Mount Hotham vs Falls Creek: Which is Best for Skiing?


Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek are two of the major ski resorts in Victoria, Australia, but which is the best? In this article I’ll compare them in-depth so you can decide which to visit.

Mt Hotham vs Falls Creek

Falls Creek is a larger ski resort compared to Mt. Hotham. Falls Creek is better for beginners and intermediates, whereas Mt. Hotham is the best option for advanced skiers and snowboarders. Mt. Hotham has the best nightlife and Falls Creek is more suitable for families.

Aspect of the ResortBest Resort
Largest Skiable AreaFalls Creek
Most Suitable For Beginners Falls Creek
Most Suitable For IntermediatesFalls Creek
Most Suitable For ExpertsMt. Hotham
Best for ParkFalls Creek
Least CrowdedFalls Creek
Snow QualityMt. Hotham
Best NightlifeMt. Hotham
Best for FamiliesFalls Creek
Easiest to Travel To By CarFalls Creek
Easiest to Travel to By PlaneMt. Hotham
Best for FamiliesFalls Creek
Mt. Hotham vs Falls Creek for skiing
Mt. Hotham

Skiable Terrain and Experience

Falls Creek is a larger ski resort compared to Mt. Hotham with 1112 acres of skiable terrain compared 790 acres. Falls Creek has 92 runs whereas Mt. Hotham has 72 runs. Mt. Hotham has two terrain parks and Falls Creek has 4 terrain parks. The base elevation and summit elevation are very similar on both mountains.

For Beginners

Both Falls Creek and Mount Hotham are good options for beginners and have a decent 17% and 20% share of beginner runs, respectively.

The beginner terrain on Mount Hotham is located high up on the mountain above the village, which does mean that you won’t find many more advanced skiers in this area, however the area is very exposed which means it’s not very reliable. In Falls Creek the beginner terrain is lower down on the mountain.

However, one notable difference is that Falls Creek has more lower-intermediate level terrain so can be good for skiers who are relatively inexperienced but are looking to move up a step.

For Intermediates

Falls Creek has a lot more intermediate terrain compared to Mt. Hotham. For lower-level intermediate skiers and snowboarders, Falls Creek offers better terrain. However, for more experienced riders, Mt. Hotham is good as it offers more of challenge.

For Experts

For advanced skiers and snowboarders, Mt. Hotham is a better option compared to Falls Creek. Mt. Hotham’s is steeper and its skiable area is made up of 40% advanced/ expert terrain and typically attracts more experienced skiers. Falls Creek is okay for experts, but is best suited to beginners and intermediates.

Which is Less Crowded?

Both resorts can get busy during the weekends, however Falls Creek tends to feel the least crowded. Some lifts in Mt. Hotham can get very busy, whereas the queuing time is usually a bit less in Falls Creek. Both resorts are quieter compared to the other major Victorian resort, Mt Buller.

Check out the table below for a full comparison of the Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek mountain stats.

StatisticsMt. HothamFalls Creek
Skiable Terrain790 acres1112 acres
Vertical Drop395 m360 m
Base Elevation1450 m1500 m
Summit Elevation1961 m1842 m
Total Runs7292
Green Circle Trails (Beginner)20%17%
Blue Square Trails (Intermediate)40%60%
Black/ Double Black Diamond Trails (Expert)40%23%
Longest Run2.5 km3 km
Terrain Parks24
Lifts1314
Lift Operating Hours8:30-17:008:30-17:00
Night Skiing AvailableWed and SatWed and Sat
Mt. Hotham vs Falls Creek mountain statistics

Snow Quality

The snow on both mountains is fairly reliable and both areas experience a similar average snowfall/ month and base depth. The powder tends to be a bit better at Mt Hotham and the elevation is a big higher which helps slightly as it is usually colder.

MonthSnowfall Mt. HothamSnowfall Falls CreekBase Depth Mt. HothamBase Depth Falls Creek
June11″10″12″12″
July20″21″22″26″
August21″19″38″42″
September8″6″32″35″
October0.4″0.5″15″20″
Data refers to averages. Data from onthesnow.com
Mt. Hotham

Ski Season Dates

Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek both typically open for the ski season in mid-June and close in early October. Please see the table below for the previous ski season dates.

Ski SeasonMt. Hotham OpenFalls Creek OpenMt. Hotham CloseFalls Creek Close
202211th Jun4th Jun2nd Oct2nd Oct
202112th Jun12th Jun2nd Oct2nd Oct
20206th Jun6th Jun8th Jul*4th Oct
20198th Jun8th Jun6th Oct6th Oct
20189th Jun9th Jun7th Oct7th Oct
Mt. Hotham vs Falls Creek ski season lengths and dates. *closed earlier than typical

Not sure when to plan your ski trip for? Check out my complete guide to the best time to ski in Australia for a comparison of all the months.

