Climb the Highest Mountain of France - Mont Blanc - 4810m

See the world from the highest point of Western Europe in this week-long climbing adventure. 7 days.

  • France
  • June, August, September
  • Geneva Cointrin International Airport, Geneva (GVA)

Push yourself to your limits, test your tenacity and climb Western Europe’s highest peak in this challenging week-long adventure to the summit of Mont Blanc and Gran Paradiso. Your hassle-free adventure includes:

  • 4 nights mountain huts at half-board
  • 3 nights Chamonix accommodation
  • 3 training days
  • Summit of Mont Blanc (4810m)
  • Summit of Gran Paradiso (4061m)
  • All guiding fees
  • All transport between locations

Perfect for: Anyone with a good level of physical fitness who wants to conquer Mont Blanc. That said, Mont Blanc is not to be underestimated; it will be challenging whatever your physical fitness, so be sure to pack your determination (you’ll need it).

If you want more training before the climb, there’s an option to add a 3-day Alpine Skills Short Break course to your trip, which you’d complete prior to your climb.

Need To Know

Your host recommends bringing the following:

  • Ice axe – for general mountaineering (between 50 and 70cm depending on height)
  • Standard steel crampons, helmet, trekking poles and B3 boots (broken in prior to arrival)
  • Rucksack – 30-50L with a rain cover feature
  • Water bottle 1L – not a platypus type, as they can freeze and leak
  • Lightweight thermals
  • Harness (adjustable so that it is comfortable over all your layers), with 2 screw gate carabiners
  • Sun protection
  • Personal first aid: blister kit, aspirin, or Paracetamol
  • Head torch and spare batteries
  • Sleeping bag liner for huts (you don’t need a sleeping bag itself as blankets/duvets are provided)

Please note you will need to bring cash – there are no ATMs on the mountain.

  • Transport to/from Chamonix
  • Equipment rental
  • Travel insurance
  • Lunch when in the huts
  • Evening meals when in Chamonix
  • Uplifts according to the itinerary

The climbing season runs from mid-June to late September and between those dates, there is no better or worse time to attempt the climb. The beginning and end of the season can be snowy/ cold, and the middle months can be busier and the hotter temperatures can cause afternoon storms.

Summit success varies from season to season but remains consistent throughout the different months. If the weather shuts us down, we will endeavour to find the closest mountain in the area with better weather, and thanks to our location we are generally able to find an equally beautiful alternative within driving distance in France, Italy or Switzerland.

Anyone with a good level of endurance fitness and a sense of adventure is welcome to come. You don’t need any previous experience either as training will be provided. However, you will need to be in good physical shape and have a good, can-do attitude! Determination is key.

If you want more training before the climb, there’s an option to add a 3-day Alpine Skills Short Break course to your trip, which you’d complete prior to your climb.

Of course – there is space available for single travellers.

Alpine and prone to change – prepare for all weathers and dress in layers. Put it this way – it’s called the ‘white mountain’ for a reason.

The food in the mountain huts is basic (3-course in the evening, hot drink and bread/jam/cereal for breakfast), but tasty. Vegetarians can be catered for but please let the hosts know in advance.

Your best bet is flying in and out of Geneva as it’s the nearest airport to Chamonix (just under 60 miles away). Loads of airlines fly to it, such as EasyJet, British Airways and FlyBe, just be sure you book flights that align with your agreed arrival and departure times. An airport transfer can be arranged upon request.

Location

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As western Europe’s highest peak, Mont Blanc has been a playground for adventurers since the Victorians first got a taste of mountaineering. It’s imposing and beautiful and straddles the Alps on both the border of France and Italy. Chamonix is a beautiful town, that’s easily accessed from Geneva International airport and has excellent nightlife.

Start point?
You’ll be met by your at Chalet Pele in Chamonix at 18:00 on Sunday. Your host will be in touch to finalise details.

Finish point?
Your adventure end at Chalet Pele in Chamonix at 10:00 on Sunday.

Getting there and away?
Your best bet is flying in and out of Geneva as it’s the nearest airport to Chamonix (just under 60 miles away). Make sure you book flights that align with your agreed arrival and departure times. Your host can arrange an airport transfer upon request.

What to Expect

Sunday: Arrival in Chamonix

Fly into Geneva, make your own way to Chamonix and be greeted by your guides at the Chalet Pele at 18:00. Meet your fellow explorers and get debriefed for the week ahead.

Monday: Travel to refuge and training

Sort out any last minute rental in Chamonix before setting out for Rifugio Chabod in Gran Paradiso (1.5h drive). Park and walk up to the hut. Then sort out any last-minute rentals in Chamonix and drive through the tunnel into Italy. Once at the refuge, eat lunch and complete an outdoor training session.

Tuesday: Gran Paradiso and the first taste of mountaineering

Wake up bright and early to make the 1,300m ascent of the Gran Paradiso, Italy’s highest peak. The journey to the summit will mainly be on snow, minus a final rocky section where you’ll need to scramble. Then it’s back down to the huts for dinner and rest.

Wednesday: Hike through the valleys

After you’ve recovered from the previous day’s climb, set out for 08:30 and make the gradual descent to the valley for two hours. Stop for a snack and one of Italy’s famous coffees, then drive back to Chamonix (1.5h drive).

Thursday: Travelling between peaks

Drive to Les Houches (10min), ride the Bellevue cable car and then take the Tramway du Mont Blanc train to Refuge du Nid d’Aigle. Hike to the Tete Rousse hut ready to rest up for the night, ready for tomorrow’s ascent of Mont Blanc.

Friday: Summit Mont Blanc

Time for the eight-to-12-hour hike to the peak. Once you’ve sucked in the view from the summit, descend to the Gouter hut once again.

Saturday: Return to the chalet for a well-deserved dinner, drinks and rest

Make your way back down from Gouter to the Refuge du Nid d’Aigle. Take the Tramway du Mont Blanc, followed by the Bellevue cable car to Les Houches. You’ll then drive back to the chalet to unwind after the climb.

You can leave as soon as you get back to the chalet (17:00), but you’re welcome to stay a final night at no additional cost. Usually, guides and guests go out for a meal to celebrate and reminisce about the week.

Sunday: Departure day

Chow down on one last breakfast before checking out at 10:00 and making your own way on to the next stage of your adventure.

Note: This itinerary and the duration of the activities are subject to change due to group abilities and preferences, and weather conditions and forecasts.

Accommodation

Much of the trip will be based in Chalet Pele, a delightful, rustic B&B in the centre of Chamonix. It’s close to rental shops, restaurants and bars. Rooms are usually shared with your co-climbers, but have twin beds and come with an en-suite bathroom. The chalet has free WIFI, a lounge, dining area and a fun après-ski-like atmosphere.

Meanwhile, mountain huts are basic; expect dormitory-style bunk beds with blankets or duvets provided. Also, note that there’s no running water in the huts on Mont Blanc.

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Dates & Prices

Prices include

  • Accommodation
  • Equipment
  • Guide
  • Local Transport
  • Meals As Described

Please note: Flights are NOT included and must be purchased separately.

Large group? Make a private booking
Special requirements? Get a quote for a custom trip

If you can't find a private trip that suits you, try a group trip or ask for a quote.

Optional Extras

Make your life easy. Once you have reserved your space, your host can help you arrange the extras you’ll need. Here are some guide prices which can be confirmed with you during booking.

3-day Alpine Training Course Payable Before Departure
3-day Alpine Training Course €999.00 Per Person
Transfer from Geneva Airport to Charmonix Payable Before Departure
Transfer from Geneva Airport to Chamonix €30.00

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