Are you interested in a private guide? A private guided tour is booked specifically for you and your friends and family. You choose the dates that work best for you and choose the itinerary that feels right. We can help you make any custom changes you like to our guided Tour du Mont Blanc, North itinerary and we will take care of all the details. Hotels are booked, taxis reserved, and your own private guide will be waiting, so all you need to do is show up and enjoy your trip!
The Tour du Mont Blanc is one of the finest hiking tours in the world, but what to do if you don’t have time to hike the full route? For those who would like a shorter inn-to-inn hike, we always like to recommend the northern half of the TMB route. On this private guided tour, you’ll still hike through all 3 countries – Italy, Switzerland, and France – stopping at beautiful inns each night. It’s a fairly moderate tour, with multiple passes to cross and plenty of alternate, strenuous options, but always with a good main route of 7-10 miles and 2000-3000 ft of elevation change each day. Our tour includes Geneva airport transfers to Courmayeur and back from Geneva, as well as luggage transfers and numerous itinerary options. With years of personal experience on this route, we have the expertise and attention to detail to help you choose the best way for you to hike Mont Blanc and experience one of the world’s classic hikes.
Our typical day on the Tour du Mont Blanc starts with a continental buffet breakfast at our inn, and soon we’ll be out on the trail for 6-8 hours of inn-to-inn hiking. With many passes to cross, the hiking is often strenuous, but there will also be opportunities for easier days. Our tour will go counter-clockwise around Mont Blanc, starting from Courmayeur, Italy, hiking up into Switzerland, before circling around to Chamonix, France.
We should finish our daily hikes around 4-5 pm, giving you time to wash up, relax, and enjoy views of Mont Blanc and the surrounding scenery. After that, we’ll enjoy dinner together at our inn or a local restaurant. These are multi-course feasts, featuring delicious local French, Swiss and Italian specialties. A hearty meal and good conversation provide a satisfying end to our day.
With 3 countries filled with soaring mountains, lofty passes, and gorgeous trails, the Tour du Mont Blanc, North is a wonderful one-week trek that covers many of the highlights of the full route.
Courmayeur – For the Tour du Mont Blanc North, it’s best to fly to Geneva, and we’ll arrange your private transfer to the medieval village of Courmayeur in Italy, where you stay in a pleasant and friendly hotel near the center of town. Courmayeur is just over 2 hrs from Geneva
There is plenty to do in the village, cable cars take you up to high vantage points, or there are great dayhikes near town. The nearby Pre St Didier spa is also a great way to relax if you arrive early. Courmayeur is a beautiful village, with cobblestoned pedestrian-only alleyways filled with comfortable cafes and stylish shops.
Courmayeur – After one of our favorite breakfasts at the Bouton d’Or, you’ll head out on a dayhike high above town.
We have a couple of choices today. One great option is the hike to the top of Mont Chétif, the steep pyramidal peak that guards the entrance to Val Veny on the southern end of Courmayeur. This is a grand panoramic hike and is a stunning introduction to the Mont Blanc region.
If you’re still having trouble adjusting to the time difference, Courmayeur is also great for people-watching and relaxing, perhaps even taking a short trip on your own down to the Pre St. Didier Spa with its renowned natural mineral baths. You’ll again have dinner with your group in Courmayeur tonight and discuss the following day’s hike to Rifugio Bonatti.
Rifugio Bonatti – One of the highlights of the TMB is the high traverse of Mont de la Saxe above Courmayeur, with incredible views of Mont Blanc and the towering Grandes Jorasses as you hike to the comfortable Bonatti hut. A more moderate hike follows an undulating traverse just above treeline directly to the hut.
Enjoy sunset views of Mont Blanc from the patio as you settle in for your second, and final, night in Italy. Double rooms are available but limited at the hut, and our tours include a room if available, and dorm otherwise. There are no singles here. If having a private room every night is important, this hut can be skipped, and hiked as a day hike from Courmayeur instead, while you stay 2 nights in Courmayeur.
La Fouly – Hiking to the back of the Italian Val Ferret, you’ll enjoy more great views while crossing the Grand Col Ferret and into Switzerland. The Grand Col Ferret is a modest pass, with grassy meadows great for savoring views back toward Mont Blanc.
When you’re ready to leave, you’ll descend through tidy green fields with high cliffs and glaciers reaching down from the heights, to the tiny village of la Fouly, a quiet stop along the Tour du Mont Blanc. For those who need to shorten their trip, we often recommend skipping this night and taking a bus to Champex instead. Stay in a comfortable 3-star hotel.
Champex – One of the easier hikes on your Mont Blanc tour takes you on a valley walk through woods and up to the pretty, lakeside village of Champex.
For strong hikers looking for a bigger day, a much more strenuous alternate route leads over a high pass, to a hut perched along the edge of the Orny glacier, before descending to Champex. Stay in a comfortable 3-star village hotel.
Col de la Forclaz – An undulating trail known as the Bovine route leads through pine forests and alpine pastures (and plenty of cows), with sweeping views of the Rhone valley.
Weather permitting, a more rigorous possibility leads up to the high pass of Fenetre d’Arpette, one of the highest points along the tour and along the Trient glacier. Finish the day at a small hiker’s inn at Forclaz or in nearby Trient. Double rooms are typically available, but limited.
Chamonix – On your final hiking day of the tour, cross the Col de Balme into France, coming back full circle to sweeping views of Mont Blanc and the Chamonix valley.
If you’re looking for a short day, there is a gondola that can take you down from the pass. Otherwise, we send you on a beautiful side trail through alpenrose and wild blueberries with the brilliant glaciers of Mont Blanc ahead in the distance. Hike down to the village of le Tour where you catch a bus to Chamonix. Enjoy a final celebratory dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in Chamonix.
depart – Today you say au revoir, and depart for your post-Mont Blanc destinations.
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