Chamonix Tourist Info

1.Hotels
2.Catered Chalets (mainly winter)
3.Chalet & Apartment rental
4.Gites & Backpackers
5.Airport transfers
6.Recommended Bars and Restaurants in Chamonix
7.Useful links
8.Activities
9.Non-Sporting Activities in Chamonix
10.Doctors & Medical,Ski Patrol,Mountain Rescue.

Accommodation
There is a vast array of accommodation available in Chamonix. Please feel free to contact us if you would like any suggestions .
Recommended accommodation not in any order of preference.
Please forward your recommendations for inclusion.
1.Hotels (see the tourist office site for a complete list)
3*
Hotel Chris-Tal, les Houches
www.lasavoyarde.com
Hotel Vallee-Blanche, Chamonix
www.hotel-labrador.com
www.hotelarve-chamonix.com
Hotel Faucigny, Chamonix
www.hotel-lanchers-chamonix.com
www.aubergedumanoir.com
2*
Hotel-le-Chamonix
.
2.Catered Chalets
Luxury Chamonix chalet with ski in, ski out: Maison-jaune.com
www.allmountainchamonix.com
www.chaletbibendum.com
www.chalet-chamonix.com
www.chaletlaforet.com (available as self catering)
www.valleyfever.co.uk (Winter only)

www.chaletski.co.uk (Winter only)

www.breatheandbelieve.co.uk
www.arcticbeaver.com (Winter only)

www.mountain-base.com
www.iceandorange.com
www.skiweekend.com (Winter only)
.

3.Chalet & Apartment rental
www.mountain-base.com
www.chamonixskichalets.com
Bellevue Alpine Lodge Rentals Vallorcine
www.chaletlaforet.com
www.chamonixaccomodation.com
www.chaletski.co.uk
www.alps-rentals.com
www.naturalchamonix.com
www.chezvouschamonix.com

Apartment Rentals
www.mountain-base.com
www.chamonixcentre.com
www.frenchmountainchalet.co.uk
.

4.Backpackers style accommodation / Gites.
Bellevue Alpine Lodge Vallorcine/
www.gitevagabond.com
www.chamionard.com
.

5.Airport transfers.
There are numerous ways of travelling from Geneva airport to Chamonix.

Shared minibus; the big advantage is that you will be delivered to your accommodation. The downside is that you may have to wait for other flights to arrive & that you may not be the first to be dropped off. It is usually less expensive to book in advance.

www.Alplinks.com Airport transfers: friendly, professional & reliable service.

www.easybus.com Shared minibus that operates to a fixed timetable (i.e. if you flight is late , they do not wait for you). Inexpensive but occasionally alarmingly unreliable , be sure to leave some lee way if you travel with this company. They only drop off at the main bus station in Chamonix Sud. You can then take the free local bus service to your final destination (or winter season only: the Brevent bus that runs ax every 15 – 30 mins depending upon the time of day).

www.http://uk.ouibus.com/line/geneve-aeroport-chamonix
A new & reliable service that runs frequently & is very affordable (from 20€ / journey).
Ouibus usually use modern comfortable coaches rather than the rather spartan larger sized minibusses (used by Chamexpress, Easybus, Alplinks) , they only go to Chamonix Sud bus station (after making a brief stop before coming into the Chamonix valley). The service is a little slower than the minibus companies but probably more comfortable.

www.http://www.chamonix-valley-transfers.co.uk/
A small minibus operator with comfortable air conditioned vehicles.

Taxi Carrier (Friendly taxi – private service): www.taxileshouches.fr taxicarrier@hotmail.fr
Tel : +33(0) 6 22 75 19 37 (Anne carrier)
.

6.Recommended Bars and Restaurants in Chamonix
Chamonix offers an abundance of great & highly varied restaurants. My nugget of advice would be to avoid the very convenient “tourist traps” in the heart of the town centre.

Please feel free to offer recommendations so that this list may be updated !
La Moraine : Tel: 04 50 21 18 13. 5 av Ravanel le Rouge. Great international food with bargain price fixed menus for lunch & evenings.

Le Panier des 4 Saisons. Tel: 04 50 53 98 77. Rue Paccard, Gal Blanc Neige
Excellent French food. Much liked by locals. Slightly down beat setting but better once you are inside.

