THERE are quite a few resorts in the Alps that are car-free, or - which is not quite the same thing - traffic-free. In fact these terms can mean any one of a number of things: maybe cars are confined to a compound miles away and you and your bags are ferried by horse and cart or electric taxi, or even electric bus; maybe cars are allowed in at weekends but must then be left immobile; maybe locals are allowed to take their cars in while you and I must take the train. What it means in Valmorel, France is that the heart of the resort consists of a piste descending to a genuinely pedestrian main street, but that cars can get to the accommodation that lines the piste. Ideal.

PLUS POINTS Ski-in, ski- out accommodation; jolly Tyrolean-style pedestrian centre; good nursery slopes; good ski kindergarten.

MINUS POINTS Nothing to do but ski; mountain restaurants few and dreary; limited nightlife. Some blue pistes rather tricky.

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