Self-Guided Hiking Tours

France & Switzerland | Hiker’s Haute Route

Walk the famous "High Level Path" from Chamonix to Zermatt.

France
  • Hiker's Haute
  • Hiker's Haute Trek
  • Aiguille Chardonnet and Verte
  • The Mer de Glace and Mont Blanc above Chamonix, France
  • hiker's haute trek
  • "Everything! I loved the daily physical challenge with the reward of incredible scenery and views- most especially because it was with a group that was very supportive and compatible. Our guides were wonderful and made the trip seamless and enjoyable for everyone. I loved that we had such an variety of terrain, sometimes all in one day! The hiking routes and places chosen to overnight were excellent and I liked the variety in them as well. The times that we were transported by vehicle were well thought out as well."- Brenda P.
  • "This was our 8th trek with RW, so clearly you are doing right by us and the friends we have referred over these past 10 years."- Andrew G.
  • "This was an awesome trip. The routes were great. Just the right length to challenge us. The hotel selection and meals were all good and at the better hotels they were exceptional."- Matt Posner
  • "I would say at least a 9, or more, out of 10!"- Mark D.

Trip Highlights:

  • Follow the original mountain route from France to Switzerland.
  • Snap photos of Mont Blanc AND the Matterhorn.
  • Hike through the Pennine Alps, the highest mountain range in Western Europe.

This self-guided trek links the villages of the Mont Blanc region and the western Swiss Valais, crossing through the highest mountain range in western Europe, the Pennine Alps. You will hike through two distinct cultural regions, the French speaking and German speaking Alps. Starting in the bustling alpine center of Chamonix, France beneath the dramatic flanks of Europe’s highest summit, Mont Blanc, and its spectacular Aiguilles, you will hike eastward into Switzerland and cross the Valais by a number of high passes that connect a number of small villages with their blackened timber houses and slate roofs. Finish in the incomparable Zermatt set beneath the soaring pyramidal flanks of the Matterhorn. This dramatic and often remote hiking tour sees surprisingly little traffic, and you will enjoy the most spectacular views of the western hemisphere from quiet footpaths between Chamonix and Zermatt. Because luggage transfers between countries are expensive and inconvenient, hikers should be prepared to carry up to three days’ changes of clothing at a time.

Trip Itinerary

Travel by rail to Chamonix, France. Overnight in an old world, first class hotel with superb French cuisine.

Start with a lift ride and enjoy a moderate introductory hike with spectacular views over the Mont Blanc range. Overnight in a comfortable French country inn.

Hike from Argentiere to the village of Trient, Switzerland with spectacular views of the Aiguilles or needles of Chamonix, its glaciers and Mt. Blanc. Overnight in a simple hiker’s hostelry.

A challenging and dramatic hike climbs along the Glacier du Trient to a high and beautiful pass with views of the Trient Glacier and the Swiss Val Ferret. Overnight in a charming three star, chalet style inn in the lakeside village of Champex.

Transfer to Arolla and an atmospheric old turn of the century hotel.*

A spectacular hike lies ahead with views of Mont Collon. L’Eveque, the Pigne D’Arolla, the Aiguilles Rouges and the Val D’Herens. Overnight in a simple inn in the traditional village of Les Hauderes.

Ascend through pastures (one often sees the women raking hay in traditional costume here) with views back to the Aiguilles Rouges, the Grand Combin and the Alps in France. Transfer to St. Luc and a charming old world inn.

Cross a pass with views back to the Aiguilles Rouges and the Dent D’Herens, and forward to the peaks above Zermatt: the Matterhorn, OberGabelhorn, Dent Blanche and Weisshorn. Overnight in a simple hostelry in the remote Turtmanntal.

Another pass lies ahead, this one along a medieval trading route with views of the Mischabel range separating Zermatt from Saas Fee and the peaks of the Oberland to the northeast. Transfer to Zermatt and a charming country inn with superb cuisine and every comfort and amenity.**

Hiker’s Haute Route | France & Switzerland

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Kendra Norris

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