Chamonix-Mont-Blanc (usually shortened to Chamonix) is a resort area near the junction of France, Switzerland and Italy. At the base of Mont Blanc, the highest summit in the Alps, it’s renowned for its skiing.
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Before visiting any town or city make sure you know the basics. General details and important information.
- Emergency Services: 112
- Language: French
- Currency: Euro
- Country Code: FR
- Travel Visa: None required
- Population: 8,882
Researching various official sources, we perceive the risk to holiday makers and travellers are as follows;
Top travel advice and interesting tip bits of information from experienced travellers.
- Don't ski? Don't worry. There are plenty of things to do in Chamonix for the non-skiers, such as beautiful hikes across the glacier, outdoor activities like paragliding and so much more.
- Snowshoeing on the terraces of Chamonix mountains is a winter dream come true. You will discover the forests, the snow-covered pastures and the most superb panoramas of the Vallon de Bernard: peaks that reach close to 3000 meters, suspended glaciers, cliffs, flora and fauna.
- Step inside a glacier at Grotte de Glace. Spend a few hours walking through the icy trails for a unique experience. Markers along the path indicate the rate at which these glaciers are melting.
For the Emergency services just dial 112 from any phone.
Click the text below to visit their website.
The various resorts and villages which make up the Chamonix Valley are all linked by a number of different train lines running the length of the valley from Les Houches to Vallorcine, stopping at all the ski areas along the way. The buses are free to anyone bearing a lift pass, carte d’hote, gens du pays card or residence secondaire card – which covers pretty much everyone in the valley.
Geneva International Airport is the main airport serving Chamonix. Click the text below to visit the website.
The Mont Blanc Express train line services the whole length of the Chamonix Valley. The nearest mainline French station for Chamonix is St Gervais les Bains/Le Fayet at the bottom of the valley; from there you would need to take the Mont Blanc Express train up into resort.
Which areas should I take more care?
After snowfalls, in some areas, avalanches can be expected — either natural or triggered in order to prevent further avalanching. Always inquire about avalanche hazards before embarking in hikes in the snow or off-track skiing. Even if you do not fear for yourself, please show consideration for the people who may be underneath you.
How can I keep up with the news?
What are the common crimes?
Crimes in Chamonix, are very low, just use common sense such as locking rooms, not walking around with large amounts of money and not leaving your personal belongings unattended.
Like other tourist areas, in high seasons the pickpockets also come to town. Also if you have an expensive mountain bike or skis, be sure to keep an eye on them and lock them up when you can’t watch them.
Recommend avoiding using the currency exchanges and cash machines in the open air in town centre – pickpockets seem to hang out here ‘targeting’ their victims (they have a very good view from several spots where they can easily hang out and look like tourists).
What safety tips should I know?
Altitude sickness may also be an issue. Using aerial lifts, one may get very fast to high altitude areas. You may experience shortness of breath and other symptoms.
Climbing the Mont Blanc is popular among alpinists. The climb should however not be attempted by people lacking mountain climbing experience and equipment, even using the easiest route.
Improve Your Personal Safety
Knowledge – the more you have the better equipped you are.
Awareness – the more you see the safer you become.
Response – the right reaction can change a situation.
Annual events allow a city come together for some amazing experiences. If visiting at this time, make sure you have your accommodation booked and are always aware of your surroundings when travelling around.
Fete de Guides (13th-15th August)
The main event of the Festival of the Guides of Chamonix (Fete des Guides de Chamonix) is generally started at the climbing wall at Les Gaillands, Chamonix. Live music, traditional food, games for children, fireworks and best of all, a performance on the cliff face by the local mountain guides.
Arc’teryx Alpine Arc’ademy
Three day alpine academy course is open to all and will cover an array of high mountain skills, from overnight bivvies to crevasse rescue, as well as seminars and cultural events. The seminars will discuss alpinism topics including the impact of climate change to the mountains and high mountain medicine.
Chamonix Adventure Festival
Christmas in Chamonix officially starts at the beginning of December when the Christmas lights are switched on. The night is marked with vin chaud (Hot Wine), hot chocolate and music. From then on you can enjoy Christmas concerts, festive markets and live music throughout town as the resort gears up for Christmas and New Year.
What are the highlight attractions?
Mont Blanc or Monte Bianco both meaning “White Mountain” is the highest mountain in the Alps and the European Union. It rises 4,810 m (15,781 ft) above sea level and is ranked 11th in the world in-topographic prominence. It is also sometimes known as La Dame Blanche (French for “the White Lady”) or Il Bianco (Italian for “the White One”).
The Grandes Jorasses is a mountain in the Mont Blanc massif. The first ascent of the highest peak of the mountain was by Horace Walker with guides Melchior Anderegg, Johann Jaun and Julien Grange on 30 June 1868.
Aiguille du Plan
The Aiguille du Plan is a mountain in the Mont Blanc massif in the French Alps. Its needle-like summit lies in the center of the Chamonix Aiguilles when viewed from Chamonix.
Mont Blanc Massif
The Mont Blanc massif is a mountain range in the Graian Alps. It is named after Mont Blanc, at 4,810.45 m the highest summit of the Alps. It is located in France, Italy, and Switzerland.
Where is great to ski?
Le Savoy (For Infants)
Les Planards (For Beginners & Families)
La Vormaine (For Freestyle Beginners)
Les Houches (For Intermediates)
Grands Montets (For Advanced)
Brévent/Flégère (For Thrill-Seekers)
Vallée Blanche (For Offpiste Experts)
Where is great to visit?
Musee des Cristaux (Crystal Museum)
Exhibiting an impressive collection of crystals, mostly from Chamonix, but also from the rest of the Alps and worldwide. Created and maintained through a partnership between the city council and the local Mineralogical club, it is both very aesthetic and scientific, displaying pedagogical posters. Found just behind the Maison de la Montagne and the church.
Lac du Brévent
Lac du Brévent is a lake in the municipality of Chamonix, Haute-Savoie, France. It is located below the Le Brévent peak, at an elevation of approx. 2125 m.
Impressively scenic ski journey across the Argentiere Glacier with some of the Alpine Giants North Faces looming above. The tour is pleasant and fairly straightforward but is entirely glacial and, in good conditions, can be combined with an exciting traversing descent from the Grand Monets top ski station.
What else should I know about Chamonix?
The French culture is one of the most notable cultures in the world; known for its romance, the beautiful language, the incredible food and the French attitude. Chamonix in some ways encompasses the classic culture of the French with Gallic history. But its location in the Alps adds the outdoor and mountain spirit to the culture here. People are very active outdoors, skiing, walking, biking and more. There is a strong sense of community and they hold onto a slower pace of life. The Alps in this region add a mountain spirit to its culture.
There is a large sense of pride in Chamonix. The locals are very proud of the beauty of their home’s surroundings, having been an Olympic city, and remaining a top world tourist destination. They should be happy to help you with your endeavours in Chamonix make your stay all the more charming!