Unpack and make yourself comfortable in your room. Walk the few hundred
metres into Chamonix Town Centre and familiarize yourself with where
everything is. May be have a coffee at one of the many street cafes
before returning to the chalet for a hearty dinner.
Take the nearby Brevent cable car up to the halfway stage, Plan Praz.
From there walk up to the top of Brevent via the Col de Brevent, part
of the famous Tour du Mont Blanc route. Have lunch at the restaurant
at the top looking across the valley at Mont Blanc and the Aiguille
du Midi. Walk down through the trees or take the cable car depending
on how energetic you are feeling.
Catch the Montenvers cog-railway up to the end of the Mer de Glace,
the largest glacier in the Chamonix area. Enjoy the views as the train
winds its way up through the alpine forest and then have your breath
taken away by the view up the huge sea of ice at the top. For a few
extra Euros you can go down to the ice cave which is dug out of the
glacier every year. Inside they have carved beautiful sculptures out
of the ice, and see the layers indicating the years of snowfall like
rings on a tree. Visit the free alpine wildlife museum by the Hotel
Montenvers (the highest hotel in Chamonix) to understand more of the
regions flora and fauna. Choose one of the pretty hikes down, or return
on the train back to Chamonix Town Centre.
Make an early start to miss the crowds and catch the cable car up the
spectacular Aiguille du Midi. The second stage of the cable car is the
longest and highest cable car with no intermediate pylons. Remember
to wrap up warm as the top station is surrounded by ice and snow all
year round. The views across France, Switzerland and Italy for a mile
up will ensure you use a lot of camera film! Only 1000m short of the
top of Mont Blanc you can often spot climbers trudging out across the
snow. Go out through the ice tunnel to the top of the Valley Blanche
and watch as brave souls take off from here with their paragliders.
Take the cable car down to the halfway Plan du Aiguille and then walk
down through the alpine meadows finishing up in town for a well deserved
Take the local train from Chamonix up the valley to Montroc, from there
hike up the Tour du Mont Blanc trail to Le Tour. Take the opportunity
to catch the cable cars up towards Col de Balme. Hike the final distance
up to the Refuge for a cup of coffee, in Switzerland! After the refueling,
start what is a long hike down into the Trient valley in Switzerland
through alpine meadows and forests. Enjoy the amazing view of the Trient
glacier before descending down into a little Swiss village. Following
the road along the valley as far as Chatelard stop at the shops to buy
some chocolates and cuckoo clocks before getting on the train all the
way back to Chamonix. You did remember your passport didn't you?
The long days hiking in the Chamonix Valley yesterday means that something
more relaxing is required. Rent a car, or take a bus and go through
the Mont Blanc tunnel to Italy. Rebuilt and reopened after the devastating
fire of 1999 the tunnel is a source of much local controversy. The deepest
tunnel in the world, it goes directly under the Mont Blanc massive.
On the other end of the tunnel you will come out into the beautiful
valley of Courmyeur. Known as the valley of sunshine cool off by a walk
along the river fueled by the melting glaciers, or add some ice to your
drink in a local pizzeria!
Have some adventure and book an early morning flight on a paraglider
from the Plan Praz take off area half way up Brevent. After gliding
over 1000m above the valley floor touch down in the landing zone right
by the chalet. Instead, you could walk to the Planards beginner's ski
slope. In the summer, when there is no snow this plays host to the summer
luge and the Parc de Adventure. The summer luge is a fast track for
plastic sledges and an opportunity for lots of fun, but be warned, you
do need that brake. The Parc de Adventure is a fun in the trees with
cargo nets, high-wires and rope slides.
In the afternoon rent a bike from one of the hire shops in town and
explore some of the low level VTT trails up and down the valley. Maps
available in the chalet for you to borrow. Come back and watch the sunset
on the Aiguilles Verte.
Its departure day, but if your flight isn't until a little later why
walk the couple of minutes to the shops and buy a few souvenirs for
those at home who missed out on this great trip.
have to come back next year because look at all the other things you
didn't get to do: -
1. Walk to the beautiful Lac Blanc and admire this high mountain lake
and the waterfalls on the way back.
2. Relax at the leisure centre by one of the three swimming pools or
by the lake.
3. Go climbing at Lac Gaillands.
4. Take a day to go and see an alpine stage of the Tour de France, if
you get your dates right!
5. Hike from the Flegere cable car and stop off on the way down at the
beautiful Chalet Floria, famed for its flowers and hanging baskets.
6. Go rafting or canyoning with one of the many organised trips.
7. Find the hidden waterfall in Vallorcine.
8. Go shopping in Geneva.
9. Hike from Argentiere up to the Grand Montets ski area and have a
coffee looking out on the Glacier du Argentiere.
10. And thats all the things that the non-riders can do, just think
how action packed a week with riding as well is going to be with 10fifty