Albert 1er Tel: 04 50 53 05 09 Rte du Bouchet, http://www.hameaualbert.fr/
Probably the best restaurant in Chamonix. Michelin guide rated, a little expensive. Dress smartly. Ties optional.

La Maison Carrier Tel: 04 50 53 00 03 Rte du Bouchet .http://www.hameaualbert.fr/ Excellent food, with nice setting in traditional building. When reserving request the small dining room. Same owners as Albert 1er.

Spiga d’Oro Tel: 04 50 53 06 49 Av Ravanel le Rouge.
Good Italian restaurant set above shop selling Italian specialities. (No Pizza !).

Munchies Tel: 0450534541 rte des Moulins
Excellent international cuisine. Rather plainly decorated.

Le Chaudron Tel: 0450534034. Rte des Moulins
Highly recommended for traditional Savoyard meals (fondue / raclette etc)

Le Bistrot (next to Hotel Morgane ) Ave Aiguille du Midi Tel: 04 50 53 57 64
http://www.lebistrotchamonix.com/Excellent French cuisine & superb wine selection. Recent Michelin star rating.

Le Caveau Tel 04 50 55 86 18. Next to post office, Rue Paccard.
Swedish owned restaurant with varied & good international cuisine. Underneath the Chinese restaurant close to the post office.

Restaurant le Pitz Tel: 04 50 53 05 08 rue Whymper
Basic French restaurant at affordable prices. Usually has space without needing to reserve.

Elevation 1904 Tel:04 50 53 00 52 Near the railway station. Ave. Michel Croz.
Simple Brasserie. Sunny terrasse, sandwiches, steaks. Pavement café.

Satsuki. Japanese cuisine. Rue J Vallot. Tel 04 50 53 21 99 Good value fixed lunch menu.

Neapolis. Pizzeria Galerie Alpina (close Hotel Alpina).

L’impossible. Rte des Pelerins. Tel: 04 50 53 20 36 http://www.restaurant-impossible.com/ Classic French cuisine in a traditional chalet style setting.

Chambre 9 . Ave Michel Croz, (opp railway station). http://www.langley.eu/en/hotels/gustavia/restaurant/ Swedish owned , excellent brasserie meals with reasonably priced lunchtime menus. Lively apres ski bar.

L’Atmosphere. Place Balmat. Tel:0450559797, www.restaurantatmosphere.com Classic French cuisine at affordable prices. Ask for a table overlooking the river.

Take Away
Bakery nr Aiguille du Midi. Ave Aiguille du Midi, Good sandwiches, salads & Panini, terrace. Good value.

Poco Loco: rue Paccard . Sandwich bar with indoor seating. Pleasant atmoshpere.

Midnight Express. by the post office. Rue Paccard. Toasted sandwiches.

Belouga . Ravanel Rouge toasted sandwiches .

McDonalds , Ave Michel Croz.
________________________________________

Out of Town
Auberge du Bois Prin (below le Brevent). Tel: 04 50 53 33 51
Classical quality French cuisine. Michelin rated.

La Cabane (Les Praz) rte du Golf. Tel:04 50 53 23 27
Fine French cuisine in typical surrounds.

Pizza van in Chamonix : Fanfoue Pizzas.
Excellent & inexpensive. Ring up to order in advance (no deliveries).
close to Chamonix Bus depot on the promenade Marie Paradis. Moves around in the summer Tel: 0609496977

Recommended Bars (In no particular order)
Micro Brasserie Chamonix (MBC) Rte du Bouchet
Popular bar with home brewed ales, good food & frequent live music..

Le Jekyll
Popular, friendly Irish bar. Good selection of beers.

La Terrasse Pl Balmat , opp post office
Popular after ski bar . Good terrace.

Le Pub Rue Dr Paccard
Anglophones local. Friendly & relaxed atmosphere.

Chambre Neuf Opp Railway station. Ave Michel Croz.
Popular Swedish after ski bar with happy hour. Frequent live music.

Bar des Sports Rue Joseph Vallot
Locals-filled bistro/bar.

