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6 Best Ski Resorts Australia | Find out where to go in the 2017 snow season

Do the snow like a pro this year with our ultimate guide to the best ski resorts Australia.

You’d be forgiven for not having Australia as number one on your list of places to ski; the lift passes can be pricey and the weather conditions are unpredictable at best. But let’s face it, a six hour drive is always going to be a more affordable, and convenient, option than a 24 hour flight to Canada. Plus, who doesn’t love a road trip, right?

So for those of you keen to embrace the cooler weather, dust off your ski boots, load up the car and take advantage of the ski resorts right on your doorstep!

Looks for a last-minute deal to the snow? Click here for the best offers available now.

Best ski resorts in Australia

ResortNumber of runsSkiable terrain
Thredbo (NSW)92 (16% beginner, 67% intermediate, 17% advanced)480 hectares
Perisher (NSW)133 (22% beginner, 60% intermediate, 18% advanced)1,245 hectares
Charlotte Pass (NSW)24 (33% beginner, 33% intermediate, 33% advanced)50 hectares
Mt. Buller (VIC)41 (25% beginner, 45% intermediate, 30% advanced)300 hectares
Mt. Hotham (VIC)66 (20% beginner, 40% intermediate, 40% advanced)320 hectares)
Falls Creek (VIC)92 (17% beginner, 60% intermediate, 23% advanced)450 hectares

Map of ski resorts Australia locations


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Thredbo

Despite being home to the longest ski run in Australia, Thredbo’s main claim to fame is its off-piste action.

If you’re more concerned around warm fires and schnapps than snow conditions, then this is the ski resort for you. With 11 ski-in ski-out restaurants on the mountain and plenty of shops, cafes and bars in the village, Thredbo has you covered.

  • Location: Kosciusko National Park, New South Wales (6.5-hour drive from Sydney)
  • Runs and terrain: 92 runs (16% beginner, 67% intermediate, 17% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 480 acres
  • Vertical drop: 672 metres

Learn more about Thredbo


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Perisher

Made up of four different resorts (Perisher Valley, Blue Cow, Smiggin Holes and Guthega) there is more than enough terrain to keep everyone busy at Australia's largest ski resort.

Perisher doesn’t have the same village atmosphere as its neighbour Thredbo, but rather caters more for families with its self-sufficient lodges that contain their own restaurants and bars.

  • Location: Kosciusko National Park, New South Wales (6.5-hour drive from Sydney)
  • Runs and terrain: 133 runs (22% beginner, 60% intermediate, 18% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 1,245 acres
  • Vertical: 355 metres

Learn more about Perisher (Jindabyne)


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Charlotte Pass

This isolated resort is only accessible via ski cat from Perisher and has more reliable snow conditions than other resorts due to its altitude (it's the highest resort in Australia).

It is also entirely ski-in ski-out, allowing you to avoid the awkward routine of lugging your equipment to and from the mountain each day.

  • Location: Kosciusko National Park, New South Wales (6.5-hour drive from Sydney)
  • Runs and terrain: 24 runs (33% beginner, 29% intermediate, 38% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 50 acres
  • Vertical: 209 metres

Learn more about Charlotte Pass (Jindabyne)


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Mt Buller

The convenient three-hour drive makes Mt. Buller a particular favourite for Melbournites, and so the resort gets very busy on weekends.

For those of you don't mind crowds, this resort can be well worth the effort. Not only is it conveniently located, but the high-tech lift facilities make moving around the mountain extremely easy.

  • Location: Alpine National Park, Victoria (3-hour drive from Melbourne)
  • Runs and terrain: 41 runs (20% beginner, 45% intermediate, 35% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 300 acres
  • Vertical: 400 metres

Learn more about Mt Buller


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Mt Hotham

If you’re looking for a more thigh-challenging ski holiday, then Mt. Hotham could be the place for you. It's is a purpose-built ski resort renowned for its steep verticals and challenging terrain.

The village is unique as it’s located on top of the mountain, instead of at the bottom like traditional resorts. This not only means that you ski down for the first lifts of the day, but you’re also staying up in the clouds.

  • Location: Australian Alps National Park, Victoria (4.5-hour drive from Melbourne)
  • Runs and terrain: 66 runs (20% beginner, 40% intermediate, 40% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 320 acres
  • Vertical: 395 metres

Learn more about Mt Hotham


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Falls Creek

Falls Creek definitely takes first prize for having the prettiest alpine village. This resort has a small village that's full of restaurants, cafes and bars. Like Charlotte Pass, Falls Creek is a good one for beginners.

Unlike other mountains, here beginners are not relegated to the lower slopes. More than 80% of the mountain is dedicated to beginner and intermediate skiers so there is plenty to ski for all.

