June 23, 2024

Olympia Travel Tips

Maniac Travel Update

12 best family ski resorts in the US

12 best family ski resorts in the US

Whether your child is a snowboarding teen used to shredding powder or a newbie headed to ski school for the very first time, many mountain resorts across the U.S. are perfect for a family ski trip.

Skiing can be the perfect family activity in winter, as the après-ski scene provides just as much fun each day as time spent schussing the slopes. Many resorts offer alternative snow-related activities — such as tubing, ice skating, snowshoeing and even sleigh rides — so the whole family can enjoy the mountain experience.

The best ski resorts for families are usually the ones that offer on- and near-mountain lodging, ski schools with a variety of programs, beginner- and intermediate-friendly terrain and some quality non-ski activities, too.

Keep in mind that ski and snowboard lessons can book up well in advance, so if ski school — or even on-mountain child care — is a must-have for your vacation, double-check the options to ensure they fit your ski vacation goals.

Once you decide on the best resort for your family, price out lift tickets and pass options ahead of time. You may be surprised at how much more affordable ski passes bought in advance are over individual lift tickets, even if you are only skiing for a day or two. Additionally, many ski resorts have capacity limits, so you’ll want to make sure you purchase your tickets or make reservations (which are required with some passes) prior to arriving.

SUMMER HULL/THE POINTS GUY

For example, while Vail resorts no longer require reservations for passholders, the company will limit individual lift ticket sales. Meanwhile, many Ikon resorts require advance reservations for passholders. You’ll also want to be aware of kids-ski-free programs, which can help keep the trip cost down.

With all these nuances in mind, here are some of our favorite ski resorts for the whole family.

Beaver Creek Resort, Colorado

Why Beaver Creek is a good ski resort for families

This may be surprising for those who are only familiar with the mountain’s luxury reputation, but perhaps one of the friendliest slopes for family ski trips is Colorado’s Beaver Creek. Located about a two-hour drive from Denver International Airport (DEN) or 30 minutes from Eagle County Regional Airport (EGE), assuming you have good road conditions, this resort is relatively easy to access.

Beaver Creek has been upping its already solid family ski game even more lately thanks, in part, to the recent opening of a brand-new, 250-acre, lift-served expansion called McCoy Park. This offers even more terrain for beginner and intermediate skiers and snowboarders, and it elevates the mountain experience with 17 new groomable trails, plus two additional chairlifts. Along with Haymeadow Park and Red Buffalo Park, McCoy Park solidifies Beaver Creek Kids Ski and Snowboard School as an industry leader.

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Not only does this kid-friendly terrain get the tots up the mountain instead of requiring them to learn just at the base, but each of these areas has a distinct place to grab a kid-friendly treat. In McCoy Park, you’ll find the Beaver Creek Candy Cabin; at the top of the Haymeadow Express Gondola is the Ice Cream Parlour; and at the top of Red Buffalo is the Cookie Cabin.

For your après-ski activities, head to the bottom of the mountain for Cookie Time, where kids (and adults) can enjoy free, freshly baked cookies at 3 p.m. Needless to say, it’s a big hit with families.

The open-air, snowcat-led sleigh rides to Allie’s Cabin are also back and are a great pick for families, as they give you the magic of the mountain at night. The ride is only eight to 10 minutes long, which is a blessing on the way “home” when the kids are potentially tired and cold. The menu is now a la carte and features dishes inspired by Northern Italy, though there is also a multicourse kids menu.

You can enjoy ice skating in the village, and on Thursday nights, kids and adults who are at least level four skiers can participate in a glow stick ski after dark from the Haymeadow Express Gondola. Lift tickets for Beaver Creek don’t have to cost a ton if you plan in advance and lock in an Epic Pass of some sort.

Where to stay at Beaver Creek

Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa

Beaver Creek, Colorado, USA

PARK HYATT BEAVER CREEK/PARK HYATT

Best for: Worry-free ski-in, ski-out access at a decadent resort for a winter getaway.

Why stay here: Location, location, location. TPG loves the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek for its convenience to slopes fit for skiers of all skill levels (making this great for families, too).

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elitelike benefits and on-property credits, or reserve through American Express Fine Hotels + Resorts for value-added benefits like upgrades and late checkout based on availability, plus on-property statement credits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $900 or 25,000 World of Hyatt points per night.

