Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights
Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights
Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights
Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights
Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights
Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights

Tour du Mont Blanc Highlights


Walking the Tour du Mont Blanc

This is the 'best of' one of the most famous walks in the world, the Tour du Mont Blanc, passing through three countries and three cultures. We meet in Chamonix, in France, the mountaineering capital of the world, and begin a journey of discovery which takes in the history, culture, folklore and wildlife of the mountains. From remote farms and refuges to ancient Roman towns and beautiful lakeside mountain villages, it's all here!

Highlights

  • 7 days of hiking around the highest peak in the Alps
  • Visit three countries - Italy, Switzerland and France
  • Stay in the famous and fabulous Rifugio Bonatti
  • Hike to Lac des Cheserys & the Grand Balcon Sud
  • Hotel-based tour with full luggage support
  • Experienced, knowledgeable and professional guide
  • Walk the spectacular Mont de la Saxe ridge
  • A night in the lovely Italian town of Courmayeur

For those with limited time, this one-week version of the Tour du Mont Blanc offers superb trekking in France, Italy and Switzerland, along with a wealth of unforgettable Alpine experiences.


Throughout the preparation for this trek, I had no worries about how our trip was being planned and was fully impressed with the individualized care and consideration you gave us. It really eased my worries about how strenuous it was going to be. You were right, I was well prepared and, while it was a difficult hike, I did really well! It was a great confidence builder. :)

I just wanted to let you know what an amazing experience it was. Suze was the best and was a pro in evaluating our experience, fitness, and interest level when choosing the itinerary each day. And, we couldn't have been paired with four better people. Who could have guessed they would also be from San Diego? We were so perfectly suited in personality, sense of humor and fitness.

It was a wonderful experience and the perfect weather was icing on the cake, we'll be talking about the trip for a long time. We enjoyed the variety of trails from the cols to the forrest settings, the snowy mountains to the glaciers that one could stare at for hours. We enjoyed the variety of accommodations and I must say that the Hotel Alpina in Champex was the tops, there was a possibility that we might not have moved on from there.

From our whole group, thank you so much for an absolutely wonderful week! We could not imagine having a better guide. How lucky we were with the weather. The drenching on day one made all the following days even more appreciated and nothing could have been better than the clear views of Mont Blanc on the last day. In the meantime we are treasuring our memories and pictures of the TMB. 

Itinerary

  • airport
  • meet in
  • accommodation
  • bus
  • route
  • transfer
  • route
  • We meet at the group hotel in Chamonix, France. Lying beneath the stunning north face of Mont Blanc, the views are amazing from the start! Before dinner, you will meet your trip leader to have an informal chat about the days ahead and check out your clothing and gear to decide if you will need to pick up any further items of equipment before setting out in the morning.

  • A stunning first day with glorious views of the Mont Blanc range - its glaciers, jagged spires and peaks, and an introduction to the history of the Tour du Mont Blanc. We will take the historic Mont Blanc Express train towards the Swiss frontier, alighting at the hamlet of Montroc where we begin our hike. We take the excellent zig zag alpine trail climbing towards the ridge line high above Chamonix. En route there are lots of wild flowers, granite outcrops, and often Chamois or Ibex grazing by the trail as we make our way to the Lacs des Cheserys, a great spot for our picnic lunch. This is one of the best walks in the Chamonix valley, and on very hot days we have even been known to have a swim! We can then climb higher to enjoy the truly spectacular views from Lac Blanc - voted the 'Best short walk in the world'. After the obligatory photo 'op' we descend to the mid-station at La Flégère, and return to Chamonix by cable car.