Casino.
Smart dress (but not ties), free for slots, admission fee for gaming tables. Passport or ID required for entry

Internet access
Mc Donalds (free WIFI access – need own computer)
Tourist Office (free WiFi access)
.

7.Links

www.lesgratteciel.net/ Chamonix paragliding club
www.ffvl.fr French flying federation
www.bhpa.co.uk British flying association
www.compagniedumontblanc.com Chamonix ski lifts

http://www.chamonix.net/files/Parapente/VolLibrepmb2008_en.pdf  Mt Blanc region sites guide

Weather forecasts & Actual weather
www.chamonix.com
http://www.meteosuisse.admin.ch/web/fr/meteo/previsions_en_detail.html
http://france.meteofrance.com/france/montagne?42425.path=montagneprevisionmassif%252FALPES-NORD
http://www.balisemeteo.com/depart.php?dept=74
http://www.ski-leshouches.com/infos_ski_du_jour.html
http://www.xcweather.co.uk/?Loc=FR

Webcams
http://www.compagniedumontblanc.com/webcams.php
http://www.leshouches-prarion.fr/
http://www.evasionmontblanc.com/webcams.php
http://www.regione.vda.it/turismo/meteo_webcam/webcam_f.asp
http://www.verbierbooking.com/panorama.php?id_webcam=2

Other Links
www.chamonix.net
www.chamonixinfo.com
Useful general information & advice for visiting Chamonix
.

8.Activities

Mountain biking
There is a great variety of cycling in the Chamonix valley, from lift served downhill trails (for experienced riders) to cruisy trails.
For easier riding, it is possible to take the bike bus to Le Tour or the train to Montroc accessing mellow downhill rides back to Chamonix.

Bike rentals (mountain & road bike) & advice on where to ride: www.legend-chamonix.com

Useful info on biking & bike trips www.bikelodging.com

Other Sporting Activities in Chamonix
Mountain Guides
Most people take a mountain guide for the Vallée Blanche but this is just a small part of what a guide can offer. Guides can offer the benefit of their experience to tackle the many glacial descents as well as steeper terrain. Guides will often be able to provide avalanche beacons and climbing harnesses where necessary.

Ice climbing
An exciting sport that may be worth considering. Guides work on a daily basis and its important to book ahead so as to secure the best guides.
Typical rates are from : 350 Euro / day. (up to 4 pers)
Alternatively, as part of a group lesson, half day: ax 75 Euro incl equipment.

Carte d’Hote / Guest Card reductions
Please note that the cost of access or participation to many activities may be reduced if you show your guest card. This should be given to you by your hotelier once you have paid the tourist tax. Train travel between Servoz & Vallorcine is free with the card.
The costs shown below are for adults, children usually have a reduction.

Mt Blanc Escalade (Les Houches) Tel: 04 50 54 76 48
Excellent wall . For beginners to experts. Possibility to rent equipment. Bar, Can become very busy in bad weather. Cost 11.60 Euro. Open all days 14h – 22h . 10h – 22h during school holidays.

Sports Centre
Richard Bozon – Chamonix. Tel: 04 50 53 09 07
Numerous indoor swimming pools, Jacuzzi, sauna, haman, weights room, indoor bouldering climbing wall. Nb: Men must use “Speedo” type swimming trunks (rental possible).
Open all days 14h – 20h (- 21h on Fridays)

Ice Skating
Chamonix Tel 04 50 53 12 36
Indoor & Outdoor (conditions permitting) , bar / restaurant.
10h – 12h, 15h – 20h (Closed Wednesday) morning.
Night session on Wednesday 21h – 23h.

Snow Shoeing Compagnie des Guides: 04 50 53 00 88
(or contact us for recommended individual accompagnateurs)
There are numerous possibilities depending upon your desire – or fitness. Usually half day or day sessions under the supervision of an “accompagnateur de moyenne montagne” or ski instructor or mountain guide. Possibility to join formed up groups (32 Euro /half day/pers;47 Euro/full day/pers)

Dog Sledding
Huskydalen.Christophe and Elisabeth Guillaud.Tel/fax: +33 4 50 47 77 24;mobile:+33 6 84 99 34 67
www.huskydalen.com
mail: Eguillaud@aol.com
Become a musher ! Advance reservations obligatory.

Aerial Ropes Courses
There are several ropes courses in the Chamonix Valley but winter opening times are variable – call first to make sure that they are open !
Parc Adventure – Coupeau / Les Houches: Tel 06 62 67 28 51. Min height requirement of 1.4m .

Parc d’Aventure, Les Planards- Parc Adventure les Gaillands (Compagnie des Guides) Tel : +33 (0)4 50 53 00 88

Walking trails
There are numerous prepared trails on packed down snow (not to be confused with the cross country ski tracks !) Route details from the tourist offices. It is possible to walk up the valley & to return by bus or by train. Walking boots may be hired from the bigger ski hire shops.

Vallée Blanche (winter)
This Aiguille du Midi lift accesses the amazing Vallée Blanche area which starts off with a walking descent of a knife edge ridge and follows up with some of the most amazing glacial scenery a skier can ski through. There are a variety of different descents that can be made but even the easiest requires a good skiing ability and a reasonable degree of fitness(reasonable parallel turns and the ability to stop instantly !), the most technical reserved for expert skiers only.
A mountain guide will whisk groups of up to eight down the Vallée Blanche with what seems like no worry of danger – do not be fooled, the guide will know the route intimately but will nevertheless be surveying the terrain with great attention. Apart from ensuring safety , a good guide will be a friendly and informative host; bringing the Vallée Blanche to life with his detailed knowledge of the run and its surrounding mountains. A descent usually takes most of the day and lunch can be taken at a mountain refuge or if the weather is good there are plenty of good picnic spots. Expert skiers can descend one of the more testing routes and combine this with another descent. If the weather is poor the guide will make the decision to cancel the trip as at best it spoils the fantastic scenery and at worst it can be dangerous in poor weather conditions.
Typical rates are from : 278 Euro / day. (up to 4 pers). Many guides will form up groups from individual skiers, cost ax 73 € / pers.
.

9.Non-Sporting Activities in Chamonix
This list is not exhaustive.
Please feel free to mail me with any recommendations so that they may be included.

Aiguille du Midi
Dramatic cable car with superb views. Between mid Jan – mid April avoid the early morning rush of skiers and to visit in the afternoon. In the summer it is possible to take the gondola across to the Italian side of the Vallee Blanche; stunning views & excellent cappuccino ! Allow ax 1.5 – 2 h for the round trip. Dress warmly. Heated snack bat at the summit. Best to reserve for visits in the summer months and even better to go up with the first lifts of the morning. It can be very slow to come back down from lunchtime onwards.

Montenvers cog railway
Superb views of the Mer de Glace. You can take the gondola & a lots of steps to visit the ice cave.

Alpine Museum
89 av Michel Croz, Pedestrian zone of Chamonix
A history of Chamonix & its development.
15h – 19h

Espace Tairraz exhibition rooms
Parvis St. Michel – (above the Church)
Different mountainous themes each season.

Guided heritage tours of Chamonix
Details from the Chamonix Tourist Office Tel: 04 50 53 00 24

Walking trails
There are hudreds of kilometres of prepared trails. Maps available from the tourist office. Walking boots may be hired from the bigger ski hire shops.

Cinema Tel: 04 50 55 89 98
Chamonix has a three screen cinema. There is usually a film shown in English (with French subtitles) . Early screenings on bad weather days in the winter.

Office de Haute Montagne
Above the Maison des Guides, opposite the Church.
A sort of library where Alpinists can inform themselves about conditions in the mountains & mountain safety. Free & welcome access to the public.
9h -12h, 15h – 18h

Espace Meteo
Across from the Office de Haute Montagne
An hands on exhibition of weather forecasting techniques.
9h -12h, 15h – 18h Free & welcome access to the public.

Ten pin bowling & pool hall
Chamonix Sud Tel: 04 50 53 74 37
Open 17h – 02h (14h opening in case of poor weather)
Modern well equipped bowling. Numerous pool & full sized snooker tables. Bar.

Fondation Pierre Gianada
Martigny, Switzerland. Accesible by scenic train from Chamonix. (bus service between the railway & the museum).
Art, Roman history & motor museum.
Ax 1 hour journey time by car.

