Mont Blanc is one of the highest mountains in Europe (4,807m) and generous in its greatness, reaching into France, Italy and Switzerland. The Tour du Mont Blanc (TMB), which circumnavigates the massif, is also one of Europe’s greatest long-distance trails. There are various ways to take on the challenge, and this Tour du Mont Blanc from Les Houches in comfort route takes you around the majority of the colossal circuit in an anti-clockwise direction. It takes 12 days to complete, staying mostly in small, mountain hotels. With luggage transfers.
If you prefer to spend most nights in traditional TMB mountain huts, take a look at our other Tour du Mont Blanc from Les Houches holiday. We also have an informative TMB blog.
- Les Houches
- Les Contamines
- Val Ferret
Click to view map
Day 1: Arrival Les Houches
Welcome to the charming village of Les Houches, just 6km from Chamonix.
- Accommodation: Hotel du Bois, 3-star (or similar), half-board
Day 2: Les Houches – Les Contamines | 4-5h
Take the cable car to Bellevue, making for an easier first day, cutting out the first ascent. The TMB path contours through the forest high above Bionnassay Valley while passing through pretty hamlets with excellent views of Mont Blanc and across the foothills of the Alps. The Dôme du Gouter and Aiguille de Bionnassay dominate the views with the impressive Bionnassay Glacier between them. Climb up Col de Tricot and start your descent following a series of switchbacks to Chalet de Miage. Following a riverside path, this is a beautiful approach into Les Contamines at the end of the day.
- Walking for the day: 4-5h, ↑640m ↓1,275m
- Accommodation: Hôtel La Gélinotte, 2-star (or similar), half-board
Day 3: Les Contamines – Les Chapieux | 6-9h
Optional short car transfer to Notre Dame de la Gorge. Climb over Col du Bonhomme and Col de la Croix du Bonhomme into Chapieux Valley. You get spectacular views over Aiguille des Glaciers today.
- Walking for the day: 6-7h ↑1,200m ↓900m (with transfer) / 8-9h without transfer
- Accommodation: Private room at mountain lodge Auberge La Nova (or similar), half-board
PLEASE NOTE: If accommodation in Les Chapieux isn’t available, we will book you into a hotel in Bourg-Saint-Maurice instead. Depending on availability, the hotel would be either a 2-star with dinner included, or a 3-star with breakfast only. If this is the case, you need to take the bus from Les Chapieux to Bourg-Saint-Maurice and return in the morning (approx. €4-6). If arriving before 25 June and after 27 August, private transfers will be required as the shuttle doesn’t run in low season. Supplement will be €190 in total for both transfers on Days 3 and 4.
Day 4: Les Chapieux – Refuge Elisabetta | 5h
Walk over Col de la Seigne to the Italian side of the border, again with spectacular views. On your descent, there are also fantastic views of Aiguilles of Peuterey.
PLEASE NOTE: luggage transfer to your next accommodation is not possible today. Instead, it transported directly from Les Chapieux to Refuge Elena where you stay on day/night 5.
- Walking for the day: 5h, approx. 10km, ↑730m ↓315m
- Accommodation: Refuge Elisabetta (dormitory rooms), half-board. There is no option for private rooms here.
Day 5: Refuge Elisabetta – Courmayeur | 4-5h
Hike up on one the most beautiful balconies of the TMB, until you reach Chécroui Pass, then descend to Courmayeur either by walking or taking a short cut by cable car.
- Walking for the day: 4-5h ↑550m ↓980m
- Accommodation: Hotel Bouton d’Or, 3-star (or similar) in Courmayeur, bed and breakfast
Day 6: Val Ferret – La Fouly | 5-6h
Cross Grand Col Ferret and arrive at the quaint but beautiful village of La Fouly in Switzerland. Take in the exceptional views over the Combins massif in the east and the Italian side of Mont Blanc.
- Walking for the day: 5-6h ↑725m ↓930m
- Accommodation: Hôtel Edelweiss, 3-star (or similar) in La Fouly, half-board
Day 7: La Fouly – Champex (Val d’Arpette) | 5-6h
A bucolic hike through one of the most beautiful valleys of Switzerland’s Valais. Hike up to the village of Champex (1,470m) , home to a stunning glacial lake of the same name, and continue on to Val d’Arpette.
- Walking for the day: 5-6h ↑600m ↓500m
- Accommodation: Le Relais Arpette, private rooms, half-board
Day 8: Champex (Val d’Arpette) – La Forclaz (or Trient) | 8-9h
Today you ascend to the highest point of your TMB, trekking over Fenêtre d’Arpette (2,750m). The walk continues with breathtaking views as you continue along the Trient glacier. There is an alternative, shorter itinerary via Col de Bovine, which is highly recommended if the weather is inclement.
- Walking for the day: 8-9h, approx. 14km, ↑1,050m ↓1,385m, or 5-6h ↑800m ↓1,135m (shorter option via Col de Bovine, especially during bad weather).
- Accommodation: Mountain hut La Forclaz (or similar), private rooms, half-board
Day 9: La Forclaz (or Trient) – Argentière | 6-7h
Walking over Col de la Balme and back to France with fantastic views of the Mont Blanc and Aiguille Verte, with two options for your descent to Argentière.
