Head for the nursery area in the centre of town – big and busy but a great place for even the youngest tot to start out. Trouble is, there’s not much to progress on to, with steep runs coming down from the Solaise area to one side, and the Bellvarde – and fast skiers criss-crossing with timid beginners – to the other. Once you’re past that first hurdle, though, there are places to go: the La Daille area 1.5km or so from town, with a big, rugged apartment complex near the base, is a good family spot.
Take the Funival underground funicular to the top of Bellvarde, from which a sometimes steepish but comfortable red run weaves all the way back down. Or take chairs up for some easy cruises.
Alternatively, meander over to Tignes, where you’ll find lots of simple slopes (as well as plenty of exciting ones), all of them snowsure. (If you want to experience Val’s skiing but feel it might be a little over the top, Tignes’ Val Claret area has plenty of space to learn and is packed with family apartments right on the slopes.)
Take some time out from the slopes at Val d’Isère's swimming pool and sports centre or skating on the ice rink.
In summer, try out paragliding, archery, canoe-rafting or white-water rafting, canyoning, mountain-biking, donkey-trekking, farm visits, fishing, geocaching, via ferrata and much more besides.