Where to walk in Switzerland
By Lorna Heatley
22 November 2017
Hiking is one of the most rewarding forms of exercise in the world, and what country is more made for this particular exercise than Switzerland?Read more
Chamonix, set high in the Arve Valley amongst the magnificent mountainous landscape of the Alps, is internationally renowned both for its winter sports facilities and as a fantastic mountain resort.
The dramatic valley was first mentioned in 1091, when it belonged to a Benedictine Priory. Very little else is known about Chamonix's early history; in fact it only became more widely known in the 18th century, when scientific explorers Dr Richard Pococke and William Windham published an account of their time in the area, during which they explored the Mer de Glace glacier. A few years later, the first successful ascent of Mont Blanc - Europe's loftiest peak - was made from Chamonix.
The beauty of the area had not gone unnoticed by either of these parties, and as a result there was a great increase in the number of people that came to visit. Chamonix was soon a chic resort - and the town cemented its place in history by hosting the first ever Winter Olympics in 1924.
Today the pretty town remains as popular as ever, and with its historic core of baroque churches and idyllic chapels, along with a charming main street, it is easy to see why.
Glorious lakes and mountains form the backdrop of this relaxing French retreat. We combine the picturesque scenery of Lake Annecy with the Alpine charm of bustling Chamonix, travelling into the mountains by rail and enjoying a leisurely cruise.… see more
8 days from £1,745 ppView tour details >
A superb combination of memorable Christmas celebrations in one of our favourite hotels and unforgettable excursions by train as we climb on narrow-gauge and mountain railways to reach the dizzy heights of the frosted Alps.… see more
8 daysView tour details >