Views and fun in Chamonix all year round
Views and fun in Chamonix all year round
Chamonix is one of the premium destinations in the Alps
and deservedly takes its place among the 'Best of the Alps'.
The « roof of Europe »
Just an hour’s drive away from Geneva lies Chamonix, a resort dominated by the Mont-Blanc massif (4810 m), the highest mountain in the Alps, by magnificent glaciers and towering granite peaks that look like flames carved out of rock.
It’s the world's meeting place, a real paradise for climbers and mountaineers, mountain bikers and paragliders, hikers and nature lovers, and of course for skiers and snowboarders.
A network of cableways connects the valley with the rest of the high Alpine region - the fascination of one of the world’s most tremendous mountain regions remains all year an intensive experience.
A paradise for walking and outdoor activities
- Mountain biking
- Horse riding
- Exciting nightlife.
The paradise of high mountain and so much more
- Husky rides
- Bars, bistrots & nightclubs.
from our hotel, discover chamonix and its exceptional environment
Ideally located in the pretty village of Les PRAZ, just a stone's throw from the La FLÉGÈRE ski lifts and the golf course, and only 100 metres from the railway station and the bus that takes you to the various corners of the Chamonix valley, your Eden, this small, confidential hotel, is the base camp you need for an exceptional holiday!
If you are coming to Chamonix for the first time, there are some sites that are not to be missed:
the AIGUILLE DU MIDI cable car and its Pas dans le Vide, the MER DE GLACE cogwheel train and its sculpted ice cave, the MERLET animal park with its Chamois, Ibexes and Marmots.
In winter, in addition to the beginners' resorts, 4 LARGE ALTITUDE AREAS welcome skiers, hikers and visitors (les Houches, le Brévent-Flégère, les Grands Montets and le Tour-Balme-Vallorcine), not forgetting our neighbours in Les Contamines, Saint-Gervais, Megève, Courmayeur (Italy) and Verbier (Switzerland).
The Mont Blanc site is THE THIRD MOST VISITED NATURAL SITE IN THE WORLD.
For hiking enthusiasts, you can follow in the footsteps of the first ascent of MONT-BLANC via the Pyramides and the Jonction, sunbathe at the Lac Blanc or the Lac des Gaillands, and refresh yourself at the superb waterfalls.
Families with children will find their own adventure playground at the ACCRO'PARC DES GAILLANDS, the PARC D'ATTRACTION DES PLANARDS, the PARADIS DES PRAZ or the PATINOIRE.
Do you want to experience something exceptional?
You could go on a helicopter ride, paraglide, go on a glacier hike, mountain bike, mountaineer, climb, do some canoeing, ski off piste in the Valley Blanche or ride with sled dogs!
The Chamonix Valley also offers an opportunity for cultural development through the Chamonix Alpine Museum, the House of Memory and Heritage and finally the Alpinism exhibition at Espace Tairraz where you also have a crystal exhibition.
If you want to discover more, visit us at the peak moments of the Chamonix Valley! Absorb the mountain atmosphere all year round, in summer and in winter:
The prestigious Alpine Skiing Kandahar World Cup
Enjoy the sun and discounted ski passes at the end of the season.
Mont-Blanc Marathon. Come to take on a new challenge or to encourage participants!
Climbing World Cup: it is truly an unforgettable experience to be present at this international competition testing the participants on their speed and capacity to master the complexity of the climbs. You will be holding your breath watching the participants show off their talents. We promise you an unforgettable atmosphere that will exceed all your expectations.
The Mont-Blanc Ultra-Trail – an extraordinary adventure entailing a tour of the Mont-Blanc passing through three countries; Switzerland, Italy and France. Come celebrate with the winners, encourage the other participants with a round of applause and share your joy, suffering and emotions with the runners and supporters.
A summer weekend in Chamonix
If you’re only coming to Chamonix for one or two days, the unavoidable, must-see part of the Valley will always be the Aiguille du Midi! Rise up to an altitude of 3842 M! The view from the summit is simply breathtaking. You will see a 360 DEGREE panorama of the alpine summits, the Mont-Blanc, the Bossons glacier and the Chamonix Valley.
To get there, you can get the train that will take you just 200 M from the Aiguille du Midi ski lift. It is however and touristic site and there may be quite a waiting line. However, you don’t have to wait in line the whole time. You can receive a token with the number of your ski lift and explore the town of Chamonix while you wait for your turn. After getting on the ski lift, start by getting to the very top of the station.
