Gran Paradiso Summits

An excellent trek and easy 4000 metre alpine climb in Italy





From $1,780 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Trekking holiday via high passes and two 3300 metre summits
  • The ascent of Gran Paradiso the only 4000 peak entirely in Italy
  • The area has some of the best mountain refuges in the Alps
  • A perfect holiday for experienced and novice Alpinists alike

A superb walking holiday adventure trekking in the Italian Alps with easy climbing to the summit of Gran Paradiso. The only 4000 metre peak entirely within the Alps of Italy, Gran Paradiso (4061m) dominates the impressive alpine mountain massif of the same name. After a night in Chamonix, we drive into Italy to beautiful Valgrisenche, to begin our 6 days of high-level trekking and easy climbing. Mostly walking within a national park, this is a tranquil alpine area allowing for pleasant trekking, largely free of tourist development and home to wildlife such as ibex, chamois and marmots. Each night we stay in a different alpine mountain refuge and enjoy good food and Italian hospitality. Walking over 3000 metre passes, we continue trekking to 2 straightforward viewpoint summits, Becca della Traversiere (3334m) and Punta Basei (3388m). Finally, from the Rifugio Vittorio Emanuele, we make the classic, easy snow face and rocky ridge ascent climbing to the summit of Gran Paradiso (4061m), where the views extend northwards over the Alps to prominent Mont Blanc. This is one of the Alps most straightforward 4000 metre summits and our easiest Alpine climbing holiday that combines nicely with classic walking in the stunning Italian Alps.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group's chalet in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley
  • Drive through the Mont Blanc Tunnel to the Aosta Valley. Trek to the Rifugio Chalet de Epee (2370m).
  • Trek across the Becca Refeita (2620m) to the Rifugio Bezzi (2284m).
  • Trek the Col Bassac Dere (3082m) & Becca della Traversiere (3334m) to the Rifugio Benevolo (2287m).
  • Trek via Col Nivolettaz (3120m) and climb Punta Basei (3338m). Descend to the Rifugio Savoie (2534m).
  • Trek via the Albergo Paradiso (2000m) to the Rifugio Vittorio Emanuele (2735m).
  • Climb Gran Paradiso (4061m) and descend to the Rifugio Federico Chabod (2750m).
  • Departure day
Sat 06 Aug - Sat 13 Aug Code GPA /01/16/ Adult$1,780 Status Guaranteed Book now
Sat 27 Aug - Sat 03 Sep Code GPA /02/16/ Adult$1,780 Status Available Book now
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 and three hours by train from Zermatt. 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 to Geneva available such as easyjet, jet2, flybe and bmibaby. 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*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • peaks
  • trip direction
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group's chalet in Argentiere in the Chamonix Valley

    The group will rendezvous at our chalet in Argentiere, just a short distance from Chamonix. Here, your guide will meet you at 7 p.m. to welcome you and for an informal chat about the week ahead. KE Land Only package services begin with dinner at the chalet

    • Accommodation Chalet

    • Meals d

  • Drive through the Mont Blanc Tunnel to the Aosta Valley. Trek to the Rifugio Chalet de Epee (2370m).

    Transfer through the Mont Blanc Tunnel to Italy's Aosta Valley and Valgrisenche. We then trek through woodland above Lake Beauregard to the Rifugio Chalet de Epee (2370m).

    • Meals bd

    • Time 3 - 4 hours

  • Trek across the Becca Refeita (2620m) to the Rifugio Bezzi (2284m).

    We cross the Becca Refreita (2620m) and descend gently via Berlo Ross, enjoying views of Ruitor and the Grande Sassiereto, to reach the excellent Rifugio Bezzi (2284m).

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bd

    • Time 6 hours walking

  • Trek the Col Bassac Dere (3082m) & Becca della Traversiere (3334m) to the Rifugio Benevolo (2287m).

    From the refuge we make a gradual ascent of the west facing slopes below the Grand Traversiere (3496m), crossing many mountain streams which descend from the glaciers above. A final ascent across a moraine slope leads to the Col Bassac Dere (3082m), which we reach after approximately 3 hours. There are great views from this pass of the north-east face of the Grand Sassiere. From here, conditions permitting, we will make an ascent of Becca Traversiere (3334m) which is a return trip of 2 hours from the col. The descent from the col crosses the remains of the Glacier de Golette to reach Lake Goletta. The exit from this hanging valley winds its way steeply down many zigzags to the Refuge Benevolo. This is an older style of hut than the Bezzi and provides a traditionally warm welcome for mountaineers. An open valley lies in front of the hut and this is a favourite grazing area for groups of ibex. 5 to 7 hours walking in total. The Rifugio Gian Federico Benevolo is at an altitude of 2287 metres. It was built in 1930 and has 60 beds, hydro-electricity and basic washing facilities. The water is drinkable and there is always plenty of wine available.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bd

    • Time 5 - 7 hours walking

  • Trek via Col Nivolettaz (3120m) and climb Punta Basei (3338m). Descend to the Rifugio Savoie (2534m).

