France itself conjures up a deluge of luxurious images. Rolling vineyards, snow-capped mountains, alpine lakes, storybook villages and delicious cuisine including a favorite – classic fondue. It’s hard to say what is the best part about visiting France.
At Ryder-Walker, we visit two distinct regions of France – French Savoie is the mountainous heart of the Alps where the queen of the Alps herself, the Mont Blanc, rises high above even the other towering peaks. In the French Pyrénées we explore the mountain range bordering with Spain and experience the historic Basque culture.
The French Savoie is home to two of the most recognizable treks in Europe. The Tour du Mont Blanc is as classic as hiking gets, visiting the three neighboring countries of France, Italy, and Switzerland, the Tour du Mont Blanc has garnered its fame by simply being one of the most epic mountain tours in Europe. The Hiker’s Haute Route shares half of its trail with the Tour du Mont Blanc as you begin your journey on the flanks of the Mont Blanc in the bustling and historic village of Chamonix. Over the course of the next 12 days, we journey to the Swiss alpine heart of Zermatt. Ryder-Walker’s longest European tour and one of our most involved, the Haute Route is for true mountain lovers.
Finally, our French Alps: Mont Blanc and the Tarentaise Mountains take a more relaxed approach to explore the lower peaks below the Mont Blanc. Featuring medieval villages, alpine lakes, and unrivaled views of the highest mountain in Western Europe, the Tarentaise Mountains have a little something for everyone.
The Haute Pyrénées Mountain Trek takes you to one of the less-traveled corners of France, exploring the Haute, or high, Pyrénées mountains. Along the way, we visit time forgotten Basque villages and explore the rugged and breathtaking Pyrénées summits. The Basque culture itself is a reason to visit, with a language that shares no common ancestor with modern languages, their own historic cooking traditions, and walled medieval cities, the Basque people have a proud and fascinating way of life that isn’t quite like anywhere else in the mountainous regions of Europe.
The French countryside sows a romantic yarn. Fields full of free-roaming cattle, farmers villages that see only a handful of visitors a year, and the most classic of the classic hiking tours offer experiences that will fascinate newcomers to trekking and enthusiasts alike!
Guided Tours: France
Mont Blanc is an icon; much more than a mountain. Huge enough and complex enough to always have something to offer cutting edge alpinists since the 1700s. And lucky for the rest of us it is so big and strategically placed on the French, Italian and Swiss borders that it is visible from the higher peaks of every Alpine country in Western Europe, Germany, Austria, Italy, Switzerland and France. ...View Trip Details
Our week-long trip to the high peaks of the Pyrénées offers an opportunity to visit the stunning mountain range which defines the border between France and Spain, and enjoy the unique cultural heritage of this enchanting region. We begin our journey in the French mountain hamlet of Cauterets, nestled on the north side of the Parc National Des Pyrénées Occidentales. Over the course of the ...View Trip Details
The world famous Haute Route crosses the highest mountain range in Western Europe, the Pennine Alps, and links the Mont Blanc region in France with the rugged canton of Valais in southwestern Switzerland. Starting in the bustling alpine center of Chamonix, France, beneath the mighty massif of Europe’s highest summit, Mont Blanc (15,781 feet), the trail crosses eastward into Switzerland and finishes ...View Trip Details
Outside Magazine named Ryder-Walker’s Tour du Mont Blanc trek one of the 25 Best Hikes in the World. Hike across the borders of France, Italy and Switzerland during our ten-day Tour du Mont Blanc. Taking advantage of some little-known variations to the standard route, we lead you from the mountain-chic cafés of Chamonix, to remote mountain hamlets en route to Courmayeur, Italy. Our gracious ...View Trip Details
*All prices are per person based on double occupancy and subject to change