  • Location: Alpine National Park, Victoria (5-hour drive from Melbourne)
  • Runs and terrain: 92 runs (27% beginner, 60% intermediate, 23% advanced)
  • Skiable terrain: 450 acres
  • Vertical: 380 metres

Learn more about Falls Creek

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Winter Travel Insurance Guide

Whether you’re a rookie or a seasoned professional, snow trips always come with an increased risk of injury. But injury is not the only unexpected financial cost you can experience. Bad weather and ski lift closures can leave you with unused ski passes, and costly equipment can easily get lost or damaged. The risks involved in ski holidays are unique, so it makes sense to acquire snow specific travel insurance. This guide will outline the benefits of winter travel insurance and what to look out for when comparing policy options.

Key winter specific insurance features

Emergency transport to hospital

In the event of a serious accident on the ski fields, snow travel insurance cover can ensure that you are covered for emergency evacuation to the hospital and even for helicopter rescue if this is required.

Extreme weather conditions

In the event that you forced to cancel your trip due to extreme weather such as blizzards and snowstorms, your snow travel insurance cover will enable you to recoup prepaid costs and expenses.

Cover for equipment hire

Ski equipment is and always has been expensive, especially within Australia. Winter sports travel insurance will ensure that in the event of loss or damage to you ski or snowboard equipment, you will be able to make a claim to cover the costs. This cover can apply for your own equipment and hire equipment, with some policies providing an additional benefit to cover the costs of hiring new equipment. In the event that your transport carrier has misdirected or delayed your equipment for a period longer than 24 hours, the insurer will cover the costs of you hiring new equipment.

Weather related issues

Some people spend a long time looking forward to their trip, travelling to their destination, getting the equipment they need and then finding that once they get there the weather is too bad to hit the slopes. Many snow travel insurance plans will cover you for transport and accommodation expenses if you are forced to travel to a new resort.

Unused ski passes or lessons

Depending on which cover you take out, you may also be covered for unused ski passes, equipment hire and lessons in the event that you are unwell or as a result of loss or theft.

Heli-skiing

Many providers will allow you to take out additional cover for single-trip heli-skiing trips for an additional premium loading. This cover can be purchased after starting your trip, provided it is taken out at least 24 hours prior to beginning your heli-ski trip. It is worth noting that most insurers will not provide cover for any event that has occurred while travelling in a helicopter or disembarking a helicopter. It is worth noting that the inclusion of this option on your policy will generally require an additional excess to be paid in the event of a claim.

Piste closure

Some providers will cover the cost of transport to a new resort and the provision of additional ski passes in the event that you are forced to move to a new resort due to lift systems being closed on account of;

  • Not enough snow
  • Bad weather
  • Power failure at your pre-booked resort

Compare winter travel insurance policies from Australian providers

Brands Product Product Details Apply
InsureandGo Winter Sports Cover

Overseas emergency medical assistance

14 winter sports activities covered

$600 cover for prepaid ski hire, ski passes and ski equipment

24hr emergency assistance

$1250 cover for damage to winter sports equipment

Get quoteMore info
Travel Insurance Direct Winter Sports Travel Insurance

Emergency evacuation from ski fields

Cover for prepaid ski hire ski pass and ski equipment

Cover for ski equipment hire

Piste closure

Get quoteMore info
1Cover Ski Travel Insurance

Emergency evacuation from ski fields

Cover for prepaid ski hire ski pass and ski equipment

Bad weather and avalanche closure

Cover for ski equipment hire

Get quoteMore info
Skiinsurance.com.au Professional Ski Insurance

Provides cover for professional skiers taking part in competition

Unlimited overseas emergency medical assistance

$5,000 luggage and personal effects

$5,000 rental vehicle excess

Get quoteMore info
Columbus Direct Winter Sports Cover

$500 piste closure

$750 delay due to weather conditions

$500-750 cover for ski equipment (hired or owned)

$500 for pre-paid ski pass, equipment and tuition fees

Get quoteMore info
AMEX Travel Insurance Snow Cover

Available as an add-on

$1,500 own winter sport equipment winter sport

$1,500 equipment hire unused winter sports costs

$1,000 piste closure

$750 weather and avalanche closure

Get quoteMore info
CoverMore Optional winter sports cover

Emergency evacuation from ski fields

Bad weather and avalanche closure

Cover for prepaid ski hire ski pass and ski equipment

Get quoteMore info
Fast Cover Snow Sports Plus

Overseas emergency medical assistance

Own or hired snow sport equipment

Piste closure

Get quoteMore info
Go Insurance Go Snow Cover

Snow sports equipment

Lift pass

Ski lessons

Piste closure

Avalanche cover

Get quoteMore info

Deals for warm snow gear and ski/snowboard equipment

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