    Following the left bank of the Doire de Rhemes Gorge, we leave the hut and gradually ascend to the Col Nivolettaz (3120m), which takes 3 hours. From the col, we cross the remains of the Bassey Glacier and make our descent between rock bands leading down to the Col Nivolet. This col has a small road leading to it from the south side of the Grand Paradiso National Park and thus gets busy with tourists during the day. From the col, weather permitting we will ascend our second summit Punta Basei (3338m) which presents little more than a rope assisted scramble. Tonight we will stay in either the Refuge Chivasso, or the Refuge Savoie. Both are situated close to the Col Nivolet. The Rifugio Citta di Chivasso was built in 1940, has 36 beds, solar lighting, basic washing facilities and a bar. The Rifugio Savoie (2534m) was built in 1920, has 70 beds, drinking water, washing facilities and mains electricity. Just occasionally, when these huts are over-booked and therefore severely crowded, we will be obliged to descend to valley accommodation (taking an extra 2 hours).

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bd

    • Time 5 - 7 hours walking

  • Trek via the Albergo Paradiso (2000m) to the Rifugio Vittorio Emanuele (2735m).

    From the refuge we descend past the Nivolet lakes and follow the Doire de Nivolet, with its beautifully clear water, first along a flat plain, often scattered with grazing cattle and scampering marmots and then we drop steeply down to the Albergo Paradiso. (2 hours of descent). Here, we can treat ourselves to a hot Italian lunch and a shower at the local campsite. This is also the rendezvous point with our technical climbing equipment and an opportunity to re-arrange the rucksack (note that on GPA.1 departures, group members may have had to carry this equipment from the start of the trek). In the afternoon we make the steep, 2 to 3-hour ascent to the Rifugio Vittorio Emanuele (2735m). The old hut (still there) was built in 1884, whilst the new one did not appear until 1932. There are beds for 120 people and there is good drinking water, washing facilities, a lake, hydro electricity, bar and restaurant. This large, lively hut is friendly and well organised, with good food, coffee and wine!

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bd

    • Time 5 - 6 hours walking

  • Climb Gran Paradiso (4061m) and descend to the Rifugio Federico Chabod (2750m).

    A pre-dawn start from the hut to climb this isolated peak, crossing boulders and snow fields which lead us onto the Glacier du Mont Gran Paradiso and towards the Becca de Montcorve. We cross snow slopes to reach the Fenetre du Mont Roc, crossing a rimaye (a large crevasse separating the glacier from the permanent snow field above) and ascending a steep slope to give access to the final rocky summit ridge. The final 100 metres is an exciting exposed scramble though we are well protected. The summit supports a recently renovated ‘Madonna’ which is fortunately well attached to the rocks. This is a fantastic viewpoint particularly of the Mont Blanc Massif. 5 hours and 1300 metres of ascent. The return journey is made via the same route for a short distance, then down the Glacier de Laveciau. This is usually a fairly intricate maze of crevasses which we wind our way through, eventually exiting onto the moraines through which a trail leads down to the Rifugio Chabod. This is a good place to bask in the sun and admire the north face of the Gran Paradiso (a popular ice climb) and our route down through the icefall. The Rifugio Federico Chabod is at an altitude of 2750 metres. It was built in 1985, has accommodation for 100, drinking water, washing facilities/showers and hydro-electricity.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Meals bd

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Departure day

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • Professional qualified IFMGA guide(s)
  • Accommodation as described
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary (not including airport transfers)
  • Meals as detailed in the meal plan

  • Travel Insurance
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals as described in the meal plan
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

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.

The group will rendezvous at the Yeti Lodge 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 KE clients can get transfers from €25 each way by entering the promo code KE11. 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 jbooking confirmation. If you are driving to Chamonix we will provide route details and directions to the group hotel/chalet in Argentiere. Parking is available for clients arriving by car.

After breakfast at our overnight refuge, we try to get a reasonably early start. For food during the day, we carry snacks. Lunches tend to be eaten on the move, as we are normally under pressure to complete the day’s walk or climb whilst the snow conditions are good. Ideally, we should arrive at our overnight accommodation by early afternoon. The remainder of the afternoon is spent relaxing, sleeping, playing cards and enjoying the view. The evening meal in the huts is a set menu of 3-courses at about 7 p.m. Most people are tucked up in bed by 9.30.

During this trip, the group will spend 2 nights in a chalet in Argentiere, Chamonix. Accommodation here is in either twin or 3-person rooms. Whilst in the mountains, there are 5 nights spent in mountain huts, where the accommodation is on a non-segregated, dormitory-style basis. In the high mountain huts, washing facilities are limited.