    Ascent: 1000m (3280ft) Descent: 650m (2132ft) Distance: 12km (7.5 miles) Duration: 7h00-8h00

  • This morning we take our private taxi to the town of Les Contamines and the ancient chapel at Notre Dame de la Gorge from where we begin our day. Following the river our trail takes the tree-lined ‘paved’ Roman road thought to have been a route taken by Hannibal and his army. You definitely feel as though you are following in the footsteps of history. Eventually we leave the forest and enter alpine meadows where the sound of cow-bells welcomes us. Each cow is given a 'tone' and throughout her life she will continue to wear the same bell with the same tone. Our first stop is at the Le Balme refuge, a good place to contemplate the climb to the Col du Bonhomme and enjoy a morning coffee. The route to the Col, which sits at 2469m (8098ft) is a long, steady climb and the pass itself often has snow patches early in the season. Arriving at the Col we have views right into the Beaufortain region and thankfully the climbing is almost over for the day as we traverse round to the Col de la Croix du Bonhomme. We then drop steeply down to our remote auberge at Les Chapieux. If you need fuel we can always stop for cake at the Refuge de la Croix du Bonhomme before our descent!

    Ascent: 1350m (4428ft) Descent: 960m (3148ft) Distance: 17km (10.6 miles) Duration: 7h00-8h00

  • We leave the tiny hamlet of Les Chapieux, taking a short transfer to Ville des Glaciers where Bernard, the farmer, is usually on hand to sell us some farm produced cheese. It's great to stop and chat about his Tarine cows who produce milk for famous Beaufort cheese. It really is lovely to be able to talk to the person who has created the local cheese we are sampling. We then stroll along the valley heading for the high point of our day at the Col de la Seigne which sits at  2513m (8242ft). This is a significant Col bordering France and Italy, and it is always tempting to do the classic photo with one leg in France, and the other leg in Italy! We then descend from the Col on a trail that gives superlative views of the infamous Peuterey Ridge on Mont Blanc. This is the hardest and most fearsome route to the summit of the mighty Mont Blanc with over 4500m (14,760ft) of rock climbing. An easy descent takes us past the Rifugio Elizabetta and down into Val Veny. We will then take the local bus, always good fun with lots of gesticulating 'locals', and descend to the vibrant town and mountaineering centre of Courmayeur.

    Ascent: 867m (2843ft) Descent: 1015m (3329ft) Distance: 17km (10.6 miles) Duration: 5h00-6h00

  • Leaving the bustle of Courmayeur behind we climb through several quaint Italian hamlets towards the Monte de la Saxe Ridge. This is a spectacular grassy ridge which provides fantastic views of the Italian side of Mont Blanc and the jagged summits of the impressive Grandes Jorasses. After a steep ascent through the larch forests we arrive at the Rifugio Bertone, perched high above the valley. A morning coffee stop is usually on the agenda, and sometimes we even indulge in some cake! We then climb even further until we reach the spectacular Monte de la Saxe ridge. This is not a nerve wracking rock ridge, but instead a beautiful rounded grassy ridge offering truly spectacular views of the Mont Blanc range. It is not to be missed! We take in the Tete de la Tronche summit, pause for lunch, then drop down to Col Sapin. We may opt to head over a final Col or begin our descent through the lovely Armina valley, with its wild flower meadows. A final stroll around the mountain to the Rifugio Bonatti, our stunning overnight accommodation. The view from the terrace, where you can enjoy a cold drink as the sun goes down is one of life's 'golden moments'.

    Ascent: 1584m (5195ft) Descent: 940m (3083ft) Distance: 17km (10.6 miles) Duration: 7h00

    Tonight is the only evening when you will not have access to your luggage.

  • This morning we enjoy breakfast with views of the sparkling glaciers and snow capped mountains. After sufficient food has been consumed, we set off on a lovely traversing path which leads us to a morning coffee/cake stop at the lovely Rifugio Elena. From here we climb the steady zig-zag path that leads us to Switzerland and the Grand Col Ferret at 2537m (8321ft). From this pass, there are views of the snow-capped Grand Combin and also Mont Dolent, the summit of which is rather unique as it is shared by France, Switzerland and Italy. The views in both directions from this Col are really spectacular. After lunch we enter Switzerland, no need for passports here, and discover that the terrain becomes less rugged and more meadow-like as we descend to La Peule. This small farm produces cheese throughout the summer months, and also runs a 'buvette' the name given to a 'snack bar/small cafe' in the mountains. Many farmers offer food and drink to the hikers as a way of supplementing their income. We always feel it is incumbent upon us to support them, though there is a limit to how much tea/coffee/cake we can consume in one day. A final traversing trail to the small village of La Fouly and it is here that we catch our private taxi transfer to our overnight halt in the beautiful lakeside village of Champex.

