Skiing in Chile and Argentina began with the building of the Central Trans-Andean railway from Valparaiso to Mendoza around the turn of the last century.As no roads then accessed the Uspallata pass, near the present-day resort of Portillo, the Norwegian and British engineers and workers contracted to build the railway were forced to ascend (and descend) on skis.
In the 1930s, the first ski clubs in Chile constructed mountain refugios, and by 1946 Portillo could boast the continent's first chairlift. Skiing spread quickly throughout the country, though operations remained modest until the 1980s, when a number of Chilean ski resorts improved lifts, services, and other infrastructure to world-class levels.
The explora Hotel is located just outside San Pedro de Atacama - an oasis town in the north of Chile, near the Bolivian border.
This is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful national parks, famous all around the world for its spectacular scenery, fauna and adventure activities.
South America's oldest and best-known ski area is perched 2850m above a collection of blue huts housing border troops in a remote and stunning valley.
For skiers and riders in search of the more offbeat face of the Chilean Andes without sacrificing quality, this spa resort - which resembles a little Swiss resort from the 1970s - best combines the two.
Valle Nevado, the closest resort to Santiago, bears a startling resemblance to Les Arcs.
COURMAYEUR EASTER SKI WEEKEND OFFER
4 nights B&B at the 3* Hotel Bouton d'Or, scheduled flights and car hire from £598 per person
4 days skiing and only 1 day out of the office
Contact Momentum Ski on
020 7371 9111