French Alps Climate and Weather

The French Alps offer lots of sunshine, but cold weather from November to April when the ski season is in full swing. The resorts are generally high and the snow is excellent, although the weather is relatively mild in comparison to the North American resorts. The northern French Alps, which are exposed to westerly winds blowing in off the Atlantic, often receive a lot more snow in winter than areas further to the east, which have a drier and colder continental climate. In the summer months, the northern French Alps enjoy a warm, temperate climate, with fairly frequent summer storms that keep the region lush and green. The alpine spring is very beautiful with wild flowers blooming all over the mountain pastures. The southern part of the French Alps is generally dry but the highest areas do receive sufficient snow in winter to provide excellent skiing conditions. During the summer months the cool, sunny weather attracts hikers and climbers.

The French Alps are a year-round holiday destination. The skiing season runs from November to April and the slopes can get crowded over Christmas and Easter holidays. The best time to visit the French Alps for hiking is between July and September when the weather is sunny and predictable and the high snows have melted.

French Alps