    Ascent: 1128m (3699ft) Descent: 1580m (5182ft) Distance: 20km (12.5 miles) Duration: 6h00

     

  • Today we have two route options and your guide will make a decision on the best trail given the group fitness and ability, and the weather. The climb up to the pass known as the Fenêtre d’Arpette, which sits at 2670m (8757ft) is one of the most demanding days of the tour, but there are compensations. On reaching the rocky col, the spectacular view across the Trient Glacier to its seracs and crevasses is quite breathtaking. However, in summer 2018 there was a landslide which has affected this route and it is now not always possible.

    Ascent: 1480m (4854ft) Descent: 1760m (5772ft) Distance: 15.5km (9.6 miles) Duration: 6h00-7h00

    Alternatively, we take the beautiful Bovine trail through the high meadows where the famous Swiss fighting cows spend the summer months. This is a lovely walk which begins by meandering past old Swiss chalets with their bright window-boxes filled with geraniums, and on into the larch forests. After a steep ascent to the meadows, we aim to stop at the farm for coffee and a chance to chat with Nathalie who tends the cow herds and the hikers! You can almost be certain that there will be freshly baked cakes and pies on the table that are still warm from the oven. Nathalie has a large herd of Hérens cows, the so called Swiss Fighting Cows. They love to tussle and essentially the one that runs away first is the loser. They are wonderful animals with a lot of character for cows! After the farm, our route continues to offer fantastic views down the Rhone Valley and on to the Bernese Oberland. It is very different from the Arpette, but is by no means 'second best'. We love it! We overnight at the Col de la Forclaz or at Trient village.

    Ascent: 775m (2542ft) Descent: 735m (2410ft) Distance: 15km (9.4 miles) Duration: 5h00-6h00

    NB: The final choice of route will be at the discretion of your guide. 

  • If we spent last night at the Col de la Forclaz we will begin our day by dropping down to the Trient Valley, which is where we start the climb up through fine woodland to reach the frontier between Switzerland and France. Our route back to Chamonix, in France, can vary to take account of the prevailing weather conditions. The preferred route, via Les Tseppes, allows us to linger over views of the Trient Glacier and the rocky skyline ridge of the Fenetre d'arpette. After wandering through the flower meadows where there are often herds of sheep grazing tended by a 'berger', which means shepherd, we then climb on a limestone trail towards the frontier with France. Soon after passing the border we are greeted with amazing views of Mont Blanc which immediately tells us we have come full circle back to our starting point. It is this view that prompted English writer, Charles Dickens to put pen to paper during the Victorian era and describe the immense beauty of Chamoinx Valley and its mountains. We descend to the valley along the mountainside below the Aiguillette des Posettes ridge with stunning views leading us every onwards to our accommodation for the night.

    Ascent: 1200m (3936ft) Descent: 1500m (4920ft) Distance: 18km (11.3 miles) Duration: 6h00

     

  • Today is departure day, services end after breakfast.

It is always our aim to complete the proposed itinerary outlined above, however, it may be necessary for our guides/instructors to adjust the daily itinerary based on the weather conditions, group safety and enjoyment.

Accommodation

On all of our trips we aim to accommodate our guests in well-situated, comfortable, characterful, family run accommodation. 

We take time to research, update and view the best options available to us on every trip. Detailed below are examples of our favoured venues and those we intend to use. If unavailable at the time of booking we will use alternative accommodation of a similar standard.

The trip fees are based on two people sharing a room. However on many of our trips single rooms are available on request for a supplementary fee.

