If you’re looking for one-on-one support in preparing for the Tour du Mont Blanc, we can help! We use our passion, experience, and knowledge of the TMB to assist…
If you’re looking for one-on-one support in preparing for the Tour du Mont Blanc, we can help! We use our passion, experience, and knowledge of the TMB to assist fellow hikers who want to have their best possible trek.
Who’s it For?
There is a TON of information out there about the Tour du Mont Blanc, so it isn’t absolutely necessary to work with a coach. However, if you don’t want to spend hours combing through books and online resources, a coach can provide you with all of the targeted, individualized information you’ll need while saving you tons of time. Additionally, if you feel anxious about the uncertainties that come with an undertaking like the TMB, working with a coach can help you feel more mentally prepared. Finally, if you have any specific needs, in terms of fitness, diet, budget, or travel logistics, a coach can provide customized advice and solutions.
What We Offer:
While all coaching packages can be customized to fit your individual needs, our basic package includes the following:
30-minute Skype Consultation: Getting to know you, your goals for the trip, what you’d like to get out of working with a coach, and answering any trip-related questions.
Itinerary Planning Assistance: We’ll work with you to put together the best itinerary based on how many days you plan on hiking, how much distance you want to cover each day, incorporating a rest day, information on camping, etc.
Gear Consultation: We’ll work with to create a custom packing list that minimizes the weight you’ll need to carry, while meeting your specific needs and incorporating the gear you already own.
Custom Training Plan: We’ll help you develop a comprehensive and individualized approach to build your fitness and reduce the risk of injury so you can enjoy your trek to the fullest. We will also provide local hike recommendations in your area and give you a breakdown of how they compare to various stages of the TMB.
Price: $100 USD
Why Choose Us?
Both Emily and Ian have many years of backpacking and hiking experience on some of the world’s most iconic trails. We’ve tackled long and short treks in New Zealand, Europe, Namibia, as well as countless adventures in our own Rocky Mountain backyard. Additionally, Emily is a seasoned marathon runner and track coach and Ian is an avid mountain biker, which means we have a good understanding of how to train for endurance events. As spreadsheet nerds, we have a knack for detailed planning and logistics. Being stewards of TMBtent.com has allowed us to become very well-versed in all things TMB, and we are continually engaged in deepening our knowledge base. Finally, we truly believe that hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc is a life-changing experience, and we want to help as many people get on the trail and share in that joy. We work with people from all backgrounds, ages, and ability levels, and we will meet you wherever you’re at with no judgement, only excitement and support.
If you’re ready to get started, fill out the form below and you’ll hear from us soon!
At first glance, the Tour du Mont Blanc might seem physically daunting, but many might find it even more financially intimidating. Traversing three Western European countries and staying in the…
At first glance, the Tour du Mont Blanc might seem physically daunting, but many might find it even more financially intimidating. Traversing three Western European countries and staying in the many “quaint” (read: pricey) resort towns along the way? Buying enough food to fuel yourself through day after day of long miles on the trail? Doesn’t seem cheap, does it? The beautiful thing about the TMB, however, is that it’s pretty much up to you how expensive you want to make it. There are hikers who choose to spend more to take guided tours, stay in private rooms at upscale hotels and huts, and buy all of their meals at restaurants along the way. Others take the extremely frugal route, camping as much as possible, cooking their own meals, and minimizing expenses wherever they can. We tend to travel on the frugal side, as we enjoy the simplicity and authentic experiences that go hand in hand with this type of travel. That being said, we’re not claiming the most hardcore budget travelers out there; we certainly allow ourselves to indulge in things that bring value to our experience, such as a post-hike beer or a hotel room on our rest day. Below we’ve outlined what we spent on our 2017 Tour du Mont Blanc adventure. We hope that by sharing this information, our fellow hikers will be able to plan and budget more accurately for their own trip. Additionally, you might find that an experience like the TMB is more within reach than you originally thought, if you just make a few intentional decisions when planning your travel. So grab your tent and get out there!
