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Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • Walking holiday through 3 countries, France, Italy, Switzerland
  • Stunning panoramic views of Mont Blanc from all sides
  • IML qualified and experienced tour guides
  • Baggage support every night

The Tour du Mont Blanc is a classic walking holiday adventure around Mont Blanc in the heart of the Alps of Europe from Chamonix, France trekking through Italy and Switzerland. Starting out in the Chamonix Valley, this superlative walking holiday makes a complete circumnavigation of Mont Blanc and its satellite Alpine peaks. Walking firstly into Italy and then Switzerland, the trekking route follows picturesque valley trails and ascends via steep mountain paths. Our walking route also climbs to a succession of scenic and challenging Alpine passes, including the high point of the circuit at the rocky Fenetre d'Arpette (2670m). Lower level highlights include the vibrant Italian Alpine resort of Courmayeur and the charming Swiss village of Champex. As an excellent final day addition to this classic walking holiday around Mont Blanc we include the trek to the summit of the Brevent (2525m) for unmatched views of Chamonix, the Aiguille du Midi and Mont Blanc itself. We use a good standard of hotel accommodation throughout and our vehicle back-up means that group members need carry only a small daysack. Suitable for regular hill walkers looking for an Alpine trekking adventure around Mont Blanc, this holiday provides an excellent introduction to long-distance trail walking in the Alps of Europe. 

 

Which Tour Du Mont Blanc is for you?

We offer this classic walk in three options: The Classic Tour Du Mont Blanc (TMH) completes the entire circuit over 10 days generally using comfortable hotel accommodation in the valleys. The Ultimate Tour Du Mont Blanc (UTM) is the toughest option which also completes the entire circuit over 10 days but crosses higher passes than the regular route, staying in some high mountain huts and using trails that far fewer people get to visit. If you want to complete the circuit in a week, the Best of the Tour Du Mont Blanc (BTM) is a shortened version of the Classic Tour, using vehicle transfers to link up the best parts of the walk!

Is this holiday for you?

This is a classic Alpine walking route on good trails. The average distance covered each day is around 17 kilometres and there is a fair amount of ascent and descent. However, the pace of the walking is steady and regular hill walkers will find this trek to be well within their capabilities. Additionally, vehicle transport for your KE trek bag, means that you need to carry no more than a small daysack. There will be vehicle support everyday to carry the group members trek bags to the next overnight stop (note, this service cannot be used for passengers).

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group chalet in Argentiere (1240m) in the Chamonix Valley.
  • Cable car to Bellevue and walk to the Col de Tricot. Descend via the Chalet de Miage to Les Contamines.
  • Walk via Le Balme to the Col de Bonhomme (2469m), then descend to Les Chapieux.
  • Cross the Col de la Seigne (2513m) to Val Veni in Italy. Overnight in La Palud above Courmayeur.
  • Walk the Monte de la Saxe Ridge and descend via La Vachey to Arnouva. Bus back to La Palud.
  • Bus to Val Ferret and walk to the Col du Grand Ferret (2530m). Descend to La Fouly in Switzerland.
  • Walk through several typically Swiss villages, to Champex.
  • Ascend to cross the Bovine Trail (2040m) and then descend to Trient.
  • Return walk into France via the Col de Balme. Overnight in Argentiere.
  • Walk to picturesque Lac Blanc, with its Mont Blanc views. Return to Argentiere.
  • Walk up to the Brevent Summit (2525m), then descend to Les Houches. Bus back to Argentiere.
  • Departure day.
2016
Sat 06 Aug - Wed 17 Aug Code TMH /04/16/
Adult$1,940 Status Limited (Only 2 places left) Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /04/16/
  • This tour begins on Sat 06 Aug and departs on Wed 17 Aug
  • This departure has limited availability and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
Sat 20 Aug - Wed 31 Aug Code TMH /05/16/
Adult$1,940 Status Limited Availability Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /05/16/
  • This tour begins on Sat 20 Aug and departs on Wed 31 Aug
  • This departure has limited availability and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
Sat 03 Sep - Wed 14 Sep Code TMH /06/16/
Adult$1,940 Status Limited Availability Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /06/16/
  • This tour begins on Sat 03 Sep and departs on Wed 14 Sep
  • This departure has limited availability and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
2017
Sat 01 Jul - Wed 12 Jul Code TMH /01/17/
Adult$2,305 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /01/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 01 Jul and departs on Wed 12 Jul
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sat 22 Jul - Wed 02 Aug Code TMH /02/17/
Adult$2,305 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /02/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 22 Jul and departs on Wed 02 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sat 19 Aug - Wed 30 Aug Code TMH /03/17/
Adult$2,305 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /03/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 19 Aug and departs on Wed 30 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sat 02 Sep - Wed 13 Sep Code TMH /04/17/
Adult$2,305 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Classic Tour du Mont Blanc -
  • The departure reference for this tour is TMH /04/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 02 Sep and departs on Wed 13 Sep
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Geneva Airport which is approximately an hour's drive from Chamonix. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements and transfers' section of the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK there are a number of low cost airlines offering flights to Geneva. These include Easyjet who have flights from London, Manchester, Liverpool & Glasgow and Jet 2 who have flights from Manchester, Leeds Bradford & Belfast. Other airports may be available. Click on the 'Flight information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

