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Debbie Gabriel

21 Jan 24

Skiing in Scotland

Debbie Gabriel

21 Jan 24

Close to home, but a world apart, one destination that British skiers have always had a great interest in skiing in is Scotland, but criminally, few of us have actually skied there ourselves.

While you definitely shouldn’t be expecting the 2000 metre peaks and dramatic mountainscapes of the Alps, skiing in Scotland has its own unique draw.

Scotland’s mountain centres boast a great range of skiing and snowboarding options, as well as great places to eat and stay locally, and a variety of off-slope activities, from mountain biking and hiking to sight-seeing and whisky tasting. All of this, amidst some of Europe’s most spectacular scenery, makes a winter trip in Scotland one to remember.

Scottish snow sports are amazing, and the 2024 season is a great chance to discover them. But don’t just visit this beautiful country once or only in 2024! We think every snow sports lover should experience Scotland. Be careful though – you’ll be hooked on winter in Scotland and want to return!


Great Value for Money

Forget expensive flight tickets and transfer costs, travel insurance and the hassle of foreign currency – skiing in Scotland is not only easy, but also provides great value for money for British skiers.

High Quality Ski Schools

In all major Scottish mountain centres you will find excellent snow sports instruction, with friendly instructors and no language barriers! As a result, Scotland is a fantastic place to learn to ski, no matter your age. If you’re in a group, the smaller ski areas of Scotland mean that you will always be close to your friends or family, so it’s incredibly easy to meet up at lunchtime or at the end of the day.

Fantastic, Friendly Local Accommodation

Depending on where you live, it is possible to do a day trip to a Scottish mountain centre. However, we’d definitely recommend making your Scottish winter getaway a little longer, whether it’s a short break or an extended holiday. Each mountain centre has a wide variety of friendly local accommodation in the vicinity, sure to provide a great base to explore all Scotland has to offer.

A Huge Amount to See and Do

Skiing in Scotland

Castle Fraser, Aberdeenshire

In Scotland, a winter holiday does not have to be solely focused on snow sports. Of course, you can spend every moment of every day on snow if you so desire, but a winter holiday here gives you the opportunity to explore beyond the ski slopes. From active adventures such as mountain biking, hiking and ice-climbing, to fantastic food and drink options (did someone say whisky distillery?!) and cultural sights aplenty, read on to find out more…

A Winter Break Not Just for 2024

Skiing in Scotland

Cloud inversion at Glencoe Mountain © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

As you can see, Scottish mountain centres are not going anywhere and their commitment to cementing Scotland’s position as a great winter destination goes way beyond this winter.

Scottish mountain centres are constantly investing in improving the snow sports experiences they offer, whether that’s this year, next year, or in ten years time.

From all-weather snow-making facilities – four of the centres have a TechnoAlpin Snow Factory and snow cannons – to lift infrastructure and facility improvements, there’s loads of development going on, making a trip to Scotland’s centres all the more compelling.


Cairngorm Mountain, Aviemore, Highlands

Skiing in Scotland

Cairngorm Mountain, near Aviemore © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

With unbeatable views across the Highlands, Cairngorm Mountain is one of Scotland’s most popular snow sports centres. The area offers over 30 runs, with options for all abilities, so it’s an ideal centre for families. There’s also on-site ski hire and superb ski schools available, providing a great opportunity for those looking to get started or improve their skills this winter.

The mountain is just a 20-minute bus ride from the bustling Highland town of Aviemore, where you’ll find loads of restaurants as well as a huge range of accommodation options.

Its proximity to Aviemore makes Cairngorm Mountain a great destination for those looking for a longer winter getaway, as there’s so much to see and do in the area. Take on the exhilarating nearby mountain biking trails, taste some whisky at Glenlivet Distillery or get up close and personal with the local wildlife at the Cairngorm Reindeer Centre or the Highland Wildlife Park.

Aviemore is easily accessed by rail, bus and road, making it a popular destination for those wanting the utmost convenience this winter. A regular bus service runs from Aviemore to the mountain centre if you’re looking to go car free. There’s also a large car park at the mountain itself, if you prefer to stay local and drive up each day – ideal for those wanting to stay in their ‘bubble’ as much as possible.

Glencoe Mountain, Glen Coe, Highlands

Skiing in Scotland

Glencoe Mountain © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

Established over 60 years ago, Glencoe Mountain is Scotland’s oldest snow sports centre, with a great snow record and 20 lovely runs.

