Hiking the Haute Route

Chamonix, France

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Hike the famous "high route" across the French and Swiss Alps from Chamonix, France, to Zermatt, Switzerland.


Duration: 8 Days
Starts in: Chamonix, France
Ends in: Zermatt, Switzerland
Group Size: 4-14
Difficulty: 5/5

Operated by:

Wilderness Travel

Wilderness Travel is an award-winning leader in adventure travel, renowned for superb itinerary design, high-value, and the best Trip Leaders in the business. Group departu...

Additional Information

The celebrated Haute Route, a high-level hike from Chamonix, France, to Zermatt, Switzerland, is immersed in alpine lore. This is where the sport of mountaineering was born in the 19th century, and just a glance at the 360-degree panorama explains why: 10 of the 12 highest peaks in the Alps, including Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn, rise along this magnificent "high route." Our unique way of hiking this famous traverse brings nonstop alpine panoramas as we cross seven dramatic passes—including the Col de Torrent (9,570')—passing fir forests, glistening lakes, and flower-filled meadows. Our team of Trip Leaders makes this a wonderfully fun mountain adventure, and we combine well-paced hiking days with overnights in charming hotels.


Days 1-2
Chamonix, France / Champex, Switzerland 
From Chamonix, we ascend through alpine meadows where cows graze as we hike up through woodlands to cross the Col de Balme (7,201'), which marks the French-Swiss frontier. From Col de la Forclaz (5,010'), we hike into alpine meadows with sweeping views of the Rhône Valley and descend to the Swiss hamlet of Champex d'en Haut. 

Days 3-4
Grande Dixence / Arolla 
Our hike over the Col des Roux (9,197') reveals the summits and glaciers of the Valais Alps, where some locals still wear traditional dress. When we cross the Col de Riedmatten, we'll have breathtaking views across the Arolla Valley to Pigne d'Arolla, Mont Collon, and the west face of Mont Blanc de Cheilon, with remarkable glaciers framing our route. 

Days 5-6
St-Luc / Gruben 
A hike through the traditional Valais canton and over the Col de Torrent rewards us with superb vistas of the towering limestone pyramid of the Dent Blanche (14,295'). Entering German-speaking Switzerland by crossing the Meidpass (9,154'),we make our way down into the peaceful hamlet of Gruben.

Days 7-8
After our climb to the top of Augstbordpass (9,495'), we catch a cable car and local train to car-free Zermatt. Surrounded by 13,000-foot peaks, this classic alpine town is famed for its awe-inspiring views of the Matterhorn. Depart on Day 8.


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