Top French ski resorts on Facebook this summer

It’s back to school time – la rentrée in France – and some welcome calm is returning to the mountains. The shopkeepers and hoteliers are taking a well-earned breather and, for the rest of us, there’s still plenty of hiking and cycling to be done, but without the crowds.

It will also – very soon – be time to turn our thoughts to the approaching winter. But before that, let’s take stock of how the summer season went.

This has not been a great summer, it must be said, at least partly due to some dreadful weather. Three out of five professionals in mountain and lake areas in Rhone Alpes judged the frequentation of their establishments insufficient, Rhone Alpes Tourism reports.

On social media, the numbers were down too. The average fan growth of the top 50 French ski resorts on Facebook June through August was 3.7% (excluding special case, Orcières, see below), which compares to 6% for the same period last year (excluding another special case, Alpe d’Huez, which merged pages last July).

That said, a few resorts did rather well this summer, despite the challenging conditions. Check out the top five by Facebook fan growth June-August:

  1. Chamonix (+25%)
  2. Cauterets (+18%)
  3. Le Grand Bornand (+17%)
  4. La Clusaz (+17%)
  5. Les 2 Alpes (+9%)

No surprise to see Chamonix up there and Cauterets in the Pyrenees also always does well. The Aravis resorts, La Clusaz and Le Grand Bornand, seem to be making a strong play – and a successful one – for summer business, with family festivals, summer press trips and more. And Les 2 Alpes has amazing summer skiing on its glacier of course.

Here are a few of the most engaging posts from around the French mountains this summer:

Meanwhile Orcières has rebranded from Orcières 1850 to Orcières Merlette 1850, taking back the Merlette name it used to be also known by. In so doing it has merged two Facebook pages and jumped up to  21 in the rankings (from 31).

And now for the numbers… Here are all the scores, as recorded on 1 September 2014:

Top 5 French ski domains on Facebook

  1. Portes du Soleil – 115,392 fans
  2. Nouvelles Pyrénées – 47,885
  3. Haute Maurienne Vanoise – 40,865
  4. Les 3 Vallées – 24,547
  5. Grand Massif – 12,524

Top 50 French ski resorts on Facebook

  1. Val Thorens – 162,022 fans
  2. Megève – 114,988
  3. Chamonix – 71,164
  4. Tignes – 55,244
  5. Les Menuires – 50,575
  6. Courchevel – 49,554
  7. La Clusaz – 47,968
  8. Les Arcs – 47,393
  9. Val d’Isère – 46,733
  10. Alpe d’Huez – 40,387
  11. Cauterets – 38,287
  12. Les 2 Alpes – 37,626
  13. La Plagne – 32,488
  14. Serre Chevalier – 30,787
  15. Le Grand Bornand – 28,605
  16. Avoriaz – 27,851
  17. Saint Lary – 27,848
  18. Vars – 24,923
  19. Méribel – 20,857
  20. La Norma – 17,449
  21. Orcières – 17,278
  22. Ax 3 Domaines – 17,047
  23. Les Gets – 16,747
  24. Le Dévoluy – 14,205
  25. Les Sept Laux – 13,009
  26. Lac Blanc – 12,964
  27. Les Contamines – 12,691
  28. Peyragudes – 12,680
  29. Châtel – 12,376
  30. Les Orres – 12,270
  31. Morzine – 11,845
  32. Montgenèvre – 10,595
  33. Aussois – 9,883
  34. Valloire – 9,837
  35. Grand Tourmalet – 9,586
  36. Sainte Foy – 9,201
  37. Piau-Engaly – 9,157
  38. Les Saisies – 8,483
  39. Les Angles – 8,019
  40. Le Lioran – 7,944
  41. Gourette – 7,060
  42. Praloup – 6,364
  43. La Pierre St Martin – 6,235
  44. Le Corbier – 5,462
  45. Samoëns – 5,219
  46. Arêches Beaufort – 4,999
  47. Metabief – 4,908
  48. Les Carroz – 4,896
  49. Villard de Lans – 4,892
  50. Luz Ardiden – 4,856

Please note: these are official pages only and only those resorts are included that have at least some alpine ski uplift capacity, ie a ski lift. Sorry if I’ve missed anyone and please let me know so this list can be improved for next month. Linked resorts/domains like the 3 Valleys are ranked separately and the count was done on 1 September.

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