Weekend in Leysin-Les Mosses (VD)
Updated: Jan 31
What a fun packed weekend we had in Leysin-Les Mosses-La Lécherette ski resorts in the heart of the Vaud Alps.
We stopped briefly for lunch in Leysin a couple of years ago but we hadn't had the chance to explore properly…until last weekend!
We set off after school on Friday and arrived in the early evening at the Hotel Central Residence & Spa which is located not far from the cable car. Check-in was very efficient and the hotel has a nice buzz about it with lots of facilities and plenty to do. We were given connecting rooms with balconies and incredible views of the mountains, so we unpacked our bags and decided to have a pre-dinner drink in the bar. Within minutes the children had disappeared to explore the games area which gave me time to feed Elio in peace.
We had dinner reservations at La Fromagerie which is a short drive from the hotel (we considered walking but the return would be all uphill which would have been a bit too much for the children). Its good to know that taxi journeys in Leysin are all CHF10 so its easy to get about if you don’t want to drive - we didn’t use this option because we had Elio with us and his cumbersome pushchair so we decided to take our own car.
La Fromagerie is a really cool and cosy spot with rustic deco and a huge vat of cheese being prepared over an open fire. We were given a large table and settled down to choose our meals. Alba had a wonderful pasta dish (I really had to stop myself from eating it to save space for my own food :-)). Jude decided to have a classic fondue all to himself and Jean and I shared a delicious tomato fondue and sabayon for dessert which was great. After dinner we all gathered round to watch the cheese being removed from the heat of the fire and packed up. It was very cool and the children really enjoyed it.
Back at the hotel and the children were soon asleep (apart from Elio who has a rule of never sleeping on the first night we are away :-/)). We ate breakfast and got wrapped up for the cold before setting off for our first activity. We were heading to the car park near the Village des Neiges at the foot of the town and were lucky to find a space to park. You need to set off early to grab a parking space as it gets full very fast. Our goal was to follow the Renardeau trail and we were happy to try out the new skis we bought for Elios pushchair so that he could stay snug and warm in his chair. We all really enjoyed this walk and loved the feeling of the sun on our faces. It’s a loop which took about 45minutes and it was easy for the children to follow. Don't miss the deer park just behind the igloos :-).
Back at the car and we had timed it perfectly to meet Jean's uncle and aunt who were also in Leysin for the weekend, so we headed back to the hotel to drop off the car and walk to the cable car for the next stop on our programme which was revolving Kuklos restaurant. We got off the cable car at La Berneuse and it was a short walk from there to the restaurant where our table was reserved (good idea to book in advance as it gets very busy). It was gloriously sunny in the restaurant and there was plenty of choice for everyone on the menu plus some tempting daily specials. Jean and I couldn’t decide what to eat so I had a goulash soup and Jean had a terrine and we shared a plate of local charcuteries and cheeses, it was all really good. All their wines come from Vaud and the waiter was really friendly. The view is amazing and its an incredible spot for a meal with family or friends and on top of that the service was excellent.
After a leisurely lunch, we headed back to the hotel to get ourselves ready for the next activity of the day which was the tobogganing park. Here we split the teams and Elio stayed with Jean's Aunt Vero since we weren’t sure if Elio would be able to enjoy this activity, and the rest of us set off for the park. Its well organised according to set timeslots (again, its a good idea to book in advance) and we were soon picking up our helmets and inflatable rings to head up to the top of the slopes. We LOVED this! It was such a brilliant activity for the whole family and even Jude and Alba at 8 and 5 were soon confident enough to go down on their own! The pistes are organised according to age and "thrill factor" with two that our children could use. Jean and I also tried a couple for adults which were steeper and faster. It was just so much fun!
We had early dinner reservations that evening so we went back to the hotel after our tobogganing to collect Elio and Vero and went back down to the Villages des Neiges. Here we were doing something really special…dinner in an igloo!!! This is something I have been wanting to do for a very long time so I was so excited to see it on the programme. The interior was cosy and atmospheric which gentle lighting. We all picked the set menu of charcuteries, fondue and meringues with cream for dessert. It was a really magical experience and definitely worth trying if you get the chance. After our busy day, we decided to have a last drink in at the hotel bar before heading off to bed for an early night. Make sure you wear your ski clothes to the igloo as it gets cold after a while inside, notably for the children.
We were up bright and early again on Sunday and had eaten breakfast and packed our suitcases before 10 when we were meeting Jean’s uncle and Vero. The first mission on our agenda was a treasure hunt in Les Mosses where we stopped at the tourist office to get the map and off went. Important to note here that again the car parks were very full when we arrived so set off early if you need to find a parking space.
After a slow start we soon got the hang of the treasure hunt and the children were happy to race each other to find the next clues (Tip for the number 1: look at the windows outside the tourism office). The route took us along a really beautiful track which was manageable for all of us (including Elio in his pushchair with the skis), collecting clues as we went before we arrived at the restaurant where we were having lunch.
We were in a bit of a hurry before the next activity so we grabbed a quick bite at the Buvette de l'Arsat and fed Elio before setting off. Luckily the meeting point for the next item on our agenda wasn’t far away and we were soon at the departure point for the dog sledding activity. Run by SOS Chiens Polaires the loop lasts about 15 minutes so we had planned to do it in two groups. First up was Elio with Jean's aunt and Uncle and he really enjoyed the ride, although I think his favourite part was meeting the dogs afterwards. Somehow animals are always drawn to Elio and he was so happy to put his hands in their fur and let them lick his little fingers. Next up it was me and Jean with Jude and Alba. We got ourselves installed and were soon enjoying the ride through the snowy landscape in the sunshine. It’s clear that the dogs are well loved and cared for and they were all so friendly, it was a joy for the children to have another chance to stroke them at the end of the second ride. Alba got especially attached to the dogs and was talking about getting one as a pet all the way home.
All too soon, it was time for us to retrace our steps back to the tourist office where the children could collect a small prize before we got back in the car to head home.
A huge thank you to Vaud Promotion and Leysin Les Mosses for this wonderful, fun-packed family weekend. There is so much to do for non-skiers and everything is so easy to access, it was one of our easiest weekends in terms of logistics. The children loved every minute of it and have already asked us when we can go again.
Definitely add this destination to your winter bucket list.
Aigle Leysin Col des Mosses