This season's hottest destination for cold weather fun is undoubtedly Slovakia. With breath-taking scenery, top class skiing and snowboarding conditions, and Alpine standards at low prices, this beautiful, mountainous country is attracting holidaymakers and serious winter sports fans in equal measure. Here's just a few reasons to make Slovakia your next destination.
Brand new, top class facilities
For anyone who visited the region just a few years ago, you'll be amazed at the transformation. Millions of euros of investment in Slovakia's ski resorts means new luxurious cabins, incredible restaurants, fantastic facilities and a solid infrastructure. This investment is already paying off, with Slovakia's biggest ski resort, Jasna in the Liptov region, taking the prize for the best upcoming resort at the 2014 World Snow Awards in London, and boasting a five month snow guarantee every year. The Times newspaper also named Slovakia's High Tatras as one of the world's best ski holiday destinations in advance of the 2014/15 season.
Great value for money
Whilst Slovakia is making huge strides in popularity, it still presents exceptional value for money. This is most noticeable in the bars and restaurants, where you'll be paying just a third of the prices you'd find in equivalent French resorts. In a top mountain restaurant, you can expect to pay the equivalent of less than £2 for a beer, and a two course meal with a drink will cost not much more than £10. Lift passes are also cheaper than most Alpine resorts.
Slovakia has certainly benefited from new, convenient and cheap travel connections. Budget airline Wizzair flies four times a week from London Luton airport to Tatry Poprad. With flight times of just 2 hours 20 minutes, and quick transfer times of just 10 minutes to High Tatras and 40 minutes to Jasna resort, you'll be on the slopes in no time.
Something for everyone
Slovakia's ski destinations are not all about the snow. With a wealth of top quality nightclubs, incredible local cuisine and other attractions, there's lots to do off the slopes, as well as on them. There are wonderful water parks, including Tatralandia Aquapark and Gino Paradise Besenova in Liptov, and plenty of relaxation opportunities in thermal pools, saunas and spas. Plus, for those wanting to explore the region or just soak up its incredible scenery, gorgeous chocolate-box mountain views are par for the course in Slovakia, and easily rival anything you'll see in the Alps.
Where to go
The biggest resort is Jasna in the Low Tatras, within the region of Liptov. The more northern High Tatras are the most visited mountains in Slovakia. Both areas feature immaculate skiing and snowboarding conditions and world class facilities.