You will stay there for a long moment just admiring the views from the different terraces and you can even take a “Step into the Void” thanks to the glass cabin suspended on the edge of a building. Just don’t forget to cover up, because even in the summer, temperatures at this altitude stay very low!
After visiting the highest station in summer, don’t hurry back down to town straight away! Get off at the intermediate station “Plan de l’Aiguille” where you will be able to explore some more at an altitude of 2310 M. You can hike over the Grand Balcon du Nord (6 KM IN TWO HOURS) to get to Montenvers (1913 M) and to Mer de Glace. But don’t worry, if you are a little bit tired, just go to the Lac Bleu surrounded by cliffs (20 MIN walk from the ski lifts).
Once you get to Mer de Glace, go down to the ice cave at the heart of the glacier re-sculpted every year via another ski-lift followed by a few steps (550 STEPS in total). This will help you realize how the glacier moves up every year. there are panels indicating the height of the glacier at different eras. From an ecological point of view, this site is a true indicator of the impacts of climate change that really make you think.
You can come back down to Chamonix by taking a train on a rack railway. During your 20 MIN descent, you can continue to admire the views from the little red train. The train ticket for the Montenvers Train is included in you Mont-Blanc Multipass fee.
To finish off this exceptional day, take a break on the terrace of the Eden hotel & restaurant, and savour our delicious meals and local wines while enjoying the sunset mountain views.
A winter weekend in Chamonix
Aiguille du Midi and the Valley Blanche.
The impressive descent from the Valley Blanche From a summit of 3 842 M, this is the longest descent in the world totalling up to 22 KM. You will descend by the Géant and Tacul glaciers and Mer de Glace while surrounded by impressive cliff summits such as aiguille du midi, the Mont-Blanc and the Helbronner pointe as well as the “Giant’s tooth” (Dent du Géant) in a universe of ice and rocks. This is indeed an experience from another world worthy of its reputation.
The usual course of this descent is quite easy. However it is highly advised that you find yourself a guide by going through the offices of La Compagne des Guides de Chamonix. The fees are all inclusive for groups of up to six people. The second stage in organizing this trip is the vertiginous 2 800 M ski lift ascent from the centre of Chamonix up to Aiguille du Midi. It is highly recommended to get used to high altitudes before taking on the challenge of “La Vallée Blanche”.
At your arrival on a 3 800 M altitude, you will go through a ‘corridor’ sculpted in the rocks et you will suddenly find yourself on an iced summit occasionally swept by wind, with a vertiginous slope on each side. For most people, this ridge that you have to walk on for at least 15 MIN is the scariest part of La Vallée Blanche. For this part, carrying your skis on your back in order to have both hands free, and wearing crampon shoes is a good solution.
After this adrenaline rushing and tiring prologue, the descent seems like a simple formality. You will experience a strong feeling of relief, joy and team spirit as you commence the longest descent of your life in a majestic décor. Most people take a packed lunch with them for this adventure, but you also have the choice of reserving a table at the ‘Refuge du Requin’, built at a 2 516 M altitude facing the Giant’s Seracs (Séracs du Géant). For most skiers, the Vallée Blanche descent ends at the Montnvers station with a beer or a choloclat chaud au cointreau at the Grand Hotel Bar, built in 1870.
A week in Chamonix
In Europe’s climbing capital, going to a Via Ferrata is in absolute must! You will find yourself climbing at a whopping 180 M from the ground. The Via Ferrata will give you the opportunity to tackle “monkey” bridges high in the air, you will be jumping from tree to tree, and you will feel like a world class alpine climber.
A half day of canyoning will lead you to an aquatic adventure in a raw and wild setting where you’ll feel the thrills of cliff jumping, descending 20 M abseils, gliding down natures water slides and screaming on ziplines!
You can also choose to do a half day of rafting – chose a “discovery” descent for a family friendly activity or go for an “athletic” option if you’re on the hunt for that extra adrenaline rush.
Whether you’re a beginner hoping to conquer the valley or an experienced climber daring to tackle other mythical mountaineering routes, Chamonix’s compact rock and granite towers attract climbers from all over the world. There’s something for everyone! For a half day of climbing, finding schools, equipped climbing sites and mountain guides is easier than ever:
- Le Rocher des Gaillands: located just 2 KM from Chamonix, near the Gaillands lake.
