Driving takes the best part of 10 hours from Calais (596 miles), unless you drive insanely fast. The green route shown on the roadmap is the best: follow signs to Lille, Reims, then Dijon, Lyon, St Exupéry airport, Chambery, Moutiers. Take Exit 40 at Moutiers, signed to Saint-Martin-de-Belleville.
The traffic police are handing out more and more on-the-spot speeding fines to UK drivers. If you are too far over the speed limit, they will confiscate your licence too. Watch out, in particular, for reduced speed limits on some sections of road, for example as you pass through Albertville on the A430.
The channel tunnel is quickest way to cross the English Channel, of course. If you don’t like queuing, or the hassle of arriving at the terminal at the right time, try the FlexiPlus upgrade – and remember to pick up your free snacks as you drive through.
You can also buy a télépéage tag these days. This allows you to drive through the péage without a ticket, and have your bank account debited directly. There are set-up costs of 30 euros or so, but the in-car electronic tag is a real time-saver.
Eurostar / SNCF. There is a Eurostar ski train once a week (Fri pm to Sat am) from Waterloo and Ashford during the ski season, all the way to Moutiers without changing. Otherwise you will need to change, probably Lille or Paris, and go down to Lyon. From Lyon you can take a train to Moutiers, then catch a coach, or hire a car. St Martin is a 30 minute drive from Moutiers.
Lyon, Geneva, and Chambéry are the main airports. Be warned that flights into, and out, of Chambéry can be delayed when the weather is poor – the geography of the airfield is seriously exciting. It’s a two and half hour drive from either Lyon or Geneva, an hour less from Chambery.
Altibus is a great website for finding and booking shuttle tickets from train stations and airports, to the main ski resorts. There are a lot of private companies offering bus transfers including 3 Vallee Transfers who offer a 24/7 service, incorporating Eurostar rendezvous at Moutiers, and Ben’s bus.
Finding the chalet
Chalet Adele is in Rue de Choumettes, as shown on the St Martin resort map. If you are new to the village, and driving up the road from Moutiers, it’s simplest to follow the signs into St Martin from the main road. Once you have turned off the main road, drive up to the T junction by the church and turn left. Carry on driving up the hill, and follow the road around to the right. As the road turns back to the left, you can see the turning into Rue des Choumettes, with a signpost to Les Chalets du Gypse. Turn into this road and follow it up to the end.