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Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • peaks
  • trip direction
  • airport
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group chalet in Argentiere (1240m) in the Chamonix Valley.

    Meet at the group chalet in Argentiere (1240m), just above Chamonix. Lying beneath the stunning north face of Mont Blanc, the views are awesome from the start!. Before dinner, you will meet your trip leader to have an informal chat about the days ahead and have the chance to check out your clothing and gear and to decide if you will need to pick up any further items of equipment, before setting out in the morning. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal.

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Meals d

  • Cable car to Bellevue and walk to the Col de Tricot. Descend via the Chalet de Miage to Les Contamines.

    A very gentle introduction on this first day, with a cable car ride to Bellevue, where our trek starts in earnest. A short descent takes us to the start of the Bionassay Glacier with the Aiguille de Bionassay towering above. Crossing the torrent via a fine new suspension bridge, we climb easily to the Col de Tricot. Ahead lies the bulk of the Dome de Miage and below us is the idyllic summer hamlet of the Chalet de Miage which will take us 45 minutes or so to reach. After a welcome drink at the Chalet de Miage, a relatively short climb and easy descent takes us to the colourful village and winter ski resort of Les Contamines.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 800m

    • Distance 16km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1450m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Walk via Le Balme to the Col de Bonhomme (2469m), then descend to Les Chapieux.

    A leisurely wander by the river to Notre Dame de la Gorge is our start for today. Leaving the river, our route then climbs steeply, following the ‘paved’ Roman road thought to have been a route taken by Hannibal in an early version of the Tour du Mont Blanc. Our next stop is at the refuge at Le Balme, a good place to contemplate the climb to the Col de Bonhomme. This is a long, steady plod and the pass itself often has snow patches early in the season. At 2469 metres, this is considerably higher than the Col de Tricot, but at least the climbing is over for the day, as we traverse around via the Croix de Bonhomme, before dropping gently down to Les Chapieux.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1350m

    • Distance 18km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 850m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • Cross the Col de la Seigne (2513m) to Val Veni in Italy. Overnight in La Palud above Courmayeur.

    A level trail takes us out of Les Chapieux towards the refuge Le Mottet, which doubles as a donkey and mule sanctuary. Many of these animals earn their keep by transporting baggage to our next high point, at the Col de la Seigne (2513m). This is a significant col on the border between France and Italy and gives superlative views of the Brenva Face of Mont Blanc. An easy descent takes us past the Elizabetta Refuge and down into the head of the Val Veni, under the awesome ridge of the Aiguille Noire de Peuterey. After lunch, we catch a bus down to the vibrant town and mountaineering centre of Courmayeur. We stay tonight in a hotel at La Palud above the town.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 800m

    • Distance 21km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 950m

    • Time 7 hours walking

  • Walk the Monte de la Saxe Ridge and descend via La Vachey to Arnouva. Bus back to La Palud.

    Leaving La Palud, we climb towards the Monte de la Saxe Ridge. This is a spectacular grass ridge which provides fantastic views of the Italian side of Mont Blanc and the Grandes Jorasses. We pass above the Bertone Hut and at this point there are options depending on the weather. We can drop down to La Vachey and walk up the road from there. Or, we can cross another col, Col des Deux Sauts, passing the Bonatti Refuge and contouring around to Arnouva. From here, we will take the bus back to La Palud, to spend a second night in the hotel above Courmayeur.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1500m

    • Distance 21km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1200m

    • Time 9 hours walking

  • Bus to Val Ferret and walk to the Col du Grand Ferret (2530m). Descend to La Fouly in Switzerland.

