The 5 best après ski bars in the Alps |

Austria reigns supreme for post-ski action, but there are locations in France who are now serious pretenders to the Austrian après ski crown.

The Rond Point, Méribel, France

Ski-in / ski-out, the ‘Ronnie’ features on the trail home of all self-respecting après skiers in Les 3 Vallées. The outdoor terrace hosts live music throughout the winter and the place can be packed with revellers after the lifts close. Simple furnishings and a basic concept – alfresco boozing with views across the Méribel valley, the formula is clean and successful. Located directly on the route between La Folie Douce, Méribel and the resort centre, the Ronnie emits a tractor beam that few can evade. After the glitz and glamour of the shows at La Folie Douce, the jugs of beer and live bands of the Ronnie makes for a great contrast.

Goaßstall, Hinterglemm, Austria

Après ski is etched into the Austrian psyche. When the lifts stop running, there is nothing more logical than to put your elbows on a table and hoist a schnapps. Austrians also have a quirky, eccentric edge and rather than glamorous A-listers, guests to the Goaßstall share their space with a herd of alpine goats, busily munching away on hay, as the après ski mayhem ensues. As well as quirky, the Austrians are also massively proud of their technical achievements. To this end, the Goaßstall offers a card activated, automated re-fill service that boasts an impressive 4 second beer fill.

La Folie Douce, Val Thorens, France

The highest ski resort in the Alps, also offers one of the best après ski scenes, with an international audience flocking to the terraces of La Folie Douce, above Val Thorens. With pomp and glitz, La Folie Douce is about celebrating the beautiful things in life, with live music, DJ sets and elaborate dance performances. Après ski is all about rounding off an epic day in the mountains and La Folie Douce, Val Thorens offers sumptuous surroundings and a high-end après ski experience. Runs back to Val Thorens can resemble a battle-field, but most return to Val Thorens unscathed and satisfied. 

Mooserwirt, St Anton, Austria

Reputed to have the highest beer consumption of any bar in Austria, the Mooserwirt is an après ski experience like few others. Located directly on the ski piste back to St Anton, the trail narrows, with exiting skiers creating a bottle-neck that is impossible to avoid. Very few, pass by without stopping and once in, it is only the curfew at closing time that brings the après ski action to a close. An outside terrace as well as a cavernous interior hall delivers drink and music to the masses. The resort run is short but Armageddon-like after closing time.

Kuhstall, Ischgl, Austria

No frills, wall to wall boozing, the Kuhstall, Ischgl is at capacity from December to May. There is a wall of atmosphere on entry, with trays of beer passing overheads, ear-busting euro-pop and waltzing skiers pin-balling around the dance floor. Ischgl après ski has yet to be matched anywhere, and for cheesy music and tasered-like dance moves, the Kuhstall is one of the best places to witness this alpine subculture.

Updated March 2023 - Après ski contenders – making up the top 10

The best of the rest and some would argue the best of the best, there are a number of pumping après ski bars that didn’t make our top 5 – it’s a brutal business! The truth is, after a day on the slopes, most lively bars in the Alps feel like heaven. So here are another 5 that many would feel deserve a place at the top of the pile.

Chambre Neuf

As close as you will get to the crowds of Austria in France, the Chambre Neuf is a Swedish driven après ski bar in what was once the (sole0 heart of Chamonix après ski. Murmurings begin mid-afternoon until the place explodes in early evening with DJ’s, live bands and unfathomable quantities of punters partying inside. Chambre Neuf is as good as it gets in Chamonix.

Scotland Yard

Scotties has decimated the early morning lifts queues for decades. This is one of the longest serving institutions of intemperance in the Alps and takes the early evening après skiers on a journey, long into the night. A no nonsense bar that is a must-visit venue for anyone visiting Mayrhofen.

The Londoner

Staying in London (although moving east from Mayrhofen to Kitzbühel), the Londoner is an icon of après ski, an absolute legend of après ski mayhem. From mid-afternoon, the centrally located bar is packed with revellers, drinking and dancing to the live bands. For those who have overstayed their hotel dinner, McDonalds thoughtfully located just across the road to cap off an evening of culture with some fine dining.

La Gondla

St Moritz is not the place people flock to for traditional après ski. Fine wines and sheepskin rugs are the order of the day in this elite resort, yet in the heart of the town there is the repurposed cable car, La Gondla. Its sliding doors devour those within reach, drawing them inside for an experience far removed from the pomp of St Moritz. Expect to meet your ski guide enjoying some after-hours lessons.

Le Petit Danois

Not content to colonise the après ski scene in Chamonix, the Swedes have also turned their attention to Val d’Isère and Le Petit Danois. Located in the heart of Val d’Isère and claiming to offer the best burgers in town, it’s fair to say that very few cross their door for solids. Live music, a terrace for moments of rehab, and an international clientele – all the ingredients for the perfect après ski venue.

It goes without saying, the best après ski bar is often the one you are stood in. Sölden, Val d’Isère, Mayrhofen, Morzine, Kitzbühel – none got a coveted top 5 nomination from us, such is the competition for après ski awards in the Alps. Make your own après ski with friends and colleagues in the mountains, it is a pretty simple formula (Ski Dubai excepted) – location, stories and beverages.

Corporate ski trips

If you are planning a corporate ski event and require a destination with solid après ski, then we at Jagged Horizons have some great options for you. With an office in Innsbruck, the capital of Tirol we know the après ski big-hitters like few others. Remember, company folklore is written in the après ski bars of the Alps.

People dancing under lights at the Chambre Neuf après ski bar in Chamonix.
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