Guided Tour du Mont Blanc Chamonix Running Vacation

Summer 2020

 

Our Tour du Mont Blanc Trail Running Vacation takes you on an adventure run around the highest mountain in the Alps, the Mont Blanc massif. Join us on our Chamonix TMB Runcation as we trail run the iconic long distance route, staying at comfortable hotels and chalets throughout.

Our 9-day "Runcation" will kick off in one of the top trail running destinations in the world, the Chamonix Valley, before setting off on our trail. The route wraps 170 km around the massive Mont Blanc massif, climbing and descending a total of 10,000 feet through 3 countries and more breathtaking views than you can count. As we traverse the mountain we'll spend the 7 nights in charming and comfortable hotels in towns, and one night at a scenic mountain refuge, which will offer a comfortable place to spend the evening with breathtaking locations and a delicious sampling of Italian, Swiss, and French cuisine, wine, and coffee throughout the trip.

This retreat adventure is open to ages 15 and up of any pace. Must be able to complete 110 miles of hiking/running, including dramatic elevation gain and loss over the course of the trip with one rest day included. Shorter options are available on several of the days (contact the tour organizer). Optional 12-week training package available from an experienced running coach to ensure you're trained and ready to go for this adventure of a lifetime!Curious if this trip could be right for you? Get in touch at runcationtravel@gmail.com. We love questions!

 
 

 
IMG_4043.JPG

Overview

•Knowledgable guided trail run of the iconic Tour du Mont Blanc route

•Comfortable curated and vetted hotels in towns in between days on the trail

• Runnable trails in the mountains and through French, Swiss, and Italian towns

• Comfortable hotels throughout and one night in a scenic French mountain refuge


• Enjoy French, Italian, and Swiss cuisine, wine, and  coffee as we run through 3 different countries

• Accommodates all levels of runners, with shorter options available on certain days (contact organizer)

• Baggage transport from hut-to-hut and all logistics and bookings taken care of

• First evening in the bustling mountain town of Chamonix, France, and a rest day to enjoy Courmayeur, Italy!


 

Enjoy Runcation panoramas of the Mont Blanc massif on your Tour du Mont Blanc Running Vacation

Enjoy Runcation panoramas of the Mont Blanc massif on your Tour du Mont Blanc Running Vacation

 

Sample Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Chamonix Meet ane Greet

Day 1: Our trip will start the afternoon of Day 1 with a meet-and-greet and orientation meeting to meet the guides and go over the logistics and itinerary of the upcoming week! We recommend that you arrive in Chamonix early to adjust to the time change and explore the fabulous markets, trails, and atmosphere of Chamonix.

DAY 2

         Chamonix to Les Contamines

Day 2: After breakfast, we'll get an early start on the road to our Tour du Mont Blanc (TMB) adventure. We'll hit the trail early for one of our longest days on the trail to Les Contamines. On the way we'll pass farms selling goat cheese, old chapels, and amazing views contrasting green hills contrasted against the Bionnassay Glacier. Our comfortable 3-star hotel for the evening has a charming shady terraces, lounge chairs, and amazing wine and charcuterie.

DAY 3

To La Valle Des Glaciers

Day 3: After an early breakfast we'll head out the door of our hotel and back up into the mountains. Today we'll cover around 14 miles with 5,700 feet of elevation gain and cross over the highest point of the Tour du Mont Blanc. On the way we'll run through the Reserve Naturelle des Contamines-Montjoie, crossing streams and meadows before starting our climb up to the Col du Bonhomme and the higher Col de la Coix du Bonhomme. On clear days views are visible to Val Montjoie to the north and Vallon de la Gittaz to the southwest. Tonight is our night of the Runcation spent in a traditional TMB mountain refuge in a peaceful green valley with marmots, donkeys, and quirky mountain decor.

DAY 4

From France to Italy

Day 4: Today we'll cross the border from France to Italy at the spectacular crossing of the Col de la Seigne. We'll enjoy more views of the snowcapped peaks of the Col de la Seigne before stopping for coffee and lunch at a rifugio which sits on a spur overlooking the Vallon de la Lée Blanche. We stop for a break at one of the most colorful rifugios on the tour before descending into the chic mountain town of Courmayeur to our comfortable hotel for the evening.

DAY 5

          Rest Day Brags

Day 5: Today you're free to rest and relax in the lively mountain town of Courmayeur, Italy. Enjoy an aperol spritz, gelato, go for a swim, take a hike, get a massage, spend the day running, or all of the above! the famous Italian mountain town of Courmayeur!

DAY 6

Spectacular Singletrack

Day 6: After a delicious breakfast, we'll head out for our longest day on the trails, but the views of today are a highlight of the TMB. We'll leave Courmayeur behind before making our entrance into Switzerland, first by passing through the famous Val Ferret before crossing the Italian-Swiss border up the climb of the Grand Col Ferret. We'll cover 18 miles before we arrive to our next stop on the tour, the sleepy Swiss town of La Fouly (shorter options available--please contact the organizer for details).

DAY 7

To the Lake!

Day 7: Today is our shortest day on the trail, and our destination is a relaxing lakeside town! As we descend from high mountains into forested valleys, we'll start to enter the flower-laden chalets and barns of Les Arches before descending into Champex, Switzerland.

DAY 8

Into the Mountains Again

Day 8: After breakfast, we'll hit the trails towards the Col de la Forclaz by way of the Val d'Arpette, a remote valley with alpine meadows and wildflowers. The writer Frison-Roche wrote of the valley, "This is scenery straight from a geograhy atlas, showing in one picture the habitat, the fauna, the flora and the mountain-formation...The Val d'Arpettaz is so satisfying; there you can still breathe the gentle air of solitude." After a long day's journey we'll pass the town of Tré-le-Champ before reaching our hotel serving traditional Savoyard cuisine and sitting at 4,600 feet at the gateway to the upper Chamonix Valley.

DAY 9

Completing the TMB

Day 9: For our final full day on the trails, we'll enjoy an early breakfast and coffee at our refuge before setting off for the final 10-12 miles of the route. On this day we'll use the impressive path of the Grand Balcon Sud, which provides one of the most spectacular views of the Mont Blanc range along the way. We'll continue with some of the most impressive views of the tour finishing our epic circumnavigation of the TMB with a steep and winding descent to our original starting point. We'll reach Chamonix by evening where we say our goodbyes over a celebratory lunch with new friends and tons of memories.

 
Enjoy a cappucino break with a view on your trail run

Enjoy a cappucino break with a view on your trail run

 

What’s included

Roundtrip transportation from our first day to the end of the trip

All accommodations and bookings 

Trip logistics of route planning, lodging, and transportation reservations

A 8:1 ratio of guide to participants

Baggage transport from hut-to-hut throughout the route

Knowledgable guide and running coach along the entire route

Breakfasts included!

 

Not included

International airfare

Alcoholic beverages and dinners 

Travel Insurance