    We start the day with a bus transfer back up the Val Ferret to its head and we then climb up to the Elena Refuge - an excellent place to stop for morning coffee. After this pleasant interlude, we set off on the long climb to the Col du Grand Ferret (2530m). From this pass, there are views of the snow-capped Grand Combin (4090m) and also Mont Dolent, the summit of which is shared by France Switzerland and Italy. Beyond the pass, we have entered Switzerland and the terrain is very different, less rugged, as we descend to La Fouly.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 920m

    • Distance 16km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1100m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Walk through several typically Swiss villages, to Champex.

    A relatively easy day, which starts off with a gentle downhill walk through woodland and a number of typically Swiss villages. There is a final 45 minute climb to the famously scenic 'Chocolate Box' village of Champex. Arriving early, we have the chance to sample the delights of its local hostelries.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 600m

    • Distance 17km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 730m

    • Time 5 - 6 hours walking

  • Ascend to cross the Bovine Trail (2040m) and then descend to Trient.

    Today we take the beautiful Bovine Trail, through the high meadows where the famous Swiss fighting cows spend the summer months. On this route after a steep ascent to the meadows, we might even have the opportunity to stop at a farm for coffee and a chat with the cowherder. This is a very pleasant walk providing spectacular views of the upper Rhone Valley and tops out at around 2040 metres. We then descend all the way to Trient.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 760m

    • Distance 13km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 710m

    • Time 6 - 7 hours walking

  • Return walk into France via the Col de Balme. Overnight in Argentiere.

    We begin a climb up through fine woodland to reach the Col de Balme. Our route to the pass can be varied to take account of the prevailing weather conditions. The preferred route, via Les Grands, allows us to linger over views of the Trient Glacier. On reaching the Col de Balme, we cross the border back into France where below us lies the Chamonix Valley, dominated by the Aiguille Verte at one end and Mont Blanc at the other. We descend from the Col de Balme to Argentiere, where we check in at our chalet.

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Ascent 1200m

    • Distance 18km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1450m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • Walk to picturesque Lac Blanc, with its Mont Blanc views. Return to Argentiere.

    From Argentiere our path meanders up to the Col des Montets before heading off towards the cliffs of Le Chesery, where our route takes a seemingly impossible line, helped on the more difficult sections by cables and ladders. This is very easy and not something to be worried about! Leaving the cliffs behind, easier ground takes us to Lac Blanc where we take lunch. This is arguably one of the Chamonix Valley’s best viewpoints. We descend to La Flegere and use the valley transport system for the short journey back to our accommodation in Argentiere.

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Ascent 1000m

    • Distance 9km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 550m

    • Time 6 hours walking

  • Walk up to the Brevent Summit (2525m), then descend to Les Houches. Bus back to Argentiere.

    Today we complete our Tour du Mont Blanc. Returning to the end point of the previous day's walk, we use the lift system to get back up to La Flegere and, from there, continue to climb on a superb trail to the Col du Brevent and on to the Brevent summit. The views across the Chamonix Valley to Mont Blanc are excellent and the walking is delightful. Finally, we descend via Merlet to Les Houches and transfer back to the chalet in Argentiere. We will be sure to have a final celebratory dinner to mark the end of our classic circuit.

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Ascent 930m

    • Distance 17km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1800m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Departure day.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A professional English-speaking guide
  • All transfers and cable cars involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described in the trip dossier
  • All meals
  • Services of a support vehicle for baggage transfers
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visa fees (if applicable)
  • Airport transfers
  • Miscellaneous expenses

As might be expected, the food available in restaurants and hotels in France and Switzerland is excellent. Continental breakfasts and evening meals are provided by our accommodation. For lunch we provide a large sandwich and additional snacks can be purchased from the huts or supermarkets when in the valley.

