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Mont Blanc West 7-day Self-guided Walking Tour Level 4
Around the heart of the French Alps
Mont Blanc is enthroned majestically amidst the highest peaks of the Alps. If you want to hike around this massif, you will be venturing onto one of the most beautiful long-distance trails in Europe. You will be greeted with high passes, dreamy hamlets and cosy mountain inns, where you can gear up for the challenges awaiting you. Tour Mont Blanc is one of the biggest classic trails for hikers from all corners of the world, all of whom come in search of the same thing: exquisite mountain panoramas, peace and unspoilt landscapes. This tour will surely enrich you and you will take something back.
You need to be physically fit to cope with the long legs of the hike. There are some exposed sites - enduring surefootedness and head for heights are a must!
Slow Tours offers a number of other Walking Tours in Europe
Individual journey to Martigny
The little town Martigny lies in an idyllic spot close to river Rhône. Go for a walk and visit the castle La Batiaz or indulge yourself in one of the many restaurants.
Martigny – Argentière Approx. 15km 5hrs | +1,200m -1,100m
Your first hiking day starts by climbing the Col de Balme (2191 m) pass, where you can rest in a quaint mountain lodge. It offers fantastic views of Mont Blanc and the Chamonix valley. You will then descend into the grassy Sattel, where you can see grazing livestock and leisurely mountain pastures. The impressive Kammweg (ridgeway) over the summit of Aiguillette des Posettes will now take you through a rocky terrain with a phenomenal panoramic view of the surrounding glaciers. You will cope with the descent on a steep trail, which later takes you along the mountain brook to your destination. A fantastic day amidst the highest, gigantic mountains!
Argentière – Chamonix Approx. 14km. 5.5hrs | +1,300m -600m
Day 3 is the most spectacular leg of the Mont Blanc tour: on well-secured ladders, you will climb steep rocks to reach the light-blue shining mountain lake called Lac Blanc. In the afternoon, the path across the “Grand Balcon”, a great alpine path, will take you along the mountain slope and through blueberry fields to Plan Praz, which has a café at an altitude of 2000 m! Here you can take the cable car and glide down to the legendary mountaineer location of Chamonix. A stroll through the magnificent pedestrian area with colourfully decorated houses is a treat for the eyes! These stretches can be made easier if you wish and you can leave out the adventurous climbing routes.
Chamonix – Les Houches Approx. 12km 5hrs | +500m -1,500 m
Today you will ride the cable car to climb up 2000 m without any efforts. You are not very far from pass Col du Brévent (2368 m), from where you will climb the impressive boulders of the panorama peak of Brévent. From the panorama platform which is known as the “best lookout post on Mont Blanc”, you can study the glaciers and corn snow peaks of the ice giant very well. A beautiful hiking trail passes the bizarre shaped mountain lake Lac du Brévent and descends into the shelter called Bel-Lachat. You can take some rest here before resuming the steep climb, which will take you past the Alpen-Wildpark Merlet through the forest and into the valley. You will stay the night in one of the many small hamlets in the municipality of Les Houches situated in the valley of the river Arve, which gets its water from the glaciers.
Les Houches – Les Contamines Approx. 18km. 7hrs | +1,350m -1,150m
Experience the famous “Mont Blanc tram” from close quarters and walk along its tracks for a stretch of the hike! From Bellevue, you can view the imposing end station of the daringly constructed rack railway next to the ice field. An interesting alpine path guides you to an adventurous suspension bridge that you need to cross to walk over a rustling glacial stream. You will then hike through mountain meadows to the Col de Tricot (2120 m) pass and climb down to the Miage huts. After a further climb, you will reach the cosy resting destination of Truc-Alpe. Grab a bite while listening to the bells of grazing cows. Your destination, Les Contamines, is situated in the Montjoie valley, which is famous for its delicious cheeses from the numerous surrounding alpine pastures. Don’t forget to visit one of the cheese dairies and taste the Savoy cheese with red wine and a fresh baguette.
Les Contamines – Bourg Saint-Maurice Approx. 17km 6.5 hours | +1,300m -900m
The last leg of the tour will make your heart beat faster: you will hike on the paths tread by Romans over gurgling ravines, see stone types of varied colours, get views of glacial lakes and climb two high pass crossings! The path passes the southernmost point of the Mont Blanc massif, where you can enjoy unending vistas of the southern part of the mountain massif of the French Alps. You will first walk leisurely along the river to the baroque pilgrimage church Notre Dame de la Gorge, from where you can start with the long climb to the top of the passes: on a rocky alpine path from Col du Bonhomme (2329 m) to pass Col de la Croix du Bonhomme (2450 m). Replenish yourself at Refuge de la Croix du Bonhomme, a traditional shelter of the French Alpine Club. The last descent across alpine pastures with mountain brooks flowing through them leads you to Vallée des Glaciers (valley of glaciers), where you can toast to your successful hiking week in the small hamlet of Les Chapieux! A short journey will bring you down to your overnight accommodation location - Bourg-Saint-Maurice. You can now relax on the last evening of your tour and relive the week-long hike over a glass of wine!
Individual departure or extra days.
If you prefer to drive yourself but would like to follow our itineraries and hotel choices we can help you with a brand new Renault vehicle - minimum 21 days - and have your itineraries and hotels ready for you.
Please email [email protected] for your choice of vehicle and pick-up and drop-off points in European countries.