The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch

Bachelor Gulch, Colorado, USA

THE RITZ-CARLTON BACHELOR GULCH/FACEBOOK

Best for: Those who want a rustic-chic sojourn right on the slopes but in a quieter part of the resort where you can really unplug.

Why stay here: This resort is like a fairy-tale mountain getaway, with a wonderful outdoor heated pool and a location steps from the chairlift. It’s a place to be pampered and to relax in front of a big fireplace when you aren’t busy at the lively après-ski scene.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy free breakfast plus on-property credits, or via American Express Fine Hotels + Resorts.

Book now

Winter rates start at $900 or 94,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

TPG tip: You can add up to 15,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to certificates with fixed prices, meaning that many nights are within range of the 85,000-point certificate awarded annually by the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card if you are willing to add some points.

The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa

Avon, Colorado, USA

THE WESTIN RIVERFRONT RESORT AND SPA/MARRIOTT.COM

Best for: Skiers who value the convenience of rooms with kitchens or kitchenettes and washers and dryers to clean all that ski gear.

Why stay here: The hotel offers near-mountain access at a cheaper price than some of the slopeside lodging but still has all the comforts of a big ski resort.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy breakfast plus on-property credits, or directly with Marriott to redeem points or enjoy elite status benefits.

Winter rates start at $500 or 91,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

Keystone Resort, Colorado

Why Keystone is a good ski resort for families

Out of all the great Colorado ski resorts (and there are plenty), Keystone is the hot spot for kids of all ages. There are the usual dog sledding, snow tubing, ice skating and sleigh ride activities, but the pièce de resistance is the resort’s kids programs and accommodations.

Keystone Resort, Colorado. KEYSTONE RESORT

There are plenty of fun on-mountain experiences, such as snowcat skiing and night skiing (on weekends and holidays). Tykes should also like the famous Snow Fort. In fact, this year, there are actually two snow forts to pick from: one up on Dercum Mountain and one in the Mountain House base area.

Additionally, the resort offers a ton of family conveniences, such as free preferred family parking for those with kids 12 and younger and red wagons to help tow skis, boards or even tired kiddos.

Within the resort’s 3,000 acres, your family will be able to experience a wide range of terrain, including the 3.5-mile-long Schoolmarm, which is a timeless run for the family to work on turns. Best of all, kids 12 and younger ski free when you stay at one of the resort’s properties for two or more nights (there are no blackout dates). On top of that, guests at those eligible properties also get free night skiing on the night of arrival, one hour of included ice skating and more.

If you want to blow your kids’ minds, you can spend some of the money you didn’t have to use for lift tickets on a horse-drawn sleigh ride dinner ($120 for adults, $70 for kids ages 4 to 17 and $12 for little ones 3 and younger).

Where to stay at Keystone

Hyatt Place Keystone

Keystone, Colorado, USA

HYATT PLACE KEYSTONE/SUMMER HULL THE POINTS GUY

Best for: Families who want to spend their days on the mountain and have the hotel be a clean and affordable nearby place to rest up for doing it all again the next morning.

Why stay here: Book one of the Hyatt Place Keystone’s 103 rooms to get the benefits of staying at Keystone resort (such as kids 12 and younger ski free) while still earning and using World of Hyatt points.

Best way to book: Book the Hyatt Place Keystone directly to get your Hyatt perks and free breakfast.

Book now

Winter rates start at $200 or 12,000 World of Hyatt points per night. This property is a great use of the Hyatt Category 1-4 certificate that’s available annually for those with the World of Hyatt Credit Card.

River Run Townhomes

Keystone, Colorado, USA

RIVER RUN TOWNHOMES KEYSTONE/FACEBOOK

Best for: Skiing families who want to combine the conveniences of a home rental with the proximity and perks of being near the mountain.

Why stay here: Keystone’s River Run Townhomes are new and have a variety of floor plans (up to four bedrooms), making them a perfect option for families who want a kitchen and more space while still getting those Keystone perks and proximity to the mountain.

Best way to book: Book directly with Keystone.

Book now

Winter rates start at $750 per night for a three-bedroom accommodation, with 20{0b5b04b8d3ad800b67772b3dcc20e35ebfd293e6e83c1a657928cfb52b561f97} discounts available to those with an Epic Pass.

