des Villards, which means you’ll be able to hang up your skis or snowboard rather than stopping off on-piste.