After you finish a great day of skiing, the fun is not over yet. You still have the rest of the afternoon and evening to fill and entertain the kids. So what can you do? There are a lot of family-friendly après-ski (that’s fancy for “after-ski”) activities, ranging from adventurous to relaxing to everything in between. Whether you are looking to play, relax, fill hungry bellies or warm up, you can follow these tips for après-ski with kids to inspire you to keep the fun going but at your own family’s speed.
Here Are Our Best Tips for Après-Ski with Kids
Engage in more winter family fun
Whether snow is a novelty for your kids or you get plenty at home, you might not get a lot of opportunities to simply play in it or engage in exciting winter activities such as sleigh rides, tubing, ice skating or snowmobiling. Here are some fun winter activities perfect for après-ski with kids.
Dashing through the snow, in a one-horse open sleigh, o’er the fields we go, laughing all the way, ha ha ha…. Several ski resorts offer horse-drawn sleigh rides or dogsled rides for family après-ski. We love them because it combines a sense of adventure with very little effort for tired bodies. Just snuggle up together under a warm blanket, sip hot cocoa and enjoy the ride. At some resorts you can combine a dinner or entertainment package with the ride.
Many ski resorts also offer fun après-ski activities off the mountain like tubing. Wheee!! Kids and parents alike can enjoy the thrill of the tube hill, without all the hill-climbing work associated sledding. The towrope or magic carpet conveyor belt will do all the uphill duty and help you to defy gravity. We know those frog legs are tired.
Is there anything more wintery than gliding on ice? Many ski resorts, villages and even hotels have ice skating rinks for après-ski with kids. Some even offer special events on ice like broomball, dress-up dance parties, or other fun and games.
Vrooom vroom! Speed demons who did not get enough thrills on skis or a snowboard will love to take a snowmobiling tour. Take a ride through the woods on a snowmobile to explore more of the area’s terrain and scenic views.
Tips to fuel up après skiing
If your tadpoles are feeling “hangry” after a long day of skiing, you can take advantage of discounted appetizers during après-ski happy hour to tide them over until dinner or even get in an early meal. Having a belly full of warm food goes a long way in turning frowns upside-down. Parents can enjoy some adult beverages while the tadpoles sip hot chocolate. Can anyone stay cranky with a warm cup of cocoa in front of them? If you choose a resort with a village at the base of the mountain (for example, Squaw Valley, Northstar, Heavenly or Beaver Creek) you will have many restaurants to choose from as soon as you step off the mountain. Fuel up, get some rest and then hop on to the next adventure.
Whenever we warm up near a fire, the tadpoles are jumping to make some s’mores. We can’t blame them. You can find fire pits in ski villages and at some lodges or hotels. Sometimes you can conveniently purchase s’more kits on-site for après-ski with kids. If we know there will be fire pits aplenty, we stock up on s’more supplies at a local grocery store to get more for our money.
Money saving tips for après with kids
One of our favorite ways to unwind and relax after a day of skiing is to splash in a pool or hot tub. Choosing a family ski hotel with a heated pool or at least a hot tub can make for a relaxing afternoon or evening for parents and tadpoles alike. Our tadpoles love having snowball fights in an outdoor warm pool. It’s free entertainment for all, and a hot tub feels so good on our sore muscles. That’s why you’ll hear no complaints from Flora or me when the kids yell, “Cannonball!”
Be sure to check the calendar for your ski resort or hotel. Many resorts offer kid-friendly après-ski entertainment. You may find game nights, story times, carnivals, snow play times, movie nights, craft nights, dress-up parties, stargazing snowshoe tours, live music and even fireworks. Aspen offers free daily kids programs in the afternoon between 3:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Finding out what kind of free entertainment is offered can help guide you in keeping your kids entertained après-ski without breaking the bank. Here are some more tips on how to save money on a family ski vacation.
If you need a quiet night in, you can create your après-ski own fun. Bring a deck of cards or favorite board game to play. The hustle and bustle of daily life at home can make it hard to get everyone together for family game night, but when you are in the mountains together you can slow down and enjoy each other’s company. If you do not have a great spot to set up shop in your hotel room, check out the lobby or lounge. Grab a table by the fire, order some snacks and drinks and deal out the cards. That makes for some budget-friendly family bonding, and you can’t put a price on that.
Need some downtime? Put on a movie and microwave some popcorn for an in-room movie night. Northstar resort also has a movie theatre on-site.
Snow play is free and a lot of fun. Have a snowball fight, make a snow angel, dig a fort or build a snowman with fresh snow. If you have sleds with you, you can go sledding for free. But expect to put in more effort than when tubing at an official location. Just be sure to find a safe area to play or sled.
Other adventures for après-ski with kids
Take to the skies! Thrill seekers will love zooming through the air on a zipline. Park City offers this fun family après-ski activity for riders 42 inches and up. Two guests can soar like an eagle together.
Kids have way more energy and power in their legs than adults do, which is why trampoline bungee jumping is a great après-ski activity for little ones with boundless energy. You can find this fun après-ski activity at some ski resort villages such as North Tahoe ski resorts Northstar and Squaw Valley. You can keep your feet on the ground and take photos while they jump away.
And if you thought coasters were just for theme parks, think again. Ride an exciting alpine coaster at such resorts as Breckenridge, Vail or Park City. Be sure to check the hours in advance because they can be subject to early closures and inclement weather.
As you can see, après-ski is not just for college students looking for a party. There is a lot of good fun a family can have after the lifts have closed. What are your favorite things to do with your family après-ski with kids? If you have any tips for après-ski with kids please share them below.