Great Alpine Traverse

Five Countries—on foot!


The ultimate Alps odyssey is WT’s unique mountain adventure on the best trails of France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, and Austria—and we cross all borders on foot! Take the epic cable car ride up the slopes of Mont Blanc and hike from France into Italy, savor spine-tingling Matterhorn views on Italy’s Grand Balconeta trail, cross the Theodul Glacier to arrive in Switzerland on foot, take a hidden trail over Fütschol Pass into Austria, and discover the Ramseider Trail leading over the Steinernes Meer (“Sea of Stone”) into Germany. This is a brilliant way to discover the cuisine, traditions, and architecture of five alpine nations while enjoying the hikes of a lifetime. We stay in hotels of character en route, and our grand finish is in Salzburg on the banks of the Salzach River.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-4, Aug 22-25, 2020
Chamonix, France / Aosta, Italy / Zermatt, Switzerland

From Chamonix, a breathtaking gondola ride carries us up the slopes of Mont Blanc, with a descent into Courmayeur, Italy, and an overnight in mountain-ringed Aosta. We hike the remarkable Grand Balconeta trail, one of the finest hikes in the Alps, with incredible Matterhorn views all the way, and cross the magnificent Theodul Glacier—right below the Matterhorn—to arrive in Zermatt on foot.

Grand Hotel des Alpes
Chamonix, France
Day 1 (1 night)
HB Aosta Hotel
Aosta, Italy
Day 2 (1 night)
Duca D'Aosta Hotel
Aosta, Italy
Day 2 (1 night)
Chalet Valdotain
Cervinia, Italy
Day 3 (1 night)
Parkhotel Beau Site
Zermatt, Switzerland
Day 4 (1 night)
Hotel La Ginabelle
Zermatt, Switzerland
Day 4 (1 night)
Days 5-8, Aug 26-29, 2020
Upper Engadine, Switzerland / Pontresina / Guarda

A spectacular rail journey on the Glacier Express is a great way to relax as the scenery unfolds and we wind our way through the mountains of the Bernese Oberland into the splendid Upper Engadine valley, with overnights in stylish Pontresina. Heading to Guarda, we hike among the classic hamlets along the Inn River in the Lower Engadine, with a picnic at the medieval castle of Tarasp.

Hotel Walther
Pontresina, Switzerland
Days 5 to 6 (2 nights)
Meisser Resort
Guarda, Switzerland
Days 7 to 8 (2 nights)
Days 9-13, Aug 30-Sep 3, 2020
Maria Alm, Austria / Kärlingerhaus, Germany / Salzburg, Austria

We cross remote Fütschol Pass to descend into Austria and the traditional Tyrolean village of Maria Alm. A challenging hike brings us to Kärlingerhaus, Germany, surrounded by limestone peaks, and our last trail brings us through glacier-carved scenery to the Königsee, the historic “Lake of Kings,” enclosed within almost-vertical rock walls that give it the look of an inland fjord. We celebrate the finish of our five-country odyssey in beautiful Salzburg. Depart on Day 13.

Jamtal Hutte
Galtur, Austria
Day 9 (1 night)
Alpenland Sporthotel
Maria Alm, Austria
Day 10 (1 night)
Karlingerhaus Hutte
Funtensee, Germany
Day 11 (1 night)
Arthotel Blaue Gans
Salzburg, Austria
Day 12 (1 night)



Great hikes, seamless logistics, the perfect team of Trip Leaders—only WT can offer a journey like this!
Cross international borders on foot, hike on the Theodul Glacier, ride the Glacier Express from Zermatt to St. Moritz
Hand-picked hotels include the Grand Hotel des Alpes (Chamonix) and Hotel Walther (Pontresina)


Length: 13 days
Cost From: $7495  
Arrive: Chamonix, France
Depart: Salzburg, Austria
Lodging: 5 nights hotels, 5 nights charming inns, 2 nights alpine lodges with semi-private rooms, shared baths, and hot showers
Meals: All meals included except 1 lunch and 2 dinners as indicated in the Detailed Itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

11 hiking days on moderate to steep trails, 2-7 hours a day, altitudes between 4,500-11,500 feet, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day's hike). This trip has a mix of strenuous, moderate, and easy hiking days. Read “What the Trip is Like” for more details.

Recent Photo Blog Posts

Hiking to Five Countries on Foot

Recent Photo Blog Posts

Hiking to Five Countries on Foot

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