We chose to camp as much as possible along the Tour du Mont Blanc and we highly recommend it to others for a number of reasons. First, many of the campgrounds were quite luxurious, with amenities such as hot showers and wifi. We also preferred the privacy of our tent versus the dorm-style sleeping arrangements of the huts. Sleeping outdoors in such spectacular alpine surroundings became a highlight of our trip. And of course, the price of camping can’t be beat! There are a few places along the TMB where there are no official campgrounds and wild camping is not permitted. For those situations, we opted to stay in the mountain huts, which offered amazing ambiance and delicious meals for a reasonable price. We also stayed in a hotels for our rest day in Courmayeur, which proved to be a wonderful treat after roughing it for so many days. Here’s a breakdown of our accommodation spending:
Average Hut Price: €54 (per person)
Average Campsite Price: €12 (per person)
Hotel in Chamonix for before and after the hike: €85 (per night)
Hotel in Courmayeur for rest day: €132 (per night)
Bus from Geneva to Chamonix: €43 (round trip)
Bus from Chamonix to Les Houches: €3 (each way)
Shuttle Bus from Les Chapieux to Refuge Des Mottets: €3
We strategically used credit card points and miles in order to fly from Denver to Geneva for nearly free. Read more about how we did it here.
Airline Taxes and Fees: $98.63 + 60,000 United Airlines miles (per person)
Food and Drink
You may be backpacking through rugged mountains, but that doesn’t necessitate spending a small fortune on fancy freeze-dried meals. We preferred to stock up on lightweight, nutritious, and tasty dry goods from the local grocery stores to fuel us along the TMB. We tended to eat ramen noodles or local cheese, sausage, and bread for most dinners. For lunches, we snacked on a trail mix blend that we made from salted peanuts and raisins, which we purchased copious amounts of whenever we found them at reasonable prices along the route. For breakfast, we ate muesli with powdered milk and instant coffee. Occasionally, we’d pick up some fresh fruit from a local shop. These foods kept us feeling full throughout long days of hiking, and we found them to be more enjoyable than those space-age style backpacker meals. Plus, they were a fraction of the price!
On average, we spent about €8-€12 per person, per day on our food and drink.
Of course, we allowed ourselves a few treats along the way, too. Here’s what you can expect to pay, on average, for the following indulgences:
As you can see, we happily teetered between dirtbag and deluxe on our TMB holiday. While there’s no escaping the high costs of some essentials, in general, one can experience the Tour du Mont Blanc on a modest budget (and enjoy some excellent wine and cheese while doing so). Obviously, you’ll also want to factor in the cost of hiking gear that you’ll need to purchase prior to setting off on your trek. Check out our packing list to get an idea of what you might need to purchase ahead of time. Also, our Backpacking Gear on a Budget article has some helpful ideas for keeping your costs low when putting together your backpacking kit. Whether you choose to splurge or keep it simple, we feel confident you’ll have the adventure of a lifetime.
Ready to keep planning your TMB adventure? Be sure to read our entire series on the Tour du Mont Blanc to learn everything you’ll need to know to prepare for this incredible adventure!
Many of the small details of planning the Tour du Mont Blanc can end up being the biggest challenges. You probably know that crossing the Col du Bonhomme will be…
Many of the small details of planning the Tour du Mont Blanc can end up being the biggest challenges. You probably know that crossing the Col du Bonhomme will be difficult, but you might not be thinking as much about how you’ll get from the airport in Geneva to your hotel in Chamonix. We’ve put together the following post to help you tackle all of those tricky logistical items that are sure to arise when you’re planning your own TMB adventure.
For those who want the best information all in one place, you can purchase our printable Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc for under $5! The Guide includes everything you’ll need to have an awesome experience on the TMB. Save yourself the time of endless searching to find the information you need to plan your trip and pick up our guide below!