- Bouldering in Col des Montets: test your strength at this bouldering spot located at the heart of the natural reserve of the Aiguilles Rouges (in the direction of the Swiss border). You can do this activity alone, or with a group
the 350 km pathway across the valley invites you to discover no less than 170 itineraries adapted to all levels
Easy walks (1 to 2 HOURS)
Chalet de la Floria (2 KM – 260 M height difference). The climb starts after the last building in Les Praz village on the right side of the road. After just a 45 MIN walk from the Eden through the village and shaded forest pathways, reward yourself with a blueberry tarte with a panoramic view from the terrace at the Floria Chalet facing the cliffs of Chamonix (Aiguilles de Chamonix).
During your descent you can take another pathway by going through the Vorgeats promenade. Follow the direction “Paradis des Praz” to find a little bar by a river bank with a children’s play area. It truly is a tiny hidden paradise. From here you will easily find the hotel in no longer than 15 MIN by walking through the Golf Club. But if this walk wasn’t long enough for you, don’t hesitate to continue your pleasures with an extra hour of promenades through the Tines and Bois villages before going back to the hotel from the other side.
A walk to the Arveyron Sources (a river that takes you to Chamonix) also starts at the Eden Hôtel. When leaving the hotel, take a left turn and the Gaudenavs route will take you to the start of the pathway (10 MIN). From here, you can start a typical promenade towards la Buvette du Chapeau. It takes roughly one hour to get there. From this little bar, you can access a view point to the “Mer de Glace” and the Giant’s Tooth (Dent du Géant).
Les Gorges de la Diosaz
You can also admire the Diosaz Canyons. They are located in Servoz, a little village 15 KM from Chamonix. It is a surprising venue because these canyons were specially equipped to make hikes easily possible since 1875. This easy promenade takes about 1H 30MIN and it offers some beautiful views. And good news: this walk is just as magical and spectacular on a cloudy day.
The Berard Waterfalls
Just a short half hour from the SNCF Buet train station, a beautiful pathway that will lead you to a breath-taking waterfall awaits. The pathways starting point is from the left side of the Buet Hotel. You will walk past the typical Poya hamlet, an old refuge for the goatherds of the village.
These are just a few examples of easy walks in the Valley and there is much more to discover such as the Dard Waterfalls, the Blue Lake, Bisse du Trient, the mysterious canyons.
Hikes for the whole day
Hike up to the Eagle’s Nest (Nid d’Aigle) with the Mont-Blanc Tramway (TMB) in summer and in winter!
You will have the opportunity to enjoy the atmosphere that inherits this rack train and in the Eagle’s Nest. You will find yourself in a melting pot of tourists and alpinists where you will have access find one of the paths leading to the Mont-Blanc.
Get cosy in your window-side seat and admire the views from the alpine train. Words don’t do justice to the beauty you will encounter. The whole adventure should take 1H 15MIN in total. Quick tip: you don’t even have to start from the Saint-Gervais-Le-Fayet train station, you can also get the train in the Bellevue plateau by taking the Bellevue ski-lift in Les Houches (BUS1 to get there from Chamonix). All fees are included in the Mont-Blanc Multipass. Hiking enthusiasts can endeavour on many adventures from the Bellevue ski-lifts or from Le Prarion; hike up to Mont Lachat (in summer) from Bellevue (300 M altitude difference with an intense slope); hike up to the summit of Le Prarion (100 M – 20 MIN). In winter, the plateau offers many options for snowshoe trek adventures.
In the footsteps of the first ascension of the Mont-Blanc – the Bossons Glacier Chalet – the Pyramid Chalet
– The Junction (for advanced hikers only)
The pathway leading to The Junction – the meeting point between the Glaciers of Les Bossons and Taconnaz – is a historical pathway where geologist and crystal hunter Jacques Balmat and Doctor Michel Paccard left their mark during the first ascension of the Mont-Blanc in August 1786. This ascension revolutionary because until then, mountains were considered to be cursed; only hunters and geologists would dare to adventure in the altitudes. This historical event initiated mountain sport activities.
Starting from the Bossons parking lot, a ski-lift will allow an ascent to the Bossons Glacier Chalet at an altitude of 1425 M or you can start your hike from there (45 MIN to the Chalet). This Chalet is easily accessible and it offers an amazing view to the glacier and some great crêpes (but be prepared they don’t accept credit cards). You can use this spot to take a quick break before continuing your hike.
