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We all know the Tour du Mont Blanc is a popular route on many hikers' lists. It is a beautiful hut-to-hut classic trekking route that crosses 3 countries' borders (France, Switzerland and Italy) with fantastic alpine viewpoints.


Originally used as a trading route for shepherds between the three countries, this route has been pulling in people across the globe for hundreds of years, and for good reason! All of this excitement and history is certainly earned, however, with all the fame comes a lot of traffic! So, we thought we would offer a few alternative and equally beautiful itineraries for you to consider for your next trekking trip.


View of the Mont Blanc Massif along the Tour du Mont Blanc trekking route with UCPA and Action Outdoors


1. La Haute Route - Chamonix to Zermatt

Hike from Chamonix to Zermatt taking in the valleys and cols, experiencing the spectacular alpine views.


View of the Matterhorn on the Haute Route Trek from Chamonix with UCPA


First up, another true classic departing from the UCPA Argentiere centre, located in the Chamonix valley. A route that links two legendary capitals in the world of mountaineering and the Alps. Throughout this route, in the Valais and Mont Blanc region, you will be privileged to enjoy breathtaking views of glaciers and snow-capped peaks, some of which rise to more than 4000 metres above sea level.


Duration: 7 days
Hours of Walking: Approximately 7 - 9 hours per day
Height Gain: Minimum of 800m+ per day


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2. Gorges du Verdon Tour

Discover the Grand Canyon of the Gorge du Verdon by hiking some of its most spectacular trails.


Panoramic view of the Verdon lakes and rivers from above, along the trekking route


The Verdon Regional Natural Park extends over nearly 180,000 hectares along its striking river. It is a wild expanse where blue rivers and lakes meet towering cliffs, and protected flora and fauna are thriving, including an impressive variety of birds of prey. This walking tour, following the Blanc-Martel Trail, will take you into the depths of the Grand Canyon du Verdon, discovering hidden beauties away from the tourist tracks.


Holiday Duration: 7 days

Hours of Walking: Approximately 5 - 7 hours per day

Height Gain: 800m - 1200m+ per day


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3. Val Clarée Refuges

Explore this majestic valley, close to Serre Chevalier, with expert UCPA guides.


Action Outdoors ski season winter 23/24 team pose on the slopes for a photo


Nestled in the Hautes-Alpes, close to Montgenèvre and Briançon, and right on the French-Italian border, the Vallée de Clarée is one of the most beautiful valleys in the South of France. This valley is a classified natural heritage site, offering a unique and magical escape in the heart of the mountains. Come and enjoy the many trails, between lakes and peaks. This stay is perfect for those looking for a taste of hut-to-hut hiking, or if you’re short on annual leave days to hit a full long-distance itinerary but still need a dose of the mountains!


Holiday Duration: 7 days
Hours of Walking: 2 days short day hikes and 3 days hut-to-hut hikes consecutively, staying in mountain refuges
Height Gain: 400m - 1,000m+ per day


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Interested in learning more? We have a range of guided hiking and trekking holidays available across France this summer to satisfy that itchy feet feeling. Whether you’ve completed the TMB before and are looking for your next itinerary, or if you’re on the lookout for a guided group holiday of like-minded people, take a look at our UCPA courses today!


Ready to hit the trails? Take a look at our trekking holidays here!