Top 9 Best Family Ski Resorts in the US

Family ski trips are a surefire way to create memories that will last a lifetime. There’s no better way to spend the winter months than on the ski slopes, and when you’re with the people you love, it becomes even more special. 

I’ve been skiing nearly my entire life, and my family members all ski as well. I’ve been to many family-friendly ski resorts in the US and know through first-hand experience how great many of these destinations are. 

I’ll highlight the best family ski resorts in the US in this post. I’ll explain why they are suitable for families and provide you with other good information to help you plan a trip or learn more about each resort. 

Let’s get after it. 

1. Keystone, Colorado 

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: Oct 31 (Average) 
  • Closing Day: April 3 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Family-friendly atmosphere, night-skiing, kids ski free if you book lodging

Keystone is one of the top family ski resorts in the US and sits in the heart of Colorado ski country in Summit County. This resort has something for everyone with a wide variety of terrain, from beginner to expert. 

There are plenty of lodging options at or near the resort, and these are some of the most affordable in Colorado. Another perk is that kids 12 and under ski for free if you book two nights or more of lodging through the resort.

The snow at Keystone is plentiful and high-quality, so you have a good chance for fresh snow at nearly any point in the season. Ski lessons and rentals are easy to set up for the family as well. 

The only real downside to this resort is that there isn’t much of a town center nearby. However, you have plenty of food and shopping options right at the resort base.

2. Deer Valley, Utah

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: December 4
  • Closing Day: April 17
  • Best Known For: Upscale amenities, rarely crowded because of limited ticket sales

Deer Valley is another excellent ski resort for the family located in the mountains outside Salt Lake City in Utah. This one is known for having upscale amenities, so it is a solid option for families looking for a bit of luxury while they ski. 

Another awesome part of visiting Deer Valley is that the resort caps the number of ski tickets sold, which means the slopes rarely get crowded, and you can enjoy wide-open runs all season long.

If you want world-class food and a wide variety of upscale lodging options, you are sure to find that here. Alongside epic Utah powder, the amenities at Deer Valley will keep you taken care of and comfortable during your stay. 

This luxury does come with a cost, and the resort is not cheap. But if you have the money and want an epic family ski trip, Deer Valley is a fantastic destination. 

3. Copper Mountain, Colorado

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 15 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 15 (Average) 
  • Best Known For: Affordable tickets and passes, family atmosphere, reliable snowfall

Copper Mountain is another family-friendly Colorado ski resort in the Rocky Mountains. This resort is right off the highway, providing easy access from the airport or nearby lodging options. 

This spot is a good choice for families looking to save a bit of money on their ski trips. Lift tickets and season passes are more affordable here than at many other well-known Colorado resorts. 

Savings extend to the dining and lodging options that you can find in the resort’s base area. Copper Mountain might not have a reputation for luxury, but that keeps costs down, and the snow conditions are always good. 

Copper doesn’t have a ski town at the base of the resort, so you don’t have endless options for food and lodging. But there are several towns within a half-hour drive where you can find more amenities if needed.

4. Stowe, Vermont

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 20 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 15 (Average) 
  • Best Known For: Storied history, good conditions for East Coast, family-friendly.

Stowe is one of the most family-friendly ski resorts in the eastern US and has been a top family skiing destination for 85 years. The resort has a solid reputation for fun snow and an inviting atmosphere that people all over the world love. 

There are two separate mountains here, providing a wide range of terrain to offer runs that match any ability level. You can stick on groomers if you are just learning or explore intermediate and advanced runs when you are ready. 

The atmosphere at Stowe is always fun, and the resort has a feel of a traditional New England village that is sure to bring a smile to locals and visitors alike. There is also a lot of good food and lodging nearby.

Stowe can get crowded, especially on the weekends. Be sure to get there early if you want a parking spot near the base. 

5. Snowmass, Colorado

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 23 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 15 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Diversity of terrain, proximity to Aspen, lots of ski-in/ski-out lodging

Snowmass is one of the four mountains to ski in the Aspen, Colorado area and is the most family-friendly option out of these. The mountain is large and provides plenty of terrain for skiers of all ability levels. 

