Coveted as one of the largest ski resorts in the world, Vail Mountain has more than 5,200 acres of ski and snowboard terrain, seven legendary Back Bowls spanning seven miles, and more perfectly groomed terrain than imaginable. Proudly claimed by passionate skiers and snowboarders as an extraordinary winter vacation destination for more than 50 years, Vail continues to elevate each guest's experience at every turn, never settling. The following top ten highlights make Vail an unforgettable destination for your ski vacation.
With a vibrant pedestrian village, accessible terrain for all skill levels, an extensive selection of lodging and dining options to suit a variety of preferences, and a lively mix of local residents and guests from around the world, Vail is truly the quintessential ski resort experience.
Founders Pete Seibert and Earl Eaton set out to create a world-class ski resort from Vail's earliest days. In 1962, when the first chairlift ride delivered skiers to pristine terrain, the idea of opening seven legendary Back Bowls and Blue Sky Basin were merely blueprints of a dream. Today, Vail is one of the largest ski areas in the world and continues to push the limits on improving lifts, gondolas, on-mountain facilities, events, and a dynamic village experience.
Vail isn't just a place to check off your bucket list, it's a place you'll return to again and again. With a guest experience second to none, generations of families and friends choose Vail to reconnect and celebrate life's most important moments.
Town of Vail
Nestled conveniently at the base of the ski mountain, Vail Village is both timeless and vibrant. The renowned fine dining scene is complimented by exclusive boutiques and galleries. Looking for the perfect place to unwind après ski? Finding just the right deck and drink special shouldn't be too hard, there's plenty to choose from. Family and group friendly entertainment abounds with ice skating rinks, a sophisticated movie theater, chic bowling, sweets shops, and full season of event concerts all within walking distance.
Whether you choose to stay in Lionshead Village or Vail Village, making your way around town is easy with the complimentary village bus system. Each village has a variety of unique lodging, dining, shopping and, of course, lift access to the mountain. From elegant, private chalets and penthouse residences to full-service hotels and studio condominiums, Vail has a diverse mix of lodging to suit all styles.
Foodies flock to Vail’s distinct and exciting culinary scene. Despite Vail's small town stature, you’ll find dining options to rival the world’s most vibrant cities. Start your gourmet experience with an elegant, on-mountain lunch at The 10th, complete with fuzzy slippers to replace your ski boots and incredible views. Then, at the end of the day, your options are seemingly endless back in the Village. From Nobu Matsuhisa’s Japanese dishes with South American flare at Matsuhisa to the always creative and sophisticated Sweet Basil to a long list of restaurants that celebrate traditional classics, up-and-coming culinary trends, and regionally specific fare, guests will surely go home sated.
While Vail's Front Side has much to taut, the distinctive Back Bowls are the mountain's defining characteristic. This legendary terrain offers wide-open skiing and breathtaking views. Start by exploring Sun Up and Sun Down Bowls, and work your way back to China and Teacup Bowls. If you are feeling adventurous, discover Siberia Bowl and access the far reaches of Inner and Outer Mongolia Bowls. Good news for those less powder-hungry guests, China Bowl offers the only groomed, intermediate or blue runs in the Back Bowls (easily accessible from the Sourdough Express Lift (#14) on the Front Side). When you're ready to take a breather, Vail Mountain's flagship restaurant, Two Elk, awaits on the upper rim of China Bowl.
One of the most beloved parts of the mountain, Blue Sky Basin is an experience unto itself. Journey from the Front Side, into the Back Bowls to the bottom of Teacup Bowl and you will find the Skyline Express Lift (#37) to access this stunningly beautiful area, renowned for its glades and meadows. Bring along something to grill at the complimentary Belle's Camp grills, or cozy up with a hot cocoa by the fire in this simple and rustic space.
Our team of ski and snowboard experts are unmatched in the industry. Hailing from around the world, Vail's Ski & Snowboard School professionals speak 22 different languages and come from many interesting walks of life including ex-NFL players, former Olympians, and long-time Vail residents. Whether you are looking for a guide to show you the best spots on the mountain, or you want to take your skills to the next level, our instructors are enthusiastic, knowledgeable and patient.
Never a dull moment in this world-class resort, both Vail and Lionshead Villages host to a wide range of events and entertainment. Some highlights include:
- Snow Daze: Our early season celebration
- SKADI Fest: Women's ski fest experience
- Holidaze: tree lighting, New Year's Eve fireworks and more
- CarniVail: Mardi Gras, Vail style.
- Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships: the world's best snowboarders gather to compete while the fans get up close views of the action and a great, free concert lineup.
- Spring Back to Vail: Our late season celebration