All meals are included in the holiday price from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 12. For lunch we provide a large sandwich and 2 trail bars. If you wish to take additional trail bars and snacks (not chocolate as it can melt) we recommend you bring these with you (or purchase them in local supermarkets) to keep in your trek bag as these can be expensive from hotels and refuges en-route.
The group will rendezvous at the group hotel in Argentiere on the evening of day 1 of the trip itinerary. For clients arriving by air, the easiest way to get to Argentiere is to fly to Geneva Airport and make use of an airport transfer service. We recommend mountaindropoffs.com. KE clients can get a discount by entering the promo code YETI. Please note that transfers are subject to availability and your flight details are required a minimum of 72 hours before your arrival in Geneva. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation. If you are driving to Chamonix we will provide route details and directions to the group hotel in Les Houches.
During this holiday, we spend the first and last three nights of the trip at the comfortable Yeti Lodge, in Argentiere, a few minutes from Chamonix. Offering stunning views of Mont Blanc and facilities which include Hot Tubs, Saunas and in-house computers & WIFI, Yeti Lodge is the perfect base to start and end your trek. On the rest of the Tour de Mont Blanc the group will spend a total of 7 nights in comfortable hotels, chalets or gites with all bedding provided. On the route of the 'Tour du Mont Blanc' accommodation is comfortable and charming but often quite simple. Where we can, we will book couples in twin rooms. Other travellers will be accommodated in same sex twin or triple rooms, which may be with shared bathrooms. Single rooms are not available. On one night accommodation may be in a non-segregated dormitory if this is all that is available. This type of shared accommodation is all part of the Alpine mountain experience. Single rooms are not available.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

The group will be led by an experienced mountain leader. There will also be a support vehicle for baggage transfer.

The package price includes all accommodation, guiding, and all meals. You should make an allowance for additional snacks, drinks etc. Beer, wine and soft drinks are available every night. Approximately 150 Euros should adequately cover typical personal spending requirements. Please note that a part of the route is in Switzerland but Euros are accepted in most places we stay.

We ask you to restrict your luggage to a single trek bag of maximum weight 15kg and a small daypack of around 30 - 40 litres. Your trek bag will be transferred between overnight stops and you should have this ready for collection by 8.30 each morning. The bag will normally be delivered to your hotel by 4.00pm. It is not normally possible to ride with the baggage transfer vehicle.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude.  During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres.  Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at high altitude.  You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude.

This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres. Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at altitude on our website which can be viewed via the link below. You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude. www.keadventure.com/page/altitude.html

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots

  • Socks

  • Underwear

  • Hiking trousers

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Waterproof overtrousers

  • Thermal baselayer shirts (1 short sleeve, 1 long sleeve)

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Warm and waterproof gloves or mittens

  • Thermal gloves

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Daypack 30 – 40 litres should be sufficient

  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)

  • Water bottles 1 litre (x2)

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Head torch and spare batteries

  • Small padlock to lock trek bag

  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment.

The following items are optional:

  • Trekking poles (highly recommended)

  • Gaiters

  • Shorts

  • Thermal baselayer - legging

  • T-shirts and/or casual shirts

  • Spare laces

  • Insect repellant

  • Camera

  • Travel clothes

  • Travel shoes

Notes

We include 2 trail bars each day with your lunch pack. If you wish to take additional trail bars and snacks (not chocolate as it can melt) we recommend you bring these with you (or purchase them in local supermarkets) to keep in your trek bag as these can be expensive from hotels and refuges en-route.

We request that you keep the weight of your main baggage to less than 15kgs for the baggage transfers.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport for each country that you visit.

Visa Europe

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations. UK residents should obtain a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is still vital when travelling overseas.

The unit of currency in Europe is the Euro.

The unit of currency in Switzerland is the Swiss Franc.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on a trekking or climbing trip getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. We would suggest that you adopt a weekly exercise regime leading up to your trip. Jogging, squash and swimming are good for developing better stamina. Before departure, we suggest that you try to fit in a number of long walks in hilly country.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The temperatures that we can expect to encounter during the day will be reasonably warm, ranging from 15°C/ 59°F to 25°C/ 77°F. It can be cool in the evenings at our highest overnight stopping places, falling close to freezing point at night. The weather is usually stable during July and August, but mountainous areas do generate their own weather systems and occasional rain and even stormy weather cannot be ruled out. You should be prepared for all eventualities!

  • Tour of Mont Blanc. Trekking Guide. Kev Reynolds

  • Walking Guide to the Tour du Mont Blanc. Andrew Harper

  • Tour du Mont Blanc Topo Guide. Publisher: Fdration Franaise de la Randonne

IGN (Institut Geographique National) 1:50,000 scale.

The IGN also produce a 1:25,000 series covering the route but these are not very practical as you would require several sheets. The 1:50,000 ‘Carte de Randonees’ series of walking maps provides a detailed topographic map with a useful contour interval of 20m. This is still a good scale for following the route on the ground and means you only need one map: Pays Du Mont-Blanc - Aravis - Chamonix - Courmayeur A1

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