An independent guide to Val Thorens
Poorly parked car in Val Thorens, photo by ValThorensGuide
If you're in Val Thorens for the week, you have to park your vehicle in a car park. The car parks in Val Thorens are run by ValthoParc. Many of the hotels and apartments have their own car parks, where guests can park, usually at an extra charge.
If you're just skiing for the day, you can park in the parking P4 below the resort for free.
Val Thorens is a semi-pedestrian resort. What does that mean? You may drive through resort, and stop to unload your luggage outside your hotel, apartment, or chalet, but then you have to park your vehicle in a parking - either your hotel's or résidence's car park, or one of the parkings run by Valthoparc.
If you leave your car parked in the street, it will eventually get towed away to the pound, and the fee for recovering it is very expensive. On Saturdays and Sundays, the Municipal Police put warning notices on cars, but they do not usually tow them away unless they are obstructing traffic (like the black Audi in the photo above - the bus couldn't get past). From Monday morning, any car parked on the street can be towed away.
Parking P0, Val Thorens
There are five ValthoParc parkings in Val Thorens: P0, P1, P2, P3, and P4. (Val Thorens won the prize for the most imaginatively-named parkings, at the World Ski Awards ;-)). P0, P1, and P2 are all in the resort itself - they're shown on this resort map. P3 is a below the resort, near the UCPA, and P4 is a little further down (see day parking below). All the parkings are shown on a map on ValthoParc's website.
It is slightly cheaper to book with ValthoParc in advance (and by booking, you ensure you get a space in the parking of your choice, which is important in busy holiday periods). For example, 5, 6, or 7 nights' indoor parking (2017-18 rates) cost €72.50 if booked a month or more ahead, €79 if booked a week or more ahead, and €80 if you pay in resort.
The outdoor parking is slightly cheaper; and it's more expensive to park a camping car.
If you're driving up to Val Thorens to go skiing for the day, it's best to park in parking P4, below the resort, because it's free for the day. You take a ticket, and as long as you leave before 8pm, there's nothing to pay; otherwise, there will be a charge.
P4 is near the Chalet de Caron mountain restaurant. If you need to buy a skipass, you can walk across the the footbridge to the Caron/Cairn lift station, and passes are on sale there.
Rather oddly, there's very little information about day parking at P4 on the official Val Thorens websites. I believe it's just an oversight, not a conspiracy!
Happy parking in Val Thorens.
Our guide to Val Thorens ski area includes the beginners' area, a sector-by-sector guide to the pistes and lifts, the Snowpark, Skicross, and Stade de Slalom, and the off piste itineraries. We also have a section dedicated to mountain restaurants in Val Thorens.
Read about the Val Thorens ski area.
Val Thorens is quite compact, and it's usually possible to walk anywhere you want to go. Sometimes, though, if you're carrying luggage or ski equipment, or if you're with small children, you may wish to make use of the resort shuttle. It runs from 8am to 8pm every day, in the winter season. Read about the Val Thorens resort shuttle bus.
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