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At a Glance

Your Holiday at a Glance


   
Independent Walking Holidays
  • Alpine Adventure: Briancon to Nice

  • (Part 3 & 4 of a trek from Lake Geneva to Nice along the length of the French Alps)

Dates for 2017
  • Everyday (subject to availability) from 15 June to 30 September
Price (with luggage transport)
  • Full trek from Briancon to Nice:
  • £1370/€1550 per person
  • Option of booking extra night at Nice at end of walk (not in above price)
  • Briancon to Roya only (6 nights and 6 days walking):
  • contact us for a price
  • Roya to Nice only (5 nights and 5 days walking):
  • contact us for a price
  • per person
Price (without luggage transport)
  • Full trek from Briancon to Nice:
  • £895/€1020 per person
  • Briancon to Roya only (6 nights and 6 days walking):
  • Option of booking extra night at Nice at end of walk (not in above price)
  • Briancon to Roya only (6 nights and 6 days walking):
  • contact us for a price
  • Roya to Nice only (5 nights and 5 days walking):
  • contact us for a price
Grade
  • challenging alpine walking

Profile
  • 11 nights, 11 days self-guided mountain walking moving between gites, auberges, hotels and refuges
Highlights
  • 3rd & 4th legs of a trek along the full length of the French Alps from Lake Geneva to Nice
  • Discovering the beautiful Queyras Regional Park
  • Exploring the pretty and quiet Ubaye Valley
  • Breath-taking scenery of Mercantour National Park
  • Beautiful perched villages of Provence
Accommodation and Meals
  • You’ll be staying in private rooms for 2 in gites, hotels and refuges, with the exception of 1 night in a dormitory. You’ll be served wholesome local cuisine. All evening meals are included in your holiday price.
What's included
  • 11 night’s half board accommodation in gites, hotels and refuges with private rooms (except for one night in dormitory); 3 transfers during the walk to access accommodation; detailed walking notes and walking maps, transport of luggage between accommodation (except for one night where you'll need to carry overnight gear).
What's not included
  • Travel to Briancon at start of walking holiday and from Nice at end of holiday; drinks with evening meals, lunches, travel insurance, anything else not listed above
 
Walks

Alpine Adventure - Briancon to Nice

This is the final stage of a mythical walk which follows the GR 5 long-distance trail from the shores of Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean coast at Nice, following the entire length of the French Alps. We have split the walk into several self-guided walking holidays, although it would be possible to combine them. Our holidays include luggage transfers (if you wish) so that you can enjoy the amazing scenery with only a light day pack.

From Briancon you’ll first traverse the beautiful Queyras regional park with its wonderful wild alpine flowers and great panoramic views, before moving onto the secret Alps of the Ubaye Valley. From there its onto the majestic and wild Mercantour National Park, with great wildlife before discovering the wonderful perched villages of the Provence in the Maritime Alps. You can do this 11-day section in one go or choose to split it into two parts with a 6-day walking holiday from Briancon to Roya and a 5-day walking break from Roya to Nice. The second of these two sections is easier than the first.

The traverse of the French Alps is a truly unforgettable experience as you head south passing by the majestic summits of the Mont Blanc range before passing through the Vanoise and Mercantour National Parks. Your wonderful trail passes through a variety of landscapes, wildlife habitats and historic sites including the green alpine pastures of the Savoy, rocky deserts in the Queyras, beautiful perched villages of the Roya, snowy peaks of the Mont Blanc and ibex in the Mercantour.


Walking Profile

11 days self-guided walking between accommodation. Walking per day amounts to an average of 5 - 8hrs walking and 950m of ascent and descent. Maximum altitude gain: 1200m. The walk follows the GR5 for the most part. The walks take place on paths, although they are mountainous and rocky in nature. You should have a reasonable level of fitness and be comfortable with walking on mountainous terrain with a good head for heights.

map location alpine trek briancon to nice GR 5

Day 1: Arrival

Arrive at Briancon. Night and dinner in hotel

Day 2: Briancon - Brunissard (1870m)

From the centre of Briancon you'll follow the beautiful Ayes Valley with its numerous traditional chalets originally built for use for summer pasture. After the first main col you'll enter the wonderful Queyras Regional Park, home to numerous wildflife and affording expansive views. A lovely descent into the dramatic Arvieux Valley and then transfer by taxi to your accommodation in the Aigue Valley + 1230m ; - 650 m; 6hr

Day 3: Ville Vieille (1380m) - Ceillac (1640m)

A climb through larch forest, pretty flower filled clearings and the sound of cow bells will take you to the high pastures of Pres fromage (cheese field!). Pass by the bright white gypsum ravines at “Ruine Blanche” before climbing towards Col Fromage (2301m) passing striking limestone peaks on the way. After the col you'll get great panoramic views towards the mighty peaks of Font Sancte (over 3300m) and the beautiful valley below where the village of Ceillac nestles. It is possible to take a dramatic traverse over the Crete de Chambrettes for stunning views. + 950m ; - 850 m; 5hr 30

Day 4: Ceillac (1640m) - Maljasset (1900m)

From Ceillac you'll discover the amazing waterfall, Cascade de la Pisse and then higher up two beautiful lakes - Lac Miroir set in pasture with its green waters reflecting the surrounding limestone rock walls, and Lac Ste Anne with its deep turquoise waters set in a cirque at the base of Fonte Sancte (3385 m). A small climb brings you to Col Girardin (2699m) with wonderful views back towards the Queyras and ahead into the Ubaye Valley. A pretty descent brings you to the hamlet of Maljasset. + 1100m ; - 800 m; 6hr

