Holidays to Samoëns

Samoëns is a place of spectacular vistas, where seven mountains secret away a village built by legendary stonemasons

The seven mountains that lend Samoëns its name have helped shelter the village so that, despite its popularity with hikers, cyclists and skiers, its character has remained charmingly in-tact. After all, this isn’t any old village – Samoëns is a national monument and the home of the Mourmé stonemasons. Walking holidays to Samoëns head out into the Haute-Savoie region, where both family-friendly hikes and long-distance trails explore in the shadow of some of the biggest mountains in Europe, including Mont Blanc.

Haute-Savoie walking for every rambler 

Around 650km of walking and cycling paths surround Samoëns, from gentle rambles to big mountain hikes. Neighbouring Le Cirque du Fer a Cheval is a highlight, where flat, well-signposted routes filter between green mountains filled with waterfalls, wildlife and mountain huts. A pair of summer lifts whisk walkers up to the top of the Grand Massif and to the lakeside Gers mountain hut. Wherever you go, widescreen views of the Giffre Valley and – if you’re lucky – Mont Blanc provides a not-too-shabby backdrop.

Summer mountain adventures 

There’s no escaping the mountains in Samoëns. If you’re not hiking them, you’re probably exploring them by bike, paragliding or by simply enjoying your picnic and taking in those views. You can also dive right in; the massif is splashed with lakes. Le Lac aux Dames is at the edge of the village – twin pools tied together by a waterfall, a leisure centre and views of the Criou peak. There’s a handful of spas in town too.

Family holidays in Samoëns

Easy circular walks start in Samoëns, looping out to alpine lakes, buttercup-bright meadows, wooden footbridges, waterfalls and chapel-topped villages. Back in town, a cinema, petanque courts, pools and picnic areas are on hand. Or there’s always the treetop routes and zip lines of Indiana Parc – just don’t forget your fedoras.

A typical French village 

The sprawling canopy of the Gros Tilleul lime tree marks the heart of Samoëns. Important village events have been staged under its watchful eye for almost 600 years. Elsewhere, there’s a botanical garden, covered markets, a farmhouse museum, plus the Notre-Dame de l’Assumption church, carved by the village’s famous stonemasons.

Festival season kicks off as soon summer arrives, celebrating everything from mountain biking and alpine plants to music and wellness. La Rioule winds down the summer season with local folk traditions, including dancing and fiercely competitive races up greased cocagne poles.

Why book a summer holiday in Samoëns with Inghams?

With over 85 years of outdoor travel experience, our holiday packages to Samoëns include flights, transfers, and accommodation, so you can relax and leave the small details to us. Our experts can help you choose the best holiday for you, and our team in resort can give you the inside scoop on how to spend your time away with us.

At Inghams, we do walking holidays differently. With no fixed itinerary, you have more time in your destination and the freedom to walk as much or as little as you like, discovering some of France's best walking routes and activities at your own pace.

Plus, we've included two optional guided walks every week in Samoëns. Join a professional mountain guide and really get to know the area (see more details in the ‘walking’ tab below).

Added value

Inghams phone rep service

Flights and transfers included

Walking in and around Samoëns

On an Inghams walking holiday, you have the freedom to explore the area at your own pace. Each day, a new adventure, with as much or as little walking as you like.

Why we love walking in Samoëns

Gorges, dramatic peaks, waterfalls and nature parks, what's not to love? There's so much variety in the landscape here that there's plenty to do and see whilst out walking. You can stick to the valley level for a more gentle pace or head nearer to the mountains if you're looking to challenge yourself. Head to Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval which is also not too far from Samoëns and is a real treat to visit, nearby you'll find Cirque du Fer-à-Cheval where there's a lot of walking paths that pass-by small lakes, mountains and waterfalls. 

Getting around Samoëns

Public Transport

During the months of July and August there is bus service that runs from Samoëns. Its reasonably priced and connects you to areas such as the Cirque du Fer-à-Cheval where you'll find the famous "Bout du Monde" which is also a great area for hiking. You can also head in the direction of Col de Joux Plane where the higher altitude will give you views towards the Mont Blanc. For other fantastic views you can take the bus towards Bourgeoise. Please be aware that this is a local service that is subject to change. 

When the bus is not running the best option is to get a taxi if you're looking to travel outside of Samoëns - or, make use of e-bikes which can be hired and booked locally (subject to availability).

Cable cars

Cable cars are a great way to connect to different walking areas and get a little further into the mountains. They are payable locally and their opening is subject to change and subject to weather conditions.

  • The Grand Massif Express Gondola usually runs from 2nd of June to 1st of September.
  • Chariande Express lift usually runs from 1st July to 27th of August.
Our Favourite Walks

Lacs aux dames to the Lac Bleu at Morillon

  • Easy to moderate
  • Around 7.7kms (one way)
  • Expect to take around 2 hours

This walk is low level and even terrain which makes it great for families. It is easy to vary this walk to different lengths as it is a one way walk so you'll have to walk back the same way you came, the total length (one way) is 7.7 kilometres so turn around at any point if you're not up to the challenge. You'll pass by the Samoëns lake and the Lac Bleu at Morillon.

Chantemerle and Les Suets

  • Moderate
  • Approx. 538 metres ascent
  • Around 7.2 kilometres

Follow the historical past of Samoëns on this walk from the town hall, past dry stone walls and the villages of Les Combes and Chantemerle. You'll go through forests of the Suets where you get great views and may even see the Mont Blanc mountain range.

Tête du Pre des Saix walking area

  • Walking area
  • Accessible by cable car from Samoëns (cable car only open during certain dates)
  • Fantastic views

During the summer months you can catch the cable car in Samoëns to reach a higher altitude then hike to this walking area. There are a number of different marked trails up here to explore and you'll feel like you're on top of the world with beautiful views. If you're lucky you may even see the Mont Blanc in the distance.

Walk to the "end of the world"

  • You'll find it in Cirque du Fer-à-Cheval
  • Numerous walking routes you can take
  • A bus or taxi is required to get from Samoëns to this area

If you're visiting the are of Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval then we highly recommend hiking to the "End of the World" or in French "Bout du Monde". There are several routes you can take to get there but once you arrive you'll be blown away by the scenery. Routes can be long and vary in ability, make sure you are well prepared and have the correct equipment.

 

Useful & General Information

Recommended Equipment

Comfy walking boots, rucksacks, waterproofs and walking poles are useful for hiking around Samoëns. Please be aware that equipment is not available to hire in resort.

Hiking guidelines

Samoëns and the areas surrounding are a natural paradise, with lots to see and explore. To help it stay that way, and remain an enjoyable and safe place for everyone, we recommend following our little list of do's and don'ts:

  • Plan your route well and don't overestimate yourself
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Tell someone where you're planning to walk and what time you're expecting to be back
  • Take all the recommended equipment
  • Make a note of emergency numbers
  • Don't leave the marked trails or go onto a glacier without a guide
  • Let nature stay wild by not picking alpine flowers (it's illegal in some places) or getting close to/making contact with wild animals
  • Always leave gates as you found them
  • Leave no trace

Hotels in Samoens

  • from£869pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Summer walking holidays at the Hotel neige et roc

The Hotel Neige et Roc is a charming family run hotel, just a short walk for the village of Samoens. The hotel offers comfortable rooms, lovely food and great facilities.

  • from£799pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Pg Neigeetroc 027

Enjoy well equipped, spacious apartments perfect for families or those wanting a little more room. Staying at the Residence Neige et Roc means you have the added benefit of being able to access the facilities at the adjacent hotel, swim in the outdoor pool, practice some tennis on the courts or try out the popular French pastime Pétanque.

Things To Do

Lake swimming, paddling or promenading

A lazy day by the lake is always called for and Samoëns lake is small but beautifully turquoise and is only a short walk from the main centre. The lake is separated into three sections with one section dedicated to swimming. Here you’ll find locals paddling (and paddle boarding) in the water or lounging on the lakes edge – it’s great for those wanting a short, flat walk around the lake or wanting to cool off in the blue waters.

Journey to incredible nature reserves

The Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval Nature Reserve is a hidden gem in the Alps. During peak times you can catch the bus here otherwise you may need to get a taxi but there are an abundance of walks to try once you arrive. You can stick to valley-level walks for those wanting more gentle terrain but there are also challenging hikes for those up to the task. Hike to “Bout de Monde”, in English, “the end of the world” for incredible scenery with dramatic peaks and plenty of waterfalls cascading through the rocks.

E-Biking

E-biking is a great way to get around the local area, the flatter valleys make it easy to explore but if you do want to tackle the mountains then use the power to get you up there. Explore nearby villages and stop off at the local Boulangeries for a treat (or two), there’s also some waterfalls in the area that are well worth seeing. E-bikes can be hired in town and are bookable and payable locally.

Adrenaline seekers

Rafting is popular in Samoëns, you get to see the valley from a whole new perspective, with trees lining the river and dramatic peaks on either side. The water runs off the mountains so it’s pretty chilly but it’s a great day out for adventure seekers.

Go in search of cascading waterfalls

With Samoën sitting at a lower altitude compared to other resorts in the Alps it has an array of beautiful waterfalls to explore. You usually see them from May to September but if you want to experience them at their best then June is often the best time to travel. That said, July is still impressive.

Botanical Garden Jaysinia

The Alpine Botanical Garden Jaysinia is in easy reach of Samoëns centre and is a treat for plant and flower lovers. There are around 2400 species of plants and nearly 3 kilometres of paths to wander so if you’re just looking to enjoy the scenery or take a leisurely stroll it’s the perfect setting.

Good to know

Walking trails: There are 650 kilometres of well signposted trails in the area to explore

Terrain: Mountain terrain

Best time to go: June is cooler, quieter and when you'll see the waterfalls at their fullest. July, August are warmer and offer more public transport options.

Best for: Walkers of all abilities, families, nature

Fly into: Geneva airport

Fly from: Gatwick, Heathrow, Manchester, Luton, Bristol, Birmingham and Edinburgh

Transfer time: approx. 1 hour

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