Let's talk about six baby: Awesome ski areas in Davos

Powder hounds sniffing around for a skiing holiday in Switzerland should head for Davos Klosters. For unadulterated skiing and some of the most assured snow dumps in Europe, the twin Alpine villages in the Swiss mountains are considered to be one of the most prestigious Ski resorts on the planet.

Perched at 1,560m above sea level, Davos is one of the highest villages in Europe and shares a ski resort with the neighbouring Klosters. Whilst Davos is very much an urban town, Klosters is the atypical Alpine village, a rural haven preferred by Prince Charles when he visits.

Davos Resort

The twin resort boasts an extensive ski area covering 350km of groomed piste and around 200km of free-riding terrain. The ski resort is regarded as some of the best off-piste skiing in the world and is adored by skiers and snowboarders.

Advanced skiers are well accommodated for, but like most ski resorts, intermediates have the most options. Beginners also have plenty of opportunities to develop and build confidence whilst snowboarders can spend hours on the snakes, jumps and turns in one of the three terrain parks.

Resort Statistics

Base: 810 meters
Summit: 2844 meters
No. of Pistes: 110
Total Piste: 300 km
Cross Country: 200 km
Total Lifts: 50
Gondolas/ Cable Cars: 14
Chairlifts: 10
Drag Lifts: 26

Piste Map

Davos Piste Map Thumb

Davos Ski Areas & Slopes


Jakobshorn was one of the first ski areas to develop freeriding in Switzerland and continues to herald off-piste skiing.

Intermediate-Advanced: Off-piste skiing is the best option for advanced skiers in Jakobshorn. Although not officially monitored, there are plenty of pisted runs to explore without guides. If you want to go further afield to areas outside the recommended boundaries, hire a guide.

Beginners: The beginner slopes of Bolgen nursery and Bünda Davos Dorf are situated at the bottom of Jakobshorn. Once you progress, check out the magic carpets and long, easy blues.


Parsenn is the largest, and most popular ski area in Davos. It is accessed by the Parsennbahn funicular from Davos Dorf and a short gondola ride up to Weissfluhgipfel.

Intermediate-Advanced: There is no shortage of runs for intermediates of all levels, whilst experts will prefer the challenging black runs through Meierhofer Tälli and the demanding itinerary routes down to Klosters. If you take a guide, you can also follow in the ski tracks of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and navigate the Maienfelder Furgga Pass to Arosa.

Beginners: The wide and easy slopes between the Weissfluhjoch and the Gotschnagrat are ideal for beginners. From here you can enjoy the panoramic views from Hauptertaeli, Dorftaeli and Meierhoftaeli.


Madrisa is the closest ski area for visitors staying in Kloster Dorf although you can access other parts of the mountain from here using the large network of lifts.

Intermediate-Advanced: Intermediates will love the fresh powder above the treeline between Raetschenioch and Aelpli. Advanced skiers will want to try the valley runs to Klosters Dorf.

Beginners: Madrisa is a beginner friendly ski area and best suited to families or parties that are more or less around the same level.


A dedicated free ride zone, Pischa is a powder paradise away from the crowds. There are no groomed pistes on the mountain although there are a series of marked routes which are accessible without a guide.

Intermediate-Advanced: With only three marked runs, advanced skiers will want to venture further up the mountain. Head for the summit of the Pischahorn and the even taller Gorihorn peak.

Beginners: Pischa is a freeride zone and not ideal for beginners.


Sitting on the southern edge of the valley, the Rinerhorn is the quietest part of the mountain and home to some of the most challenging terrain in Davos Klosters.

Intermediate-Advanced: The groomed runs here are an intermediates paradise whilst the black Brand run from Nuellisch to the Rinerhorn base station is an adrenaline-fuelled rush for advanced skiers - it’s the most difficult and longest run in the region.

Beginners: There’s not as much for beginners at Rinerhorn as other parts of the mountain but confident beginners will find a manageable run from the Nuellisch t-lift. It’s recommended you master the slope at Training lift first however.


Schatzalp-Strela is just a four-minute ride on the funicular from the centre of Davos-Platz and provides decelerated runs that are ideal for beginners to grow their confidence.

Intermediate-Advanced: The slopes at Schatzalp-Strela are designed to be slower - in the old traditional style of skiing. Subsequently, intermediate and advanced skiers don’t take much of an interest.

Beginners: Once you’ve graduated from the nursery slopes, Schatzalp-Strela is the best ski area to develop your technique and build confidence.

Ski Holidays in Davos

Ski holidays in Davos are great for families and groups with the same ski ability. Organising a day together is more difficult for mixed ability groups although not impossible. 

Davos Ski Passes

There are numerous ski pass options at Davos. Subsequently, the pricing is complex and differs between the ski area and the number of days you buy the pass for. Click through to the official Davos tourist guide for a full rundown of ski lift prices in Davos Klosters.

Davos ski passes are flexible and can be used to access Parsenn, Jakobshorn and Madrisa. You can also buy a regional pass that covers all six ski areas.

Ski Schools

There are several ski schools worthy of note in Davos. The Swiss Snowsport School operates off their own nursery slopes and has the best facilities for beginners. Ski & Snowboard School and Top Secret Swiss Ski and Snowboard Schools are the principle service providers for skiers at all levels. There are also plenty of local guides for off-piste and adventure skiing.

Equipment Hire

The usual suspects of Switzerland all have ski hire shops in Davos-Klosters including Skiset, Snowell and Intersport. If you prefer to support local shops that hire ski equipment, choose one of the lesser-known names from the Davos-Klosters website.

Family Fun in Davos

Davos Klosters is a family-friendly resort with plenty to offer both on and off the slopes. Young families are best positioned in Klosters Dorf close to Madrisa Children’s Land where you will find mini ski courses, tubing, igloos and full daycare facilities allowing the parents to head for the mountain slopes.

When to Go?

If you book accommodation well in advance, the best time to go skiing in Davos is during the annual World Economic Forum held in January. Although the town is bustling, the slopes are not crowded at all and fresh powder dumps make excellent ski conditions.

Snow Report

Given Davos is the highest town in Europe - albeit not the highest ski resort - it is considered a snow-sure resort. There is always an abundant blanket of snow throughout the season so snowmaking facilities are only used on five per cent of the runs.

With a plentiful seasonal snowfall and a better than average sun quota, the weather conditions in Davos are ideal for skiing. Occasionally, some parts of the mountain may have low visibility.

The best snow in Davos is between February and April.

Operating Times

Thanks to the resorts high altitude and regular snow dumps, Davos opens earlier and closes later than many European ski resorts. The season typically runs between early December and mid-April and the lifts open from 08:15 to 16:00.

Getting There

Visitors flying in from the UK are most likely to arrive in Zurich. To get to the resort, you have the option to hire private transport, private transfer, shared transfer or go by rail. There are some 40 trains a day from Zurich Airport to Davos Dorf and the transfer time is 3-hours 40 minutes.

UK Airports

The only UK airports flying to Zurich are London Heathrow, London City Airport, Luton and Leeds-Bradford.

Airport Transfers

The closest airport to Davos Klosters ski resort in Zurich International Airport in Switzerland. The transfer time is around two to three hours depending on traffic and weather conditions.