Day 5: Fouillouse - Larche (1660m)

Small transfer from Maljasset to Fouillouse. Walk to the Col du Vallonnet at 2524m, dominated by the summit of Brec de Chambeyron (3389m). A beautiful and wild valley leads you on to Col de Mallemort (2558m) where you start your descent to the village of Larche. You are now walking for the next couple of days in the Mercantour National Park. + 1100m ; - 1050 m; 7hr

Day 6: Larche (1660m) - Bousieyas (1883m)

A beautiful trail in the small valley of Ubayette to reach lake Lauzanier at 2285m before a steep climb to the mountain pass called Pas de la Cavale Beau at 2675m. A small descent through alpine meadows and pastures before a small climb to Col des Fourches (2262m). Afterwards, descend to Boussieyas in 45 minutes and your accommodation. +1070m ; - 1000 m; 6hr 30

Day 7: Bousieyas (1883m) - Roya (1490m)

Your walking trail crosses the alpine pastures of Col de la Colombiere with the possibility of going to the summit of Tete de Vinaigre (2394m) for great views. Then descend to the village of St Dalmas le Selvage before climbing to the next mountain pass called Col d'Anelle. You'll then descend to reach the village of St Etienne de Tinee. Depending on the availability of accommodation, the walk will either stop here or you'll walk to Roya with relevant transfers. +600m ; - 1250 m; 6hr 30

For those that choose to split this holiday, the first 6 days version of the walking holiday ends in Roya. Onward transport after the walk or night in Roya. The last 5 days walking holiday starts in Roya

Day 8: Roya (1490m) - Roure (1883m)

You'll cross alpine meadows to reach the mountain pass known as Col de Crousette (2480m). You'll then have a wonderful ridge walk with great views as you head towards Col de Moulines. Descend to reach the narrow valley of Roure and your accommodation. +1100m ; - 1050 m; 6hr 30

Day 9: Roure (1883m) - Saint Dalmas Valdeblore (1050m)

A gentle descent of the Roure Valley brings you to the pretty hamlet of Roure itself before moving on to discover the village of Saint Sauveur sur Tinee where you'll now be at only 450m in altitude. Climb back up hill to discover the historic perched villages of the region including Rougios, La Bolline and Rimplas. +850m ; - 1470 m; 6hr 30

Day 10: Saint Dalmas Valdeblore (1050m) - Utelle (850m)

You'll need to start early on this long day. A beautiful climb brings you to Col de Caire Cros. Then a traverse will bring you to the summit of Mont Tournairet at 2086m for wonderful views. A short descent to Granges de la Brasque before a small climb brings you to the next mountain pass at Col d'Andriani. You'll then follow the entire ridgeline of the Utelle mountain which undulates regularly. Tough but great walking. You'll then descend steeply to the beautiful perched village of Utelle. +855m ; - 1350 m; 7hr 30 to 8hr

Day 11: Utelle (850m) - Levens (550m)

A shorter day's walking to recover from yesterday's efforts. There is a variation of the GR trail which goes via the ridgeline and valley of Toasquet which is well worth the detour. Afterwards you have great views over the Vesubie Valley before crossing the valley at Pont du Cros. You'll then climb to reach the beautiful perched village of Levens. +800m ; - 1000 m; 5hr 30

Day 12: Levens (550m) - Nice

A wonderful trail to Sainte Claire before a forest trail brings you to a magnificent view point over the Maritime Alps at the summit of Mont Cima (878m). You'll then descend to the historic village of Aspremont with its alleyways forming concentric circles around its centre, before a small climb brings you to Mont Chauve. Here a longer variation is possible. A last descent brings you to Gairaud and the end of the official GR 5 trail and the end of your Alpine Adventure. A short bus ride will take you to Nice and the Mediterranean Sea for a well-earned rest. +550m ; - 700 m; 4hr 30


Holiday ends after walk on day 12 or book extra night's accommodation in Nice.

 

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Bed

Accommodation & Meals


You’ll be staying in a mixture of simple hotels, gites and refuges in private rooms for 2. Good wholesome mountain food.

Name Type Details Rating  
         
Travel Options

Travel Options


Make your own way to Briancon at the start of the holiday.

By Train

Eurostar and the TGV provide a relaxing journey from London to Lyon Part Dieu via Lille or direct. From Lyon you'll need to take a local train services to Briancon station, changing at Grenoble. Some trains go direct to Briancon from Grenoble, whilst others require a further change. The section between Grenoble and Briancon takes a minimum of 3hrs. You can also take trains from Lyon to Valence and change at Valence going via Gap. There are also overnight TGV trains to Briancon from Austerlitz station in Paris, If flying to Marseille there are TER trains from Marseille to Briancon. Also TGV trains from Paris to Oulx in Italy and shuttle bus to Briancon.

At end of holiday shuttle bus to Nice. TGV trains from Nice to Lyon and Paris.

www.raileurope.co.uk
www.eurostar.com

By Air and rail

Regular direct flights to Lyon St Exupery with Easyjet, British Airways and Flybe and then trains as above. Also possible to fly to Marseille and take TER trains from Marseille.

Please contact us for assistance in organising your travel arrangements

 

 

 

Photos

Photos


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