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Primary Activities: Hiking
Other Activities:Local Culture & Cuisine
Mont Blanc (15,771'), the highest peak in Western Europe, is a magnificent glacier-clad mountain with seven valleys radiating into France, Italy, and Switzerland. In circling this impressive massif, we cross from one country to the next—on foot! The Tour du Mont Blanc is one of the “Great Hikes of the World,” and we’ve honed our unique version to perfection with impeccably planned hiking days, each one opening up new panoramas of the snow-covered giants of the Alps. Cultural and culinary experiences through three countries are part of the delight, and high in the Alps, festive evenings may find us passing the traditional grolla bowl (espresso and grappa—flambe!) to toast our day’s adventures. Our expert team of Trip Leaders add energy and fun to memorable days on the trail.
What the Trip is Like:
This hike is rated Level 5, Strenuous. All trip members should have good hiking experience, but no technical climbing experience is necessary. Most hiking is at altitudes between 6,000 and 8,000 feet, and the maximum elevation reached is 8,800 feet. Daily hikes range from four to eight hours. All participants must be in good physical condition. There are long daily ascents and descents of up to 3,000 to 4,000 feet in each direction. On most days, we end the hike with long, steep descents. Of course, you are always free to skip a day’s hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle. We recommend that you make a special effort to get in top physical condition for the trip.
In Chamonix, we stay in the wonderful Grand Hotel des Alpes. Outside of Chamonix, we stay in comfortable (but not luxurious) small hotels and pensions, with shared bathrooms on a couple of nights of the trip. They are rustic, well located for hikers, and continuously busy in the summer hiking season. Please note that these are hikers’ hotels, not five-star resorts. The rooms are clean and comfortable, but are not always of uniform size or amenities. All meals are included. Evening meals are at our hotels, and they will consist of hearty mountain fare. A support vehicle will transport the group’s luggage daily. We use many forms of transportation as we travel during the trip, so we ask that you restrict your luggage to one piece, plus your daypack/rucksack.
Our Trip Leaders try their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole. Single rooms are offered when possible, but those who pay the Single Supplement may have to share a room for up to two nights during the trip. At the Auberge de la Nova, couples may also have to share a room.
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