Due to the nature of the accommodation on this particular trip we use small hotels, often in tiny villages, and one remote mountain hut, the Rifugio Bonatti. If you are booking as a couple you can expect to be in a twin or double room, normally with en suite facilities. In some smaller hotels it's possible we may need to share the bathrooms. Depending on availability we may have to use larger rooms for one night at Les Chapieux where accommodation is very limited. At the Rifugio Bonatti we may be able to book bedrooms, rather than dormitory rooms, but this relies on early booking on the trip. Those guests who book first will be allocated rooms when they are available. A single room may be available for solo travellers in the hotels, but will incur a supplement and is dependent on early booking as the number of single rooms is limited. However, it will not be possible to have a single room at the Rifugio Bonatti.

Hotel Le Refuge des Aiglons, Chamonix

Hotel

Chamonix is a vibrant bustling town and offers a range of hotels. For our trips we aim to book the Hotel Le Refuge des Aiglons, but this does require early booking. Otherwise we consider staying at the Hotel Aiguille du Midi, or the Hotel Pointe Isabelle. All these hotels have en suite facilities, and are welcoming and comfortable. 

 

Hotel Gai Soleil, Les Contamines

Hotel

Les Contamines is in a lovely valley, and is a typical market town. We aim to stay at the Hotel Gai Soleil which is a traditional style chalet-hotel. It has a large garden with seating, and on a summer evening it is a lovely place to spend some time. Rooms are en suite, and dinner is usually local Savoyard dishes. 

Chambres du Soleil, Les Chapieux

Auberge

The Chambres du Soleil guest house is located in the heart of the Les Chapieux and is without doubt one of our favourite overnights. A warm welcome and memorable stay is assured here thanks to Céline and Pierre, who offer comfortable rooms and excellent homemade food. Please note that at Les Chapieux it is always difficult to secure accommodation, and for that reason you might find yourself staying at the Refuge de la Nova next door, or indeed the Refuge des Mottets along the valley. We aim to book bedrooms, but larger rooms may be necessary as spaces are always at a premium in this tiny hamlet. 

Hotel Edelweiss, Courmayeur

Hotel

The Hotel Edelweiss is right in the heart of Courmayeur with easy access to the town centre, while being tucked away in a quiet street where you will not be disturbed by the crowds. The hotel has a lovely sunny garden area at the front, and a spacious lounge bar to enjoy a drink. All the rooms are en suite and dinner is very Italian with local dishes and plenty of pasta. Other hotels which we use in Courmayeur include the Hotel Bouton d'Or, and the Hotel Walser

Rifugio Bonatti, Italy

Refuge

This wonderful mountain hut was built in memory of the world renowned Italian mountaineer and photographer, Walter Bonatti. The Rifugio Bonatti is run by Mara who always gives us a warm welcome. It is positioned above the picturesque Italian Val Ferret with stunning views of the Mont Blanc massif. There are hot showers and the food is very good!

When possible we aim to book either twin bedrooms, or small dormitories just for our group. A private room depends on early booking and is not always possible. 

Hotel Splendide, Champex

Hotel

The Hotel Splendide sits high in the mountains with great views from the terrace down to the valley below. This historic hotel was built between 1934 and 1938 by the grand-father of the owner. All the bedrooms have en suite facilities, and there are various family rooms available. We eat dinner in the lovely old-fashioned dining room, a real touch of history to be found in this family run hotel. 

 

During the Second World War the army from the nearby artillery fort were stationed at the hotel. Those perfect views down the valley were appreciated by more than just the tourists! It gave the army an excellent position of strength for protecting the route through to Italy. 

 

 

Hotel Col de la Forclaz

Hotel

This historic coaching inn has been in the same family for generations. Today it is run by Sophie who is the 6th generation! It was in around 1830 that her ancestor Joseph Gay-des Combes opened the first inn at the summit of the Col de la Forclaz with his wife. The hotel has a range of bedrooms, but due to the traditional nature of the building not all of them are en suite. 


  • Chamonix, France is easily reached from other European and worldwide destinations by road, rail, coach or plane.

