Walking in the Valais

Tour of the Val D’Herens - Self-Guided

Trip Style

Mountainous

Availability

June to Mid-September

Highlight

Grand Dixence; Riedmatten Pass; La Cabane des Becs de Bosson

Price from

530 EUR

 

Grade

Walking in the Valais you will discover an authentic and traditional Swiss Alpine way of life. The Valley of Herens is right next door to the famous Matterhorn (Toblerone Mountain) but is virtually untouched by the tourism that has sprung up around Zermatt. During this walk you will discover the world’s biggest dam, Grand Dixence. Come right up to the foot of the glaciers that dominate the peaks as well as pass where the famous ski-mountaineering race “La Patrol of the Glaciers” takes place. Traditional villages will also be visited where the ways of old are still present today. Needless to say the views will surely take your breath away as you become emerged in the wonderful timeless nature of the Alps.

PACKAGE DETAILS

Day 1: Arrive Thyon


Thyon is the gateway to the ‘Four Valleys’ skiing area and enjoys views of not only the Matterhorn but also the Dent Blanche. In the summer you can enjoy a much quieter Thyon than in the winter months. Fresh Alpine air will entice you outdoors, be sure to try some Raclette a traditional Swiss cheese dish.  Relax tonight before you start walking in the Valais tomorrow.

Day 2: Thyon to Grande Dixence (16km; 6hr30)


The day starts with climbing up out of Thyon on to the mountain pastures. Passing the Thyon 2000 ski lift you soon find yourself surrounded by nature with views ahead to the dam that is your destination for the day. Continuing through the valley you can visit the peat bogs of Essertze, where information panels will inform you on your rich natural surroundings. This can also make a great spot for a picnic. Leaving the peat bogs of Essertze behind you will continue across the valley ever closer to then arriving at the world’s largest dam, Grand Dixence. The impressive sight of this man-made structure is a wonderful juxtaposition to the summits of the Val de Dix which at over 3500m high have snow topping them all year. Although the Dam is your destination for today it also has much to offer, with exhibits, walking trails, a cable car and even the possibility to visit inside the dam.

Day 3: Grande Dixence to Arolla (16km; 6hr30)


Your walk today starts off with an ascent up to the top of the dam where you will then follow the shore of lac des Dix. Listen and watch out for the marmots (large squirrels) that have made the rocky outcrops their homes. Getting to the far side of the lake the climb to the Riedmatten Pass awaits you. This climb does not start out difficult as you move up and closer to the Mont Blanc de Cheilon. With each step the views get more awe inspiring and the climb does increase somewhat in difficulty. The famous ski-mountaineering race, La Patrouille des Glaciers passes through the Riedmatten Pass. Here you have an option to climb ladders to the top of the pass. To finish off today you will descend not as steeply as you might have anticipated to the valley and Arolla.

Day 4: Arolla to Les Hauderes (15km; 5hr30)


Today be sure to take a diversion to visit the Blue Lake. This lake is fed by water from the glaciers so as tempting to jump into the clear waters as it may be it will be cold! Be sure to spend some time here in this picture postcard perfect location. From here you have two options on getting to Les Haruderes and whichever you choose you will not be disappointed as the scenery on both is spectacular. Les Hauderes is what you would imagine of an alpine village, wooden houses with pretty window boxes bursting with flowers surrounded by the Arolla pine forests and flowery meadows of the region. After this pleasant day walking and all the fresh air you will be ready to sample some fondue.

Day 5: Evolene to La Cabane des Becs de Bosson (19km; 6hr30)


With a continually ascending day waiting for you and the fact you will need to take some items for overnight, take the bus from Les Hauderes to Evolene to save your legs for the uphill. From Evolene you will climb up through the alpine pastures of the Val d’Herens where you will see many of the Herens cows who cheese is used for the very tasty raclette. An initially pleasant climb will take you to Volovron but after here it will become steeper so simply take your time and you will find it more than doable. The higher you go today the more opportunities you will have to spot the marmots. The last stretch of today’s climb is made all the more doable as the cabin will be in sight as you make your way up. Perched at 2985m you are greeted with panoramic views of the Mont Blanc and Val d’Anniviers as well as Val d’Herens.

Day 6: La Cabane des Becs de Bosson to Nax (19kms, 5hr30)


Leaving the hut you will descend into the remote valley of Vallon de Rechy, here there is nature at its finest untouched by mankind. Enjoy the peaceful valley as your descend all the way down to Nax where you will be greeted with magnificent views of the Rhone Valley. In NAx before getting the bus to Sion where you will spend your last night be sure to sample some traditional rye bread made fresh daily in the village oven, with local jam, honey and cheeses to choose from. Wash it down then with some locally produced Apple, Apricot or Quince juice. Sion where you will spend your last night will not disappoint. The Castles of Tourbillon and Valeria welcome you from afar on their hilltop setting. One of the oldest cities in Switzerland there is plenty to see and do here.

Day 7: Sion – Check Out


Today we bid you farewell and hope to see you again on another walking holiday adventure.

INCLUDED AND NOT

  • 5 nights in 2/3* hotels – 1 night in mountain hut
  • 6 Breakfast, 1 Dinner on night in mountain hut
  • Roadbook (Guide Book)
  • Luggage Transfer – except Day 5 to Mountian Hut
  • 24/7 Customer Care
  • Flights/trains
  • Insurance
  • Drinks
  • Swiss Pass
  • Extra nights stay in Merrakech
  • Transfer from/to Airport

Access

Getting there


From Dublin
Fly from Dublin to Geneva with either Swiss Air or Aerlingus. From Geneva airport get the train to Sion then a bus to Veysonnaz and a cable car to Thyon.

 

From London
Fly from London to Geneva. Swiss Air and British Airways fly from London City; Heathrow and Gatwick. EasyJet fly from Gatwick and Luton. From Geneva airport get the train to Sion then a bus to Veysonnaz and a cable car to Thyon.

Going Home


To Dublin
Get the train to Geneva Airport then fly to Dublin with Swiss Air or Aerlingus.

 

To London
Get the train to Geneva Airport then fly to London. Swiss Air and British Airways fly to London City, Heathrow and Gatwick. EasyJey fly to Gatwick and Luton.
Information on trains and busses in Switzerland can be found on the following link:
https://www.sbb.ch/en/timetable.html

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