We have just come back from spending Christmas on a snowboarding holiday in Val Thorens, France. This is our first holiday since going vegan so really didn’t know what to expect. We booked the holiday before we were vegan so chose to go half board – I think we would have gone self catering if we had of been vegan at time of booking (but I’m glad we didn’t!).
We contacted the hotel (Val Chaviere Hotel) a few weeks before arriving telling them of our dietary requirements – they responded saying they would be able to make some food for us to cater for this which was great. Needless to say we didn’t expect much as France seems to be obsessed with dairy and meat.
We weren’t expecting to be fed particularly well so we took our smoothie maker with us for breakfast, this worked out really well, we found a supermarket that had soya milk and all the supermarkets there had a wide variety of fruits. In all honesty there wasn’t a lot we could eat from the hotel breakfast, but we expected this, as in Darren’s 11 years of being vegetarian he always struggles with continental breakfasts as it’s mostly bread available. So breakfast for us worked out really well, we have a really neat smoothie maker so didn’t take up much space in the luggage. If we hadn’t of taken this we could have eaten breakfast, but all that was available for us was bread and fruit.
Lunch on a snowboarding holiday is always tricky as you have to sort yourself out and you are usually at the top of a mountain. Food on the slopes is very expensive and there isn’t much variety. We try and avoid eating in the slopes-restaurants where possible so we had packed cous-cous with us, made this up in the morning and snacked on it for lunch. We also took a number of vegan granola bars which were great (O-bar, 9-Bar and some others I can’t remember the name of!). We did actually eat out a couple of days as we found that one of the restaurants, Face West, would make their pizza’s without cheese for us.
Finally our evening meals, prepared especially for us by the hotel, were incredible. On most evenings we were served a 4 course meal, we didn’t have a single meal repeated and the taste of the food was amazing. We really were pleasantly surprised. I was usually so excited to eat the food I forgot to take pictures, however I did remember on a number of occasions…
Our first Christmas as vegans was actually a really positive experience. The hotel made sure we ate just as well as everyone else. When we came home and spent time with our families we found that they had made a special effort too, we ordered a takeaway from Mint and Mustard which catered for vegans. Some of our presents included vegan cook-books as well as a number of items that my mother had researched that were vegan, including Jammy Dodgers, Starburst and Trek bars!
We also stumbled across these vegan magazines in WHSmiths…
So all in all, going on holiday and Christmas as a vegan has been great