Snowmass, Colorado

Why Snowmass is a good ski resort for families

Snowmass is one of the mountains that comprises the swanky Aspen ski area in Colorado, so you can check a high-end ski resort off your bucket list while entertaining the kids at the same time.

A bit less showy than its big sister Aspen, Snowmass notably includes the Treehouse Kids’ Adventure Center, a licensed kids club for children between 8 weeks and 4 years old.

Inside the Snowmass Treehouse. SUMMER HULL/THE POINTS GUY

The center can occupy little ones while older kids take part in ski school and parents enjoy diverse terrain. Children as young as 2.5 years old can join in with a combo play and ski school lesson, the resort’s full- and half-day programs that include an hour of lesson time.

On top of that, Snowmass allows kids to ski free all the way through age 6, which makes it a more affordable choice for a young family than most mountains, as other areas typically start charging kids by the time they turn 4. For those 7 and up, know that the mountain participates in both the Ikon and Mountain Collective ski passes.

Other kid-friendly Snowmass activities include on-mountain snow tubing, alpine coasters, ice skating and snowshoeing tours. During select dates — six of them throughout winter — Snowmass will offer a nighttime winter wonderland party called Ullr Nights filled with evening activities for families. This includes a gondola ride to Elk Camp, bonfires, tubing, alpine coaster rides, fire dancers, kids snow biking and kids tubing.

New this season, you’ll experience a fully transformed base area at nearby Buttermilk. This more than 9,000-square-foot building will feature an expanded bar and an outdoor patio, as well as additional services and a renovated and rebranded restaurant, all of which help create a better experience for guests. If you want to see some world-class skiing, the FIS Alpine Ski World Cup will take place in Aspen from March 3-5, 2023.

Where to stay at Snowmass

Viewline Resort Snowmass, Autograph Collection

Aspen, Colorado, USA

VIEWLINE RESORT SNOWMASS/MARRIOTT.COM

Best for: Marriott Bonvoy members who want something steps from the slopes at an affordable price.

Why stay here: Formerly The Westin Snowmass, this Autograph Collection property built into the side of the ski slopes recently went through a renovation and a rebranding. It isn’t as glamorous as other Aspen properties, but it offers good value.

Best way to book: Book directly with Marriott to earn and redeem points and enjoy elite status benefits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $600 or 54,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night. This means you could add Marriott points to a 50,000-point free night certificate on many nights.

Woodrun Place, a Destination by Hyatt Residence

Snowmass Village, Colorado, USA

WOODRUN PLACE/HYATT

Best for: Families and groups who want to be close to Snowmass’ base without sacrificing amenities like a heated pool, a hot tub, multiple bedrooms and airport shuttle service.

Why stay here: Woodrun Place will let you book up to a four-bedroom accommodation with 2,400 square feet of space using Hyatt points, making it a family-friendly option that’s easier on the budget than other similarly sized ski lodges.

Best way to book: Book directly with Hyatt.

Book now

Winter rates start at $266 or 25,000 World of Hyatt points per night.

Viceroy Snowmass

Snowmass Village, Colorado, USA

VICEROY SNOWMASS/FACEBOOK

Best for: Those who want to ski Snowmass with slopeside ease and luxurious lodgings.

Why stay here: This modern hotel with a vibrant lobby raised the bar for Snowmass hotels when it opened in 2017. With plenty of spots to eat on-site plus proximity to multiple restaurants, it’s a great base for your vacation.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy free breakfast plus on-property credits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $900 per night.

Related: How to save money on a trip to Aspen

Copper Mountain, Colorado

Why Copper Mountain is a good ski resort for families

If you are looking for a Colorado ski resort experience with lower prices than its neighbors, Copper is a great choice. This resort has family-friendly written all over it, with an array of activities for all ages.

In addition to skiing in what are often prime snow conditions, you’ll have the Rocky Mountain Roller Coaster, plenty of snow tubing, ice skating on West Lake in Center Village and even daily complimentary tours. Additionally, whenever there is a full moon, Copper Mountain will offer guided Full Moon Snowshoe Tours in the evenings.

ANDY CROSS/GETTY IMAGES

For the second year in a row, the Copper Maze is set to return. Located near the base of the Super Bee lift in East Village, this maze is extremely fun for kids, as it’s made entirely of snow.

