Time to breathe... lazy days in the French Alps

Wednesday 11 January 2012

Days, weeks and months go by slowly in the Alps. Lazy days curled up by the fire reading, snow shoe walking at dusk on the top of the Beauregard mountain, drinking coffee, eating, skiing.  It's a home from home. Somewhere to relax, to contemplate, and to plan for the year ahead.

I always leave the mountains feeling refreshed, energised and well fed. The time I spend at the beginning of each year in La Clusaz gives me time to focus, breathe, and prioritise. Gives me perspective.

Mist creeping up the valley - Snowshoe walking at dusk
La Clusaz is a rare, traditional gem that stands out from larger, concrete ski towns. It has character.

And it's renowned for its Alpine fare. Mountain-side meals of raclette, fondue and tartiflette, eaten with a chill in the air and wind-chaffed cheeks. Vin chaud and pain perdu (caramelised french toast) at the end of a hard days skiing. Diot (local pork sausages, cooked in white wine), pierrade (an indoor BBQ, cooked on a hot stone) and gratin dauphinoise to round off the day.

There are too many favourite restaurants to list. If you visit, and I recommend you do - Summer or Winter - try the tartiflette (and view) at Le Relais de L'Aiguille, the coffee and an always wholesome plat du jour at Le Bercail or the Plat Pisteurs at Le Telemark.

Just what's needed to reinvigorate the senses and reevaluate what's important in 2012 - family, friends and perspective.

Lunch with a view - at Relais De L'Aiguille
Watching the snow clouds roll in

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