There is a spectacular steam-train ride through gorgeous Provencal countryside, from Nice, France, to the start of your trip at St André Les Alpes. The Train des Pignes is one of the very few private railways in France, and with trains running several times a day it is an easy way to get to the start. It is not expensive for what is a journey of about 2h50. Please note that due to a landslide the section between Saint André Les Alpes and Digne-les-Bains is currently replaced by a bus. Saint André Les Alpes is approx 2h00 by car from Nice.
We can provide contact details for a private transfer which you may like to share with other members of the trip.
For your arrival the nearest airport is Nice. Many guests prefer to arrive a day early and explore the ancient seaside boulevards of Nice and the old town.
At the end of the walk in Greoux-les-Bains there are several methods for onward travel. First you must travel by bus or taxi to either Manosque (20 minutes away) or Aix-en-Provence (45 minutes away) where connections are possible across France including to the nearby Luberon region. The bus stop in Greoux-les-Bains is about 100m from the hotel and all buses arrive and leave Aix-en-Provence from the main bus station.
Marseille is the closest airport for your departure, but there are also options to return to Nice. We recommend using the online public transport scanner to search for your method of transport www.rome2rio.com To get to Marseille Airport by bus goes you will go via Manosque and it takes 1 hour 40 minutes. Follow this link for bus times to Marseille Airport.
Flix Bus runs a service from Aix en Provence to Nice and Nice Airport taking 2 hours 30 minutes, depending on the timings. Tickets can be bought in advance for the intercity buses but not the regional buses. We recommend buying regional bus tickets on the bus itself to avoid queues.
Click here for more information on travelling by public transport.
If you would like to extend this holiday to fill the week you might consider an extra day/night in the beautiful village of Gréoux-les-Bains to allow time for shopping or poolside action. Enjoy the quaint streets with their pavement cafes and watch the world go by, or explore the boutique shops featuring local products and produce.
If you are travelling onwards to Nice for transport reasons we highly recommend a night in this famous city on the French Riviera. The natural beauty of the Nice area and its mild Mediterranean climate came to the attention of the English upper classes in the second half of the 18th century, when an increasing number of aristocratic families took to spending their winters there. In 1931, following its refurbishment the city's main seaside promenade, the Promenade des Anglais , "Walkway of the English" was inaugurated. The clear air and the wonderful 'light' inspired painters such as Marc Chagall, and Henri Matisse, among others. Well worth a visit!
When booking a trip we ask you to acquire insurance to cover you for the following:
Mountain Rescue Insurance
It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, mountain rescue, cost of repatriation and personal accident risks. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. The maximum altitude for any trip can be checked on the 'At A Glance' box on each trip page. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip, then please ask us for specific details.
Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance
You should also have insurance to cover trip cancellation and curtailment. Please note that your deposit and balance payments are non-refundable, unless it is Tracks and Trails who cancel the trip due to a failure to reach the required minimum numbers. In this case we will offer you a refund or the option of transferring to another trip if one is available. We also advise that you should have insurance which covers baggage loss/equipment damage as Tracks and Trails will not be held responsible for loss/damage to baggage/equipment.
As well as medical cover, we recommend that you have appropriate travel insurance so that if you fall ill and test positive for COVID-19 prior to (or during) your trip, you will be financially covered for cancelling your trip. You should also consider booking a policy that covers you if you have to cancel or curtail your holiday because you have to self-isolate. If you choose to cancel, cancellation charges will be payable, but if the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges. Please read the clauses below detailing trip cancellation and curtailment.
Travel Insurance covering COVID-19 is now available from a number of suppliers, Campbell Irvine, Trailfinders and Staysure. Please check their websites for the latest information on what is and isn't covered. It is likely that more companies will offer COVID related cover in the future.
All of the above insurances are detailed in our Terms and Conditions.
If you are joining a trip in the UK helicopter/mountain rescue insurance is not required as this is a free service.
For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.
In mountainous terrain the weather can vary considerably and you should always be prepared for any eventuality.
Temperatures in Haute Provence, France, range from daily highs of 17°-21°C (63°-71°F) in April, and May, to daily lows of 5-9°C (41°-48°F) . In September and August the daily temperature ranges from an average 24-29°C (76°-84°F), down to 11-15°C (53°-59°F).
It is often sunny with good clear days and can be very warm where hydration will become important, but it can rain and the temperatures can drop dramatically. It is not unusual for thunder storms to occur at the end of the afternoon and waterproof clothing should be carried at all times.
When packing for a trip in the mountains it is important to have appropriate equipment and clothing. This kit list features items we believe are necessary for the weather you might encounter and accommodation you will be staying in.