    Geneva is the closest international airport, only 1 hour 15 by road which makes shared transfers, buses or trains easy to arrange.

    A range of travel options to reach the Chamonix valley can be found on the Chamonix Tourist Office website.

    If arriving via Geneva we recommend that you book a seat on a shared transfer which is a door-to-door service to reach your accommodation in Chamonix. We recommend Mountain Drop Offs, Chamexpress and Haute Pursuit for this service. Easybus also runs a service from Geneva airport to Chamonix Bus Station. This service runs throughout the day, but does not drop you at your hotel.

    Please contact us if you need further advice on your specific travel requirements.

  • You must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity, including helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. We also advise you take out Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance in the event of you being unable to join the trip. The insurance referred to should only be purchased AFTER we have confirmed your trip is guaranteed to run. 

    The insurance clause set out in our 'Terms and Conditions' is below:

    Insurance: It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, cost of repatriation, and personal accident risks. This must include cover for the activities to be undertaken during the trip. For tours taking place outside the United Kingdom you must ensure that your insurance covers rescue from the mountains, including helicopter rescue. It is the right of the leader to make a decision to call for helicopter rescue if such assistance is needed. Costs incurred by you, the client, due to an evacuation, rescue or other emergency shall be your responsibility. Any subsequent costs incurred for expenses, not limited to but including such costs as hotels, food, transport etc, shall be borne by you, the client. You are responsible for ensuring insurance cover is adequate for the particular needs of your chosen activity. You must be fully aware of the implications involved in arranging your own travel insurance and understand the limitations and exclusions of the policy. By agreeing to our Terms and Conditions you are authorising Tracks and Trails Ltd, or the person employed to lead the trip for Tracks and Trails Ltd, to instigate rescue and/or helicopter evacuation procedures without previously obtaining the permission of the company issuing your insurance policy. We reserve the right to cancel your booking at any time if we are not satisfied you have the necessary insurance policy covering your activity. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip then please contact us for specific details. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres (9840ft), except the Tour de Monte Rosa which reaches 3316m (10,877ft). You must bring all insurance documentation with you at the time of the activity. We also recommend your insurance covers you for trip cancellation and baggage loss/damage. Tracks and Trails Ltd are unable to accept responsibility for the loss or damage to any client equipment or luggage.

    For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.

  • Summer mountain weather in the European Alps can vary considerably, and in this respect it is no different to any mountain environment where the terrain influences the weather and it can change from valley to valley. 

    However, in the summer months it is generally good in the Alps, but it can deliver everything from glorious sunshine, to rain, fog, high winds and even snow. Temperatures can reach over 30°Celsius (86°F) in July and August, but can drop to 5°Celsius (41°F) on the high passes, or 'Cols' as they are known in the Alps. Essentially, as with all mountain journeys, you should be prepared for any eventuality. The average temperatures range from 15-25°Celsius (59-77°F) in the valleys and 5-15°Celsius (41-59°F) on the passes.

    Even in mid-summer we can be faced with overnight snow especially when we have spent the night in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut at higher altitude. 

  • On many of our trips there will be an element of 'group kit' which will be shared amongst our guests. As mountain people you will be used to team work and working together to the mutual benefit and safety of the group.

    The 'group kit' will be minimal and usually just a case of sharing a few lightweight 'survival shelters'. For example on a week-long trip you may carry a small shelter for just one day before passing it on to the next person. 

    If you are booking a trip in winter there will be a few additional safety items. These will be distributed in such a way that no one is over burdened. 

    Other group items necessary for safety and comfort will be carried by your guide/instructor.

  • After we have processed your booking we will send you a comprehensive clothing and equipment list that is appropriate to your trip and activity. There will be some items on this list that we strongly recommend and others which are suggested. Our list is based on our experience of what is needed for any particular trip, but it is not the definitive article! If you have items you like to use then do bring them, but be aware of over-loading your 'day' rucksack with items that are heavy and therefore making the trip more challenging.

