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Château d'Oex

Château d'Oex Ski Resort Guide

Château d'Oex, Switzerland

Rated: 4/5 (from 6 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Intermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders, Snowfall and Apres-Ski!
Total Piste Length50km31 miles
Highest Lift1,800m5,906ft
Resort Height970m3,182ft
 Nearest AirportsSion and Berne
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Château d'Oex

A lovely village on the French side of the French/German language border within Switzerland. Home for many years to actor David Niven and still to the biggest annual ballooning festival in the Alps each January. More than 250km of piste are available on the Gstaad Mountain Rides pass which includes the mountain railway which conveniently runs between base lifts at most of the resorts en route.


The Swiss ski resort of Château d'Oex is in the Swiss Alps at an altitude of 970m3,182ft, with 50km31 miles of marked runs.

Château d'Oex is part of the Gstaad Mountain Rides ski area with access to 250km155 miles of downhill skiing, with 144 marked pistes, served by a total of 57 ski lifts. In addition to the skiing in Château d'Oex itself (50km31 miles of pisted ski runs), the appropriate ski Lift Pass will allow you to ski or snowboard in the other Gstaad Mountain Rides ski resorts of Gstaad, Saanen, Saanenmöser, Schönried and Zweisimmen. Château d'Oex is directly linked by Ski Lift to the ski areas of Anzère.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Château d'Oex?

The next notable snow forecast is 3cm1in, expected on 3 October.

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Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Château d'Oex

Ski Area Stats

Château d'Oex Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
 1 4km2 miles
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
 3 5km3 miles
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
 2 3km2 miles
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
 4 3km2 miles
Total Length
50km31 miles
Cross Country
Total Length
28km17 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts

Gstaad Mountain Rides Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
1139km24 miles
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
35101km63 miles
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
50110km68 miles
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
Total Length
250km155 miles
Cross Country
Total Length
135km84 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts


Château d'Oex Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift1,800m5,906ft
Lowest Piste970m3,182ft
Resort Altitude (Château d'Oex)970m3,182ft
Max Vertical830m2,723ft

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Château d'Oex
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers

Château d'Oex Overview

A lovely village on the French side of the French/German language border within Switzerland, Château-d'Oex was home for many years to actor David Niven who recounts his adventures on skis in his autobiography 'The Moon's a Balloon'. It's not clear whether his choice of title was influenced by the fact that the resort stages what is still the biggest annual ballooning festival in the Alps each January.

The wide sunny high alpine valley in which the village is located, known as the Pays d'Enhaut, has been farmed for a millennium or more and many of the old Swiss chalets are centuries old. The architecture of many was regarded as a work of art by their creators who often signed and dated them, whilst the present owners ensure the window boxes are full of flowers for most of the year. It is a truly peaceful, relaxing place.

From a winter sports fan's perspective the great thing about Château d'Oex is that the lift ticket - which includes some of the most terrain available on one pass in the world - has several unique assets! A key one is that it allows holders to hop on to the mountain train or bus and ride along from one great ski area to the next.

After Château-d'Oex's own slopes there are those of Rougemont - where you can leave the train and walk over to the gondola which takes you up to the mountain tops; then it's a similar story at Saanen (after you've crossed the language border in to German speaking Switzerland!), and beyond Gstaad at Saanenmoser and Zweisimmen. Gstaad is the point where you can hop off the train and on to the bus over towards les Diablerets and Villars, with the famous Diablerets glacier the first stop. The transport system continues right through the day and the evening so there's no mad rush to catch the last ski bus home at the end of your day on the slopes.

 Notable Ski Runs

The longest possible descent in Château d'Oex is 4km2 miles long and the most difficult run is the 'Bois Cheneau', which is 4km2 miles in length.


