Discover the most beautiful itineraries in the Beaufortain
Of course at Chalet les Cerises we are naturally drawn to the nearby Mont Blanc massif. However, the region offers many different hiking playgrounds. Let’s focus today on the Beaufortain massif.
On the border between Haute-Savoie and Savoie
The Beaufortain massif offers superb mountain itineraries in highly protected landscapes. A paradise for cows in the summer and a paradise for ski touring in the winter, the Beaufortain massif is a hidden gem that you absolutely must discover.
In the Beaufortain, you will find very few hikers, beautiful landscapes without human infrastructure (and even less ski resorts), breathtaking panoramas and an ancestral pastoral activity which brings us the mythical Beaufort every year.
The Beaufortain lends itself equally well to family day hikes and multi-day treks.
For families, it is possible to go up quite high by car on dirt roads (to the Cormet d’Arêches for example at 2100 m altitude). This is ideal for children and older people who like to walk but cannot cope with the steep gradients.
The more experienced will choose to do the tour of the Beaufortain and sleep in the various refuges. The Tour du Beaufortain is a 5 or 7 day loop depending on the walker. It is a hike of more than 110 km and 7000 m of ascent.
Our favourite sites in summer are:
Crêtes de Combe Bénite: several kilometres of walking on a small single track with the void to the right and left, all above the clouds, with panoramas of dozens of glaciers.
Lac d’amour: a very nice place to bivouac or have a family picnic. The most courageous can swim in this beautiful mountain lake.
Étang de la Pêchette: a beautiful lake with a magnificent view of Mont Blanc.
Combe de la Nueva: beautiful views of the whole Beaufortain.
In winter, the Beaufortain offers excellent ski touring routes
Far from the alpine ski slopes in an “alone in the world” atmosphere, the snow cover is often excellent as most of the itineraries are located between 1600 and 2200 m in altitude. You will have the possibility to sleep in the numerous unguarded mountain refuges such as the Refuge de l’Écondu or the Refuge de la Coire. The use of a mountain guide is strongly recommended for safety reasons.
A visit to the Beaufortain cannot end without a stop at one of the local Beaufort cheese farms. Ask to taste the different Beauforts: there is a summer cheese and a winter cheese. Personally, I prefer the summer Beaufort made from cow's milk from the summer pastures. The taste is more floral and deeper.
Where to stay when hiking in the Beaufortain?
At the Chalet des Cerises of course! We are 45 minutes from the Col des Saisies, the gateway to the Beaufortain.
If you prefer to stay in Savoie rather than Haute-Savoie, opt for the resort of La Plagne whose sunny side gives direct access to the Beaufortain massif. You could stay at really nice self catered chalets in La Plagne.