Arrival in Martigny
The little town Martigny lies in an idyllic spot close to river Rhône. Go for a walk and visit the castle La Batiaz or endulge yourself in one of the many restaurants.
Martigny – Champex
Early in the morning by bus or transfer to Trient. Your first hiking day starts by climbing the legendary old pass trail to Col de la Forclaz, an important junction between Rhônetal and Chamonix. From the top of the pass, a beautiful forest trail guides you up and over the Collet Portalo peak to the mountaineer station Alp Bovine. Take rest on the alpine pasture before starting heading on a spectacular descent along high cliffs and across rustling mountain brooks. A typical farmhouse with homemade products awaits you in the valley. You can stop here to take a break. A gentle climb through small villages and woods takes you to the Lac de Champex lake that has crystal clear water. Not without reason is this place called the “Canada of Switzerland”: dark wooden houses and extensive, lone woodlands surround the frozen lake.
Champex – La Fouly
Good forest roads will take you down to the valley of the Dranse river; you will now follow its course through the quaint mountain villages of Valais. A beautiful path soon takes you further up, above the ravine of the mountain brook, till you reach the upper end of Swiss Val Ferret at La Fouly. You will be amazed by the sanded cliffs and massive glacier flanks that you will see all around you. Rock climbers and high alpinism enthusiasts will find countless bivouac huts as base camps for their mountain adventures. A cable car ride to the panorama point is a tempting proposition in the afternoon or you can simply enjoy total relaxation in the dreamlike alpine surroundings.
The first high pass and mountain pass to Italy awaits you here! After climbing the Alpe Peule, where you can stock up on supplies, you will hike on good roads till you reach Grand Col Ferret (2537 m). You can enjoy fascinating views of the Italian Val Ferret, which is flanked by greenery on one side and has rock edges and glaciated walls on the other. When you climb down, you will directly reach Refuge Elena, where you can sip an original espresso while enjoying an overwhelming view of the glacier from the terrace. A beautiful hiking trail along the stream will finally guide you to the valley. You will spend the night in a small chalet hotel directly at the valley head; a dreamlike, idyllic spot, where the nights are especially peaceful.
Your first climb in the morning will bring you to a great alpine path, which offers a wonderful mountain view and leads to Refuge Bonatti. You must not miss the halt at this legendary alpine hut! At this point, you have to make a choice: you can take the shorter and more levelled route along the mountain flank or you can cross two more passes and hike on the alpine path across the summits. Both offer a great alpine experience! Both routes meet in the cosy Rifugio Bertone, where cappuccino and cakes await the hikers. You will reach the pretty Italian town of Courmayeur in the afternoon. It is famous for its great alpine history and its panoramic views of Mont Blanc. The beautiful pedestrian area, well-kept bars and cafés attract people to visit this place.
In the morning transfer or by bus (depending on the season) to Chalet du Miage. On the sixth day, you will hike through the Veny valley, where you will discover impressive lateral moraines, bizarre limestone formations and hidden glacial lakes. Through the wide valley floor, you will hike to the alpine club hut called Rifugio Elisabetta. You can enjoy delicious Italian cottage specialities on its terrace. Via the Col de la Seigne (2516 m) pass, you will now reach the region of Hoch-Savoyen in France! Your destination is Vallée des Glaciers (valley of glaciers), formerly an alpine pasture, where you can grab a quick bite surrounded by numerous herds of cows. You will then climb down to the leisurely French Alps location called Bourg-Saint-Maurice, which is located right next to river Isère. Here you can look back on your impressive 3-country hike and enjoy a glass of wine. In the afternoon, you will be transported from Ville des Glaciers to Bourg-Saint-Maurice.
Departure or extension
You need to be physically fit to cope with the partially long legs of the hike. Hiking experience in alpine regions is a must. Though there are almost no exposed sites, one needs to be surefooted for the treks across the high mountain passes!
Category: 3*** hotels and country hotels
- 6 overnight stays as stated, breakfast included
- 1 x evening meal (Val Ferret)
- Lugagge transfer
- Transfers as per program
- Carefully elaborated route description
- Detailed travel and tour documents 1x per room (German, English)
- Organised transfer from Bourg-Saint-Maurice to Martigny, CHF 110.- per Person (min. 4 persons). Booking required, advance payment.
Arrival / Parking / Departure:
- Arrival by train from Zurich via Visp to Martigny, duration approx. 2.5 to 3 hours. Direct trains from Geneve, duration approx. 1.5 hours.
- Parking: Limited amount of parking spaces close to the railway station in Martigny, approx. CHF 10.- per day.
- Departure by bus and train from Bourg Saint-Maurice to Trient, duration approx. 8 hours (several changes).
Things to note:
- Tourist tax, if due, is not included in the price
- Rides in public transport, cable cars, CHF 22.- per person