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Frédéric Echavidre has travelled a great deal including in Japan, Canada and Estonia to name but a few. In his view, the Auvergne is the best region in France for anyone looking to try their hand at Nordic activities. As a Nordic ski instructor and former top-level sportsman, he has taken the time to tell us a little of the many advantages of practising these sports in the Auvergne. These are exciting leisure activities waiting to be enjoyed as a family or among friends, for a great day’s sport but also heaps of fun.
"The main Nordic activity in the Auvergne is cross-country skiing. At the same time, the biathlon is gaining ground as is the “Nordic skiercross” challenge, created by the ESF (Ecole du Ski Français) ski school. However, this activity requires the presence of a Nordic ski park.
Snowshoe hiking is another very popular activity. It provides visitors with a chance to discover winter sports while at the same time really taking the time to enjoy the marvellous landscapes here.
Long-distance treks and Nordic ski touring are also becoming very popular. The Auvergne offers the ideal location for these hiking trips with maps and compasses.
In addition to these traditional activities we should also mention ski jumping thanks to a specially prepared ski jump, or "Skijoring" (skiing while being pulled by a horse)."
"The Auvergne's landscape and terrain are ideal for these activities, offering wide open spaces and high plateaus. In my opinion this is one of the finest regions for Nordic activities, as the landscapes are so amazing, offering breathtaking 360° views.
Access to the pistes couldn't be easier. What's more, the Auvergne is situated in the very heart of France. As a result, winter sports lovers head here from just about everywhere to discover the majestic, constantly changing environment comprised of craters, fir trees and plains, etc. Here in the Auvergne, we are not stuck in the middle of a forest. In a hike lasting just one hour you can easily change scenery four times over!
The Auvergne is a little slice of Norway here in France. For extremely reasonable prices, you can get back to nature during a holiday certain to bring you a welcome dose of well-being and fun."
Cross-country skiing instructor, former top-level skier