Fast, agile, occasionally mad and reckless, snowboarders are the acrobats of the snow who are increasingly populating the slopes to the amazement (and sometimes concern) of winter sports lovers.
It’s an engaging and growing sport to which sections of the pistes are increasingly being allocated for tricks and freestyle practice: snowparks.
But which are the best in the world? Here are the top six:
Situated in the Sondrio area, this snowpark is rated the best in Italy.
It has 5 different runs and an XL course designed for the most daring skiers and professionals.
The Mottolino Snowpark often hosts national and international competitions.
Laax has won an award for being the location with the best snowpark in Europe. Laax boasts an Olympic-size jump: the new superpipe at NoName Park is the longest in the world at 200 meters in length. There are 90 obstacles scattered around the area’s 4 parks (as well as the NoName there is also the Curnius Park, the Ils Plauns Park and the Beginner Park). Laax also hosts an indoor freestyle facility.
This locality in the Austrian Alps has always been a go-to place for riders, with its Nightpark which stays open until 9.30 pm. Saalbach Snowpark is mainly for expert riders but also offers facilities for intermediate riders and beginners such as the Learn-to-ride Park.
The nine parks within this locality cover an area of around 40 hectares, offering riders more than 200 possible combinations. The Canyon Lodge Family Park has small obstacles and a pipe with 3 metre-high walls, while Unbound Park offers larger facilities and a pipe with walls of nearly 7 metres.
Situated in Hokkaido Prefecture, northern Japan, this locality is known as the Saint-Mortiz of the Land of the Rising Sun. Stomping Ground is the ski resort’s first snowpark and stands out for a large airbag that can be used to try new stunts. But be careful, the mattress isn’t always inflated… check before trying it!
Mayrhofen manages to combine relaxation and a party vibe within a charming rural village that has remained true to its traditional Tyrolean roots. It has also recently acquired a reputation as the coolest snowpark in Austria.