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Soll - A beginner’s skiing experience

By Daniel Q. Annoh

Daniel Q. Annoh on a beginner's skiing experience in Soll, Austria

We booked our first ski experience through Crystal Ski, A reputable UK ski operator. From arrival in Austria we were greeted by amazing, helpful and kind Crystal reps. The Crystal reps made the airport transfer seamless, and sorted out all the things you needed to begin your holiday in the picturesque S?ll. Despite being farmlands and theme parks during the summer, the snow-capped mountains depicted accurately, what one’s dream of as a perfect ski resort would look like. The scenery coupled with the Austrian hospitality, made S?ll a top destination even before your beginner skis are strapped to your legs.

On arrival at the Chalet Mounty you are once again greeted by an even more wide-grinned Crystal representative who

shows you to your room and settles you in before pointing you to the direction of your ski hire.

As a total beginner, one could expect complications with the processes involved in hiring your skis and probably most importantly attaining the right ski boots. The Austrian staff in the ski hire station were very helpful and their excellent English meant they could give you valuable information on how to fit boots so as to avoid any undesired pain that could ruin a skiing holiday. Meals provided in the Chalet Mounty present an opportunity to make friends with others in the chalet. We were served with a well-portioned and tasty three-course meal full of Austrian flavours.

Daniel with happy skiers enjoying a glass of Gluwein, a famous Austrian drink, affectionately called "liquid Radox"

The next day signified the beginning of ski school and so began our ski experience. The ski instructors all lined up with vibrant smiles, which each guest soon grew accustomed to in Soll, despite only being there for one day. This was accompanied by a lot of people, all eager to learn. You are put into groups based on your skill level and randomly assigned a ski instructor. A maximum group number of eight persons made for ideal learning condition. The first day also meant the first venture into the 279 Kilometres of Skiwelt ski runs with its 70 beautiful and well-priced restaurant and bars. The cost of living was pocket-friendly; one could spend as little as five Euros on a meal, and still feel like he or she had just taken part their first ever food eating contest. The portion sizes are not the only thing to rave about; there was also the simple cuisine with substantial flavour and choice.

The experienced ski instructors’ methods of teaching led to a steep learning curve, grooming beginners to face red runs by the third day, a remarkable feat that is unheard of in many other resort ski schools. The rate of progression and advancement in your ski level as a beginner really motivates you and keeps you constantly interested. If you feel you are progressing faster than others or even can’t match the pace of your group; one can effortlessly move between groups to learn at the right level. The ski school takes you across most of the peaks on your skiwelt map including Brixen im Thale and Scheffau two resorts with breathtaking views.

I would recommend the entire beginner's programme to all who have been longing to ski but have not yet had the courage to do so; and this goes for the ski school and runs; as well as the après-ski options on and off the mountain. It is important to add that it is also a very cost-effective destination making it an ideal choice for a first-time skier in comparison to other ski destinations in France or Switzerland.

Soll in Austria is a complete destination for its ski instruction and ski-related activities but the lack of spa facilities is felt; nevertheless, I can probably say that Gluwein, a famous Austrian drink, affectionately called "liquid Radox", by the visiting tourists drink made up for the missing spa., Gluwein is a hot wine that relaxes the tired muscles and doubles up as a perfect drink during a break in skiing or even to end you adventures.

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