- Walking for the day: 6-7h ↑1,000m ↓1,050m
- Accommodation: Hotel Le Dahu, 2-star (or similar) in Argentières, breakfast
Day 10: Argentière – Chamonix | 6h
Take in the beauty of Balcon des Aiguilles Rouges, before a trek up to Lac Blanc. Natural highlights today include Aiguille Verte, Les Drus, Mer de Glace, Aiguilles de Chamonix, Mont Blanc du Tacul, Aiguille du Goûter, and Mont Blanc itself of course. Descend to Chamonix via Le Praz. You can also opt to take the cable car at La Flégère or the local bus (transfers not included).
- Walking for the day: 6h, ↑900m, ↓1,100m
- Accommodation: Hotel du Clocher, 3-star (or similar), bed and breakfast
Day 11: Chamonix – Les Houches | 6-7h
f the weather is good and it’s not the beginning of the season (when there is more of a risk of snow), you can take the cable car from Chamonix to Planpraz and walk to Les Houches via Col du Brevent. Or take a cable car from Planpraz to Le Brevent down to Les Houches (only after end of June). Take a the train or bus from Les Houches back to Chamonix. Another option is just to call this a rest day and enjoy strolling around Chamonix.
- Walking for the day: 6-7h ↑515m ↓1,540m
- Accommodation: Hotel du Clocher, 3-star (or similar), bed and breakfast
Day 12: Departure or extra nights
Chamonix is a great base to spend a couple of days, and we would recommend that you add some extra nights here. There is superb walking in Aiguilles Rouges National Nature Reserve, take the cable car to the Aiguille du Midi (3,795m) or the train to the Montenvers on the Mer de Glace.
What to expect
Accommodation in double en-suite rooms in 3-star hotels in Les Houches, Courmayeur, La Fouly, Argentières and Chamonix and 2-star hotel in Les Contamines. Accommodation in double rooms in lodges in Les Chapieux, Arpette (or Trient), with an en-suite bathroom (en-suite bathrooms in the lodges, however, cannot be guaranteed and the price will not be reduced in case there is no en-suite available). One night in a dormitory at Elisabetta Refuge with shared facilities. Accommodation has been carefully selected based on a variety of criteria including their location, warm hospitality, fine local food or commitment to responsible tourism.
Click to view default hotels
- Hotel du Clocher, 3-star
- Hotel Bouton d’Or, 3-star
- Auberge La Nova
- Mountain hut La Forclaz
- Hôtel Edelweiss, 3-star
- Hotel du Bois, 3-star
*Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.
Half-board with breakfast and dinner is included in every accommodation except Chamonix and Courmayeur. Lunch packs for next day can be pre-ordered at each accommodation.
Difficulty and terrain
This holiday is appropriate for experienced walkers and requires an excellent level of fitness; you will walk 5-7h a day (up to 9h on some days if you do not use the shorter alternatives) (read more about difficulty grades). We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never shorten the path through the unknown and unmarked terrain. We will provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.
When to go
This trip is available on any date from mid-June till mid-September. Regularly updated weather forecasts for the area are available here and here. Detailed month-by-month climate info is available here. The flexibility of self-guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date in the season – so please indicate desired beginning date when booking.
Please note that availability may be limited during big events such as the Marathon du Mont-Blanc at the end of June and the UTMB trail running event at the end of August.
FCO up-to-date travel advice on Switzerland, France and Italy.
Click to view travel options
Our recommended airport for this holiday is Geneva (GVA).
By train or bus
- By own/rental car: Very easy access to Les Houches and Praz de Chamonix via Highway A40 to St-Gervais-le Fayet and expressway (4 lanes) to Servoz and Les Houches.
- By train: St Gervais-Le Fayet TGV station is at 7km from Servoz and at 17km from Les Houches. Then bus from St Gervais-le-Fayet to les Houches or St-Gervais / Les Houches by train.
- By bus: SAT Mont Blanc, +33 (0) 4 50 78 05 33; about 45mins. Taxi Besson, +33 (04) 50 93 61 47 (Mini-buses with 8 or 6 seats are also available), about € 70 / transfer 1-4 persons (Le Fayet – Contamines or Chamonix – Contamines).
- Return via Chamonix Mont Blanc Railway Station. From Chamonix to Le Fayet: by train, approx. 40mins.
- By taxi: From Geneva airport to Les Houches about €280 one way on weekdays and before 18.00. Taxi 2 – 4 people.
- 6 nights in 3-star hotels, 1 night in a 2-star hotel (private en-suite rooms), 3 nights in private rooms in mountain huts (with or without en suite facilities), 1 night in a dormitory room with shared facilities
- 11 breakfasts
- 7 dinners
- Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel on all walking days (1 piece of luggage per person, max 15kg) except on day 4 – your main luggage will be transferred directly from the day 3 to the day 5 accommodation
- Private transfer on day 3
- Detailed holiday information pack including GPS-checked and regularly updated route descriptions and road notes; maps with daily routes and optional hikes marked (provided only digitally as access to our Navigation app; printed documents available at extra cost)
- 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative
- Airfare and connecting land transfers
- All lunches, and dinners not mentioned as included, drinks and snacks
- Luggage transfer on day 4
- Eventual bus transfers and cable cars to shorten the walks (Courmayeur, Champex, Chamonix)
- Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
- Personal expenses
- Local tourist taxes and entry fees (payable on-site)
- Any items not explicitly listed as included
- If staying in Bourg-Saint-Maurice on day 2 before 25 June and after 27 August, private return transfer will be required with a supplement of €190 in total.
Options, extras and supplements
- If you’re travelling in a group, a supplement applies to group members who would like to have a room of their own. – only possible for hotel accommodation.
- This holiday is not available for solo travellers
- Extra nights in Les Houches or Chamonix
- Printed pre-departure materials