About Family Activities in Morzine
Whatever you choose to do on your family holiday, you are sure to find a huge range of activities across Morzine. There is something for everyone, every ability and every age. Check out the selection of things to do below for some holiday inspiration!
Archery is one of those sports that people all ages love to try. There are a number of places near Morzine to practice archery and become the Robin Hood of the Alps, they will all provide you with bow and arrows.
You will find a multisports court at the Parc des Dérêches, near the tennis court, which offers free access every day. It has hoops and markings adapted to basketball. You can also contact them and book the ground.
Beach volleyball in the heart of the French Alps may sound strange but in Morzine you can hop on the sand and play a game of volleyball with your friends or family. Located in the Parc des Dereches, the beach volleyball court is situated by the outdoor swimming pool, open in July and August.
There is a small underground bowling alley and bar on the main street of Les Gets to keep you entertained on bad weather days, or if you're looking for something to do with a group or non-skiers.
Canoeing / Kayaking
Kayaking is a fun watersport that can be enjoyed as a team or on your own. Unlike canoeing, paddlers face forward and have a double bladed paddle. It is a versatile sport that you can enjoy on rivers, lakes and the sea. You can take your inflatable or plastic kayak and make your way down the water. Using the double-bladed paddle you can control the speed, direction and enjoy the experience and wonderful views in your own time.
During the summer months, you can hire a canoe, pedalo, kayak or stand-up paddleboard at Lac Montriond. You can easily spend the day there splashing in the rock pools, having a picnic and walking around the shores. It’s around 8€ to hire a boat for around 1-2 hours.
A not-so-gentle but extremely refreshing summer activity is one way to describe canyoning! Plunge yourself into the mountain streams via a series of abseil descents, jumps and natural water slides – just make sure you choose a warm day! You will make your way along rivers and rapids, using the river bed as a natural obstacle course. Not suitable for very young children, but anyone over the age of about 8 can take the (very cold) plunge and try canyoning. With the safety of a guide everyone can abseil down cascades, splash into pools and ride the river rapids. You can choose from short beginners’ routes, such as the one in Balme (Cluses) or longer ones for the more adventurous like the route down in Nyon (Morzine) which is not suitable for children under 12.
Depending on the age of your child there are a number of childcare options available in Morzine. There are also numerous babysitting and nursery facilities available in the area.
The main winter establishments are the ski schools which offer a combination of tuition and childcare for children 3 years and older. You can book your child in for full or half day programmes and lunch can also be provided for an extra charge. At the Parc des Dereches they organise a whole host of activities for children in the summer such as swimming, climbing, tennis, basketball, ice-skating, etc. and organised hikes and picnics.
Catch the latest films and releases in Morzine on your winter holiday. Cinema Rex is located in the centre of Morzine and shows films in the evening and, some days, also in the early afternoon. Look out for VO or VOST for English speaking films.
Morzine is great for cyclists as there are 15 mapped itineraries starting from here as well as 25 mountain passes within 50 km. This resort also boasts an international reputation thanks to it hosting 22 stages of the Tour de France. Although the routes are sometimes short they are often quite steep and in some cases, the longer rides are flatter and easier. To gain the most from your riding in the area you need to have a reasonable level of fitness. The most famous cycling route here is the ascent from Morzine to Avoriaz which is a short 14.5 kilometres with 850 metres of altitude gain and an average 6% ascent with peaks of 11%. Older kids can even try and measure themselves against Bernard Hinault's record, 33 minutes in 1979.
Also see: Cycling in Morzine
Diving & Snorkelling
At the Parc des Derèchês there is a scuba diving club where you can take diving lessons, from beginners courses in the swimming pool to more advanced levels in nearby lakes.
At Les Apprentis Fermier in Les Gets, your children will become the farmer's apprentice, helping feed the animals, make cheese and look after the pigs, cows and other farmyard animals. A great day out for the family where they will learn all about the animals and the way the farm works whilst having some petting and feeding time. The farm is open on Wednesdays in the summer from 10:00 to 12:00. To be able to participate children must be over the age of 3 and have some good closed shoes and that's it, your children can then be farmers for the day!
If you fancy a spot of fishing whilst in Morzine then there are a few local and nearby lakes where you can catch some fish and enjoy the alpine scenery: Lac Mines d’Or, Lac Montriond, Lac Plan du Rocher... You can also fish the River Dranse, which runs from Morzine to Evian, in which the much sought after Lake Geneva (Lac Leman) trout spawn their eggs. You must, however, ensure that you have the correct fishing permit and are aware of the local fishing regulations.
