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One of the Most Popular Backpacking Europe Treks is the Tour du Mont Blanc (TMB)!


This Backpacking Europe hike rounds the Mont Blanc Massif covering a distance of approximitly 170 km with 10 km of up and down and passes through Switzerland, Italy and France.


Mont Blanc Massif
Mont Blanc Massif, backpacking europe

It is a classic long distance hiking trail. The European backpacking route is usually hiked in seven to ten days. It is also the route of an annual marathon. Start points are Les Houches in the Chamonix valley or Les Contamines in the Montjoie valley in France, Courmayeur from the Italian side, and either Champex or a point near Martigny in Switzerland.

Mont Blanc Massif View From Les Houches
Mont Blanc Massif View From Les Houches, backpacking europe

The trail passes through 7 valleys around Mont-Blanc, an anticlockwise start in Chamonix would lead through the Chamonix or Arve valley, Montjoie, Vallee des Glaciers, Italian Val Veni, and Val Ferret, Swiss Val Ferret, and either the Arpette or Trient valley in Switzerland.

Chamonix Valley
Chamonix Valley, backpacking europe

The Backpacking Europe trail has changed over the years and many alternatives exist. Some of these require greater fitness, awareness and skill. Other trails are less demanding, which are quicker than the usual Backpacking Europe trail but have poorer views of the mountains.

Between the top of Brevent and the Col de la Croix du Bonhomme, the trail meets with the backpacking in Europe long distance trail GR5 as it makes its way to the Mediterranean Sea. A connection can also be made with the walkers' Haute Route from Chamonix to Zermatt in the Swiss Alps.

Accommodations exist along the entire backpacking Europe route. The accommodations are from separate rooms to large mixed sex dormitories. One can obtain cooked meals at many of these locations. Beginning at Les Houches one might expect overnight stops at Les Contamines, Col de la Croix du Bonhomme refuge or Les Chapieux, Elisabetta Soldini refuge, Courmayeur, Elena refuge, Champex, Trient village, Argentiere, La Flegere refuge and return to Les Houches.

Hike From Les Chapieux to Col de la Croix du Bonhomme
Hike From Les Chapieux to Col de la Croix du Bonhomme, backpacking europe

The abundance of accommodation backpacking Europe makes for very flexible trip planning. The popularity of the trail can lead to problems finding accommodations towards the end of the day. It's possible and suggested to book accommodation in advance.

The highest points of the backpacking Europe route are the Col des Fours in France and the Fenetre d'Arpette in Switzerland, each at 2,665m (8,743 ft). This is not high enough to cause altitude sickness but the route represents a tough physical challenge.

Col des Fours
Col des Fours, backpacking europe

It is important to have experience hiking in mountains. The weather can change very rapidly and you should always be equipped for the worst.

The route passes through or near the towns of Martigny, Courmayeur and Chamonix. Bring your camera and gear backpacking Europe and have fun! When backpacking across Europe, you never know what you'll see or experience!

Martigny, Switzerland
Martigny, Switzerland, backpacking europe


More Great Backpacking Europe Articles

Rick Steves employs 80 people at his Europe Through the Back Door headquarters where he produces over 50 guidebooks on European travel, the most popular travel series in America on public television.

With more than four hundred km of marked hiking and walking trails, Zermatt Switzerland, Tasch and Randa offer a wide range of options to hiking fans.

With its 72 thundering waterfalls, secluded valleys, colorful alpine meadows and lonely mountain inns, the Lauterbrunnen Valley is one of the biggest nature conservation areas in Switzerland.

You can see weird and wild limestone spires right from Cortina Italy. Convenient, efficient public transportation makes for easy access to trails for hikers of all levels of ability.

Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the British Isles, reaching a height of 4,406 ft. If you're looking for the best Backpacking UK, you found it here. Unless you are in great physical condition, your limbs will hurt after this hike.

Immerse yourself in Backpacking Tours Around Europe. A cultural adventure from Berlin to Paris. This journey lets you indulge all your senses at your own pace.

Best cheap backpacking in Europe: London, Paris, Rome, and Amsterdam are definite stops on the travel trail in Europe, and you need to know what's free in those sometimes expensive spots.

We will cover the price of backpacking in Europe, before you go and while you are traveling, the Euro, ATM's in Europe, how to carry your money and travelers checks.

The importance of packing light cannot be overemphasized. You'll never meet a traveler who, after five Backpack Europe trips, brags: "Every year I pack heavier."

Chamonix to Zermatt, Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn. In this Europe Travel Backpack, the Haute Route, you will see the best collection of four thousand metre peaks in the Alps!

Backpacking Italy at the Cinque Terre. Exploring some of the higher paths to Volastra (above Manarola), Monte Negro (above Riomaggiore) or paths that begin outside of the park such as the trail between Levanto and Monterosso.

There are two kinds of backpacking food ideas. You could get freeze-dried backpacking meals, but at tremendous prices. Or, you can get inexpensive food (also with a wide variety of tasty choices) at your local grocery store.

If you are looking for the Best Youth Hostel in Europe, I'll tell you about one of the finest I have found. The best quality at the lowest price!


Backpacking Europe




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