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Sierra Nevada

Sierra Nevada Ski Resort Guide

Sierra Nevada, Spain

Rated: 4/5 (from 6 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Intermediates, Beginners, Snowboarders, Snowfall and Apres-Ski!
Highest Lift3,300m
Resort Height2,102m
 Nearest AirportsGranada and Malaga
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Sierra Nevada

Spain's highest lifts and resort, and site of the 1996 Ski World Championships following a huge investment in infrastructure improvements. Purpose built in the 1960s and '70s, facilities include underground car-parking and a high altitude training camp.


The Spanish ski resort of Sierra Nevada is at an altitude of 2,102m.

Sierra Nevada has direct access to 79 marked pistes, served by a total of 24 ski lifts.

The ski resort itself is at 2,102m, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With ski lifts as high as 3,300m, skiing and snowboarding is assured throughout the season.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Sierra Nevada?

There is currently no significant snow in the 7-day forecast for Sierra Nevada.

See our long-range Snow Forecast for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Sierra Nevada

Ski Area Stats

Sierra Nevada Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
Green Pistes
Beginner Runs
Cross Country
Total Length
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts


Sierra Nevada Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift3,300m
Resort Altitude (Sierra Nevada)2,102m
Lowest Piste2,100m
Max Vertical1,200m

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Sierra Nevada
Expert Skiers
Intermediate Skiers

Sierra Nevada Overview

Generally regarded as Spain's top ski resort, Sierra Nevada stands alone in the Penibetic mountain range in Andalucia, far from the country's other 30 or so ski areas, the majority of which are located 'up' in the Pyrenées. Once known as 'Sol-y-Nieve' or 'Sun and snow', the resort endeavours to offer the best of both worlds - sunshine and snow - the combination of latitude, altitude and a state-of-the-art snow making system usually allow it to pull this seemingly impossible trick off successfully. It is Europe´s southernmost ski resort, wonderfully close to Spain's famous Mediterranean beach resorts but located by the Iberian peninsula´s highest summits.

Sierra Nevada's 'resort´ village', Pradollano is one of Europe's highest, at an altitude of 2,100 meters. The resort is famous for staging the World Alpine Skiing Championships in 1996 after the event had to be cancelled when it was due to be staged there a year before because of lack of snow. Since then the resort has invested still further in its snow-making system, considered Spain´s largest and one of Europe's best such facilities. Even in the case of a complete lack of snowfall, Sierra Nevada can now guarantee the opening of the resort thanks to its excellent snow-making system. The number of guns have doubled, to 200 cannons, 13 low pressure and 187 high pressure units producing nearly 2000 cubic meters of snow per hour on 14 runs.

The village area has been greatly upgraded with new alpine-style buildings and environmental improvement scheme. This is good news as the resort was a rather characterless mix of concrete rectangular blocks during its first decades of operation. One of the best assets of the resort is a remarkable underground parking complex with a capacity of 2,880 vehicles. Another is the excellent indoor sports facility providing high altitude athletic training. The resort's Pradollano village offers a variety of services including quality hotels in a range of categories which include jacuzzi, squash, workout areas, sauna, indoor swimming pools, convention and meeting rooms, ski lodges, restaurants featuring local Andalusian and international cuisine, sundecks, night clubs, pubs and bars, discotheques etc. There is also a new medical centre, child day-care centre, banks with ATM´s, supermarkets, sports and fashion boutiques.

The resort works closely with Spain's Environmental Agency and the University of Granada has designed a complete programme to protect and preserve Sierra Nevada´s extraordinary wealth, including its geomorphology, landscape, flora and fauna. The area was declared a Biospherical Reserve by UNESCO in 1986. More than two thousand trees of different sizes have been introduced or transplanted throughout the village area.

Sierra Nevada was the first European ski resort to introduce the 'green ski pass' to its environmental programme. Three per cent of income received from the sale of ski passes goes towards ecological matters.


Sierra Nevada´s ski courses have been designed by European and American specialists. Virtually all well above the treeline, they are mostly long wide trails over a healthy vertical drop of 1,300 meters.

Beginners can make their first turns on the nursery slopes by the Borreguiles mountain restaurants. Three enthusiastic ski schools operate on the Borreguiles beginners area, Escuela Española de Esqui, Escuela Oficial de Esqui and Escuela Internacional.

For intermediate and advanced skier's the ski area's highlights are undoubtedly the courses which were those used in the World Alpine Ski Championships of 1996. Although the options are not unlimited because this is only a medium sized ski area there are some exciting runs on the Monachil area as well as the steep descent from the top of Valeta II back down to Borreguiles - one of Spain's toughest runs. The resort is also proud to offer all manner of snow sports in addition to traditional Alpine downhill and 'boarding. These include cross-country skiing, artistic skiing (ballet, jumps, moguls), telemark skiing, trekking and adventure skiing. Sierra Nevada also provides ski rental services.

Located in the Al-Andalus upper gondola station is the Rossignol Test Centre where one will find sunscreen, sunglasses, ski rental, a checkroom for storing personal objects and the famous Rossignol brand skis.

A skier information centre is located in Borreguiles in the control tower (Torre de Control), where the ski area crew may be notified in case of emergency.

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.


Sierra Nevada is one of Spain´s pioneer resorts for snowboarding. The main run for 'boarders is the Tubo de Borreguiles - exclusively for 'boarders it incorporate's the resort's halfpipe.

The majority of the ski lifts are chairs and gondolas so this is a particularly easy ski area, by European standards, to get about in.

Off the slopes the resort has specialised snowboarding shops and schools.

Location and Map

Where is Sierra Nevada?

This ski resort is in Alpujarras, Granada, Spain.


Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Sierra Nevada is Granada, 60 minutes drive away.

Malaga airport is also within three hours drive.

Granada is just one hours drive away, in good driving conditions, so you can be on the piste quickly.


Ski Lift Capacity

The 24 ski lifts are able to uplift 31,965 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, on 30km of ski runs, with 25 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Sierra Nevada open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates, but hope to soon.

Usual opening is early December (Usually opens last weekend in November or first in December depending on how the year falls), and usual closing is Early May.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Sierra Nevada, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Sierra Nevada Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Sierra Nevada

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Aprés Ski

Sierra Nevada has a great reputation for après and also for late night action. Indeed the norm is to relax until dinner at 9'ish and then for the bars and discothèques to get busy after midnight, and remain so through to 6 or 7am.

Popular bars (from a choice of about 30) include Crescendo, Vaya, and Chimenea. Most popular of the two night clubs is Sierra Nevada 53.

Sierra Nevada