Hit the Slopes: 8 Amazing Places to Ski with Kids

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Your kids will totally master the pizza wedge after a lesson or two at the best ski resorts near Atlanta

Life in Atlanta doesn’t come with a lot of snow or snow days. But we can go snow tubing or even skiing within a day’s drive of the city limits (hint: if you need a winter activity that doesn’t require a drive, why not hit a local ice skating rink) when snow is what your kids crave. No need to hop on a plane for your next ski adventure because we rounded up eight ski resorts near Atlanta for the perfect winter road trip. Get ready to pack up all your winter gear—it’s time to check out the best places to go skiing near Atlanta.   


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1. Wolf Ridge Ski Resort

Just 20 miles north of Asheville, this North Carolina ski area includes 15 trails, a terrain park, four ski lifts, and the Wolf Ridge Tube Run. It’s one of the best ski resorts near Atlanta. Half-day and full-day passes range from $25 and up for adults and students, and equipment, ski bib, helmet, and locker rentals are available.

Lessons: This ski resort near Atlanta provides a top-rated Snow Sports School that offers lessons for beginners to intermediates in skiing and snowboarding. The instructors are trained to give you the highest quality instruction with your safety as a priority.

Drive time: 4 hours from Atlanta

578 Valley View Cir.
Mars Hill, NC
Online: skiwolfridgenc.com

Related: 10 Skiing Tricks to Memorize Before Hitting the Slopes

2. Appalachian Ski Mountain

Be one of the first skiers to experience North Carolina’s first RFID ticketing system. As a result, you’ll get a more streamlined and convenient skiing and riding experience. And take advantage of Snow Day rates for students, teachers, and staff of all local schools when schools are canceled or released early due to snow. In addition, just one cold night allows the snowmakers to create fresh powdery snow. Tickets start at $25 for students. 

Lessons: Join one of the small classes grouped by similar ability in a fun, supportive, social atmosphere. Group lessons are for beginner or first-time skiers and snowboarders only. Stronger skiers will learn a ton in one of the more advanced training sessions. 

Drive time: 5 hours from Atlanta 

940 Ski Mountain Rd.
Blowing Rock, NC
Online: appskimtn.com

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3. Sapphire Valley Ski Resort

Sapphire Valley Ski Resort is one of the best ski resorts near Atlanta. It offers affordable snow sports opportunities as part of a 5700-acre, four-season resort. With a moderate slope fit for intermediate skiers and ideal for youth and beginners—along with the Frozen Falls Tube Park—Ski Sapphire Valley is a convenient place to go skiing near Atlanta. Opened in 1964, a renovated Base Lodge Park, Fire Pit, and the new Slopeside Tavern are excellent options for family skiing near Atlanta. Day lifts start at $45 for children and adults. Clothing (ski bibs and coats) and equipment rental are available.

Lessons: This resort has a great learning slope with plenty of room, a gentle slope and easy to use moving carpet lift. Sign up for group training or splurge for a one-on-one lesson. 

Drive time: 2 hours, 45 minutes from Atlanta

127 Sapphire Valley Rd.
Sapphire, NC
Online: skisapphirevalley.com

4. Sugar Mountain & Beech Mountain

The sisters of North Carolina Skiing, Sugar Mountain is the largest ski area in North Carolina, with 115 acres of skiable terrain. At the same time, Beech Mountain’s claim to fame is its personality (think quaint and Southern). Although both are excellent ski resorts near Atlanta with options for beginner to intermediate skiers, Sugar has the steepest vertical drop, but Beech boasts a higher elevation. The good news? Both locations offer alternatives to the slopes when the kiddos cash out (tubing, ice skating, snowball fighting). Half-day lift tickets start at $39 for adults, $27 for kids, and kids 4 and under get free lift tickets. Rental equipment is available, as is ski and snowboard school.

