Sallanches (550m) is an attractive and bustling town, in the Arve Valley between Chamonix and Geneva and in a superb location between the Massifs des Aravis, Mont Blanc, Fizz and Chablais. It is thus a great base from which to enjoy the surrounding countryside, hills and mountains whether your chosen activity is ski touring, mountain walking, rock climbing, mountain or road biking…
Sallanches is located in the Haute Savoie department of South East France, near both the Italian and Swiss alpine borders. It is a town with around 16-17000 residents and has many good shops and facilities as well as interesting nearby tourist attractions.
Getting To Sallanches
Sallanches is about a 1hr drive from Geneva Airport. There are many car hire options at the airport. Make sure your hire car has winter tyres if you are coming in winter!
There is a regular public bus from Geneva Airport which stops at Sallanches train station, very close to the centre ville.
For other public transfer bus options check out the companies below who will usually offer a stop at Carrefour on the outskirts of town, but with a much longer walk in to the centre, 20-30mins.
For private transfers contact Mike at Alplinks.
Milan Malpensa airport is around 3 hours drive. More if there is a lot of traffic waiting to use the Mont Blanc Tunnel. Thus Geneva airport is much closer, easier and cheaper but the access from Milan is via the beautiful Italian alpine Val d’Aosta, so this is a good route if you want to spend some time in the Italian Alps.
Sallanches is on the main train line between Le Fayet and Cluses – Bonneville – Annemasse down the Arve Valley. Rail travel from Geneva airport is possible but slower and more expensive than using a private transfer company, see above, so these are much more popular.
Paris – Sallanches takes around 6-8 hours and it is possible to take an overnight sleeper train to Le Fayet / St. Gervais which then just provides a final short hop to Sallanches. Check with the French rail company SNCF.
Road Access to Sallanches from France and the North is via the ‘Autoroute Blanche’ E25-A40 which links to the main European motorway network. Access from the West & South is via Albertville and Megeve (Check the Gorges d’Arly is open) or via Switzerland by Martigny, Col de la Forclaz and Col des Montets (occasionally closed in winter) & Chamonix. Rapid access from Italy is via the Mont Blanc Tunnel at the head of the Valle d’Aosta (allow c.€55 for a return journey).
Please note that our courses usually meet in Sallanches town centre if it’s an evening informal meeting or one of the cafe / bakery locations on the outskirts of town on the morning of a mountain day. Thus easily accessed on foot from any of the town centre hotels but also with nearby parking for those arriving by car. Flexibility to arrange your own accommodation during your stay in Sallanches and its evnvirons is a feature of our group courses. We prefer to let you choose your own budget & style of hotel, self catering accommodation or camping. All of these are available in Sallanches and its surrounding area.
For private guiding courses we offer door to door collection / drop off from anywhere in Sallanches and for group courses there is usually a pre-determined morning meeting point on the outskirts of the centre of town.
Weather and conditions sometimes mean that a flexible approach is required regarding which nights are spent in mountain huts, and thus what nights are spent in the valley. Some guests have found this flexibility is more easily managed when dealing direct with the Hotel / accommodation rather than having booked through booking.com for example.
Sallanches Hotels – In And Around The Town
Auberge de l’Orangerie – Pleasant 3* Hotel between Sallanches and Passy with on site parking.
Hotel Mont Blanc – Town centre 2* Hotel
La Maison Bleue Sallanches – Chambre d’hôte in great location on the edge of the town centre and yet right next to the paths leading to the hills and the Centre de la Nature Montagnarde. On site parking and bed & breakfast for up to 4 guests.
Evasion / Aravis Hotels
Hotel Armancette – Impressive smart & modern 5* Hotel in the lovely little village of St Nicholas de Veroce above St. Gervais and with great views across to the North Face of Les Domes de Miage and the Armancette Glacier.
There are many hotels & self catering options in the nearby resorts of St. Gervais, Megeve, Combloux which you can check out via the local tourist offices or booking.com or AirBnB.
Sallanches & Arve Valley Camping
Camping Tohapi Lac Passy – Great campsite location next to the lovely Lac de Passy and it’s great short walks, views, kids playgrounds and various activities in summer.
There are also various other campsites nearer to Sallanches although watch out for the noise from the nearby motorway if you are a light sleeper!
Sallanches & Aravis Weather & Avalanche Forecasts
Avalanche Forecast For Surrounding Areas (Swiss Valais and Italian Valle d’Aosta)
Sallanches & Aravis – Mountain Guides – Ski Instructors – Mountain Info
Sallanches Restaurants & Cafés
Auberge de l’Orangerie – Excellent local restaurant on the outskirts of Sallanches
Palais d’Inde – Sallanches Curry House
La Braconne – Good restaurante on the outskirts of Sallanches with outdoor terrace
@Table – Town centre restaurant in Sallanches
Charles Albert – Town centre cafe & restaurant in the heart of the ville
Pub le St Jacques “Chez Vez” – Lively pub bar in Sallanches with lots of outdoor seating in summer
Sallanches & Arve Valley – Other Activities!
Plaine Joux Great base for skiing, ski touring, mountain walking, rock climbing, parapenting, camping etc.
Sallanches & Arve Valley With Kids
Lac Passy – Base de Loisirs Lovely lake with great walks, views, kids playgrounds, water activities, high ropes course in the trees etc
Plaine Joux Great base for skiing with kids, camping, hill walks, lake walk etc.
La Petite Folie For wet days with little ones!