During your visit to the mountain, you’ll also want to check out the Woodward Copper Barn. This 19,400-square-foot barn is an action sports playground with multiple skate, scooter and BMX zones; indoor ParkSki and Burton ParkBoard training; five Olympic-grade fly-bed trampolines; and one 12-by-12-foot Super Trampoline, among other amenities. For an off-mountain indoor activity, Woodward should not be missed.

Last year, Copper undertook a multiyear project called the Western Territory Expansion. This area is on the far west side of the mountain and is designed to inspire beginner skiers, kids and families to connect with Copper’s history and heritage. In addition to the two new trails that debuted last year, an enhanced kids tree trail will continue to improve the on-mountain skiing and riding experience.

Copper will also be celebrating its 50th anniversary season this winter. With that, you’ll be sure to see many extra resort activities, promotions and customized 50th-anniversary items.

Where to stay at Copper Mountain

Element 29

Frisco, Colorado, USA

COPPER MOUNTAIN/FACEBOOK

Best for: Staying as close to the snow at Copper Mountain as possible in the first, and so far only, hotel located right at the base of the mountain.

Why stay here: If you want to be a snowball’s throw from Copper Mountain’s 140 ski runs, this new 127-room property is the one to pick. Element 29 has an on-site gear shop (with discounts for hotel guests), hot tubs and Bar 29, which has both morning coffee and after-ski cocktails.

Best way to book: Book directly with Element 29.

Book now

Winter rates start at $180 per night.

Deer Valley Resort, Utah

Why Deer Valley is a good ski resort for families

When kids are getting their bearings and making big side-to-side turns on a slope, it can be easier to start off on runs where you won’t find any snowboarders.

At the ski-only Deer Valley Resort, there’s a children’s adventure area on the mountain where you will find 14 pint-size trails allowing tots to practice new techniques — although their favorite part will probably be the tiny cabin hidden in the woods. The mountain limits its ticket sales each day, which keeps crowds (and lift line waits) at a minimum.

If you are looking for a ski resort that can also entertain a non-skiing child, the Deer Valley Children’s Center offers licensed full-day child care with many activities, as well as outdoor and indoor playgrounds. Children between 2 months and 12 years old can enjoy this facility.

Deer Valley has a fun approach to ski school that includes the Adventure Club for kids ages 4 to 12 and the Bambi Club for younger kids. While the former has a six-child maximum, the size for the latter is kept even smaller, with only two in a class.

Because Deer Valley participates in the Ikon Pass ski program, you may find that the more economical way to lock in lift tickets is to opt for a pass instead of paying the window rates.

Where to stay at Deer Valley

The St. Regis Deer Valley

Deer Valley, Utah, USA

THE ST. REGIS DEER VALLEY/FACEBOOK

Best for: Those seeking a deluxe on-mountain stay at a world-class resort.

Why stay here: The St. Regis Deer Valley has it all. It’s located right on the mountain (though on an actual run and not at the ski school base), has an Elemis spa, restaurants, a ski shop and a valet, not to mention free nightly Champagne sabering, s’mores and hot chocolate to warm you up and celebrate another great day on the slopes.

Best way to book: Book the St. Regis Deer Valley through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, using your Marriott Bonvoy points, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection.

Book now

Winter rates start at $1,200 or 96,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

Montage Deer Valley

Park City, Utah, USA

Best for: Vacations where you’re after a traditional take on mountain luxury with unique on-property family amenities.

Why stay here: Montage Deer Valley is perfect for a classic luxury vacation, as it has heated bathroom floors, soaking tubs and more in its spacious 600-square-foot rooms.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection with your American Express Platinum Card.

Book now

Winter rates start at $1,500 per night.

Northstar California Resort, California

Why Northstar is a good ski resort for families

California’s Northstar Resort, along the California-Nevada border on Lake Tahoe, is excellent for families who can ski together in the Kids Adventure Zone, where two mountain areas have blue trails that are safely tucked away from bigger, faster skiers and snowboarders. Since the mountain, which is in the Epic Pass family, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this winter, there’s bound to be a lot of extra special fun.