In Morzine, at the Dereches forest, you can try frisbee-golf. Using a frisbee, teams take part in a “round” by landing the flying disc in the nine goals that are set out along a pathway using as few throws as possible with the aim of completing 18 "holes". Anyone over 4 years old can participate, 2 frisbees are given to each person: a driver for long shots and a putter for short distances.
There are over 2.5 million people doing geocaching around the world and some of them (perhaps surprisingly) are right here in Morzine! It’s a relatively new craze that started taking the world by storm in May 2000 after a computer geek decided that GPS could be “really exciting”. He hid some treasure at his home in Portland, America, for people to find, broadcast the GPS coordinates and said, “Come and get it”. His only rule: “Take some stuff, leave some stuff”. And that’s exactly what Geocaching is…you go in search of treasure by using the GPS system on your mobile device – once you’ve found it, you write your name in a logbook and replace the treasure you decide to take. It’s pretty simple really and means, as a family, you can be adventurers together. You won’t usually find anything quite as precious as gold, silver and diamonds but nevertheless it’s quite exciting!
Horse-drawn sleigh rides
In Morzine, up to 6 people can have a ride in a horse-drawn carriage around the resort starting at 15€ and up to 90€. Starting at the Tourist Office, the ride takes you through the whole village, showing you the old town, the different hamlets around Morzine or even up to lake Montriond. It’s an afternoon activity, usually starting around midday. And it’s first come first served.
The Portes du Soleil offers a wide expanse of spectacular terrain on which you can saddle up and go exploring. There are a wide range of trails and routes waiting to be explored in Morzine and what better way to explore them than on horse back.
In the Parc des Dereches equestrian centre you can have lessons for all abilities in horse riding from beginner to advanced. They also offer camping tours and rides which will be supervised by a qualified instructor, and allow you to experience some of the spectacular mountain views including panoramic views over Mont Blanc. Open during the summer season you can explore the mountains and trails on horse back with family and friends as lessons and classes are accessible from age 3. A great and exciting activity to do with all the family and a fun way to explore the mountains and scenery.
Alternatively, up to 6 people can have a ride in a horse drawn carriage around Morzine from a price of 15€. Starting at the Tourist Office, the ride can take you through the whole village, showing you the old town, and taking you through some of the more hidden streets. It’s an afternoon activity, usually starting around midday. And it’s first come first served.
Be in charge of your own sled and team of excitable husky dogs, driving them along forest paths in winter. After a brief explanation of how to make your team stop and start, you set off following the guide’s team. If this all sounds a bit much you can opt for a less physical outing where you sit in the sled and the guide does all the hard work! It's a very popular winter activity, so booking at least 48 hours in advance is a must. They run from early December to the end of April (snow-permitting).
Hydrospeeding is one of the newer 'extreme' water sports to hit the market, it's a fun and exhilarating way to get yourselves down a river!. Using a large float, which bears resemblance to a bodyboard, be ready to cling on for dear life as you send yourself hurtling down the rapids! This activity is a little more demanding physically than rafting or canoe rafting, but allows you to discover the unique sensation of surfing down white water rivers. It is also accessible to all, no need to be a professionnal diver or swimmer, you just have to be smart at using the water movements, obstacles and waves. In Morzine, anyone over 7 years old can descend the Dranse river on a board wearing a thick neoprene and fins.
Ice-skating / Hockey
Go to the ice-skating rink in Morzine for fun loops with friends and family. With a refreshment bar, music and lighting you can enjoy the indoor ice skating rink at Parc des Dereches all year round. Open during the day and with night sessions from 09:00-23:00 on Tuesday and Thursday, although be warned these are sometimes postponed due to hockey matches or special events. In the winter you can scoot around on the outdoor ice skating rink situated in the tourist office square, with ice shows on Thursdays. Open every day from 10:30 to 12:30 and 15:00 to 19:00 throughout the winter season.
In Morzine, you can have dinner inside an igloo after a short 30-45 minutes walk. A guide will accompany you and you'll enjoy a delicious cheese fondue surrounded by ice before heading back down. Anyone over 8 years of age can take part.
Morzine and the wider Portes du Soleil area was the original, and still remains, the best mountain biking (MTB / VTT) area based in a winter ski resort. Its popularity has increased year on year, aided and abetted by the stunning alpine scenery and more than 80 kilometres of world-class enduro trails and 50 kilometres of downhill slopes. The variety of terrain ensures that everyone from beginners to expert and pro-level downhill and freeride riders, can get many days riding on trials suited to their preferences and ability level. Morzine's central position means you can freewheel down to the village from most of the Portes du Soleil ski lifts.