Château-d'Oex's local ski area on La Braye, reached by cable-car - is of modest dimensions: 25km (16 miles) of trails served by 10 lifts and a respectable 802 metres (2631 feet) vertical. A second ski area on Mont Chevreuils, a short distance from the village, has ceased operations. What is not immediately apparent to anyone just passing through is that you're actually in one of the world's largest ski pass areas, certainly Switzerland's largest, the Ski Gstaad Pass, of which Château-d'Oex's near neighbours of the Gstaad Superski area are just a part. Public service trains and buses take skiers on the single pass over to a selection of 15 different resorts, together offering 600km (375 miles) of runs.

Famous resorts included are Adelboden, Lenk, Les Diablerets, Les Mosses, Leysin, Villars and of course Gstaad. The minimum duration for this pass is 4 days. This means that intermediates and expert skiers have a vast choice of runs including, from February onwards, the epic descent from the top of the Diablerets glacier down 13km (8 miles) to the Gstaad road. The local Swiss Ski School also organises high mountain touring, off piste guiding, ski mountaineering and heli-skiing for the more adventurous.

Beginners will enjoy the chance to stay in an authentic Swiss village, learn to ski on the peaceful and largely gentle slopes of La Braye above the resort, but then have the option of doing more than just ski or 'board, with the easy access to Gstaad and larger Swiss cities beyond. Intermediates can explore all of the ski areas, but the local slopes at La Braye above the resort itself will provide several days entertainment.

The largest and most popular area nearby is above Schönried or Saanenmöser, the first and second rail stop respectively a few minutes after Gstaad. Now all inter-linked right over to St Stephan beyond Zweisimmen, this is a wonderful area of many long blues and reds and where, with higher bases than Château-d'Oex, top-to-bottom snow lasts longer (although Château-d'Oex's ski area is in any case accessed by cable-car so the snow fields can be reached without hassle even when the lower slopes thaw at the end of the season).

A second large intermediate-friendly skiing area, not quite so big but closer still, joins the skiing above Rougemont, Chateau-d'Oex's French speaking neighbour, and to that above the resort after it, Saanen (first of the German-speaking villages).

Experts have many opportunities in the region, some already mentioned. Closer to home Château-d'Oex has several black-graded descents including a rather long one down from Monts Chevreuils to Les Moulins, above the village.

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.


Snowboarders have the same huge choice as skiers with the Ski Gstaad Pass. Most of the resorts in the area have snowboard parks, so this could be the area with the most snowboard-parks-on-one-pass in the world if anyone cares enough to add up such things (probably not a cool thing to do!)

There are three terrain parks in the area, in the larger Schönried - Saanenmöser sector, and a further three above Les Diablerets and Villars.

The year-round park on the Diablerets glacier helps this summer glacier skiing to be dominated by 'boarders throughout the warmer periods of the year, with numerous international camps.

Location and Map

Where is Château d'Oex?

This ski resort is in the Swiss Alps in Gstaad Mountain Rides, Bern.


Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Château d'Oex is Sion, 70 minutes drive away.

Berne, Geneva, Basel, Annecy, Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg, Zurich and Chambery airports are all within three hours drive.


Ski Lift Capacity

The 10 ski lifts are able to uplift 5,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, with 3 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Château d'Oex open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates, but hope to soon.

Usual opening is mid December, and usual closing is Late March.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

Piste Map

Château d'Oex Piste Map
Château d'Oex

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Château d'Oex, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Château d'Oex Tourist Office for the latest.

Aprés Ski

There are few resorts where you have the option of stopping off in a cafe or bar as you come off the slopes 20km from your hotel and then staying for a coffee or an après ski tipple without having to worry about missing the last ski bus home. Thanks to the area lift pass it's possible to get a train back to Château-d'Oex from Zweissemen, Saanenmoser, Rougemont, Saanen or Gstaad almost any time of the evening.

One popular option is to stop off in Gstaad en route home and take an après ski dip at the wonderful swimming pool complex. Another is to head back to Château-d'Oex to shower, change and maybe eat, then head for Gstaad's legendary après ski opportunities.

There are a dozen cosy bars and restaurants in Château-d'Oex itself should you wish to stay closer to home, and La Bamba disco is often lively.

Château d'Oex