This winter, the mountain (which gets an average of 350 inches of annual snowfall), will see the return of tōst — one of the area’s most unique traditions. Here, you can kick up your feet and unwind midday while enjoying a glass of apple cider (or a glass of bubbly for the adults). Additionally, every Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. in The Village at Northstar, families can enjoy the après-ski scene by cozying up around the fire pit or zipping around on ice skates while listening to live music. At other times, you can enjoy fireside s’mores and hot cocoa.

If cross-country skiing is your activity of choice, the Nordic Center offers nearly 22 miles of scenic trails for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and fat biking.

Where to stay at Northstar

The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe, California, USA

Best for: Families who want a ski-out location and luxury mountain amenities nestled directly on Northstar.

Why stay here: The national park lodge-inspired Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe is located mid-mountain on Northstar, making it a true ski-out resort on an easy run.

Best way to book: Book the Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, through Marriott to use your Bonvoy points, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection.

Book now

Winter rates start at $800 or 88,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

Hyatt Residence Club Northstar Lodge

Truckee, California, USA

Best for: A family vacation where you want the amenities of a home with a Northstar resort mountain address.

Why stay here: With ski-out units ranging from studios to five bedrooms with full kitchens and private balconies, Hyatt Residence Club Northstar Lodge is made for family ski getaways where you want the best of convenience and comfort.

Best way to book: Book directly with Hyatt using your World of Hyatt points or to earn and use elite benefits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $400 or 21,000 World of Hyatt points per night.

Hampton Inn & Suites Tahoe-Truckee

HAMPTON INN SUITES TAHOE TRUCKEE/HILTON.COM

Truckee, California, USA

Best for: A budget-friendly stay that’s still near Northstar.

Why stay here: Hampton Inn & Suites Tahoe-Truckee is not a ski-out hotel, but it’s also not a budget-buster. With a near-town location, reasonable rates and free breakfast and Wi-Fi for all, the family bank account can breathe a little easier when staying here.

Best way to book: Book directly with Hilton.

Book now

Winter rates start at $200 or 52,000 Hilton Honors points per night.

Smugglers’ Notch Resort, Vermont

Why Smugglers’ Notch is a good ski resort for families

An uber kid-friendly ski resort, Smugglers’ Notch focuses on the entire family experience, which is why it’s known as “America’s Family Resort.”

Smuggs, as it’s called by those who know and love it, offers an award-winning Snow Sport University that starts lessons with little ones as young as 3 years old. Sir Henry’s Learning and Fun Park has two “magic carpet rides” that gently guide new skiers to the top. Families return year after year and request the same instructors.

SMUGGLERS’ NOTCH

For those who already know how to ski and board, the mountain has everything they could want: 78 trails, eight lifts, the highest vertical drop in northern Vermont at 2,610 feet and more than 300 inches of natural snow each year. Not to mention, multiple terrain parks and 1,000 acres for skiing and riding are available. For those staying at the resort, everything is a few steps away, and an on-demand shuttle will take you wherever you need to go.

Not a skier or snowboarder? No problem. Smuggs offers many non-skiing activities, including snowshoeing, tubing, cross-country skiing, swimming and ice skating. You can also experience the updated Fun Zone 2.0, which features a Ninja Warrior course, laser tag, miniature golf, an arcade, large inflatable slides and more spread across 26,000 square feet of indoor space.

The day doesn’t end at Smuggs when the sun goes down. There are fun family activities every night, including bingo, “Hungry, Hungry Humans,” family gaga ball and a Winter Carnival with fireworks each Thursday.

Additionally, you’ll find night skiing, glow tubing and evening lessons for learning snowboarding and jibbing (freestyle snowboard tricks). Last season, Smuggs also introduced “Snowshoeing and S’mores,” where you can snowshoe on a lantern-lit trail to a bonfire and make s’mores before heading back — the ultimate way to end a winter day.

Where to stay at Smugglers’ Notch

Smugglers’ Notch Vermont

Jeffersonville, Vermont, USA

SMUGGLERS’ NOTCH RESORT/FACEBOOK

Best for: Being close to the mountain while having space for the whole family.

Why stay here: With condos in five neighborhoods ranging from studios to five bedrooms, it’s easy to be within walking distance or an on-demand shuttle ride from Smuggs.

Best way to book: Book directly with Smugglers’ Notch.

Book now

Winter rates start at $270 per night.