Comparing Villages and Apr├Ęs Ski

Hotham’s village is near the mountain’s summit at an elevation of 1750 meters which makes it unique in comparison to most other ski resorts. Falls Creek’s village is located at the base and is widely regarded as one of the prettiest ski villages in Australia.

In terms of the atmosphere, Mt. Hotham has a more bustling and lively feel with better nightlife and is usually suits younger people. Falls Creek feels more relaxed and is better suited to families.

Mount Hotham

  • 13 dining/ drinking locations
  • 6 sports shops
  • 3 supermarkets
  • A medial centre and physio
  • 2 spas
  • Childcare

Falls Creek

  • 27 dining/ drinking locations
  • 6 sports shops
  • 1 supermarket
  • A medical centre
  • A spa
  • Childcare
Winter ActivitiesMt. HothamFalls Creek
Kat TourYesNo
BiathlonYesNo
SnowshoeingYesYes
TobogganingYesYes
Dog Sled ToursYesNo
SnowmobilingYesYes
HelicopterYesYes
TubingNoYes
Falls Creek

Location and Traveling

Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek are both located in Victoria and are north-east of Melbourne. It takes approximately 2.5 hours to drive between the resorts. Here is some information on how to get to either ski resort.

By Plane

The closest international airport to Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek is Tullamarine Airport in Melbourne. The transfer time from the airport is very similar to both resorts. The closest regional airport to Falls Creek is Mt Beauty Airport in Bright which takes approximately 1 hour. Mt. Hotham has its own regional airport which is 25 minutes away from the alpine resort.

AirportTime to Mt. HothamTime to Falls Creek
Mount Beauty (Bright) Airport1 hour 30 mins1 hour
Mt Hotham Airport25 min2 hours 10 mins
Wangaratta Airport2 hours2 hours 15 mins
Tullamarine Airport (Melbourne)4 hours 25 mins4 hours 35 mins
Nearest airports and transfer times to Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek

By Car

Both resorts are a similar drive time from major locations in Victoria. However, the drive to Falls Creek is a bit easier compared to Mt. Hotham.

LocationTime to Mt. HothamTime to Falls Creek
 Bright1 hour 1 hour 30 mins 
Mt. Beauty1 hour 30 mins1 hour
Albury Wodonga2 hours 10 mins2 hours
Melbourne4 hours 30 mins4 hours 50 mins
Canberra6 hours5 hours 30 mins
Sydney8 hours7 hours 35 mins
   
Approximate Drive time to Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek Alpine Resorts

Parking at both resorts costs pretty much the same amount.

  • Falls Creek day parking permit is $55
  • Mt Hotham day parking permit is $56

Proximity to Other Ski Resorts

Mt. Hotham is located very closely to Dinner Plain Alpine Resort which is a very small location that has 75 acres of skiable terrain and one ski lift. Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek are a similar distance to the other major ski resorts in Victoria and New South Wales.

Ski ResortTime to Mt. HothamTime to Falls Creek
Dinner Plain15 min2 hours 15 mins
Mt Buller3 hours 45 mins 4 hours
 Mount Baw Baw 4 hours 45 mins5 hours 45 mins
Thredbo4 hours 30 mins4 hours 30 mins
Perisher5 hours 15 mins5 hours 15 mins
Approximate Drive time to Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek Alpine Resorts
Falls Creek

Accommodation Options and Price

Both resorts offer fantastic ski-in-ski-out accommodation. In Falls Creek, most of the accommodation is ski-in-ski-out, whereas in Mt. Hotham you also have the option of staying in Dinner Plain which is 15 minutes away.

Mt Hotham Accommodation

  • 26 lodges
  • 13 chalets
  • 21 apartment complexes

Falls Creek Accomodation:

  • 4 hotels
  • 4 lodges
  • 13 apartment complexes

Lift Tickets and Equipment Rental

Lift tickets are the same price at Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek:

  • Adult weekday = $148
  • Adult weekend = $185
  • Child weekday = $81
  • Child weekend = $102

There are several places you can rent ski and snowboard equipment in Mt. Hotham and Falls Creek and the prices vary between them. Please see the table below for the average prices.

Equipment Rental (Daily)Mt. HothamFalls Creek
Ski Package Demo$84$85
Ski Package Performance$74$65
Ski Package Sport$64$50
Ski Package Junior$64$50
Helmet$15$20
Mt. Hotham vs Falls Creek ski equipment rental prices

Prices quoted above are based on the most recent ski season at the time of writing and are subject to change. Based on daily rates when buying in-advance online for tickets and on the day for rentals (better value for money offers are available when booking for multiple days). Prices are in Australian dollars. Please check the resort websites for up to date prices.

Which Resort is Best?

Heather

I have been a keen skier for a number of years, skiing in different locations around the world, and have a real passion for snow sports. My favourite ski resorts are Lake Louise in Canada and Obergurgl-Hochgurgl in Austria.

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