Also see: Mountain Biking in Morzine
Museums & Galleries
A visit to a museum is a great idea on a bad weather day or for those in the group who don't ski. In Les Gets, at the Mechanical Music Museum you'll learn about the history and development of this kind of music. The slate workshop and mines in Morzine can also be visited, local master Franck Buet will explain the origins of this 100-year-old trade in Morzine and how the stone is crafted.
Night skiing takes place on the Pleney piste in Morzine every Thursday weather permitting.
Orienteering involves going on foot through unfamiliar terrain and requires the honing of your navigational skills, with the use of maps and a compass to go from one place to another. The Alps offer a great playground where to practice it surrounded by stunning landscape, and it is also a great activity for children. There is an orienteering circuit at Parc des Dereches open year round to everyone, where you need to find all 20 tags within a set time. Maps are available at the Tourist Office as well.
The Wibit Waterpark in Les Gets is a large inflatable obstacle course open from June to the end of August 2017. With around 30 different modules to play on, including a human catapult, rock climbing, trampolines, a giant slide and monkey cage to name a few, it's a great plan for the whole family. You'll need to be 6 years and older and able to swim to have a go. Tickets can be bought on site and there are discounts with a summer multi-pass.
Challenge your friends and family to a game of paintball! This exciting activity offers fun for groups of all ages. In most cases, you're split into teams and a variety of scenarios and courses are offered at the beginning of all games, with each game lasting approximately 2 hours. The ultimate aim is to shoot your opponents with paint pellets and capture their flag before they get hold of yours. To practise it in Morzine, the minimum age is 14 years old and there is a minimum of 10 participants.
Morzine is a great place rock climbing for both beginners and experienced climbers. Experienced climbers can tackle the mountain side rock and enjoy the fantastic views (just make sure you have all the right gear and safety equipment). There are a number of adventure companies or mountain guides who can take you out on your first climb and show you the 'ropes'. Some of the most popular rock climbing areas include the Rocher de la Chaux, perfect for beginners near Saint Jean d'Aulps, the Falaise des Ardoisières near Morzine or the Terres Maudites, where the famous Morzinoise route is, which has long but moderately easy climbs.
Skiing & snowboarding
Morzine is ideal for absolute beginners and advancing beginners alike, with one green piste at the bottom of the Pleney another one at the top, and a children's zone where little ones can practise. When you're ready to progress there are even more pistes to try in the wider Portes du Soleil ski area which has a total of 34 green pistes and 119 blues to help build your confidence.
Ski passes are free for children under 5 years old and there are discounted prices for children 5-15 years (Child Pass), 16-19 years (Junior Pass) and for families.
Also see: Ski Areas in Morzine
Sledging / Tobogganing
This is one winter activity that doesn't require a lot of expensive equipment, just grab your sledge and head for the nearest snow-covered hill! You can pick up a sledge at one of the many ski hire shops or sports shops in Morzine. Several activity companies also offer you the chance to sledge at night, down the ski slopes of the Pleney.
Raquette à Neige or Snow-shoeing in and around Morzine is a perfect activity for bad weather conditions or for non-skiers. Either set out on your own or join a group led by a knowledgeable local guide and discover the hidden parts of the ski area. The trails will take you to places from where you can enjoy stunning views of Mont Blanc, Lake Geneva and the Swiss peaks or explore forests where local fauna such as chamois, wild goats and deer roam free. Popular spots include the Boutigny Valley and the Chardonnière forest. Snowshoes and ski poles are provided by most companies offering this as an experience, or you can hire them from most Sports Shops or Ski Hire Shops, grab a trail map from the Tourist Office and head off on your own adventure. Be sure to check the weather forecast before you go.
Avoriaz and the wider Portes du Soleil is a favourite for freestyle skiers and snowboarders. With a permanent halfpipe, Europe's first Burton Stash and parks in Avoriaz, Les Gets, Crosets, Nyon and Chatel it's no wonder it is so popular. There are around 30 snowparks across the whole of the Portes du Soleil ski area. The small Nyon Snowpark in Morzine boasts kickers and boxes, while the Les Gets Snowpark features kickers and rails for beginners to intermediate as well as an airbag.
