High Alps Traverse from Chamonix to Zermatt

Overview

The celebrated Haute Route is a high-level hiking traverse across the French and Swiss Alps from Chamonix, France, to Zermatt, Switzerland. Ten of the 12 highest peaks in the Alps, including Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn, rise along this magnificent “high route,” along with glaciers, cool mountain tarns, and meadows full of wildflowers. Our unique version of this classic route provides a nonstop panorama of stunning alpine scenery and a quintessential hiking experience of the Alps. En route, we hike over seven dramatic passes, including the wild and rocky Fenêtre d’Arpette (8,750'). We combine our well-paced hiking days with overnights in charming hotels, including the 4-star family-run Bella Tola, a spa hotel with delightful Old World ambiance.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2
Chamonix, France / Champex, Switzerland

From Chamonix, we hike over the Col de Balme and descend to the Col de la Forclaz. A steep but gorgeous hike skirting the Trient Glacier brings us to the top of the Fenêtre d’Arpette, then down to the rugged Val d’Arpette.

 View Lodging
Days 3-4
Grande Dixence / Arolla

Our hikes lead to the Col des Roux, with good chances of seeing ibex and chamois, then along Lac des Dix and up to the Col de Reidmatten (9,577'), with its dazzling mountain-and-glacier views.

 View Lodging
Days 5-6
St-Luc / Gruben

Hiking through the traditional Valais canton, we cross the Col de Torrent (9,570'), where superb vistas include the Mont Blanc chain and the most impressive summits and glaciers in the Swiss Valais, including the towering limestone pyramid of the Dent Blanche (14,290'). We hike into German-speaking Switzerland by crossing the Meidpass (9,154') to descend into the peaceful hamlet of Gruben.

 View Lodging
Days 7-8
Zermatt

After our climb to the top of Augstbordpass (9,495'), we descend into the green Mattertal, where we catch a cable car and local train to storied Zermatt, surrounded by 13,000-foot peaks and famed for its awe-inspiring views of the Matterhorn. Depart on Day 8.

 View Lodging

Highlights

Highlights

Experience one of the world’s great mountain hikes—in WT style!
Discover remote and pristine trails amid the highest peaks in the Alps
Savor the distinctive alpine cultures and cuisines of France and Switzerland
Enjoy our charming hand-picked hotels, some with spa facilities

Details

Length: 8 days
Cost From: $4495  
Arrive: Chamonix, France
Depart: Zermatt, Switzerland
Lodging: 4 nights four-star hotels, 3 nights mountain inns
Meals: All meals included
Activity: Cultural Adventures, Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

7 hiking days on moderate to steep trails, 5-8 hours a day, altitudes between 6,000-9,600 feet, van support. This is a strenuous hiking trip, read “What the Trip is Like” for more details.

Other Trips You Might be Interested in: