Learning to Ski in the Swiss Alps

GoPro Brooke Saward Ski Lesson
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When I first visited Switzerland last year at the close of summer, I was amazed by the sea of colours that lay before me. The Alps seemed a world away in the distance, whilst the rolling hills in front of me were bursting with colour and summer freshness. The sky was a rich shade of blue, the air was clean, and I felt as if I was living in the Sound of Music film. Hah! No really. The last time I stayed at the Arosa Kulm Hotel in Switzerland looked like this:
Arosa Kulm Hotel
Then, an entire year and a season later, I finally returned to Switzerland to experience the winter wonderland that is Arosa. It is little wonder Arosa is a favourite ski destination for families around Switzerland and visitors from abroad. It doesn’t have the snobbiness of some other (unnamed) ski resort towns, and isn’t so laid back that you can’t enjoy a friendly race down the slopes. All in all, Arosa is pretty close to skiing perfection for those that enjoy a low-key holiday with the five-star comforts of beautiful hotels like the Arosa Kulm to return home to at the end of the day.
Given that I had never skied before (in my entire life – shock horror at 23 years of age), I came to Arosa with one task in mind: learn to ski. Here’s how it went…


Checking-In to the Arosa Kulm

As previously mentioned, this wasn’t my first stay at the Arosa Kulm, located at the foothills of the ski slopes. I had stayed here once before a year prior and had such a memorable stay that I was eager to get back in winter, and so I did.
For my three nights at the hotel I enjoyed a big buffet breakfast every morning, used all the hours of daylight to hit the slopes or adventure around the many hiking trails, and spent the evenings ordering quality in-room dining, floating around the indoor pool or melting away inside one of the sauna/steam rooms.

GoPro Brooke Saward Ski Lesson

Learning to Ski in the Swiss Alps

Then came the actual hard stuff.
The Hotel Concierge called to make a private ski lesson reservation for me, which I was lucky to secure considering the ski season was a little slow starting this year and there wasn’t much of an opportunity to ski just yet. Thankfully one of the slopes were open, and one was all I needed, though I began having second thoughts standing at 1,775 metres above sea level with my feet glued to two long prongs that had a mind of their own. They were prone to wander…. down steep hills…. on their own schedule and terms.

GoPro Brooke

You could say I was pretty hopeless for at least the first thirty minutes. And it was all down-hill from there (pun intended). My ski instructor, Jürgen, was pretty instrumental in the whole day. I’ll be the first to admit that learning to do any winter sport comes with time and practice, but most importantly requires a good instructor for your first try.
There were ofcourse a few fun falls that resulted in some bruises and limping on one limb the following day, but it was all part of the fun. All in all it took me about x3 times as long to get down the slopes as it would have anyone else out there on that day, which was probably also partially due to my persistence for Jürgen to piggyback me (whilst skiing) down the really steep slopes…. haha! You can view snippets from the whole day in this video.


Getting There: Arosa is best accessed by train from Chur, a one hour journey to Arosa. If you’re flying in from elsewhere in Europe or outside of Europe, Zurich is a short 1.5 hour train journey from Chur.

World of Wanderlust would like to thank the Arosa Kulm for their hospitality and welcoming WoW for the winter ski season! My opinion is as always, my own.

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    Hata Trbonja
    December 28, 2014 at 9:19 am

    You have perfect timing! I am 38 and have no clue how to ski. We just moved to Bern, switzerland and will be going skiing in a few days. Yikes!
    Wish me luck!
    ps…If you are ever in Bern, I can show you around.
    Happy Holidays!

    December 27, 2014 at 4:44 pm

    I am going skiing for the first time ever in Breckenridge in a few weeks — and I’m almost 30!! I’m super excited though, looks like so much fun! Hopefully the views are almost as good. ;P

    December 23, 2014 at 6:47 am

    Wonderful photos! The slopes look a bit terrifying from the GoPro’s angle. 🙂

    Best holiday destinations
    December 22, 2014 at 8:31 pm

    Fantastic experience. looking wonderful place . thanks for sharing nice views.

    December 22, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Your new hair color looks great!

    December 22, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    Ahh, Switzerland is high on my bucket list! SO beautiful. Can’t wait to visit myself.

    Raza from

    December 22, 2014 at 6:37 am

    Isn’t the Swiss Alps just a magical place! Awesome place to learn how to ski. Thanks for sharing. What program did you edit your video in?

    Uros @ Fine Stay Slovenia
    December 22, 2014 at 4:44 am

    The Swiss Alps are ideal in the wintertime.

    Courtney {Alkeks Abroad}
    December 21, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    Gorgeous pics! I also learned to ski in the Swiss alps too but I’m not sure I was as successful as you. I spent the majority of the time falling then just taking a seat in the snow and admiring the scenery. I wish I had a video to remember the experience from though!

    December 21, 2014 at 10:42 am

    The hotel is amazing! It has been one of my dreams to travel in Switzerland since I met a Swiss friend. To ski… I don’t want to break my bone again.
    Kozue from Tokyo

    December 21, 2014 at 7:30 am

    What an amazing view! Love skiing.. nice that you had the chance to try it!

    December 21, 2014 at 12:57 am

    I love skiing. I started when I was 3 years old and I haven’t stopped since then.
    It’s great that you haved so much fun.


    December 20, 2014 at 6:41 pm

    wow the views look amazing 😀

    December 20, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    TO Ski is my top dream. Thanks for the video.


    December 20, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    Skiing is hard. I fell over a thousand times. It’s like learning to ride a bike, once you got it, you got it. Awesome pictures, by the way 🙂

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn
    December 20, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    Wow, this looks so amazing! What gorgeous accommodation too 🙂

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn

    Sharon Greene
    December 20, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    I tried downhill skiing but couldn’t get the hang of it at all. The hotel and resort look and sound fantastic! Maybe I’d enjoy it more in the summer?

    Katie @ Second-Hand Hedgehog
    December 20, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    Haha – amazing! I’m seriously impressed at your guts for giving it a go. I’m 24 and I’ve never been skiing. (And I’m a little terrified to try it!) The scenery looks incredible though, both with and without the snow. Love your Sound of Music shot 🙂