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The French Lakes, Chamonix and Mont Blanc

4.6 stars(5 reviews)

Beautiful lakes and mountain scenery by rail

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2019 Tour code: CAL19

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Day 1 - London to Annecy

Meet your group and Tour Manager at our exclusive Departure Office in St Pancras, before boarding the Eurostar to Paris. As we travel in Standard Premier Class, a light meal and drinks are served at our seats. After crossing the city by coach, we continue by TGV, travelling eastwards into the Savoy Alps, with the scenery increasing in beauty as the train gently climbs.

Our destination is Annecy, a picturesque town located in this peaceful corner of France, with a delightful medieval heart, criss-crossed by a network of pretty canals, cobbled bridges and winding streets. The 'Venice of the Savoy' has at its centre a charming, unusual castle, which sits in the middle of the Canal du Thiou and is surrounded by the timber-framed houses on preserved medieval streets. In Annecy we stay for three nights at the 4-Star Novotel Annecy, close to the railway station and just a short walk from the charming Old Town and lake. We enjoy dinner together in our hotel tonight.

  • Dinner
  • Eurostar Meal
Day 2 - Lake Bourget lunch cruise

Today is one of the real highlights of our tour, as we take sail on the crystal clear waters of Lake Bourget. The tranquil water reflects the vistas of the surrounding mountain scenery, providing us with incredible panoramas during our relaxing cruise, which includes a three-course lunch. Along the way we make a visit to Hautecombe Abbey which juts out into the lake and dates back to the 12th century.

  • Breakfast, Lunch
Lake Bourget
Day 3 - Vienne

Enjoy a full-day excursion to Vienne today. Known for its Roman remains, we embark on a guided tour that includes sights such as the Temple d'Auguste et Livie, the city's cathedral, the Theatre Romain and Renaissance Courtyard.

  • Breakfast
Day 4 - Annecy and Chamonix

Today we travel by coach to Annecy for a walking tour to before some free time to uncover the delightful medieval centre, criss-crossed by a network of pretty canals, cobbled bridges and winding street for ourselves. After lunch you are free to sightsee on your own, a popular option is to take a cruise on fabulous Lake Annecy. We then continue to the bustling mountain town of Chamonix- Mont-Blanc for four nights, travelling via the Col des Aravis, a mountain pass from where you can admire truly stunning views.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Days 5-6 - The Montenvers Mountain Railway

We depart late morning for a journey on the Montenvers Mountain Railway, which climbs from the valley floor through the pine forests above Chamonix to Montenvers at 6,275 feet (1,913m). The train arrives at Montenvers station and you have free time to look around. It may be possible to descend by cable car to the glacier itself and visit the ice grottos inside. Day 6 is at leisure.

  • Day 5 - Breakfast
  • Day 6 - Breakfast, Dinner
Montenvers Railway
Days 7-8 - The Mont Blanc Express and homeward bound

We leave Chamonix this morning and head to Lake Geneva in Switzerland where we begin our journey on the fabulous Mont Blanc Express- a narrowgauge railway built over 100 years ago - to Martigny and back. We transfer to Annecy on Day 8, catching the high-speed train to Paris where we connect with the Eurostar back to London.

  • Day 7 - Breakfast
  • Day 8 - Breakfast
Mont Blanc Express