Skiing & Other Holiday Ideas

A Brief History Of Skiing

Skiing is older than you might think; primitive yet effective wooden skis are said to have been used in various parts of the world in around 8,000 BC and they were used to safely navigate marshy terrain as well as snow and ice. Skis have also played an important role in warfare too; in 1716 the Great Northern War between Sweden, Norway and Russia was fought mostly on skis. The cambered ski was invented in the early 1800s, followed by laminated skis in the late 19th century, and aluminium and metal skis were perfected in the 1940s. Kitzbuehel in Austria claims to be the oldest Alpine ski resort, the first chairlift was operational in the 1930s, and the first artificial snow was invented and used in the US in the 1950s. The 1936 Winter Olympics helped to popularize the sport, as they featured several skiing events and from that point, skiing became increasingly popular all over the world. Today, an estimated 115 million people ski for fun or for competition all over the world.

The Appeal Of Skiing

It isn't hard to see the wide appeal of skiing - the sport is fun, fast paced and exciting, although it's also suitable for those who prefer their skiing action a little more sedate. You can ski for pleasure or to keep fit, and it's one of the few sports in which you don't need to compete against someone, and you can simply ski by yourself. Skiing also takes you to some of the world's most stunning mountain scenery and many skiers like the 'apres-ski', or socializing that goes along with the actual sport. But not everyone enjoys skiing, and if you fall in that category, there are plenty of other destinations waiting to be explored. Whether your destination is Penzance, Perth or portrush hotels can be found in every corner of the globe, although France, Spain, Florida and Eastern Europe are still top destinations for Brits going on holiday abroad.

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Most Popular Ski Destinations

Most people think of the Alps when they think of skiing, and the French Alps are still the most popular winter sports destination for UK skiers. Almost as popular is Austria, and Switzerland also attracts millions of ski enthusiasts every season. Many skiers like the traditional charm of the major European ski resorts, and the increase in the number of budget airlines has made most of them easy and cheap to visit. Scotland is a popular ski destination for anyone who wants to stay closer to home, and North America remains popular, especially with more transatlantic routes and generally lower airfare prices. Although the Alpine countries don't seem to be in any danger of losing their popularity, if you want to ski somewhere a little bit different, you actually have a surprising number of more unusual places to choose from. It's possible to book skiing packages to China, Japan, Australia as well as countries better known for warmer weather, such as Morocco and Turkey.