Personal First Aid
Your luggage will be moved each day by a taxi driver. Please restrict yourself to one bag of approximately 15kg (33lbs) per person. Not all hotels have 'lifts' and you should be able to carry your luggage upstairs. There may be a charge imposed but the taxi company if you have more than 1 bag, and we would please ask you to cover this.
**Supplementary snacks if you follow a gluten free or coeliac diet**
Leaders are all first aid trained and carry their own first aid kit
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.
For each of our trips a minimum number of guests is required before we can confirm that your trip will go-ahead. The minimum and 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. This trip has a single supplement of £450 and in 2025 it will be £500.
Tracks and Trails 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 for the countries that they work in.
Note your guide 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.
Your hiking guide will be a fully qualified and experienced International Mountain Leader. International Mountain Leaders are not only qualified to ensure the safe management of the group, but are also a source of knowledge about the local flora and fauna, and traditions of the area which you are visiting. You can learn more about our guides and instructors on the About Us page.
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.
NB: We have graded this trip 'Difficult' because the days are lengthy, but we would say this is at the lower end of the scale and nearer 'Moderate' in terms of terrain and fitness required. We would not consider it essential that you had previous mountain walking experience if your mental attitude and level of fitness is good!
On this point-to-point trip you will have luggage support 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.
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.
We do not include lunches in your trip fee for various reasons, the most important of which is food waste. In general our guests have particular tastes and requirements for 'trail' or 'hill' food and it is better you purchase your own snacks rather than throw away items from the picnic lunch which we would supply.
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 the day. Buying snacks and trying local specialities is a great way to inter-act with local people and to practise your language skills.
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 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. In all cases we would ask you to settle any 'bill' for lunch or drinks the evening before you depart, and not in the morning 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.
Your leader will carry the correct maps and you are not expected to navigate, but if you would like to have maps of the itinerary you could consider those listed below:
IGN 3541 OT: Annot 1:25,000
IGN 3542 OT: Castellane 1:25,000
IGN 3442 OT: Verdon 1:25,000
IGN 3343 OT: Gréoux-les-Bains 1:25,000
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 often only accept payment in the local currency in cash.
We encourage you to experience local tastes and dishes and for this reason many of our accommodation options will be family run with a reputation for traditional food.
If you have a 'special' diet because of an allergy or intolerance which will make you ill then the accommodation will cater for this as best they can, eg gluten free, nut free, lactose free. 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 are vegetarian his 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 contact us.
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.
We request that you do not CHANGE your dietary requirements during the trip as we will have pre-ordered your meals.
The countries we visit all have tap water which is drinkable. If for any reason a particular hotel or mountain hut 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.
Due to rising temperatures in the summer months some mountain huts are having to restrict water usage. Which may mean that you are unable to shower in some mountain refuges.
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. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for the country you are visiting, paying attention to your citizenship. 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 ask that you carry a paper copy of your passport with you on your trip. We suggest keeping your passport in your rucksack, and a paper copy of your passport in any luggage you might have. If your trip is without luggage transfers then keep a paper copy somewhere in your rucksack, separate from your original document.
We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:
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.
For UK residents travelling to an EU country you should obtain and bring with you a free Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment in certain European countries, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance.
If you have a UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) it will be valid until the expiry date on the card. Once it expires, you’ll need to apply for a GHIC to replace it. The UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) lets you get state healthcare in Europe at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. 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.
We believe in team work, and enjoy working with other small high quality companies. In this respect due to the specialised nature of our holidays, we co-sell a number of trips with 'partner' companies. All the trips being sold by Tracks and Trails are organised by Tracks and Trails, but you may find guests from other companies on your trip. Partners are carefully selected to ensure they reflect our ethos and standards. By encouraging other companies to sell our trips it means 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. We guarantee that companies with whom we work will offer the same price package. If you have any questions about this policy contact us and we will be happy to discuss it with you.
Prices may vary depending on date.
|Sat 27 Apr
|Sat 04 May
Sat 27 Apr - Sat 04 May
|Sat 18 May
|Sat 25 May
Sat 18 May - Sat 25 May
|Sat 14 Sep
|Sat 21 Sep
Sat 14 Sep - Sat 21 Sep
|2 more to guarantee
|Sat 26 Apr
|Sat 03 May
Sat 26 Apr - Sat 03 May
|Sat 17 May
|Sat 24 May
Sat 17 May - Sat 24 May
|Sat 30 Aug
|Sat 06 Sep
Sat 30 Aug - Sat 06 Sep
|Sat 13 Sep
|Sat 20 Sep
Sat 13 Sep - Sat 20 Sep