"For families looking for fun and safe activities this winter, there are plenty of options to play in the snow - and this list shows it.”

By Alison Fox
December 01, 2020
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Nothing says winter like a day on the slopes, an inherently socially-distanced, outdoor activity perfect for the whole family. But some mountains are more kid-centric than others, which is why Yelp created a list of the most family-friendly mountain resorts in North America to help skiers and snowboarders of all ages plan their next adventure.

The all-time list of family-friendly ski destinations ranked mountains throughout the U.S. and Canada using keywords like “family,” “kids,” and “children” to identify them, Yelp shared with Travel + Leisure. The mountains were then ranked by several factors, including the total volume and rating of the reviews, with only three included per state for geographic diversity.

"For families looking for fun and safe activities this winter, there are plenty of options to play in the snow - and this list shows it,” Tara Lewis, a Yelp trend expert, told T+L, but warned “Knowing this ski season will be different from past [ones], we encourage families to check business listings on Yelp for current information and COVID-19 safety precautions."

skiers wait in line under a lift
Loveland Ski Area
| Credit: Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty

At June Mountain Ski Area in California, which came in as the top family-friendly mountain and is set to open Dec. 19, children 12 and under ski for free on most days throughout the season and a fun deer mascot named Bucky roams the slopes, saying hi to kids of all ages (kids can even get their own set of free Bucky antlers).

From treating kids to a sweet, fried BeaverTail after a long day of skiing in Quebec’s Tremblant (one of the East Coast’s best ski mountains) to Montana’s Big Sky Resort where 300 runs provide opportunities for skiers of all ages to test their limits, the mountains on Yelp’s list offer plenty of variety and fun activities on the slopes and beyond. 

Ski season will definitely look different in 2020 -- with masks, reservations, and social distancing the new norm -- but many mountains are modifying their operations to open up for the year. 

This is the full list of Yelp’s top 25 family-friendly North American ski resorts:

  1. June Mountain Ski Area (June Lake, Calif.)
  2. Whistler Blackcomb (Whistler, BC, Canada)
  3. Loveland Ski Area (Georgetown, Colo.)
  4. Perfect North Slopes (Lawrenceburg, Ind.)
  5. Wolf Creek Ski Area (Pagosa Springs, Colo.)
  6. Mt Rose Ski Tahoe (Reno, Nev.)
  7. Big Sky Resort (Big Sky, Mont.)
  8. Deer Valley Resort (Park City, Utah)
  9. Red River Ski Area (Red River, N.M.)
  10. Sugar Bowl Ski Resort (Norden, Calif.)
  11. Diamond Peak Ski Resort (Incline Village, Nev.)
  12. Mt Shasta Ski Park (McCloud, Calif.)
  13. Pats Peak Ski Area (Henniker, N.H.)
  14. Mont Tremblant Ski Resort (Mont-Tremblant, QC, Canada)
  15. Sunlight Mountain Resort (Glenwood Springs, Colo.)
  16. Killington Ski Area (Killington, Vt.)
  17. Alta Ski Area (Alta, Utah)
  18. Ski Santa Fe (Santa Fe, N.M.)
  19. Shawnee Peak (Bridgton, Maine)
  20. Gunstock Mountain Resort (Gilford, N.H.)
  21. Hoodoo Ski Area (Sisters, Ore.)
  22. Bryce Resort (Basye, Va.)
  23. Crystal Mountain (Thompsonville, Mich.)
  24. Whitefish Mountain Resort (Whitefish, Mont.)
  25. Big White Ski Resort (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she’s not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.