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

The food in Yeti Lodge is varied and plentiful. Continental breakfasts and full 3-course evening meals are included at the Yeti Lodge has and there is an 'honesty bar' for wine and drinks with your meals. At the huts there will be set 3 course meals and hearty breakfasts. Packed lunches or hill-food can be bought in the huts. On most days there will also be the possibility of having a hot lunch either at a hut encountered on route or a late lunch taken at our overnight halt. Depending on your choice you should allow €10 – 20 per lunch.

All meals except lunches are included in the trip price. Packed lunches or hill-food can be bought in the huts. On most days there will also be the possibility of having a hot lunch either at a hut encountered on route or a late lunch taken at our overnight halt. Depending on your choice you should allow €10 - 20 per lunch.

A total of €200 should be sufficient to cover all personal expenses, including your hill-food and lunches, drinks and other incidental expenditure. Bottled water in the huts is very expensive, but on most nights of this trek water is safe to drink from the tap. Beer, wine and soft drinks are available every night. There are cash point facilities in Chamonix. If you are intending to hire or purchase items of equipment, you should budget accordingly (credit cards can be useful in this respect).

There will be one or two IFMGA guides (depending on group size). Guiding is at a ratio of 1:10 during the first 4 days and 1:5 during the final 2 days.

It is important to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum, since you will be carrying everything you need for the traverse. We suggest that you should be able to keep the weight of your pack, including your climbing gear and packed lunch, to around 10 kgs. Your travel clothes and other items not required during the trek can be left at the group 's chalet in Argentiere.

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 high altitude. During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 3500 metres. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high 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.

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

You must bring the following items:

  • Mountain Boots (see notes below)
  • Crampons – MUST be fitted with anti-balling plates*
  • Crampon bag
  • Ice Axe*
  • Mountaineering harness*
  • Screw gate karabiner x 1*
  • Trekking poles x 2 (with baskets)
  • Gaiters
  • Socks – technical walking socks are best (2/3 pairs)
  • Trekking Trousers (i.e. not cotton)
  • Waterproof Overtrousers
  • Underwear
  • Thermal Base Layer x 2 (one long sleeved for glacier travel)
  • Fleece jacket or pullover
  • Waterproof, breathable jacket (with hood)
  • Extra warm layer – (lightweight ‘prima loft’ or down jacket)
  • Sunhat
  • Warm hat
  • Eye wear – sunglasses – category 3 or 4.
  • Thin gloves – leather or thermal
  • Warm gloves/ski gloves or mittens
  • Sleeping bag liner/sheet sleeping bag (silk is lightest)
  • Rucksack (30 - 40 litres should be sufficient)
  • Rain cover for Rucksack
  • Head torch – with new battery
  • Sun Protection (high factor for skin)
  • Lip salve – with sunscreen
  • Water bottle x minimum 1 litre
  • Small, lightweight wash kit and pack towel
  • Plastic Bag to keep essentials dry
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters (band-aids), blister treatment (zinc oxide tape and ‘Compeed’), insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).

The following items are optional:

  • Change of shirt and trousers
  • Long johns
  • Shorts (for non-glacial travel)
  • Earplugs (particularly if you are not the one snoring!)
  • Repair kit – (eg. Pocket knife, needle, thread, duct tape etc.)
  • Camera, media, batteries
  • Travel Clothes (can be left at your hotel)
  • Travel Shoes (can be left at your hotel)
  • Small Padlock (for trek bag)


Mountaineering Boots:Recommended boots for this trip are comfortable, warm and sufficiently stiff to take a crampon securely (a sturdy B1 or a ‘worn in’ B2 boot is ideal). Rigid B3 boots are NOT suitable for this trek.

  • .

    Crampons: Modern strap on crampons are perfectly acceptable for this trek and will fit any boot. All crampons MUST be fitted with anti-balling plates. Grivel Crampons - G10 or G12 with a strap system are excellent and they come fitted with anti-balling plates. We do not recommend semi-automatic crampons for use with softer boots since with this system, the pull on the heel can lead to blisters.

  • .

    Equipment hire: Equipment marked *can be hired from KE. This can be reserved either when you book your trip or closer to your departure but we advise booking hire equipment as soon as possible to ensure availability. We do not hire mountaineering boots, but there are several shops in Argentiere renting boots that are suitable for this trip.

  • .
  • Sleeping bags are NOT required as bedding and hut shoes/slippers are provided at mountain refuges. However, you should bring a sheet sleeping bag.
  • Needle Sports (specialist mountaineering equipment shop)

    • Needle Sports is the English Lake District's foremost specialist climbing shop supplying mountaineering, rock, ice, alpine and expedition equipment worldwide. Internationally recognised as among the very best of the UK's top technical climbing gear retailers. They have a good range of equipment appropriate for this trip and offer knowledgeable advice both on their website and in store.
    • View >>

    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.

    Visa Europe

    UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

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

    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.

    You should contact your GP 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.

    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: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: 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 10°C / 50°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!

    The Alpine 4000 Metre Peaks, Classic Routes, Richard Goedeke, Diadem

    Kompass Maps

    Gran Paradiso and Val d'Aosta. 1:50,000.

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