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Walking in the French Alps

from $1,549.00

Walking in one of the most beautiful areas in the Southern Alps

  • Reviews 1 Review
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Guided
  • Activity Level Moderate
    5/8
  • Group Size Small Group
    7 - 26
All about the Walking in the French Alps.

Dramatic landscapes, towering pine forests and rugged mountain peaks make the Queyras Regional Park one of the most beautiful areas in the Southern Alps. We base ourselves in the small village of Saint Véran, one of the highest inhabited villages in Europe, dotted with wooden and stone chalets, water fountains and chapels, all framed with beautiful bright flowers tended to by the proud villagers. From here we enjoy five walks throughout the week, offered in two different grades, moderate and challenging, with one leader escorting each grade. Perfect if you are looking for a bit of a challenge, simply wish to admire the surroundings at a steady pace or if you wish to holiday with someone but you want different challenges from your walks.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.

* All breakfasts, 4 dinners
* 7 nights 2-star family-run Hotel le Grand Tetras, all rooms en suite
* Arrival & departure transfers (if meeting group timings)
* Tour leader throughout.  Level 3 and 5 walks offered each day, 1 leader per grade
*

What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Moderate and challenging walks each day
  • Centre based in the beautiful village of Saint Veran
  • Varied trails in Queyras Regional Park
  1. Day 1 Start Sain Véran.

    Our week begins in the quaint alpine village of Sain Véran. In the evening the leaders will hold a welcome meeting to discuss the week ahead and give advice on the local area.

  2. Day 2 Level 3 - A wonderful loop walk on the south face of Saint Véran.

    Today we enjoy a loop walk on the south faces of Saint Veran. We discover the valley of the Aigues Blanche river stream. We start walking from the hotel and follow on and off tracks along an old irrigation canal designed to water the numerous fields around. This is a perfect way to see the place from different angles. This walk is close to Saint Véran and we take tracks where we see hardly anyone. We come back to Saint Véran through a different track, where we can stop for a drink on the high part of the village and strech our legs.Ascent: 480 m Descent: 480 m Distance: 9 km

  3. Day 3 Level 3 - Walk through delightful variety of landscapes of the Aigue Blanche valley and the alpine village of Molines.

    Today we take another walk with some sections of track offering delightful views of the Aigue Blanche valley, the superb village of Molines, with its typical alpine architecture. We descend to Moline ski resort first through the lovely larch trees forest and continue the walk along the river Blanche, before climbing to Sommet Buchet, a relatively low altitude mountain but with a fantastic panoramic view. After this climb, we walk down to Molines to catch the bus back to Saint Véran.Ascent: 631 m Descent: 910 m Distance: 11 km

  4. Day 4 Level 3 - After a short transfer explore the north end of Queyras. Trek on GR58 to the village of Ville Vielle.

    After a short transfer by public transport to Aiguilles we explore the north end of Queyras and some unspoiled parts of the regional park. Today is an easier day than the day before. We visit first the lovely village of Aiguilles before taking a balcony walk to the old Sheppard house of Borels. Then we follow the GR 58 track (tour of Queyras track) down to the village of Ville Vielle.Ascent: 450 m Descent: 511 m Distance: 7 km

  5. Day 5 Free day. Optional activities include rafting, mountain biking and self-guided walking.

    Today is a free day to relax or enjoy some optional activities. There are many options available, including self-guided walks, white water rafting, mountain biking or road cycling with some famous climbs of the tour de France like Col Agnel or Col Izoard.

  6. Day 6 Level 3 - Travel by bus to Chapelle Clausis; climb Caramantran peak (3025m).

    In the morning we take a shuttle bus to the Eastern side of Queyras, to Chapelle Clausis (2399 m). We explore the old copper mines of the valley before climbing to Caramantran peak (3025 m) an impressive summit on the Italian border with views of Monte Viso (3841 m) in Italy.Ascent: 720 m Descent: 720 m Distance: 9 km

  7. Day 7 Level 3 - A day trekking the ridges of Saint Véran on the south side of the Queyras, walking the Curley ridge.

    For the last day, we explore the ridges of Saint Véran, the south side of Queyras. Never exposed, they offer an amazing vista of the Ubaye valley, the last mountains before the Mercantour national park. We walk the Curley ridge (very wide and comfortable) with fabulous views of Saint Véran and walk down through the meadows.Ascent: 650 m Descent: 650 m Distance: 8 km

  8. Day 8 End Saint Véran.

    Following breakfast we say our goodbyes.

