Morzine: Rising to the problem within the French Alps

The placid lake at Morillon

The placid lake at Morillon

I don’t have a head for heights. Standing on the fringe of a balcony or in a glass elevate could make my abdomen flip.

So it’s possible you’ll be stunned to listen to I’ve simply been on vacation excessive within the French Alps and even tried my hand at paragliding.

Because it occurred this was to be probably the most exhilarating expertise of the week. We’d come to Morzine within the French Alps.

A household exercise break at chalet firm Chilly Powder’s lodge Au Coin du Feu proved to be the right selection for all of us.

At a number of thousand toes, Morzine seemed gorgeous, like a Google-view satellite tv for pc shot

In addition to having different households with youngsters of the same age to Ella, six, and Heath, 11, there was at all times an excellent ambiance and the homeowners Paul and Francesca couldn’t be extra welcoming.

Every night started with canapés earlier than a four-course dinner.

The kids had eaten earlier at 6pm so it gave the adults an opportunity to loosen up whereas they headed off to the video games room.

The lively town of Morzine

The vigorous city of Morzine

How they discovered much more vitality every night is anybody’s guess, notably after the limitless actions all through the day, resembling white-water rafting and canyoning, climbing and strolling.

Chilly Powder’s properties are based mostly simply exterior Morzine city centre in Les Prodains. Its 17-bedroom chalet-style lodge and 4 self-catering chalets sit on the backside of a valley with the plush wooded Alps looming over them on both aspect.

One among our many firsts was mountain biking. My son and I joined a guided experience taking within the “simple” route. Because it turned out, it was something however simple.

Of our group of eight, together with 5 youngsters, three pulled out lower than midway by way of. I don’t blame them.

After selecting up our bikes, helmets, knee and elbow pads from one of many many rent outlets in Morzine, we put them in a cable automobile and headed up the mountain.

After a warm-up with our teacher, Bertrand, and a fast lesson on stances and braking, he set us off down a steep shale-covered slope.

We went down at a snail’s tempo at first however as confidence grew my son picked up pace and I needed to attempt to sustain with him. The path led right into a wooden which was much more enjoyable.

Morzine’s Au Coin du Feu hotel

The relaxed ambiance of Morzine’s Au Coin du Feu lodge

We then sped alongside filth tracks, glided by way of pastures, coasted down hairpin roads and pedalled alongside rock-strewn rivers. As a result of mountain biking was not appropriate for Ella, we took her to the Summer time Luge.

This entails a plastic sledge on wheels taking place a concrete observe formed like an Olympic bobsled run. She has a worry of going too quick however the brake eased her pressure.

Heath prevented the brake altogether and tried to make it go away the observe. Fortunately he couldn’t.

Even Morzine’s equal of Go Ape, referred to as Indiana Park, didn’t elevate our pulse charges to the mountain bike degree. It is a hardcore clamber among the many tree-tops.

I placed on my helmet and mounted the 2 security harnesses to the cables and set off up a metal ladder. That was the straightforward bit.

From there I shuffled throughout excessive wires, crawled by way of barrels suspended 20ft within the air and tried to look calm strolling throughout swinging planks whereas being instructed to rush up by my kids.

There was additionally ample alternative to carry calm to our holidays.

We took the cable automobile as much as Avoriaz which overlooks Les Prodains and set off down a steep gravelly slope into the damp inexperienced valley.

The spotlight of the stroll was a cease within the village of Les Lindarets, which is thought for the herds of goats that roam freely across the eating places and outlets.

There will need to have been at the very least 50 of them standing on tables, nibbling at grass and gently nudging vacationers who had meals to supply.

At Lac Bleu, a small pure lake in close by Morillon, we dived off the jetty and swam in its chilly blue waters.

Away from Morzine we spent a day in Annecy, a medieval city wrapped inside a big metropolis on the aspect of an enormous lake.

We loved a few hours strolling the slender streets working alongside its canal system.

The enduring picture of town is a lovely turreted former citadel, the Palais de L’isle, which sits on a triangular islet on the canal and is now a museum.

The largest shock of the week was a ship journey throughout Lake Geneva to Lausanne, dwelling of the Worldwide Olympic Committee and its implausible museum.

I used to be not anticipating an excessive amount of however this interactive delight stored the kids amused and impressed me to step out of my consolation zone.

We watched movies of former rivals talking about the way it felt to participate within the Video games and took in historic Greek historical past.

A nervy Anil (front) flying with instructor Pascal

A nervy Anil (entrance) flying excessive with teacher Pascal

My favorite components had been the gathering of each Olympic poster after which standing underneath a high-jump bar set to the world report, a shade over 8ft.

Again in Morzine, I made a decision to go paragliding. I used to be pushed as much as the highest of one of many native peaks by a chap from Aero-Bi Parapente the place my pilot, Pascal, connected himself to the large kite then strapped me to him.

On his orders, we ran three lengthy steps in the direction of the void then lifted again into the air. The elevate was so clean it was nearly unnoticeable.

As soon as we began floating, Pascal instructed me to sit down in my harness. My abdomen was contracting however as soon as I had sat again it managed to loosen up barely – not like my fist, which was gripping the strap.

The experience was how I think seagulls really feel if you see them floating spherical. There isn’t a objective to the flight besides to expertise the feeling of flying with out being enclosed.

It was surprisingly calm. Paragliders transfer comparatively slowly by way of the air so turbulence was not a difficulty as we swooped over the woods and rivers.

The wind blew gently over me as I took within the sensational views. At a number of thousand toes, Morzine seemed gorgeous, like a Google-view satellite tv for pc shot however with out the pc.

I noticed the river that I had cycled alongside trailing again alongside the valley ground and bought an in depth view of the aspect of a mountain peak that you just can not get from anyplace else.

Medieval town of Annecy

Canals fill the medieval city of Annecy

I additionally had an incredible overview of all of the sports activities accessible right here. Cable automobiles, ski slopes, bike tracks, tennis courts, rafting and canoeing rivers, swimming swimming pools, horse-riding trails and climbing parks are dotted everywhere in the space.

The 15-minute flight was so light even the touchdown in a subject close to the city centre didn’t harm my ageing knees.

It even got here as a slight anti-climax after the opposite adrenalineinducing actions I had completed.

Per week in Morzine could not have cured my vertigo fully however I liked the problem.


Chilly Powder (020 7289 6958/ affords seven nights from £655pp (two sharing), half-board.

easyJet ( has return flights to Geneva from varied UK airports from £40. Morzine-Avoriaz tourism:

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