Europe & Africa / Switzerland / France / Italy
Mont Blanc Classic Hiking Tour
Hike Around Mont Blanc through France, Italy and Switzerland
From Mont Blanc's glacier-clad 15,771' summit, the highest in Western Europe, sublime alpine valleys radiate to three countries creating some of the most awe-inspiring mountain landscapes on the planet. We circle this great peak crossing from France to Italy and Switzerland on foot, savoring the changes in language, architecture and cuisine as much as the magnificent scenery itself.
Days 1-2: Geneva-Chamonix-Tricot Pass-Contamine-Montjoie
We're met at Geneva Airport and transfer to Chamonix, capitol of the French Alps. The next morning we transfer to Fayet to catch the spectacular Mont Blanc Tramway for the 2500' ride up to our hike's start. We cross the moraine of giant Bionnassay Glacier and climb through the meadows of Tricot Pass. After lunch we descend through lovely alpine forests to the charming ski village of Contamine-Montjoie.
Days 3-4: Bonhomme Pass- Les Chapieux-Seigne Pass-Courmayeur
We transfer to Notre Dame de la Gorge and begin the long climb over Bonhomme Pass. After lunch we continue downhill to the mountain hamlet of Chapieux and transfer to Ville des Glaciers. We next climb through the Valley of Glaciers over Seigne Pass for stunning panoramas of Mount Blanc's peaks and snowfields. From the pass we descend into Italy's Veni Valley and the village of Visaille where a bus takes us to Courmayeur, the "Pearl of the Alps". Courmayeur is filled with grand old buildings, narrow cobbled streets and Italian village charm.
Days 5-6: Grand Ferret Pass-Champex-Forclaz Pass-Trient
This morning we're off to Switzerland across mountain meadows with stunning views of the Veni Valley en route to Grand Ferret Pass where the rocky spires of Mont Dolent tower above. We descend through Ferret Valley to Fouly where we transfer to the tranquil Swiss resort of Champex for the night. Next we have two options--we can take the classic route through the high meadows of Bovine over Forclaz Pass, or the rigorous but spectacular route via the Window of Arpette. This trail climbs high above the giant seracs of Trient Glacier and offers fantastic views to the Aiguille D'Argentiere. Both routes lead us to the Swiss village of Trient.
Days 7-8: Balme Pass-Chamonix-Geneva
Today it's back to France as we climb through serene larch forests to Balme Pass for tremendous views of the Chamonix Valley at the top, and then complete the gentle descent to the French village of Tour. From here we transfer back to Chamonix and our hotel and farewell dinner. After breakfast it's back to Geneva International Airport for flights home.