It’s quiet. The hoards have left, and getting out and into that scenery is amazing. You really feel like it’s just you and nature. In the spring you can walk up to (and beyond if you’re dedicated) the snow line, not see a soul and simply enjoy being there. Returning back to town has its own special rewards too. St Gervais is a French working town, not a purpose built ski resort, so ”out of season” it remains alive. Quieter, French, and still alive. So those in the know get to embrace ‘La Vie Francaise’, something that it’s much harder to do during peak season, when the British, the Dutch, the Belgians and everyone else is in town.
As a father of two I feel a pang of guilt mentioning this next ‘bonus’, so this might not be for everyone, but another common theme during these discussions is the appreciation of the absence of crying children, youngsters bashing into the backs of chairs in restaurants and parents shouting at their ‘adorable’ offspring. For the tourist this has a secondary benefit. Coming in the spring or autumn is cheap as it’s during school term times. Properties are the cheapest to rent and owners can be very flexible with arrival and departure dates, flights and car hire are cheaper, and you can get a lane to yourself in the swimming pool.
If you’re without children, looking for a bargain and want the best of what the Alps has to offer it is well worth considering an ‘out of season’ break.