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Notre Dame de Bellecombe - traditional and oh so pretty...

If you had given up hope of finding an authentic and beautiful Alpine village that still offers access to some of the best skiing in Europe, here is the good news. The village of Notre Dame de Bellecombe, which lies in the French Alpine department of Savoie, is all that and more. It sits close to Chamonix and Mont Blanc, so it is no "second rater" when it comes to ski slopes, and it has managed to retain its heritage and original style, making a perfect base for those who appreciate its tranquil beauty.

Wooden chalets and pine trees

Notre Dame de Bellecombe is the Alpine dream for many, with its wooden chalets and ancient church, its lush green summer meadows and its dark pine forests. Snowy slopes and mountain peaks surround this gorgeous village in winter, suffice to say the village would not be out of place on a chocolate box lid or masquerading as a jigsaw puzzle!

Notre Dame de Bellecombe provides all amenities

Don't, however, underestimate Notre Dame de Bellecombe, as the village is well equipped to offer all the facilities that holiday makers and residents require. There are mini markets, cash points, doctors, a dentist, a pharmacy, and even some bars and restaurants for that all important Aprés Ski! It's not, however, the place to go if you are hoping for the wildest of night-life. Serious clubbers had better stick to the larger resorts where the priorities are different. In Notre Dame de Bellecombe, it is all about the good life, in traditional Savoie style.

Snow, skiing and all that...

It is probably fair to say that the majority of people who consider buying a property in Notre Dame de Bellecombe are interested in the skiing. The village lies in the Diamant ski domain, and has access to excellent skiing, both on and off piste. There are ski schools, childcare facilities and even a snow park for those who aren't challenged enough by ordinary skiing and wish to attempt the half pipe, or the rails... ! Night skiing is also arranged in high season, and there are other snow sports available such as snow shoeing and sledding.

Summer fun too in Notre Dame de Bellecombe

Notre Dame is as enchanting in summer as it is in winter, and its streets and squares are full of interesting events all summer long. There are wine tastings, craft fairs, opportunities to try local produce such as cheeses, and a general street market once a week as well. Sports on offer in the summer time include mountain biking, climbing, trail walking, orienteering, pony trekking… and golfers will be delighted to discover that there is not just one but three good courses in the area!

How to get there

The airports of Lyon, Geneva, Grenoble, Chambéry all offer flights to the region from the UK. Lyon is served by Air France, British Airways, easyJet, and bmi; Geneva by British Airways, Air France, Aer Lingus, easyJet, flybe and Jet2; Grenoble by Ryanair and easyJet; and finally Chambéry by flybe, Jet2 and Astraeus. Lovers of train travel will be pleased to find they can access nearby Albertville or Megève by train from Paris in only three and a half hours. If driving, you will find signposts for the village from the A40 and A43 motorways.

Property prices and availability in and around Notre Dame de Bellecombe

It's the Alps, it's the desirability factor, it's going to be hideously expensive... right? Wrong. Currently on the market in Notre Dame (Spring 2008) is a four to five person studio, in a very attractive, traditionally designed building, for less than 100,000 Euros! Now that's something you won't find too often.

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Notre Dame de Bellecombe AT A GLANCE

WHERE IS Notre Dame de Bellecombe?

Notre Dame de Bellecombe is located in the east of France, in the Alps. It lies in the north of the Savoie department, close to the border with Haute-Savoie.

Notre Dame de Bellecombe Property Map

IN THE REGION OF RHÔNE-ALPES

Rhône-Alpes Guide

Rhône-Alpes Property Map

IN THE DEPARTMENT OF SAVOIE

Savoie Guide

  Savoie Map


Population: 510


Access: By air: Fly to Lyon, Geneva, Grenoble or Chambéry. By rail: The train will take you to Albertville, just 25 kilometres away. By road: The town is signposted from the A40 and the A43 auto routes.


Economy: The economy is boosted by mountain tourism, particularly skiing, but also retains some traditional enterprises such as Alpine agriculture.


Interesting fact: Notre Dame de Bellecombe is one of the best preserved old Alpine villages in the region, known for its traditional architecture and buildings. Wooden chalets and old farmsteads predominate, rather than purpose built concrete apartment blocks.

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