Stowe, Vermont

Why Stowe is a good ski resort for families

Stowe has a world-class ski school and plenty of long, beautiful blue trails to keep your not-yet-expert skiers and snowboarders engaged. The newly created Adventure Zone was a hit last year and will continue to be improved and expanded. These low-angle, gladed areas are appropriate for anyone in the family looking for a fun experience skiing or boarding through the trees on Mount Mansfield.

Families will also benefit from a huge lift upgrade this winter with a new high-speed, detachable six-pack. This will give skiers and riders more direct mountain access from the Mansfield Base and should reduce lift lines.

STOWE MOUNTAIN RESORT

After a great family day on the slopes, take in a free, pre-dinner skate at the Spruce Peak outdoor ice rink or embark on a guided twilight snowshoe tour through the woods. The resort’s Adventure Center will also be open to the public this winter, with its Stowe Rocks climbing gym available.

If you want to skip the “are we there yet?” choruses in the car, hop on a Tradewind Aviation flight from Westchester County Airport (HPN) outside New York City directly to Stowe Morrisville State Airport (MVL). Flights are limited to just Fridays and Sundays from January through March; while the cost might burn a hole in your wallet, you can purchase a ticket book to reduce the cost slightly. On the plus side, there is no extra charge for your ski gear.

The main issue with Stowe Mountain is its ticket prices compared to many other East Coast resorts. Luckily, the Epic Ski Pass can potentially save your family over the walk-up lift ticket rates. You could even look at Epic’s Northeast Value Pass if you expect to only ski at East Coast mountains this winter.

Where to stay at Stowe

The Lodge at Spruce Peak

Stowe, Vermont, USA

THE LODGE AT SPRUCE PEAK/HYATT

Best for: When your family wants a ski-out Stowe vacation.

Why stay here: As the only luxury ski-out resort at Stowe, this 250-room resort (now part of the Hyatt family) has rooms ranging from studios to multibedroom units.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, directly with Hyatt to use your World of Hyatt points, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection if you have an American Express Platinum Card.

Book now

Winter rates start at $300 or 30,000 World of Hyatt points per night.

Trapp Family Lodge

Stowe, Vermont, USA

TRAPP FAMILY LODGE/FACEBOOK

Best for: An Austrian-inspired getaway in Vermont.

Why stay here: The Trapp Family Lodge sits on 2,500 acres and features stunning Austrian-inspired architecture, plus the largest cross-country skiing network in all of Vermont.

Best way to book: Book directly with the Trapp Family Lodge.

Book now

Winter rates start at $235 per night.

Related: Vail of the east: Everything you need to know about skiing at Stowe Mountain

Jay Peak, Vermont

Why Jay Peak is a good ski resort for families

People love Jay Peak thanks to its indoor water park, which is ideal for families who want to take a day off from skiing or have something to do after morning ski school. The Jay Peak Pump House features slides, a FlowRider surf simulator and an entire kids play area. There are many lodging packages that include water park access, or you can purchase a day pass (purchasing in advance is recommended).

Jay Peak, Vermont. JAY PEAK RESORT

Aside from the water park, there are two arcades, a climbing gym, an ice skating rink, an indoor ropes course and a slopeside movie theater. Not all activities are offered every day, so double-check ahead of time and make advance bookings where available.

Best of all, there’s a surplus of ski-in, ski-out condo and hotel options, giving families the perfect opportunity to stay in accommodations that work best for their needs. For those with little ones — or even big ones — Jay Peak offers child care for children as young as 6 weeks old both during the day and in the evenings.

Where to stay at Jay Peak

Jay Peak Resort

Jay Peak, Vermont, USA

JAY PEAK RESORT/FACEBOOK

Best for: Easy access not only to the lifts, but all of the non-ski activities right near the mountain.

Why stay here: Jay Peak Resort has three hotel options along with various condos and single-family homes.

Best way to book: Book directly with Jay Peak Resort.

Book now

Winter rates start at $450 per night for a package that includes lift tickets.

TPG tip: You can also check to see if you like any on-mountain condo options using your Wyndham points through Vacasa.

Bretton Woods, New Hampshire

Why Bretton Woods is a good ski resort for families

Just across the Vermont border is New Hampshire’s answer to family-oriented skiing: Bretton Woods.