This path is a constant meandering slope hidden within a towering forest. Within roughly 1H 30MIN you will reach the Pyramid Chalet hung onto the side of the mountain. The serpentine pathway brushes against the Côte Mountain between the right edge of the Taconnaz Glacier and the left edge of the Bossons Glacier. After 2H 30MIN of hiking, you will be challenged by a rocky steep sloped and physically demanding path that is occasionally equipped with handrails and footboards. This will lead you to the “Gîte à Balmat”, which are granite blocks underneath which Jacque Balmat installed his camp during his ascent to the summit of the Mont-Blanc. Shortly afterwards, you will reach the Junction, the final destination of the hiking pathway.
The Aiguilles Rouges Lakes (Lac Cornu, Lac Noir, Lac Blanc, Lacs des Chéserys)
The Lac Cornu (horned lake) and the Lac Noir (Black Lake) pathways, considered as intermediate difficulty pathways, lead you to some of the most mesmerizing places in the valley that will leave you speechless. The start of the itinerary is at the top of the Planpraz ski lift. For this walk you will need to buy a ticket up to Planpraz and a ticket down from the Flégère ski-lift.
This is an easy pathway with just a few steep passages and névés (the superior layer or a glacier) that aren’t risky. During your walk, no matter where you look you will be seeing the most prestigious summits or the valley.
The duration of the walk to the Horned Lake is 1H 45MIN and if you continue to the black lakes it will take a total of 2H 30MIN. We strongly recommend you to get to the Black Lakes for a picnic with a unforgettable and unique view. If decide to take on this pathway you will be at a 2550 M altitude, so don’t forget to bring some warm clothes depending on the season! The Black Lakes are the highest Aiguilles Rouges lakes with a glacier origin.
To get back down to town, you can take the same route or you can continue to the Flégère ski-lift. For the latter, you will have to follow “Col de la Glière”. Be prepared for a short, steep climb of roughly 100 M upon your arrival to “Col de l’Index”. From this point, you just have to follow the ski slopes to get to the Flégère ski-lifts.
For the most athletic tourists, this hike could be linked to the Lac Blanc (White Lake) hike and to the Lacs des Chéserys hikes from the Col de l’Index (this hike should last 6 to 7 hours in total). You will be able to continue to the Lac Blanc through a rather flat pathway. This will take you 1H 20MIN. Finally, to begin your descent, take the pathway that leads to “Lacs des Chéserys” because the route leading back to la Flégère is overcrowded with hikers.
Grand Balcon Sud
This is a superb hike with stunning views over a mountainous “balcony” that you could easily do with children in just a few hours. We advise you to adventure on this pathway in the morning, which will lead you to a stunning view point of the Mont-Blanc massif during the whole walk.
To get to the beginning of the hiking spot, take the Flégère sk-lifts just 100 M away from the Eden hotel. If you haven’t purchased a multi-pass you can buy a ticket to Flégère for the ascent and from Planpraz for the descent. This flowery picture perfect promenade lasts 2 H. you might even be lucky enough to see some beavers during your adventure.
Upon your arrival at Planpraz, you will most likely see numerous colorful paragliders taking off into the blue sky: a perfect ending to a perfect walk. Take the Planpraz ski-lift to return to the Chamonix center.
You can get back to the hotel from Chamonix by bus, train or even by foot (20-30 MIN) through a flat pathway going along the river “l’Arve”. You will take two pathways; promenade du Fori and then promenade des Encontres. These will take you back to the hotel.
Allow yourself a relaxing day at QC Termes.
Hidden within nature, the QC Termes spa is a luxurious Italian spa. You can swim and relax in the infinity pool whilst admiring a view of the Mont-Blanc surrounded by snow in the winter or by mountain prairies in the summer.
A day of fauna and flora
If you dream about seeing chamois, squirrels and deer, your go to spot is the Aiguille Rouge Natural Reserve. You will find yourself among these majestic animals, in harmony with their secret nature rich in fauna and flora. You will see moraines (rocks) on glaciers, and numerous plants that have adapted to the extreme life conditions at this altitude. This really is a unique terrace provided by nature to enjoy the view of the Mont-Blanc at its best. If you have a car, you can park at the Col des Montets (5 MIN away from Argentière) where you’ll find a Réserve refuge chalet.