You can take advantage of a large number of ski-in/ski-out lodging options in Snowmass, making it a great way to experience an authentic ski vacation. This also allows any family member to take a nap or get in from the cold. 

Snowmass also has excellent restaurants scattered across the mountain and is a reasonably short drive to the legendary ski town of Aspen. 

This isn’t the most affordable resort on the list, but if you have the money, you are sure to be pleased with everything Snowmass has to offer. 

6. Northstar, California

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 25 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 15 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Laid-back vibe, European village-like base, shopping

Northstar is the best family ski resort in California and one of the top spots in the US as well. This ski area has a beautiful setting looking over Lake Tahoe and gets reliable snowfall for good skiing conditions all season long. 

The mountain has plenty of terrain to please skiers of all ability levels, and it boasts one of the best terrain parks in the US. There are also plenty of non-skiing activities, such as tubing and snowshoeing if anyone in the family doesn’t want to be on the slopes.

Northstar also has a reputation for having upscale shopping and dining. If you want to find souvenirs for your ski trip and enjoy world-class meals, this resort provides you with everything.

This is another resort where the cost of luxury amenities can add up quickly. It’s family-friendly for sure but not always budget-friendly. 

7. Okemo Mountain, Vermont

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 20 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 4 (Average) 
  • Best Known For: Beginner terrain access, family atmosphere

Okemo Mountain is another excellent family resort in the eastern US. Located in Vermont, this location gets around 200 inches of snow each year, so conditions are reliably decent. 

The resort is a good spot for beginners because it offers easy access to many green runs that will help you learn the basics of the sport or improve your abilities to the next level. 

There are many dining options at the resort’s base area to keep you fueled up and ready for action all season long. 

Okemo is pretty small, so don’t expect the vast terrain you see at many other resorts in the western US. Still, this location has a lot to offer for families who live or visit the East Coast. 

8. Steamboat, Colorado

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 20 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 10 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Glades, throwback western vibe, many winter events

Steamboat is another fantastic family ski resort. This location offers some of the best snow and most inviting atmosphere you’ll find in Colorado. 

Experienced skiers will love all of the terrain to explore on the mountain. Steamboat is well known for having epic glades, and on a powder day, these runs turn into a playground where you can find fresh tracks all day long. 

At the bottom of the resort sits the town of Steamboat Springs, where you can find great food, make new friends, or find the perfect ski lodge to relax after a long day on the mountain. 

Steamboat takes some effort to get to, and it’s about a four-hour drive from Denver International Airport, where most visiting skiers arrive into.

9. Park City, Utah

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 20 (Average)
  • Closing Day: April 11 (Average) 
  • Best Known For: Large skiing area, easy access to airport, friendly atmosphere 

Park City is one of the largest ski resorts in the world, which means you can find any type of terrain imaginable here. This can allow your family to spread out or explore together and find something new each day you are here. 

On top of incredible terrain, the resort also boasts extensive dining and lodging options as well as plenty of shopping. It has a luxurious feel and a friendly atmosphere, making for an excellent combination for family ski trips. 

Park City is also close to Salt Lake City, making it is easily accessible from the airport. You can be skiing within hours after your arrival and don’t need to worry about a long car ride. 

There isn’t a vast amount of beginner terrain here, so it might not be the best choice for any family skiing for the first time. 

Additional Tips for Family Skiing 

If you are skiing with the entire family, there is a good chance you might get split up from one another. I always like to make a meet-up plan with my group to rendezvous at the lodge or base area at a specific time. 

Many of the resorts listed here offer discounts or deals for children. Be sure to check in with the resort to see if you can take advantage of any of these offers during your stay. You can save some money and keep the kids happy at the same time. 

Final Words

While you can take your family skiing anywhere you wish, the resorts listed here are the best options in the US. They all have fun terrain, good snow conditions, and an inviting atmosphere that skiers of all ages and ability levels will love. 

Family ski trips can be a lot of fun but also require a good amount of planning. Be sure to take care of the essentials like lodging and equipment rentals ahead of time so you can’t focus on skiing once you’re there.

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