A Weekend in the Alps

One of the best parts of this lifestyle – and a major benefit of being in Europe – is being able to travel frequently, easily, and relatively inexpensively to the continent. We’ve really been trying to take advantage and go to places that are a bit off the beaten path (for us at least).

Last month, we got a chance to go to the French Alps for a long weekend. We met up with two friends and rented a tiny little apartment in the town of Briançon, through Airbnb. We flew into Switzerland for about $200 roundtrip, and then rented a car to do the approximately 3 hour drive to the town. The town itself was pretty adorable (and is a Unesco World Heritage site), and completely fit my stereotype of what a European ski town would look like.

View near our apartment
Mopeds and snow-filled streets

We got to ski at some slopes that were about 5 minutes from where we staying. M skied for the first time, and did pretty darn well. I’ve been a few times, but have since lost a lot of my childhood fearlessness, so I took it easy on the green slopes. There were some amazing views, even from those easy slopes.

Green and black in the same direction?!
Open trail
Mulled wine at the bottom of the slopes

One of the best parts of the trip was our stop at the thermal baths in town – the Monêtier les Bains. A complete must-do if you’re staying anywhere near the town, especially in the winter, because there is an outdoor portion of the baths that is open year round. We were lucky enough to be at the baths while it was snowing (and man, did it snow.).

Yup, we’re in the Alps.

It was a pretty wild experience to be outdoors, in your bathing suit, snow pouring down, and to still feel completely warm. Here’s a photo of the outdoor portion of the baths:

Photo credit: ZoOm, Stéphane Candé, Marie durand

Pretty cool stuff.

The center of town was the most historical section, and is a walled off, former fortress. Cute shops, and great photo ops.

Unsurprisingly, we didn’t want to leave when it came time. It was definitely a nice escape from the hustle and bustle of city life!


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