For experienced hikers, you can walk around the area starting from Col des Montets by going through La Réserve des Aiguilles Rouges and then hiking past the Lacs des Chéserys to get to the Lac Blanc (White Lake). Afterwards you may commence you descent by the Flégère ski-lifts and you will find yourself at your hotel. Don’t forget to bring a little picnic with you and maybe even some bread for the jackdaws who will be keeping an eye on you along the way.
For an easier version: you can go to the Merlet park.
This is also an animal park at a 1500 M altitude. The Mont-Blanc massif panorama from this park is also an unsurprisingly breath-taking. You can either drive there or hike there from the Gaillands lake (500 M altitude rise). To get to the Gailland lake you can take the bus line 1 or get the SNCF train to Les Pèlerins.
Child friendly activities
During the winter, a snowy Chamonix is transformed into a giant playground. You can ski or take out your sledges, you can have a snowball fight or learn to ice-skate. You can even participate in a snowman building competition, build a “real” igloo and make snow angels in fresh snow with the family! And after such a wonderful day in the snow, a hot chocolate with some whipped cream is an vital and essential reward.
During the summer
Accro’parc des Gaillands – 3 H of activities in the pine forest for whole family. For the children who are still growing up to be future warriors (1 M to 1.3 m) the “Pitchoun” course is ideal with pirate nets, monkey bridges and zip-lines on their obstacle course. For the older children, in other words teenagers and adults: the blue, red and black obstacle courses high up in the trees will give you the chance to fly on the 600 M zip-line 200 M above a lake with a castle ruin, to Tarzan jump and to jump into the emptiness for the audacious adrenaline junkies. After this adventure you can enjoy a picnic by the lake with a Mont-Blanc panorama to share your experience with the whole family.
Chamonix Attraction Park – many activities and games await such as a railway luge 1 300 M long (open all year round), slides, trampolines, electric motorbikes, playgrounds, a giant swing, a splash boat, vertical loops, a game room… with your Chamonix Multipass once you buy one sledge descent, you get a second one for free!
Les Marécottes – zoo and pool
The zoo or Marécottes park is the highest park in Europe at a 1100 M altitude. It is located in the middle of a pine and larch forest. You will be able to see black bears, wolves, lynxes, beavers, foxes, owls, deer, chamois, ibexes, wild boars and the list goes on! You can even come to the park and help feed the animals from 10 AM to 11 AM. And right next to the zoo across from the black bears, the alpine pool is carved into the rocks giving it a harmonious existence amongst the alpine nature surrounding it. Its temperature is ideal at 24 to 27 DEGREES Celsius despite its altitude thanks to the sun.
Paradis des Praz
This is truly a hidden paradise, worthy of its name, in Les Praz perfect for young children. It is located just behind the Praz golf course, a 10 MIN walk from your hotel. There is a playground for the children (2 to 7 Y.O.) by a shallow river bank. In summer, you’ll even be able to give the children a pony ride! There is also a tiny restaurant where you can have refreshments and snacks.
Saint-Bernard Breeding farm (Servoz)
Initially bred to be guard dogs, the Grand Saint Bernard monks trained them to search for lost adventurers in the 18th century. Here you can enjoy a one hour guided and commented visit of this noble dog breed with a prestigious past.
For more information, don’t hesitate to check out the following website: www.chamonix.com
If the weather is bad
Whether you’re a couple, a family or just a group of friends, all sorts of indoors activities are available in Chamonix! Places to visit and wine & food tasting institutions, museums, the cinema (with most movies in English with French subtitles), the climbing centre, and don’t forget the pool and the Chamonix sports centre! And if you really need to disconnect and relax, you always have the QC Terme spa centre in Chamonix or the “Termes de Saint Gervais” in Fayet. The museums reveal the rich history and the varied culture in Chamonix. If the weather isn’t in your favour, you will always find something to do!
Walking around Chamonix
The centre of Chamonix is beautiful. It is situated at the foot of the mountains. An afternoon walk in town during the summer surrounded by snow tipped mountain tops is truly a simple pleasure. In summer and in winter, there is something from everyone; you can go for some tea or coffee accompanied with a French patisserie to satisfy a sweet tooth; you can go shopping in the numerous boutiques in Chamonix.