    Please contact us if in any doubt about what to bring.

  • For each of our trips there is a minimum number of guests required to book before we can 'guarantee' your trip will run. It depends on the particular trip in question, but it is normally 4. The maximum number of guests on your trip is displayed in the 'At a Glance' box on the righthand side of the trip page. 

    We strongly advise you do not book travel until we have confirmed your trip is 'guaranteed' to run. If you book travel before we have confirmed it is 'guaranteed' we cannot be held responsible for any financial loss if the trip does not go ahead.

  • When booking a holiday as a solo traveller a twin bedded room comprising of two single beds, is booked as standard. This will be with someone of the same gender unless you request to pay extra for your own room. Single rooms are often limited in supply so if you would like to pay a supplement for a single room we urge you to get in touch as soon as possible.

  • We go to great lengths to work with first class guides and instructors who are passionate about their work. They are all fully qualified, insured, and hold the correct documentation.

    Please note your guide/instructor has complete discretion to make a daily decision on whether or not to take the advertised route based on the weather and the ability of the members of the group. They have our authority to make any route changes they believe are necessary in the interests of safety and enjoyment. 

    For our walking, family, and snowshoeing trips your guide will be a fully qualified and experienced International Mountain Leader. For our running trips your guide will be an International Mountain Leader, and an experienced mountain 'trail runner'.

    If you have booked on a cross country ski trip you will be with a fully qualified professional BASI Nordic Ski Instructor or equivalent. BASI is the British Association of Snowsport Instructors.

  • This classic journey picks out the best of the daily stages and links them by short vehicle transfers. Please be aware this does not mean it is 'easier' than the full ten day version of the Tour du Mont Blanc. The trip takes in the highlights, while leaving out the easier valley walks. Our route will tackle several major pass crossings, such as the Col de Bonhomme, and the Col de la Seigne. We also spend a day on the stunning Mont de la Saxe ridge, followed by a night at the world famous Rifugio Bonatti, dedicated to the legendary Italian photographer and mountaineer, Walter Bonatti.

    This trip is graded 'Difficult'. It is suitable for those of you who consider yourself ‘hill-walkers’, these trips involve longer days at an altitude of up to 2800m (9184ft) on good paths and tracks. A good level of fitness is required as these treks can involve considerable amounts of ascent and descent and the occasional difficult day on rougher paths. There may be an occasional day with ascents/descents of up to 1350m (4428ft). We would expect you to have previous experience of walking on consecutive days in the mountains, and have experience of hiking in bad weather. Expect to walk 5-7 hours per day. 

     

  • On this point-to-point trip you will have luggage support on all but 1 of the nights, which means your bags are transferred each day to the next accommodation and you only need to carry a small/medium sized 'rucksack' for items you might need during the course of the day. Please refer to the kit list for this trip for guidance on the size of rucksack required. On the nights you are in the mountain hut, the Rifugio Bonatti, you will need to carry just a few extra items in your rucksack.

    As your luggage will be moved along the route by taxi we ask that you keep the weight to a maximum of 15kgs (33lbs), and ONE bag per person. Many of the taxi companies who move your bags impose a 15kg (33lbs) limit and restrict the number of bags simply because they have to unload and reload the vehicle many times each day. If you take more than one bag you may be asked to pay a supplement. Also with regard to weight be aware that you may have to carry your luggage to your bedroom, which may involve climbing several flights of stairs as not all hotels have elevators. Luggage on wheels is generally a good idea.

    Your trip begins and ends at the same hotel and it is possible to leave any unwanted luggage at the hotel for your return.

     

  • We do not include lunches in your trip fee for various reasons. We have found our guests have particular tastes and requirements for 'trail' or 'hill' food and it is better you choose and buy what you require. Buying supplies and trying local specialities is a great way to inter-act with the local people and to practise your language skills. 

    Lunches on our trips are 'picnic' style lunches, in other words you take a packed lunch with sufficient snacks, food and fluid to sustain you throughout your day of activity. If there is the possibility of lunch being taken at a restaurant/farm/cafe beside the trail, your guide/instructor will advise you of this. 