BRETTON WOODS

Home to the family-friendly Omni Mount Washington Resort, Bretton Woods features fat-tire snow biking trails, a 62-mile trail network for cross-country skiing, sleigh rides, snow tubing, canopy tours and an indoor-outdoor heated swimming pool (just for guests). The newly debuted Rosewood Lodge at the top of the mountain also gives skiers and riders that top-of-the-mountain lodge and luxury dining experience, which you won’t find at many other nearby mountains.

However, ski lessons will be slightly different than before the pandemic. The good news is that private lessons are more affordable than at some mountains, starting at just $199 for one person. However, that’s just a 90-minute lesson, so plan accordingly if you’re hoping to spend the day skiing while the kids learn from the best. Children’s group lessons for those between 4 and 10 are back this year but only on Fridays and Saturdays. They last two hours and start at 10 a.m. or 1 p.m.

From the hotel’s architecture to the incredible views of the top of Mount Washington, it’s no surprise that the resort is a top destination for families. With many fun activities for the entire family and more than 468 acres to ski, there should be no shortage of on-mountain family fun.

Where to stay at Bretton Woods

Omni Mount Washington Resort

Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, USA

Best for: A resort stay that conjures up a taste of history (and the memory of multiple presidents who have walked the halls) while also offering the updated amenities of today.

Why stay here: Less than a mile from the Bretton Woods slopes, Omni Mount Washington has a free shuttle that’ll get you there, plus a new Presidential Wing with guest rooms and suites to go along with the property’s more than 100-year-old history.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $400 per night.

Mont-Tremblant Ski Resort, Quebec

Why Mont-Tremblant is a good ski resort for families

In case you haven’t found the perfect family ski resort for you this far into the list, we are cheating a little and including two near-to-the-U.S. family ski resort options in Canada.

At Mont-Tremblant, your family can get the feeling of skiing internationally without crossing the pond at this French-influenced getaway just a couple of hours outside Montreal. Featuring 102 slopes and usually great snow conditions, Mont-Tremblant is one of the best ski experiences in North America, with the highest peak in the Laurentians region.

While older family members explore the high peaks of Mont-Tremblant, kids ages 1 to 6 years old can play in the Mother Nature Camp, which offers a full day of activities. There are also learn-to-ski programs for kids 3 and up.

Mont Tremblant Resort in Quebec, Canada.  PGIAM/GETTY IMAGES

Guests can explore a unique European-style pedestrian village directly at the base of the mountain. The pedestrian village allows easy access from the front step of your hotel door to the bottom of the slopes. With its colorful buildings — including more than 75 shops, restaurants, bars and boutiques — there is plenty to do in any weather.

On a non-skiing day, grab the kids and hit the snow-covered trails ripe for fat biking, dune buggy rides, snowshoeing, ice fishing, sleigh rides and even ice climbing. Families will not want to miss the Brind’O Aquaclub water park, which offers four slides, indoor and outdoor hot tubs, 35 interactive water games and a revamped fitness room. There are also laser tag and a virtual reality arcade.

A few ski-free opportunities are available, too. You can get two complimentary weekday lift tickets when you fly into Mont-Tremblant International Airport (YTM) on a Sunday or Monday and fly out on a Thursday or Friday.

Where to stay at Mont-Tremblant

Fairmont Tremblant

Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

FAIRMONT TREMBLANT/FACEBOOK

Best for: A classic luxury resort ski-out vacation in Mont-Tremblant.

Why stay here: A full-service hotel in Tremblant, the Fairmont Tremblant offers all the hallmarks of an upscale ski resort, with heated pools, a prime ski-out location, ski valet services, a spa, a game room, gourmet on-site dining, après-ski options and even a daily family bonfire for marshmallow roasting with the kids around the igloo village.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection if you have an American Express Platinum Card.

Book now

Winter rates start at $335 per night.

Le Westin Tremblant

Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

LE WESTIN RESORT AND SPA TREMBLANT/MARRIOTT.COM

Best for: Being in the middle of the village with shops and dining at your fingertips while still just a brief walk from the lifts of Mont-Tremblant.

Why stay here: Le Westin Tremblant is in the heart of the Tremblant pedestrian village, making it a great spot for when you want to do a little more than just ski on your vacation.

Best way to book: Book Le Westin Tremblant via Marriott using your Marriott Bonvoy points or cash.

