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Skiing the Ardennes

It may not be the Alps, and it sure ain't the Rockies, but Belgium's Ardennes region can be something of a skier's paradise -- so long as the snow shows up. Therein lies the problem. In the low Ardennes hills -- the highest point is a mere 694m (2,256 ft.) above sea level -- snow's appearance is often brief and unpredictable. Some years it stays away altogether. Still, when the thermometer starts dropping, ski aficionados in Belgium take serious notice. Skiing is particularly popular on weekends.

Although there are some downhill slopes, cross-country is more usual. Traversing the gentle wooded hills or the high plateau of the Hautes Fagnes Nature Reserve can be a memorable experience. The main ski zones lie in the north of the Ardennes, around Botrange, Robertville, BĆ¼tgenbach, Spa, Stavelot, Vielsalm, La Roche-en-Ardenne, and Bastogne. Parts of Luxembourg and the Germany's neighboring Eifel district offer good facilities.

Detailed information is available from local tourist information offices for these places.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.