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.
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.
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!
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