Book now

Winter rates start at $246 or 53,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

Homewood Suites by Hilton Mont-Tremblant Resort

Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

Best for: A budget-friendly trip still within walking distance of the Tremblant lifts.

Why stay here: Homewood Suites by Hilton Mont-Tremblant is within walking distance to the Express Flying Mile ski lift and Casino Express Gondola. While it doesn’t have as many on-site amenities as a full-service hotel, it will keep more money in your pocket thanks to lower nightly rates and free hot breakfast daily.

Best way to book: Book directly with Hilton.

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Winter rates start at $174 or 56,000 Hilton Honors points per night.

Related: Want to ski for less? Head to Canada

Whistler Blackcomb, British Columbia

Why Whistler is a good ski resort for families

British Columbia’s Whistler is another Canadian winter ski hot spot with a family-friendly focus. Your kids will love the pint-size ski experience at the resort’s Enchanted Woods, which is usually clear of more experienced and faster skiers. Or, embark on the thrilling bubly Tube Park.

Whistler Creekside Village. VISUALCOMMUNICATIONS/GETTY IMAGES

In addition to the return of the Magic Castle and Tree Fort outdoor playlands at both Whistler and its sister mountain, Blackcomb, families will be entertained with the mountain’s free Fire and Ice performances every Sunday night (a display of ski and snowboard skills). Families can also exchange their ski boots for ice skates and skate for free in Whistler Village, which is chock-full of shops, restaurants and things to do in the after-ski hours.

Where to stay at Whistler

Four Seasons Resort Whistler

Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

FOUR SEASONS WHISTLER/FACEBOOK

Best for: Near-mountain luxury close to the base of Blackcomb.

Why stay here: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection if you have an American Express Platinum Card.

Best way to book: While not exactly ski-out, the Four Seasons Whistler is nestled at the base of Blackcomb in the Upper Village. Whether you walk or take the complimentary shuttle, the ski concierge can handle shuttling your equipment back and forth.

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Winter rates start at $633 per night.

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

FAIRMONT CHATEAU WHISTLER/FACEBOOK

Best for: A secluded (but still close-to-it-all) modern ski-lodge-inspired mountain vacation.

Why stay here: Sometimes luxury ski hotels rest on their location laurels and don’t always have the most modern of looks or approaches to lodging. However, the Fairmont Chateau Whistler has 11 alpine suites that are just a few years old and are well worth booking.

Best way to book: Book through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection if you have an American Express Platinum Card.

Book now

Winter rates start at $521 per night.

The Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler

Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

THE WESTIN RESORT & SPA WHISTLER/MARRIOTT.COM

Best for: Family ski trips to Whistler where you want a little bit of everything without emptying the college fund.

Why stay here: Located right at the base of Whistler just a few steps from ski school and Whistler Village, The Westin Whistler Resort & Spa is a great example of balance. While there is an on-site spa, restaurants and a heated indoor-outdoor pool, the rooms also have kitchenettes so you can manage some simple meals and snacks on your own to keep costs down.

Best way to book: Book the Westin Resort & Spa Whistler through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits, using your Marriott Bonvoy points, or via the American Express Fine Hotels + Resort Collection.

Book now

Winter rates start at $335 or 57,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

Hilton Whistler Resort & Spa

Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

HILTON WHISTLER RESORT SPA/BRAD KASSELMAN/FACEBOOK

Best for: A near-mountain family vacation.

Why stay here: Just five minutes from the lifts of Whistler, the Hilton Whistler Resort & Spa has all the basics of a family mountain vacation: ski valet, heated outdoor pool, on-site spa and on-property dining.

Best way to book: Book through Hilton Honors to use your Hilton points and certificates or through our partner Skylark to enjoy elite-like benefits and on-property credits.

Book now

Winter rates start at $335 or 80,000 Hilton Honors points per night.

Bottom line

Though you may have to shell out a little more for a vacation on the slopes, planning a family ski trip is more than worth the effort (and added expense). Whether you’re dreaming of a powder-filled getaway out west or a winter sports adventure up north, there’s a destination (and slope-adjacent resort) made for you and your crew.

Ready to plan a family ski trip? Check out the following stories for more tips on how to book your ski trip with points and miles and make the most of your family ski vacation: