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Trek the Tour du Mont Blanc in a Week

Tackle one of the world’s greatest hikes on a wild week of wandering in the Alps

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Trip Ref #10484

Trek the Tour du Mont Blanc in a Week

Tackle one of the world’s greatest hikes on a wild week of wandering in the Alps

DURATION
6 nights
LOCATION
France, Italy, Switzerland
ANNUAL LEAVE
1 week off work
SEASON
Jun-Sep
GROUP SIZE
Up to 12 people
MEETING POINT
Central Chamonix
ACCOMMODATION
Classic

Guesthouse · Hotel · Mountain hut

OVERALL RATING

4.8

Based on 24 reviews
DIFFICULTY
Challenging

You’ll need to be in good shape and capable of hiking between 15-20km each day with a pack on your back and gains of as much as 1000m.

Circumnavigate the Mont Blanc massif on this jam-packed trek through the heart of the Alps, a week-long version of our classic Tour du Mont Blanc trip

Trek between remote mountain refuges and step into three countries en route - France, Italy and Switzerland

Hike past pristine lakes, traditional farms and ancient churches - all backed by astounding Alpine vistas

Day 1

Chamonix

Hiking

7hrs · 16km · 730m up · 1300m down

Travel to the commune of Les Houches, the traditional starting point for the Tour du Mont Blanc and get your first views of the Chamonix Valley and the Mont Blanc Massif. Ride the cable car to Bellevue and hike to Col de Tricot, along the way crossing a suspension bridge over the waterfalls cascading from the Bionnassay Glacier. If there is adverse weather then the classic trail takes you through the more protected forest route and along the Contamines Valley. End the day in the French resort village of Les Contamines-Montjoie.

Day 2

Hit the trail

Hiking

9hrs · 20km · 1450m up · 1000m down

Take a moment to explore Notre Dame de la Gorge, an ancient church with a fascinating history dating back to the 14th century. Climb up the Col du Bonhomme and walk through the nature reserve and mountain pass of Savoie County. See the Roman bridge, beautiful mountain lakes and traditional farmhouses (Le Balme), then after lunch, descend to your alpine accommodation in the small hamlet of Les Chapieux, where you'll spend the night.

Day 3

Hop across to Italy

Hiking

6.5hrs · 15km · 800m up · 1034m down

Heading straight out of the refuge door in the morning, follow the river as it winds its way through Alpine valleys. Climb up to the Col de la Seigne, 2516 metres above sea level and straddling the French-Italian border. From here you'll descend into Italy's Val Veny, enjoying stunning views of Mont Blanc's southern face. Reach the road at La Visaille, where a short bus ride takes you into the stunning alpine town of Courmayeur where you'll bunk down in a hotel for a spot of extra comfort.

Day 4

The high 4000s

Hiking

8.5hrs · 20km · 1400m up · 612m down

Hike through the Val Ferret in this far corner of Italy, right next to the Swiss and French borders. Take in the epic scenery of Mont Blanc, the Dent du Géant and the Grandes Jorasses - all 4000+ metre mountains -towering above you as the trail winds through the valley, eventually reaching your next mountain hut, Rifugio Elena.

Day 5

Climb to the Grand Col Ferret

Hiking

6.5hrs · 13km · 600m up · 1005m down

An early start today. Grab a quick bite and coffee at the hut before setting off for the 600m climb up to the Grand Col Ferret, where you'll step over the border into Switzerland. Another parade of epic alpine vistas awaits as you enter the final stage of today's trek, with the trail winding through to the lovely village of La Fouly.

Day 6

Champex Lac to Trient

Hiking

6hrs · 16km · 739m up · 873m down

Hop on a short morning bus ride to the beautiful alpine village of Champex Lac, where you can have a morning croissant whilst admiring the reflections in the lake. Hike through the forest to the Alpage de Bovine - a traditional alpine farm - to sample cakes and take a break before the descent down to Trient.

Day 7

The final climb, and back to Chamonix

Hiking

7hrs · 13km · 875m up · 992m down

Today you'll hike from the village of Trient up towards the French border at the Col de Balme. After a long climb, you are rewarded with the best views of Mont Blanc and the Chamonix Valley (where you started from) down below. Descend the other side into the village of Le Tour, where you can enjoy a drink before a short bus ride back to Chamonix where the trip finishes.

Included

Guides

Professional, experienced and friendly English-speaking IML certified guides

Accommodation

4 nights in remote mountain huts and guesthouses, 2 nights in village hotels

Meals

Munch on tasty food throughout

Transfers

Short transfers during the hike

Equipment

Pillows and blankets are provided at the refuges. Trekking poles are available for hire.

Not Included

Flights to and from the meeting point

Travel insurance

Personal expenses

Travel to and from the start point

Visas where required

Day 1

Guesthouse · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2

Guesthouse · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 3

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 4

Mountain hut · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 5

Guesthouse · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 6

Hotel · Mixed dorm

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 7

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

Breakfasts and dinners will be served at the refuges. Breakfasts always include coffee, bread, jam and butter. Depending on the refuge, they may also include orange juice, cereal, yoghurt, fruit, cheese and meats. Dinners are hearty and served in large portions – just what a hungry hiker needs! Typical meals include a soup starter, a main course of meat and veggies with a side of grains or pasta, and a dessert like vanilla pudding or creme brûlée. Picnic lunches will be provided each day, featuring a large main item like a sandwich or wrap, a salad, and a selection of fruit, muesli bars, chocolate, nuts, etc.

Vegetarian, vegan and most other dietary requirements (including gluten-free) can be catered for with advanced notice. Just let your host know when booking. Whilst dietary needs are sent to each refuge with the group reservations, please consider that the mountain refuges will have a limited range of choice to offer guests due to their remote locations. People with very specific dietary requirements typically choose to also bring some of their own snacks with them to ensure they have sufficient fuel for hiking up and down the beautiful mountain trails.

What is the accommodation like?

The Alps

During the trek you’ll stay in a series of remote mountain refuges and traditional guesthouses which form a quintessential part of the Tour du Mont Blanc experience. The refuges you'll stay in are:

  • Day 1: Gite Le Pontet (Les Contamines)
  • Day 2: Refuge Mottets, Chambres du Soleil, Base Camp Lodge, Auberge Nova (Les Chapieux, Bourg St Maurice)
  • Day 3: Hotel Croux or Hotel Les Jumeaux (Courmayeur)
  • Day 4: Rifugio Walter Bonatti or Reugio Elena (Val Ferret)
  • Day 5: Auberge Maya Joie (La Fouly)
  • Day 6: Hotel Grand Ourse (Trient)

The accommodation is simple, clean and comfortable. Groups typically sleep in mixed dormitory rooms of up to 20 persons, usually in bunk or single beds. They feature hot showers, running water, pillows and blankets, and a bar serving cold drinks. Most refuges also have outlets for charging your electronics, and some even have WiFi. Some refuges are more modern in style, others have a more traditional heritage, most are busy throughout the hiking season; it's the refuge's location and its remoteness that largely decides what comforts and conveniences are available. It's best to keep your expectations simple and enjoy the time on the trail to unplug from everyday life. Each of the mountain huts listed is the first choice option, but will be subject to availability. Where alternate accommodation is required, it will be of a similar style and standard.

Hotel Croux

On Day 3 you'll stay at Hotel Croux or a similar hotel, such as Hotel Les Jumeaux, in Courmayeur. Hotel Croux is a family-run hotel in Courmayeur with spectacular views of Mont Blanc. There's a bar, a cosy lounge and even a sauna and Turkish bath to soothe tired trekkers' legs. You'll stay in twin-share rooms.

Hotel La Grande Ourse

Your final night of the trek is spent at the Hotel La Grande Ourse in the picturesque village of Trient at the foot of two glaciers and the Col de la Forclaz. You'll stay in mixed dorms, with shared bathrooms and single-sex showers to use. There is a bar and a lovely garden to grab a drink and toast the last stage of your trek.

Upgrades

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

Les Houches

09:00 on Day 1

Ends

Chamonix

17:00 on Day 7

Transfers

Your adventure will begin at 09:00 on Day 1 in Les Houches, at the TMB Archway next to the tourism office, the traditional starting point of the trail. Les Houches is easily reachable from central Chamonix using the local bus network, there is also a local train service which links the valley.

You should arrive any time the day before the start date and book a hotel of your choice in the Chamonix area. There are regular buses from Geneva Airport and Geneva Bus Station to Chamonix, which take around an hour. Your host will be able to recommend an airport transfer company. Alternatively, you could also fly to Milan Airport (LIN) about three hours from Chamonix.

Your adventure ends in Chamonix at 17:00. You are free to make your own way back to Geneva or Milan airports, or Geneva railway station for those travelling onwards by train. We advise that you book any onward trains from Geneva to depart after 19:30, and any flights from Geneva or Milan to depart after 20:30. You also have the option to stay additional nights in Chamonix.

Travel options

Air travellers can fly into Geneva Airport (GVA) which is approximately one hour from Chamonix. Alternatively, you can fly into Milan Airport (LIN) about three hours from Chamonix.

For those who wish to avoid flying, why not travel by train instead? Chamonix is accessible by train via the St. Gervais-les-Bains (Le Fayet) station at the base of the valley which connects to Chamonix Mont Blanc train station. For example, take the Eurostar from London to Paris and then connect to a number of direct lines or an overnight sleeper train from Paris to St. Gervais-les-Bains, then on to Chamonix Mont Blanc station.

You can also travel to Geneva by various train routes from other parts of Europe and travel on to Chamonix from there by bus. Geneva bus station is a 5-minute walk or short taxi ride from the central train station. There are various bus services from Geneva bus station to Chamonix, the quickest option taking 1 hour and 8 minutes.

Enjoy 12.5% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 12.5% discount to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What's available to hire?

  • Trekking poles (see Optional Extras for prices)

What do I need to bring?

You'll be carrying all you need for the seven day trip on your back, so don't over pack but also don't skip the essentials. Hiking in the Alps even in the peak of summer you can have very mixed conditions, both hot and cold, especially when climbing over the high mountain passes.

KIT

  • 30-50L backpack with waist belt (plus a rain cover)
  • A Pack Liner or Dry Bag is also good protection in case of rain
  • Sleeping bag liner (cotton or silk). This is very important as it's a mandatory requirement at the mountain refuges. Pillows and blankets are provided by the refuges.
  • Sunglasses and Sunscreen (SPF 50+ recommended due to altitude)
  • Hydration/Electrolyte tablets
  • Preferred snacks for the trail
  • Towel
  • 2L water bottle(s)
  • Toiletries and personal first aid items
  • Swim suit
  • Earplugs and Eye Mask (recommended)
  • Cash (EUR) for drinks, snacks along the trail, tips etc.
  • Plug adaptor and/or battery pack to charge electrical devices (note Switzerland uses a different standard to the rest of Europe)
  • Headlamp

CLOTHES

  • Waterproof Jacket (with hood) and Trousers
  • Primaloft or Down Jacket
  • Fleece or merino pullover or sweater
  • Synthetic or merino wool base layers
  • Warm hat and gloves (really important in mixed weather conditions)
  • Sunhat or cap
  • Synthetic shirts and trousers (zip-off preferable) for hiking
  • Comfortable shirt and trousers for the refuges
  • 2+ pairs of hiking socks, wool or synthetic
  • Sturdy hiking boots or shoes (worn in)
  • Comfortable light shoes for around the refuge
*Requests for optional extras can be made after booking on your “My Bookings” page

Trekking Poles

Payable In Resort

Trekking Poles

Jim

Beware, add 3 miles to every day itinerary

Cara

Overall I had an amazing week on the 7 day TMB trip. Having never completed a multi day hike before, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect but feel that the distance/ elevation matched my expectations and felt my fitness level was right for the hike.

Sophie

A WONDERFUL week in absolutely beautiful scenery. Every single view was amazing - the TMB is a bucket list hike for a reason! The ascents were challenging enough to get a sense of accomplishment at the top, but not so challenging that it wasn't enjoyable. Our group was great (I came with a friend, but it was fun to get to meet new people and have lots of people to chat to during the long hikes!) Joel is a 10/10 guide - fun, knowledgeable, and was great at feeling out the group's energy level and catering the hiking speed to everyone's fitness level. It was so nice to be able to turn up and not have to worry about logistics (apparently most of the mountain refuges get booked up a year in advance anyways) and everything was super smooth and well organised. Accomodation is basic (as you would expect in the middle of alpine valleys) but clean and the food is also basic but filling. We ate a lot of bread, ham , cheese and boiled eggs, which made the day 3 negronis and day 4 pizzas a real treat! All in all an amazing trip. If you're hesitating just go ahead and book, you won't regret it!

Magali

What an amazing trip we had! The trip was very well organized, our guide Joel was kind and knowledgeable and made sure everyone was comfortable at all times, the group dynamic was great and the sceneries breathtaking! I enjoyed the food and accommodation as well and would highly recommend this tour. It´s my second trip with MBA and certainly not my last!

Gareth

An excellent seven day trip. The guide was knowledgeable about all aspects of the hike and accommodating to everyone in the group. Each day was well planned with hikes taking us to interesting places with fantastic views and ending with a different type of refuge to stay in each night. Overall a very good experience that I would recommend to anyone.

Kathy S.

Great scenery. Shortened tour, but still hard work, with some long days and steep trails. Our guide, David, was the best! Helpful trip coordination support provided by Joel.

Natalie

The scenery is amazing! This is a challenging hike that should only be tackled by people with a very good fitness level but the views are worth it. Be aware that the accommodation and food is VERY basic.

Carolyn

Highly recommend this trip! It was challenging but you geel a real sense of accomplishment and the views were worth it. The group was wonderful. The accommodations are rustic and communal. I recommend bringing ear plus if you are a light sleeper and Euros if you want drinks or snacks. Pack as light as possible and enjoy the trek!