    Each evening you can choose to order a picnic or a sandwich from the hotel, or your guide/instructor will advise you of other options such as a local shop or market and whether you need to purchase items in the evening or if the shop/market is open early enough the next morning not to delay your start. In all cases we would always ask you to settle any 'bill' for lunch or drinks in the evening before you depart, and not on the morning of your last day when there may be a queue.

  • On your itinerary you will find an indication of the amount of ascent and descent you can expect each day. This offers a guideline to how much effort might be expended each day and allows you to decide, based on previous experience, if your fitness and stamina are correct for the trip. 

    We make every attempt to ensure these statistics are as accurate as possible, but ask you to note that the most modern of technology used to record these details can show considerable variations in terms of ascent, descent, and in particular distance. In other words no two people using GPS devices on the same route will have exactly the same details recorded at the end of the day. 

    The statistics given should be used as a 'general' indication of the effort required. 

  • It is useful to arrive at your destination with some cash in the local currency, however, on most occasions it is relatively easy to visit a 'cash machine' after arrival and withdraw money on a credit or debit card. Some of our locations are an exception to this in particular Norway, where the accommodation will often have no facilities for withdrawing cash, but they will take a credit card. 

    On many of our trips we will visit remote cafes/farms where it is wonderful to enjoy a drink and a cake, at places such as these they will only accept payment in the local currency in cash.

  • Food

    On our trips we encourage you to experience local tastes and dishes that reflect the culture of the country and for this reason many of our accommodation options will be family run with a reputation for the traditional food of the region. 

    If you have a 'special' diet because of an allergy or intolerance to a certain food type which will make you ill the accommodation will cater for this as best they can, eg gluten free, nut free, lactose free.

    If you are vegetarian then this is not a problem as the hotels/refuges are used to being asked for vegetarian meals. Our accommodation will try to cater for those with vegan diets but in remote refuges in the mountains this is more difficult. If you would like to discuss the suitability of a trip for a vegan diet please contact us. Gluten-free diets will be possible with regard to the evening meals, but we would advise that you bring along some gluten-free snacks for your breakfasts and lunches.

    If you have a 'special' diet which is NOT because of an allergy or intolerance, and is not 'veggie' then we apologise, but we cannot cater for this. The accommodation on the popular routes will be catering for many people each evening, in some cases up to 70/80 meals per night, 7 days a week, and realistically they cannot produce many different meal options unless the food will result in illness.

    Water

    The countries we visit all have tap water which is drinkable. If for any reason a particular hotel is having a problem with a remote mountain water supply they will normally post a sign over the tap indicating that you must not drink the water. At all times you are welcome to ask your guide/instructor if the water can be drunk. We would ask, for environmental reasons, that you avoid using single-use plastic bottles, and bring a water bottle that can be used repeatedly. 

  • A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required for visits to countries outside the EU, such as Norway. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice.  

  • We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

    http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

    Note that if your trip involves staying in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut that electric sockets may be in short supply and for that night you may not be able to charge any items. Although the accommodation will have electricity this will often be supplied by solar panels or a generator and limited to use by the staff. For this reason we advise that carrying a small slimline and lightweight 'battery pack' can be very useful for recharging phones which many of you will also use as your camera. 

  • Before booking consider whether you expect to be in the appropriate physical condition on the date of your  departure to allow you to fully participate in and enjoy your holiday. If you have any doubts because of an illness or injury it would be advisable to check with your doctor.

    UK residents should obtain and bring with them the free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment in certain European countries, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance. Also note that if/when the UK leaves the European Union that the EHIC card may no longer be valid. Please check this before departing. We advise that you always carry your insurance documents with details of the Emergency Medical telephone number for your insurance provider, and your policy number. 