Also see: Snowparks in Morzine
Sledging or luge takes place on the hillside close to the Pleney gondola in Morzine centre. Take the lift up and sledge down 150 metres to the bottom. There are two trails of different lengths and difficulty levels, starting from the Crusaz chairlift. The lift runs from early July to early September each year, from 10:30 to 18:00, non-stop. Children must be 3 years old and all those under 8 years old must be accompanied by an adult.
In the Parc des Dereches you can enjoy a whole outdoor swimming complex including a heated Olympic pool, a teaching pool, a paddling pool with water games and an 80m waterslide. In the same area, there is a bouncy castle, a beach volleyball court and sun loungers. The indoor facilities include two heated pools and a paddling pool, as well as a spa with saunas and Turkish baths. Open from late July to late August until 19:00. Free for children under 5 years old and seniors.
The tennis club at the Parc des Dereches offers 7 hard courts and 2 clay courts, available to rent from early June to the end of September. They also have tennis training and lessons, while balls and rackets are available for rent.
Tours & excursions
If you fancy a free, educational activity, why not try a lesson in Cheese making at the central Morzine cheese shop? La Fruitiere L’Alpage (which is close to the Ferme De La Fruitiere restaurant) offers free tours of its cheese cellar on Wednesday’s at 9:00. You’ll learn about how all the popular Savoyard cheeses are made, whilst also tasting a few. There are also free guided tours of Morzine old town on Thursdays at 10:00 during the season from the covered hall next to the church.
For a longer day out, head down towards Thonon and take a trip underground at the Gorges du Pont du Diable. There are a series of walkways and steps leading you into the gorge. It's a great place to escape the heat of the summer days!
Tree-top / Forest adventures
Adventure parks are designed for children and adults to play, explore, exercise and have fun in the natural mountain surroundings. The ropes, swings, tunnels, trees and activities will be a great day for children and adults alike. Qualified guides will be around the course throughout to make sure you are safe and having as much fun as possible. There are treetop adventure routes in Morzine, you can find them near the Nyon waterfall, at the Parc des Dereches and behind the sports centre.
Regarding zip wires, the Fantasticable in the Portes du Soleil is the only one of its kind in the Alps. Located in Chatel at the top of the Chaux Fleurie lift, this zip wire covers over three kilometres in two stages and reaches speeds of up to 100km/h. Strapped into a harness you fly face first across the valley, taking in the views in unique style. All safety equipment is provided - Superman outfit optional...
If climbing up sheer rock on the end of a piece of rope sounds a bit scary, then Via Ferrata climbing offers an element of security that still allows beginners to enjoy the achievement of having scaled a mountain! This form of climbing was invented by Italian soldiers in the Dolomites who used it to enable them to scale vertiginous faces easily and quickly. Following marked routes through the mountains, you are helped along by steps, bridges and ladders whilst being roped up for extra safety.
The main Via Ferrata site in Morzine is the Saix du Tour; it is 600m in length and affords some beautiful views over the valley. It features footbridges, monkey bridges and ladders and should take around 2 or 2 and a half hours to complete. It is accessible from May to October if there is no snow. Suitable for adults and children over the age of 8.
Walking & Hiking
In the summer months, Morzine is a mecca for walking and hiking in the beautiful alpine mountains. he Portes du Soleil offer 800 kilometres of marked trails that go across a wide variety of mountain landscapes, from ridges to forests, farms and, of course, views of Mont Blanc and the Dents du Midi. From Morzine, you can embark on short walks to lakes like the Chavanette or the Lac de Montriond, farmlands like the Alpage de Morzinette or waterfalls like the Cascade de Ardent. Longer hikes will take you across the border into Switzerland or down the surrounding valleys.
Also see: Walking Routes in Morzine
If you haven't experienced white water rafting before then this is a definite 'must try' on your list of activities to do! From the middle of May until September, the Dranse river flows furiously as it is fed from the melt waters running off the glaciers high above the town. There are various options available from a three-hour adrenaline rush to a full days excursion - this activity is guaranteed not to disappoint.
Morzine is a winter walker's paradise, with lifts giving access to the higher ground and a network of groomed trails in the winter, it's very easy to discover the resort on foot. Don’t forget to check the weather forecast before you set out as conditions can change rapidly in the mountains. You do not need any particular equipment, just a pair of sturdy boots and layers of warm clothing that you can take off or put on as necessary. A pair of walking poles will come in handy for extra balance on icy patches and for checking snow depth before you go striding forth. Top tip: buy ‘grippers’ for your walking boots to prevent slipping which you can buy from most local Sport Shops.
Also see: Walking Routes in Morzine