Forecasters are predicting a harsh winter ahead with a lot of rain on the way, but it might not be bad news for everyone. The Scottish centres have already received the first snowfall of the season and might even be open soon for some proper skiing. If you catch the Scottish ski centres on a good day you can find conditions as good as many you would find in France or Switzerland, so here is our guide to Scotland’s ski centres.
Cairngorm, based in the hills above Aviemore, is a great ski resort destination. Skiing in Scotland can be unpredictable as the weather can change very quickly so Cairngorm is a great option; if the weather turns bad you can either get a lift in the funicular railway to the café at the top and enjoy views over Loch Morlich or head into Aviemore and seek shelter in one of the many cafes and pubs. There is skiing for all abilities, from a ski school for beginners to a freestyle park for the more advanced skiers. Cairngorm is just under three hours from Edinburgh by car so it is great for a weekend break.
This resort has stunning views that would put some alpine resorts to shame, so this is definitely worth a visit. Situated about two and a half hours from Edinburgh, Glencoe has some of the longest and steepest runs in Scotland, so is best suited for those experienced skiers looking for a challenge- but they still have excellent gentle runs for beginners and sledging areas if you fancy something a little more sedate.
This is one of the largest ski centres in Scotland and really does have the greatest variety. In terms of runs, they have both nursery runs and very advanced runs. Glenshee, near Braemar is just over two hours by car from Edinburgh. They have a great ski school too, so if you want to get some practice in before you head off for a European ski trip you could do worse than head to here for a couple of days.
One of the smallest ski centres in Scotland, the Lecht, still has a lot to offer skiers of all levels and even boasts a snow park for the more adventurous skiers. Based at Strathdon in Aberdeenshire, the Lecht is three hours by car from Edinburgh. It’s a bit further to travel than some of the other resorts, but it is a great ski centre and is a little quieter than some of the bigger resorts like Glenshee and Cairngorm.
Based near Fort William, Nevis Range is three hours from Edinburgh by car. Nevis Range like the other Scottish ski centres has runs for all abilities. They also have a gondola, which offers a little respite from the cold for weary skiers. This is a great resort for advanced skiers, especially as there is a large off-piste ski area to explore.