Experienced skiers will enjoy some of Scotland’s most challenging terrain, including the UK’s steepest black run, the ‘Flypaper’, as well as some excellent off-piste options. Meanwhile beginner and intermediate skiers can take on numerous blue and red runs to test their skills.

Centre facilities include on-site micro-lodges sleeping up to 6, a small caravan park, equipment hire and a ski school. They’ve also just installed the new 3-person Rannoch Chairlift and a new café and reception area will open in 2022. A fantastic selection of accommodation options and restaurants can be found in the surrounding area.

Glencoe Mountain also offers a free sledging area (sledges provided!)

Glenshee Ski Centre, Aberdeenshire

Skiing in Scotland

Glenshee Ski Centre © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

Glenshee is sure to be a very popular choice for British skiers this winter. It is highly accessible by road, as the closest mountain centre to Edinburgh and is the UK’s largest snow sports centre. Thirty-six runs are set across four mountains and three valleys, served by 22 lifts that whisk skiers up as high as 3,500ft. A constantly improving ski centre, Glenshee offers a great selection of graded runs for all abilities, so it’s an ideal destination for mixed ability groups.

On the mountain, there are three cafés where you can pick up a mid-ski snack, as well as a fantastic ski school for those wanting a helping hand. There’s also talk of the UK’s longest ziplines being installed in Glenshee in coming months, providing even more entertainment!

Off the slopes, visitors here can enjoy the wonderful hospitality of the nearby towns of Braemar and Blairgowrie. Or visit the vibrant city of Dundee, the UK’s first UNESCO City of Design, where you’ll find the V&A and many other visitor attractions.

Nevis Range, by Fort William, Highlands

Skiing in Scotland

Experienced skiers in the Back Corries itineraries, Nevis Range © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

Over on the west coast of Scotland, in Lochaber – the Outdoor Capital of the UK, Nevis Range is one of the most reliable destinations for Scottish snow. It’s located high up on the slopes of the UK’s eighth highest mountain, Aonach Mor, so it’s unsurprising that the views from the slopes are utterly unparalleled.

Nevis Range features the UK’s only ski area gondola, taking you from the car park to the ski area, where you’ll find 11 lifts and 32 runs at your disposal. There’s plenty of space for younger skiers to develop their skills, while experienced skiers will be sure to enjoy the multiple off-piste itineraries available at Nevis Range.

A 70-metre travellator (a.k.a magic carpet lift) has just been installed in the beginners’ area, alongside a newly commissioned snow plant to ensure that beginners can enjoy a reliable, high quality, gentle slope to improve their skills.

Stay in the nearby town of Fort William, where you’ll find a lot of great restaurants and bars, as well as great value, cosy accommodation.

Lochaber is a spot sure to delight anyone who wants to spend their winter holiday exploring all that the Scottish mountains have to offer! Whether you prefer challenging hikes or gentle walks, marvelling at the local sights or learning about the area’s geology, there’s something for everyone!

The Lecht 2090, Moray Speyside

Skiing in Scotland

The Lecht 2090 © Ski-Scotland/Steven McKenna Photography

One of our favourite Scottish spots for families or beginner skiers, (though there’s plenty to keep more experienced skiers and boarders entertained), The Lecht is a great ski area that offers plenty of wide, easy, well-groomed ski runs. It’s the perfect spot for skiers starting out on their snow sports journeys, with a convenient day lodge at the bottom of the runs, which has everything you need for a day on the slopes, all under one roof. Facilities include equipment hire, a ski school with highly experienced tutors, a shop for those forgotten essentials, a self-service restaurant and a café bar for those mid ski hot chocolates.

It’s slightly more remote than some of the other mountain centres we’ve mentioned, but there are some great accommodation and eating out options in nearby Tomintoul (20 minutes drive), Kildrummy (20 minutes drive), Ballater (30 minutes drive) and Braemar (40 minutes drive).

The Lecht is set on one of the highest roads in the UK, so it’s pretty snowsure, but even so, they’ve been investing in impressive snowmaking facilities over the last few seasons to provide more consistent snow conditions.

Of course, Scotland also has a number of artificial slopes as well.

Mountain Information

Before visiting, remember to check centre operating hours, weather and travel reports and Ski-Scotland snow conditions reports before travelling. And always plan ahead and book lift passes and equipment hire in advance.

The easiest way to keep up to date with all that’s going on at Scotland’s mountain centres is to register for Ski-Scotland snow alert emails and to follow Ski-Scotland on Facebook

Further information about Scottish snowsports can be found at 

Your Guide to Indoor UK Skiing