Lessons: The Sugar Bear Ski School is designed to teach skiing to children ages 5-10. All programs include slope tickets, rental equipment, helmet, lessons, lunch (full-day only), and supervision. In addition to lessons, Beech Mountain offers childcare so the adults can enjoy skiing, too. 

Drive time: 4.5 hours from Atlanta

Sugar Mountain
1009 Sugar Mountain Dr.
Sugar Mountain, NC
Online: skisugar.com

Beech Mountain
1007 Beech Mountain Pkwy.
Beech Mountain, NC
Online: beechmountainresort.com

Related: Cozy Up! 13 Winter Cabins for When You Need to Get Away

5. Wintergreen Ski Resort

Head East, and pick one of the 26 runs at Wintergreen that provide a bit of fun for everyone, along with Virginia’s largest tubing park. No wonder it’s one of our favorite places to go skiing near Atlanta with kids. A 100-foot-high massive hill lets riders hit speeds of 30 miles per hour on their way down. A separate ticket is required to ride here. Lift tickets start at $66, with rentals and equipment available. View the snowmaking progress by checking out its webcams.

Lessons: The Wintergreen instructors are waiting to help you learn how to ski or snowboard near Atlanta or to build on your existing skills. Choose from one and two-hour private lessons or our half and full-day kids’ camps.

Drive time: 7.5 hours from Atlanta

Route 664
Wintergreen, VA
Online: wintergreenresort.com

6. Cataloochee Ski Resort

Cataloochee, the oldest ski resort in North Carolina, boasts fourteen different trails and runs on twenty-five acres about a half-hour west of Asheville. Three-quarters of the runs are either beginner or intermediate, and when the Littles get tired of the slopes, you can head into Maggie Valley for more classic family fun. Half-day lift tickets start at $47 for adults and $37 for youth, and full-day, half-day and night passes are available. 

Lessons: This resort’s training is so popular that they only offer first-come-first-served group lesson slots. You can reserve a private lesson with a well-trained instructor if you’d prefer to book ahead.  

Drive time: 3 hours, 15 minutes from Atlanta

1080 Ski Lodge Rd.
Maggie Valley, NC
Online: cataloochee.com

7. Ober Gatlinburg

One of the closest options to Atlanta, Ober Gatlinburg’s offerings include skiing, wildlife encounters (black bears, river otters, birds of prey, and other regional wildlife), tubing, ice skating, and plenty more in the town of Gatlinburg, just down the mountain tram. Those in the know suggest staying in downtown Gatlinburg or renting a chalet nearby and plan to save a little time to check out the Wilderness at the Smokies indoor water amusement park or even Dollywood, weather permitting. Keep in mind, due to the high demand for ski and snowboard rental equipment, Ober will suspend rental sales when they reach capacity (before regular closing times).

Lessons: Get the most out of your Ober Mountain winter experience by learning from the best. Learn the skills of gliding, slowing down, turning, and stopping, so you can safely capture the thrill and excitement of the sport.

Drive time: 4 hours from Atlanta

1339 Ski Mountain Rd.
Gatlinburg, TN
Online: obergatlinburg.com

Related: Snow Much Fun! 7 Snow Tubing Spots That Aren’t Too Far

8. Snowshoe Mountain

The most similar to Rocky Mountain skiing of the resorts mentioned above, Snowshoe Mountain hits the top ten spots to ski in the East. Still, it is also the farthest from Atlanta (nearly nine hours). However, those brave enough to make the pilgrimage with little ones in tow will undoubtedly be rewarded. Ski lift tickets vary in price by the date and age of the skier. So book your tickets in advance, as they’ve limited the number of tickets available, and many dates sell out.

Lessons: Personalized instruction is given to skiers of all ages and abilities in group and private lessons. Skis, boots, poles, and snowboards are available for rent in the Ski Lodge.

Drive time: 9 hours from Atlanta

10 Snowshoe Dr.
Snowshoe, WV
Online: snowshoemtn.com

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