Justin

What an absolute blast of an experience! The hiking was tough but the scenery and views were immensely rewarding! Our guide Cecilia was brilliant and took great care of all of us!

Rather unfortunate, but we had one slow member of the group which meant we spent a lot of time waiting around, but Cecilia managed it very well. Also, some refuges on the French side had some water issues which meant no showers and dry toilets - but I guess it adds to the experience!

Another tip - pack light, you’ll have some opportunity to do some washing, but make sure you have quick dry clothing.

Superb trip, which I would highly recommend! Back in London, but I wished I was up hiking in the alps!

Lorraine

Challenging hike but made worthwhile for the breathtaking sights seen.

We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 149kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity, ensuring the protection of the reserve and its wildlife.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

This trip is suitable for experienced hikers in good shape. You'll need to be able to hike 15–20km on mountain trails, with as much as 1000m of elevation gain and descent, each day. You will be carrying your own overnight pack between the refuges, so should be confident hiking with a 30-50L pack for multiple days. Doing some practice hikes before the trip with your pack and boots is strongly recommended to help you prepare for this adventure!

Sure can! Over 70% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

Summer around Mont Blanc is generally warm and fair, but the weather can change very quickly in the high mountains, bringing cold rain and wind. Average temperatures range from 6 to 26 °C. It rains roughly half of the days each month, but storms generally pass through quickly. Even in the peak of summer you can have very mixed conditions, especially when climbing over the high mountain passes above 2000m. Heatwaves have also been a feature of recent European summers. Our kit list is intended to guide you on what to pack for this trip.

Yes. Excess luggage not required on the trip can be stored. There is a storage fee of 25.00 EUR per bag which needs to be stored during the hike. This can be paid in cash at the time. Please let your host know in advance if you have excess luggage so that they can plan the logistics accordingly.

Yes, you will be carrying your own 30-50L pack between the refuges, with everything you need for the seven day trek. A luggage transport service is unavailable on this trip as not all accommodation is accessible by road. So don't over pack, a lighter pack will be more enjoyable, but also don't skip the essentials and risk getting caught out in bad weather. It's a good idea to do some hiking before the trip so you are comfortable with the gear you plan to bring on the trek. Check out our kit list section for the basics to consider putting in your pack.

We recommend checking out the country-specific information here and also talking to a travel nurse.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all of our adventures and you are required to provide your policy information before departing.

Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure. We also strongly recommend it includes cancellation and curtailment insurance, should you be unable to join your trip for specific reasons such as illness.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last-minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're always in good company on one of our adventures.

Our trips are typically made up of a mixture of solo travellers and small groups of 2 or 3 friends, with most in their 30s-50s.

Our sociable adventures are solo-friendly by design and naturally attract outdoorsy people with a shared mindset; a love for adventure, a desire to push themselves and meet awesome, like-minded people along the way.

It’s this camaraderie that has so often turned a great adventure into a life-changing one.

Don't just take our word for it:

  • 95% of people rate the group dynamics on our trips 5/5
  • 90% of people recommend joining a trip to make new friends
  • 75% of people have met people on our trips that they would now consider friends

See here for more info about the Much Better Adventures tribe.

Interested in a more exclusive experience? Opt for a 'Private Group' through the dates and prices tab to book this adventure for just you and your chosen companions.

Your trip is led by carefully curated local hosts and expert guides. See here for more info about the guides we work with.

TRIP DEPARTURE DATES

June 2024

Monday • 10th June 2024

to Sunday • 16th June 2024
€1,450.00
5 Booked • 7 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 17th June 2024

to Sunday • 23rd June 2024
€1,450.00
11 Booked • 1 Spot left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 24th June 2024

to Sunday • 30th June 2024
€1,450.00
11 Booked • 1 Spot left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 8th July 2024

to Sunday • 14th July 2024
€1,450.00
10 Booked • 2 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 15th July 2024

to Sunday • 21st July 2024
€1,450.00
4 Booked • 8 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 22nd July 2024

to Sunday • 28th July 2024
€1,450.00
1 Booked • 11 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 5th August 2024

to Sunday • 11th August 2024
€1,450.00
2 Booked • 10 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 12th August 2024

to Sunday • 18th August 2024
€1,450.00
12 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 19th August 2024

to Sunday • 25th August 2024
€1,450.00
1 Booked • 11 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 2nd September 2024

to Sunday • 8th September 2024
€1,450.00
3 Booked • 9 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 9th September 2024

to Sunday • 15th September 2024
€1,450.00
2 Booked • 10 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Monday • 16th September 2024

to Sunday • 22nd September 2024
€1,450.00
1 Booked • 11 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

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