The Haute Route traditionally starts in Chamonix, home of Mont Blanc, and travels East through the French speaking part of the Swiss Alps until it arrives in the German speaking Zermatt, which is the home of the Matterhorn - probably the most famous mountain in the world.
Along the tour, you will cross impressive high mountain passes to go from one alpine valley to the next. You will experience a variety of stunning mountain scenery, which includes mountain pastures, pine forests, deep alpine valleys, majestic rugged peaks, mountain lakes, rivers and glaciers. At night you will rest in charming mountain villages or remote mountain huts, whilst enjoying tasty regional food and wine. The route is bursting with mountaineering history all the way.
Day 1: Arrive at your leisure in the Chamonix valley. You'll meet with your guide in the evening for welcome and briefing. Overnight in local hotel.
Day 2: From the top of the Chamonix valley we ascent to Col de Balme, which is the mountain pass that forms the border between France and Switzerland. From here, we have an easy descent to the small village Trient where we spend our first night in Switzerland in dormitories in a hiker's hostel. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 3: From Trient we have a choice of two routes. If the legs are feeling good, we'll ascend the steep and rocky pass known as the Fenêtre d’Arpette, which offers amazing views of the Trient Glacier. The slightly gentler option takes us over the shoulder of the Mont Blanc massif to the Bovine high mountain pastures where we enjoy amazing views up the Rhone valley. Both routes will take us to the Swiss lake-seide village Champex where we stay in small dormitories in a hikers hostel. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 4: From Champex we have an easy downhill hike to Le Chable, where we use cable car to the famous ski resort Verbier. We'll have time to look around Verbier before we ascent to the beautiful Mont Fort mountain hut, where we spend the night in small dormitories. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 5: From the Mont Fort mountain hut we have a long day ahead as we hike hike over Col de la Chaux, Col de Louvie and Col de Prafleuri before finally descending to the Prafleuri mountain hut where we stay the night in dormitories. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 6: From the Prafleuri hut we have a short climb to the Col des Roux and a pleasant descent to the large dam and lake: Lac des Dix. Then it's up again over the steep and narrow Pas de Chevres mountain pass before we can descend to the lovely village Arolla and our hotel for the night. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 7: A restful day in Arolla and transport with local post bus (or optional walking) to the village Villa and a small hiker's hostel. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 8: From Villa we ascend to the Col de Torrent and descend to the beautiful lake Lac de Moiry. From the dam at the lake we jump on a local post bus the last way to our hiker's hostel in the village Zinal, where we stay the night in dormitories. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 9: From Zinal, the day starts wit an ascent to the Forcletta pass, from where we desend into the German speaking Turtmann valley and the small village of Gruben where we stay in the dormitories of the old village hotel. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 10: From Gruben we cross over the Augstbordpass and down to the magical hamlet of Jungu. From here it's an easy descend to St. Niklaus in the Mattertal valley using a small cable car. The night is spend in St Niklaus. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 11: We leave St Niklaus and climb to the airy 'Europaweg', which is a trail that traverses high above the Mattertal all the way to Zermatt. But it's too far in one day so we stop half way and spend the night in the Europahutte. Breakfast and dinner is included.
Day 12: We leave the Europahutte for the final leg of our journey. Spectacular walking and stunning views all the way until we descent down to Zermatt and the end of our journey. The night is spend in Zermatt where you are free to explore the town and it's many bars and restaurants. Breakfast is included.
Day 13: Today is your departure day and the official end to the tour. Breakfast is included.
Our Walker’s Haute Route trek is completely tailored to walkers and hikers and avoids glaciers and sections where technical climbing skills are needed. It is a true mountain hikers itinerary and we complete the whole tour on foot, which makes it quite a challenging proposition. We'll be on the trail for around 8 hours every day, covering on average 20 km and 1000 meters of ascent. We'll stay in rugged mountain huts and hiker's hostels as often as possible and we'll not have support vehicles ferrying equipment up and down the valleys, which means we'll carry our personal equipment for the duration of the tour. Not only is this a more authentic, adventurous and satisfying way to complete the tour but it also helps cut down the cost and reduce our environmental footprint.
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