  • We feel strongly about protecting the environment and do not encourage the use of single-use plastic items. We would ask that you arrive with a ‘water bottle’ or ‘hydration system’ that can be used repeatedly. We would point out that we operate a ‘zero tolerance’ for rubbish, and would ask you to remove all your rubbish items from the mountain even those you consider to be bio-degradable. In particular we ask that you remove any toilet tissue.

    You can read our full policy here.

  • Working across international boundaries, and with various currencies means that the price of our trips can change overnight. We have, however, undertaken to guarantee that once you have paid your deposit the price of your trip is fixed. In this respect we urge you to book early to ensure that you receive the price advertised on our website. The website price may increase due to currency fluctuations, but we guarantee that the price advertised on the date of your booking will be maintained in your individual case. 

  • Due to the specialised nature of our holidays, we co-sell a number of trips with 'partner' companies. These are carefully selected to ensure they reflect our ethos and standards in terms of the service we offer our guests. By encouraging other companies to sell our trips it means that your chosen holiday may reach its 'minimum' number earlier, allowing us to guarantee the trip and to give you the go-ahead to book your travel arrangements.

    There may be occasions when our partners have helped book your accommodation and organise the logistics for your trip. On these occasions your hotel may have recorded your room reservation in the name of one of our partners. 

    We guarantee that companies with whom we work will offer the same package as Tracks and Trails Ltd. The price will be the same, though occasionally they may be operating in a different currency. Your itinerary and the items that are included, or not included in your trip fee, will also be the same. 

    We believe in team work, and enjoy working with other small high quality companies. If you have any questions about this policy please contact us and we will be happy to discuss it with you. 


Prices may vary depending on date.

2020

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What's Included

  • The guiding services of a fully qualified International Mountain Leader
  • 7 nights half board hotel accommodation: breakfast, and dinner, based on two people sharing
  • 1 night half board rifugio accommodation: breakfast, and dinner, in Rifugio Bonatti
  • Transfer from Chamonix to Les Contamines
  • Cable car down to Chamonix on the day we walk to Lac Blanc
  • Daily luggage transfers to your accommodation, except the night in the Rifugio Bonatti where there is no vehicle access
  • Tracks and Trails memento - a gift to take home!

What's Not Included

  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers
  • Drinks and snacks
  • Transfers and cable cars which are not part of the itinerary
  • Lunches; we find that our guests enjoy buying local food, or you can order a picnic from our accommodation

Throughout the preparation for this trek, I had no worries about how our trip was being planned and was fully impressed with the individualized care and consideration you gave us. It really eased my worries about how strenuous it was going to be. You were right, I was well prepared and, while it was a difficult hike, I did really well! It was a great confidence builder. :)

I just wanted to let you know what an amazing experience it was. Suze was the best and was a pro in evaluating our experience, fitness, and interest level when choosing the itinerary each day. And, we couldn't have been paired with four better people. Who could have guessed they would also be from San Diego? We were so perfectly suited in personality, sense of humor and fitness.

It was a wonderful experience and the perfect weather was icing on the cake, we'll be talking about the trip for a long time. We enjoyed the variety of trails from the cols to the forrest settings, the snowy mountains to the glaciers that one could stare at for hours. We enjoyed the variety of accommodations and I must say that the Hotel Alpina in Champex was the tops, there was a possibility that we might not have moved on from there.

From our whole group, thank you so much for an absolutely wonderful week! We could not imagine having a better guide. How lucky we were with the weather. The drenching on day one made all the following days even more appreciated and nothing could have been better than the clear views of Mont Blanc on the last day. In the meantime we are treasuring our memories and pictures of the TMB. 

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Grade: Intermediate

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At a Glance

From Price £1695
Holiday Type Walking
Duration 9 Days
Group Size 10
Minimum Age 18
Maximum Altitude 2670m (8757ft)
Countries Visited Italy, France, Switzerland
Meet In Chamonix, France
View all Walking Holidays

Climbing Mont Blanc

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Why book with T&T?

  • Highly professional guides
  • Personal service guaranteed 
  • Attention to detail throughout
  • Explore off the beaten track
  • Single rooms on request
  • No surcharge guaranteed
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