Annecy
The Venice of the Alps. Small town set on the shores of beautiful Lake Annecy.
Weekly excursions organised by Chamonix Bus
Ax 1 hour journey time by car.

Aosta
Roman town, complete with numerous artifacts.
Weekly excursions organised by Chamonix Bus
Ax 1 hour journey time by car.

Geneva
More than just an airport !
Beautiful old town & contrasting modern town.
Ax 1 hour journey time by car.

Megeve
Yes this is another ski resort but the main pedestrianised street is very beautiful & well worth half a visit. Check out the farm surronding the three star Michelin restaurant Marc Veyrat. www.marcveyrat.fr Tel: 04 50 21 01 01. The historic walk by La Calvaire past its numerous small chapels. The Superb Health Spa at Hotel Fermes de Marie Tel: 04 50 93 03 10
Ax 45 mins drive from Chamonix

Panoramic Helicopter flights
CMBH Tel: 04 50 54 13 89
A variety of flights are available including one to the summit of Mt Blanc.

SPA
Hameau Pierre Blanche (Les Houches)
Hotel Les Aiglons
Albert 1er
Club Med
Pre St Didier (Italy)
.

10.Doctors & Medical,Ski Patrol,Mountain Rescue.

Medical Centres
There are numerous practices, the following are my recommendations – see the phone book or tourist offices for others. If you cannot obtain an appointment at a Doctors surgery you can go directly to the hospital where you will be seen as quickly as possible – the wait is rarely less than 30mins.
Argentière

Dr Patrick Bettin, rte du Plagnolet, 74400 Argentiere. Uphill of the school. Tel:0450540067 Consultations by arrangement in the mornings , without appointment the afternoon (from 13h30). Equipped with X ray equipment. English speaking , excellent doctor. Ax 23 Euros / consultation.
Chamonix

Dr Roncin, 10 ave du Mt Blanc. Chamonix. Tel 04 50 55 85 74
English speaking & often available with only short notice.

Chamonix Hospital Tel 04 50 53 84 00
A & E only during the ski or summer season, serious cases are usually taken directly to Sallanches (20 mins drive).
The hospital also has a number of doctors based there who offer private consultations.
Groupe Medical du Lyret, 275 rue Allobroges, Chamonix Tel 04 50 55 80 55 8h -11h / 14h30 – 18h. Appointments only, but call in case of emergency. Dr Richard & Dr Cadot. X ray equipped. English speaking.

Sallanches Hospital Tel 04 50 47 30 30

Dentist
Familly Costa, 260 rue Vallot, Chamonix. Tel: 04 50 53 64 52
Roux – Levrat, 10 av du Mt Blanc, Tel: 0450558787

Physiotherapists
Chamonix boasts many physios but most have a long waiting list.

The Clinic du Sport http://www.thechamonixclinic.com/ Tel: 0450180508 Close to Montenvers train station. Neil: Superb top level British qualified physio. Highly reccomended.

Mountain Rescue: PGHM (Gendarmerie): 04 50 53 16 89.
Generally used for rescues outside of the patrolled ski areas – they may be called in by the ski patrol if a victim requires paramedic attention (and medication) prior to transportation & helicopter evacuation.
Following an accident on the slopes the victim will usually be collected by the ski patrol who will take your insurance details and either deal directly with the insurance or bill you afterwards.
For an accident not requiring immediate medical attention but occuring in an awkawrd point of the mountain the ski patrol may offer the alternative of a private helicopter evacuation. Most insurance policies cover this but it is worth being aware of the conditions of your cover.
An ambulance will take the victim form the ski area to a Doctors surgery or the hospital (having forewarned the Doctor / Hospital). They usually expect payment immediately & are often equipped for credit card payment in the ambulance but if you are without money or card they will not abandon you by the roadside !
The Doctors or Hospital will often expect you to pay for more minor injuries but will deal directly with the victims insurers for anything more serious.
Ski Patrol Tel:0450540473 Each ski area (except Les Houches) in Chamonix valley has its own ski patrol organization, but are coordinated by a central telephone exchange, these are the people who you should contact first for help whilst skiing in one of the patrolled ski areas. You can telephone the exchange or contact any of the lift operators to call for assitance.
Les Houches ski patrol Tel: 04 50 54 40 32.