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Where you stay

Hotel le Grand Tetras 2*

TDW, France

This small, friendly 2 star hotel is our base for the week. With wonderful panoramic views of the Queyras from the restaurant and the terrace, a cosy lounge with a fireplace, a small library/book room and a sauna, it is the perfect place to relax after the walks. All the rooms are en suite and have a balcony or terrace. Wi-Fi available at reception.

Single accommodation (double for single use) available on request.

TDW, France
TDW, CAF, France

 

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 4 dinners are included.

Breakfasts are all simple continental breakfasts including ham, cheese, yoghurts, cereals, bread, pastries, fruits, juice, tea and coffee. Evening meals are home cooked and hearty and consist of 3 courses, usually starting with soup followed by a meat or vegetarian dish such as pasta or stews, and a dessert. House wine is available for around €10 for a litre, and beer can be purchased – this is often local and on tap. Lunch can be purchased at shops in Saint Véran or the hotel can prepare picnics or sandwiches.

Vegetarians can be catered for but options are limited.  Please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests.

Level 3 – Moderate
Most people who enjoy a weekend in the hills or mountains at home are capable of undertaking a trek at this level: you need to be in good health and reasonably fit, and you will almost certainly be taking regular exercise. A trek could be level 3 either as a fairly easy medium-duration walk, or as a harder, shorter walk. Some walking at higher altitude and the occasional longer or more difficult day may be involved, but generally conditions underfoot will be fair. A walking day usually is between 5 to 7 hours long and no experience is necessary.

Level 5 – Challenging
For walks at this level, fitness is most important and you may have to improve yours before departure. Most level 5 treks are equivalent to extended walking in mountainous terrain at home, but usually at significantly higher altitudes; climate and remoteness can also play a part. Walking days are usually between 6 to 8 hours although there may be some longer days for pass crossing or similar. Previous trekking experience is desirable but not essential if you are confident of your physical condition. Usually, some scrambling is involved.

The times mentioned include lunch break and photo stops.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Excellent walking holiday.

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I think this was reaching the pic de Caramantran at 3025 metres in the moderate-grade group (bear in mind that the walk started at 2340m that day). There were excellent views of mont Viso in Italy, which still had some snow on it. You could walk over the border into Italy for a few minutes. It was windy there. Everyone shook hands on reaching this point.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    I walked with both group leaders on different days. Both were very competent and spoke English very well. Both had a good knowledge of the history of the local area and knew the routes well. Yves led the challenging walks and Isabelle led the moderate walks. Both guides ate with the group in the evenings. On the free day, they gave us an informal tour of the village, explaining its history. On the challenging walk on the last day, there were some difficult stretches near the top and Yves made sure everyone was safe. The leaders provided marked-up contour maps of the walking areas, something I have not experienced before on this type of holiday. This helped clients to make up their minds which grade of walk to go on.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It's a good idea to have walking poles if you are going to do the challenging-grade walks.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There is a long bus journey of over 3 hours between Turin airport and St. Veran. The scenery is nice and there is a stop about half-way. The walking footpaths were un-crowded. We only came across a few locals and no other large groups.

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Package Confirmed Dates Trip Status Trip Status Price (PP) Excluding Flights Price (PP) Including Flights  
August 23, 2020
Available
$1,549.00
N/A
September 13, 2020
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$1,549.00
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July 4, 2021
Available
$1,749.00
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July 18, 2021
Available
$1,749.00
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August 22, 2021
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$1,749.00
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September 12, 2021
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$1,749.00
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