Experience the rarified air of Europe as you trek the Alps from France to Italy and Switzerland along the Tour du Mont Blanc. This challenging hiking circuit will reward you with mesmerizing views of glaciers, steep valleys and, of course, Mont Blanc itself. Travel across high passes and through Alpine meadows, recharging at night with delicious mountain cuisine in simple refuges. Challenge yourself to conquer one of the world’s premier hiking routes, uncovering the alpine heart of Europe on this incredible active adventure.
Challenging mountain hikes led by an International Mountain Leader (IML) (7-day). All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Hike the soul-stirring Mont Blanc massif, witness alpine meadows and rocky peaks, conquer windswept cols and steep trails, earn that delicious mountain meal, stay in remote mountain refuges.
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
1. Please note that this trip is rated Physical Grade 5 and is a backpacking trekking trip from start to finish. Passengers are required to carry their own packs and there are no support vehicles. It is possible to leave some gear at the hotel in Chamonix as the trip begins and ends here. Night stops and routes may vary depending on weather conditions, daily group progress and availability. Flexibility is very important. Please see the equipment list for essential information on what to take
2. Please note that this trip travels through remote and rugged Alpine terrain. Extremes of heat and cold may be encountered and the route involves some long and demanding trekking days carrying all your own gear. The CEO will accompany you on the treks; however, there are up to 12 people in a group and the trip is self-supported. There are no luggage transport, porters or guides. Therefore it is important that you are a fit and confident walker over mountain terrain, able to manage ascents and descents and cross streams by yourself. Please realistically self-assess your fitness and suitability for this trip.
Please note that on most days there is no possibility of continuing by public transport; taxis may sometimes be possible if you are not able to continue walking but these cannot be guaranteed and will be at your own expense
2. Please note that the Hotel Chamonix is affiliated with the nearby Hotel Crete Blanche and that in some cases the group could be divided between the two hotels.
Group Leader Description
This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our Chief Experience Officers (CEOs). The aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. The CEO will accompany you on the treks; however, there are up to 12 people in a group and the trip is self-supported, there are no luggage transport, porters or guides. Therefore it is important that you are a fit and confident walker over mountain terrain, able to manage ascents and descents and cross streams by yourself.
On Mont Blanc, we employ the services of fully-trained International Mountain Leaders (IML). The IML qualification requires significant international trekking experience followed by 3 weeks of training and assessment in the Alps in both summer and winter conditions. The training includes avalanche awareness, dealing with altitude sickness, being aware of the surrounding elements and an understanding of physiology. With experienced IMLs guiding you on your trek, you are guaranteed the best possible experience whilst in the mountains.
Group Size Notes
Max 12, avg 10
Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. The above information applies to G Adventures group trips. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.
Local bus, walking, cable car
About our Transportation
Transport on this trip will mainly be on foot, but there will be some short journeys by public bus or train to get to the start/finish points of walks.
All local flights are included in the cost of your tour unless otherwise noted. It is important that we have your passport information at the time of booking in order to process these tickets. Internal flight tickets are issued locally and will be given to you prior to the flight departure.
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Hotels (2 nts), basic hotels (2 nts, possibly multi-share), mountain refuges (5 nts, multi-share).
As this trip has a “Basic” Service Level grading, and uses mountain refuges,some accommodation on this tour is multi-share. This may involve 3-4 group members sharing and often in the mountain gites dormitory style rooms for the whole group. Rooms will not be en-suite and will have shared bathroom facilities.
Please note that the Hotel Chamonix is affiliated with the nearby Hotel Crete Blanche and that in some cases the group could be divided between the two hotels. These two lovely hotels in the centre of Chamonix have everything we need to enjoy the area and get a good rest before and after our trek. The interior of the hotels are all in wood, giving them a very typical Alpine atmosphere.
We will be staying at a mixture of mountain refuges and small local hotels on this trip. Most nights will be multi-share and with basic, shared facilities.
Please note that day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned on this day. Upon arrival to the city on day 1 (or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us), please make your way to the joining hotel (note that check-in time will be in the afternoon). Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note or bulletin board in the reception with a note from your CEO. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on day 1 (usually between 5pm and 7pm), where you will get a chance to meet your CEO and other travellers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!
If you are arriving later and will miss the Welcome Meeting, your CEO will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need, and with morning instructions for the next day.
AIRPORT TRANSFERS to HOTEL LE CHAMONIX:
We recommend that you use the following company for all your travel enquiries.
Office – 0033485800132
Mobile – 0033633634241
Shared (Saver) Transfer – Each seat costs €30. Transfers depart approximately every 100 minutes daily.
Shared Transfer – Each seat costs €35. Transfers depart approximately every 60 minutes daily.
*Please note that if your flight is delayed or you arrive very early or late, it is better to book a Shared Transfer service as this option allows greater flexibility
Other options available include:
Private Transfer – One Way €175 (Available 24 Hours)
VIP Transfer – One Way €225 (Available 24 Hours)
Please note these rates are guaranteed only for transfers booked 72hours prior to flight departure – transfer prices may increase if booked at short notice. We recommend you book both your arrival and departure transfers in advance, to guarantee the best rate and most convenient timings.
NOTE: Please make sure you have the following TRAVEL DETAILS before booking.
- Flight number
- Flight Arrival Time
- Flight Departure Time
- Passenger’s Name
- Number of Passengers
- Valid Mobile Telephone Number ((00+) contactable whilst in Europe)
- Drop off and/or Pick Up Address
*Please note that arriving by train takes a lot longer and changes are required. The Hotel is a 5 minute walk from the railway station but there are usually taxis that you can ring if you have a lot of luggage and need transport to get to the hotel.
We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO. If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures UK office (manned UK 8am – 8pm)
+44 (0) 2072439878
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, from calls within North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from within UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from within Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from within Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from within New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
For absolute emergencies after office hours please contact +44 7817 262559
If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, and your call will be returned as soon as possible.
Finishing Point Instructions
We recommend you book your departure shuttle to Geneva airport, as per the joining point instructions, in advance. See details above.
What to Take
We strongly recommend the use of a small backpack. It is essential that you travel as light as possible as you will be carrying all your own gear during this trip. You should be able to fit everything you will need into a 30-35litre rucksack.
You may leave some extra gear or a piece of luggage at the start hotel and get it back on Day 10 at the end of the trip (check with your CEO or hotel front desk about the luggage storage policy).
Rucksack of max 40 lites capacity, containing suggested Items:
•Hiking boots (well worn in & waterproof)
•Sleep sheet (cotton or silk)
•Extra pair of shoes like flip-flops,very light sneakers or sport sandals;for wearing in the refuges
•Hiking poles (optional but recommended, especially for departures in June and early in the season)
•Wind and waterproof jacket
•1 or 2 lightweight shirts or T-shirts – wicking material rather than cotton is recommended for T-shirts
•Something to sleep in- suitable for multi sex dorm rooms
•1 pair hiking pants/track pants (convertible pants/shorts are useful)and 1 pair trousers to wear in the evenings
•2-3 pairs socks and underwear
•1 thermal baselayer
•Small towel(pack towels are good)
•Toiletries (just the essentials in small/light bottles)
•Watch or alarm clock
•Water bottle – at least 2litres capacity
•First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
•Waterproof pants (optional but recommended in case of rain/snow)
•Gaiters (esp early or late season) may be useful if there is snow on higher ground
•Passport (with photocopies)
•Travel insurance (with photocopies)
•Airline tickets (with photocopies)
•Credit or debit card (see personal spending money)
•G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information and dossier
•Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
Please note it is ESSENTIAL you travel light as you will be carrying all your own gear
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge or ask your CEO where the closest laundromat is. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
Contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your responsibility to have the correct travel documentation. While we provide the following information in good faith, it is vital that you check yourself and understand that you are fully responsible for your own visa requirements.
All visitors to the EU (European Union) and EEC (European Economic Community) countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand passport holders do not need a visa to visit the Schengen area (see below), however they may not stay longer than three months in any 6-month period.
For other nationalities, travelling in Europe has been simplified with the introduction of the Schengen visa. As a visitor to the Schengen area (Austria, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Greece, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Portugal, Finland, Italy, Spain, France, Luxembourg, Sweden, Czech Republic, Hungary, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Switzerland) you will enjoy the many advantages of this unified visa system. Generally speaking with a Schengen visa, you may enter one Schengen country and travel freely throughout the Schengen region during the validity of your visa. There are limited border controls at Schengen borders, if any at all.
Please note that the UK and Ireland are NOT part of the Schengen agreement.
A Schengen visa is applied for at the Embassy or Consulate of the Schengen country in which you will be spending the most nights on your trip to the Schengen space. If you are only visiting one country on your trip then you apply for your visa at the Consulate of this Schengen country.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
France and Italy are in the Eurozone and the unit of the currency is the Euro. Switzerland uses the Swiss Franc (CHF) however euros are very widely accepted and you should have no problem making any cash purchases in Euros.
Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances but you must remember to bring your PIN number (be aware that many ATM machines only accept 4-digit PINs). Both Cirrus and Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. Visa cards are the most widely accepted credit cards. While ATMs are commonly available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in France, Italy or Switzerland. You should be aware when purchasing products or services on a credit card, that a fee usually applies.
Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of Euros, traveller’s cheques and cards is best. Avoid relying on traveller’s cheques alone as these are less and less readily cashed as clients use them very little.
Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com
Usually included in international air ticket
It is customary in Europe to leave a small tip for service providers, such as waiters, if you are pleased with the service (€1-2).
Tipping is an expected – though not compulsory – component of your tour program, and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides. You may do this individually, or your CEO will offer to collect the money and tip as a group. Recommendations for tipping local guides would range from €3-5 per day, depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture.
Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline €30-40 per person, per week can be used.
All prices are per person, in Euro amounts.
- Aiguille du Midi (cable car + summit lift) – 57 EUR + 3 EUR
- Mer de Glace (alpine train and visit ice cave) – 27 EUR
- Transglacial crossing Aiguille du Midi to Pointe Helbronner (return) – 27 EUR
- Tramway du Mont Blanc – 30.50 EUR
- Pointe Helbronner (bus + cable car) – 6 EUR + 36 EUR
- Transglacial crossing Pointe Helbronner to Aiguille du Midi (return) – 17 EUR
- Spa Centre in Pré St Didier – 50 EUR
All prices are per person (unless stated otherwise), and are subject to change as services are provided by third party operators.
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.
Please note your Adventure travels to high altitude. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000 feet (2,440 meters). Most people can travel to 8,000 feet with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are effected on your Adventure, please consult your physician.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.
Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.
Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).
Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.
We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:
Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility’ is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day’s activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.
The medical questionnaire can be found online at:
A Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation
Through our commitment to responsible tourism we have developed the Planeterra Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people and communities around the world through support of international charities, local organizations and community projects in the places that we visit on our tours. G Adventures matches all individual donations and pays all administration costs, which means that 100% of each donation is doubled and goes directly to support our projects. For more information about Planeterra and the projects we support, or to make a donation, please visit www.planeterra.org
Planeterra Dollar-A-Day Program
Our Dollar-A-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to help us give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar per day for the duration of their tour. 100% of these proceeds will go directly to support our G Adventures for Good projects.
To participate in this program please indicate at the time of booking that you would like to participate in G Adventures’ Dollar-A-Day program, either by clicking the check box online, or by advising your G Adventures specialist or travel agent. (Note: Donation will be charged in the currency of your booking)
Travel Forum - The Watering Hole
Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you’re interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.
Qualified International Mountain Leader as CEO throughout.
Allow USD225-295 for meals not included.
7 breakfasts, 5 dinners
PRODUCT_LINE: EFMB, ID: 22966
Day 1: Chamonix
Our circuit begins and ends in Chamonix, France.
This evening is our first opportunity to try out some of the best Alpine specialities in a typical restaurant, such as Cheese fondue, Tartiflette or Raclette accompanied with some famous “Vin de Savoie” wine.
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2: Les Contamines (1D)
We set off this morning after breakfast for our first day of hiking. We’ll take the bus or train to the village of Les Houches, where we begin with a cable car ride to Bellevue. From here on a clear day you’ll enjoy great views of the Chamonix Valley and the Mont Blanc Range, before beginning our hike to Les Contamines.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 3: Col de la Croix du Bonhomme/Les Chapieux (1B, 1D)
Hike the challenging 18km (11 mi) from Les Contamines to Les Chapieux.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 4: Col de la Seigne/Val Veny/Courmayeur (1B)
Pass glacial lakes on the 23km (14 mi) trek from Les Chapieux to the Italian town of Courmayeur.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 5: Courmayeur (1B)
Today we have a scheduled rest day to put up our weary feet or take the opportunity to enjoy the lovely town of Courmayeur and La Saxe.
Enjoy an optional dinner with the group and our leader to taste some of the Italian Alpine specialities offered in Courmayeur’s many atmospheric restaurants.
Day 6: Italian Val Ferret (1B, 1D)
Hike the 14km (8.6 mi) from Courmayeur to the Italian Val Ferret. It’s a steep climb but the rewarding views are worth it.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 7: La Fouly (1B, 1D)
Embark on a long, steep hike of 20km (12 mi) followed by a stay in the Swiss mountain village of La Fouly.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 8: Trient (1B, 1D)
Follow the “Bovine Way” and trek from La Fouly to Trient.
Mont Blanc Trek
Day 9: Chamonix Valley (1B)
Enjoy a final day of trekking over the Col de la Balme to the Chamonix valley. Take local transport back to Chamonix.
Mont Blanc Trek
Local bus (0.50 hour(s))
Day 10: Chamonix
Depart at any time.