Experience the rarefied air of Europe as you trek the Alps from France to Italy and Switzerland along the Tour du Mont Blanc. This challenging hiking circuit will reward you with mesmerizing views of glaciers, steep valleys, and, of course, Mont Blanc itself. During this 10-day Chamonix trekking tour you will travel across high passes and through Alpine meadows, recharging at night with delicious mountain cuisine in simple refuges. Challenge yourself to conquer one of the world’s premiere hiking routes, uncovering the alpine heart of Europe on this incredible active adventure.
Arrive at any time. Meet your CEO at 17:00. As this is a challenging active trek, demanding good fitness and equipment, it is very important that you arrive on time for this briefing to learn more about the route and to hear your leader’s recommendations on equipment. Please make every effort to arrive on time. If you are delayed, your CEO will leave you a message detailing where they can be contacted and when to meet later in the evening or early the following morning.
This evening is your first opportunity to try out some of the best Alpine specialities in a typical restaurant, such as Cheese fondue, Tartiflette or Raclette accompanied with some famous “Vin de Savoie” wine.
Stay: Pointe Isabelle (or similar)
Travel to Les Houches and enjoy a 24km (14 mi) hike through the stunning countryside to Les Contamines and savour a delicious dinner in the evening.
You set off this morning after breakfast for your first day of hiking. You’ll take the bus to the village of Les Houches, where you begin with a cable car ride to Bellevue. From here on a clear day you’ll enjoy great views of the Chamonix Valley and the Mont Blanc Range, before beginning your hike to Les Contamines.
Hike past the Bioniassay glacier and the rolling slopes of Col du Tricot (if weather permits,) afterwards descend into the Valley of Les Contamines-Montjoie. Then climb up along an old Roman ridge and past an original Roman bridge. Arrive to the Gîte in a valley that leads to the Col du Bonhomme and stop for the night for a well-deserved rest. Approximate hiking time is 8.5hrs. 900m – 2952ft ascent, 1300m – 4265ft descent
Stay: Refuge Nant Borrant (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Hike the challenging 18km (11 mi) from Les Contamines to Les Chapieux.
Begin the steep ascent to the Col Du Bonhomme, then hike to the Croix du Bonhomme and stop for lunch. While eating your meal, enjoy the amazing view of the Vallee des Chapieux. Descend to Les Chapieux for the night. Today the group will tackle steep uphill and downhill routes on rough terrain, this part of the tour can be extremely difficult but hikers’ feeling of satisfaction after climbing the Col du Bonhomme make the challenges worthwhile. Approximate hiking time is 7 hours. 1300m – 4265ft ascent, 900m – 2952ft descent
Stay: Auberge de la Nova (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Pass glacial lakes on the 23km (14 mi) trek from Les Chapieux to the Italian town of Courmayeur. Free time to explore what the biggest town in the Italian Mont Blanc circuit has to offer such as restaurants and bistros.
Climb through open pastures and snowfield to Col de la Seigne and the border with Italy. Pass by picturesque glacier lakes while descending into beautiful Val Veny. Continue on a 45 minute descent to Rifugio Elisabetta, then a further 45 minute descent will bring the group to La Visaille. From this small hamlet take a bus or taxi to the picturesque town of Courmayeur, Italy. Approximate hiking time is 5hrs. 750m – 2460ft ascent, 800m – 2625ft descent
Stay: Hotel Cristallo (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast
The picturesque mountain town of Courmayeur is an ideal backdrop for a free day. Opt to ride a cable car to Pointe Helbronner or go for a day hike.
Today you have a scheduled rest day to put up your weary feet or take the opportunity to enjoy the lovely town of Courmayeur and La Saxe.
Enjoy an optional dinner with the group and your leader to taste some of the Italian Alpine specialities offered in Courmayeur’s many atmospheric restaurants.
Stay: Hotel Cristallo (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast
Hike the 14km (8.6 mi) from Courmayeur to the Italian Val Ferret. It’s a steep climb but the rewarding views are worth it.
Lace those hiking boots back up! Start the steep climb up to Rifugio Bertone with the best view of the Mont Blanc Massif. Hike along the Mont de la Saxe, taking the balcony path facing the ridge of the Grandes Jorasses. Stop for a picnic lunch and take in the unforgettable view. Continue to Rifugio Bonatti, overlooking the Italian Val Ferret for the night. Approximate hiking time is 5hrs. 850m – 2789ft ascent, 700m – 2297ft descent
Stay: Rifugio Bonatti (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Embark on a long, steep hike of 20km (12 mi) followed by a stay in the Swiss mountain village of La Fouly.
Start towards Arp Nouva, then begin the steep climb across the Grand Col Ferret, and descend into the hamlet of Ferret, Switzerland. Continue the decent into the Alpage at La Peule before reaching a high traverse above the valley; from here, enjoy the view of the deep, green forest crawling up the foothills of the surrounding mountains. Continue downward on a the final passage, finishing in the mountain village of La Fouly, where you can finally kick those feet up and relax. Approximate hiking duration is 6hrs. 900m – 2953ft ascent, 1400m – 4593ft descent
Stay: Auberge des Glaciers Fouly (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
After a short bus journey to the picturesque village of Champex, follow the “Bovine Way” and trek 16km (10mi) from La Fouly to Trient.
Taking the Bovine Way, an old trail used to access the flower-filled summer cow pastures high above the valley, we continue along our circuit today, passing the Col de la Forclaz and then heading downhill to Trient. Approximate hiking duration is 5hrs. 750m – 2460ft ascent, 950m – 3117ft descent
Stay: La Grande Ourse (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Enjoy a final day of trekking 14 km (8.6mi) over the Col de la Balme to the Chamonix valley.
Head back towards the Chamonix Valley and out of Switzerland. Walk uphill through a large forest and then open alpine slopes to the Col de Balme. Trek the last downhill stretch to Montroc in the Chamonix Valley to wrap up this unforgettable trek. Approximate hiking duration is 5hrs. 900m – 2952ft ascent, 750m – 2460ft descent
Stay: Pointe Isabelle (or similar) | Meals: Breakfast
We suggest booking your flight no earlier than 12:00 if you would like to leisurely enjoy your last morning in Chamonix. Please keep in mind that Geneva is several hours away. You will need to allow at least 3 hours prior to your departure time to travel from Chamonix to Geneva.
- Small group experience (maximum 12 people)
- 4 nights in a hotel (possibility of multi-share) + 5 nights in mountain refuges (multi-share)
- 9 breakfasts + 5 dinners
- Dedicated Chief Experience Office and an International Mountain Leader leading the hike
- Transport between destinations and to/from included activities
- All activities mentioned in the itinerary, excluding optional activities
WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED
- Flights to Geneva
- Airport transfers to Geneva and/or Chamonix
- Travel insurance
- Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
- Accommodation in Geneva if required
- Optional activities
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