Purchase your digital Guide for under $5 here (securely processed via PayPal):
Getting to Chamonix from the Geneva Airport
The vast majority of walkers will get to the start of the Tour du Mont Blanc by first flying into the Geneva Airport (GVA). There are frequent flights to Geneva from the rest of Europe as well as a good number of flights from the U.S. Most U.S. flights arrive early in the morning, leaving you with ample time to get to Chamonix that same day. Once you’ve landed in Geneva, you’ll have several options for getting to Chamonix, outlined below:
OuiBus – We found this to be the cheapest option and would highly recommend OuiBus. The service departs directly from the Geneva Airport and will take you to the Chamonix Sud bus station, in the heart of Chamonix.
AlpyBus – AlpyBus runs a door to door transfer service from the Geneva Airport to hotels in the Chamonix Valley. It is more costly than OuiBus, but also more convenient since they’ll drop you directly at your hotel (or campground!).
Mountain Drop-offs – Similar to AlpyBus, Mountain Drop-offs runs a door to door transfer service for walkers arriving in Geneva. Very highly rated.
All of the options above will also be able to transport you back to the Geneva Airport at the end of the TMB. Many also offer discounts for booking a return ticket.
Getting from Chamonix to Les Houches
Many walkers will opt to stay at least one night in Chamonix before and after hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc. While Les Houches is a lovely town, there is no denying that Chamonix has more services and certainly more accommodation options. Luckily, the Chamonix Valley has excellent public transportation linking the various villages, and it is a breeze to get to Les Houches and the start of the TMB from just about anywhere in the valley.
If you’re staying in Chamonix, you’ll want to make your way to the Chamonix Sud bus station. Busses depart from the Chamonix Sud bus station every 30 minutes for Les Houches. You can find updated service schedules on the Chamonix Bus website. Once in Les Houches, we recommend getting off at the ‘Les Houches Mairie’ stop located in the center of the village. The stop, located on the Rue de l’Essert, is directly on the TMB. To start you’ll just begin walking along the road through Les Houches!
After you’ve finished the TMB you’ll utilize the same bus to return to Chamonix (after a well-deserved beer, of course). Make sure to save enough cash to pay the bus fare on the way back, as there isn’t a ticket office near the bus stop.
Beautiful flowers adjacent to the ‘Les Houches Mairie’ stop
Where to stay before and after the TMB
If you’re using our Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc, you’ve surely got your tent packed up and ready to go. While you’ll be doing plenty of camping during your hike, you may enjoy sleeping in a hotel both before and after the TMB. There is nothing quite like a soft mattress and hot shower after 10 days of trekking! Below are some of the best accommodation options in the Chamonix Valley for before and after the TMB:
Hotel Le Morgaine – We stayed at this highly-reviewed hotel both before and after the TMB. We found the rooms to be spacious, the staff very friendly, and the location to be excellent. Room rates are also quite reasonable.
Auberge du Manoir – Known for their friendly staff, beautiful rooms, and great location, the Auberge du Manoir is a great option in Chamonix.
Hôtel Le Refuge des Aiglons – The Hotel Le Refuge des Aiglons is located adjacent to the Chamonix Sud bus station, making it an ideal location for the night you arrive in or before you depart Chamonix.
You can check out all the options in the Chamonix Valley here:
Hotel Les Campanules – Located just across the river from the town center of Les Houches, Hotel Les Campanules gets great reviews for its tremendous views and excellent food. It’s also a great budget option.
Rocky Pop Hotel – Located just outside of Les Houches, the Rocky Pop hotel has stellar reviews for its funky style and friendly staff.
Camping Bellevue – Of course we’d be remiss to not include the well-located campground in Les Houches, Camping Bellevue.
There are many different accommodation options available in the Chamonix Valley on Airbnb. You’ll find everything from luxurious chalets to rooms in a shared house. Airbnb’s often provide a kitchen and laundry facilities, which can be a welcome feature after hiking in the same two smelly outfits for the past 10 days! You can get $40 off your first Airbnb stay by registering here.
There are many stunning Airbnbs in the Chamonix Valley!
Many walkers will be traveling with more luggage than they might want to carry for the entire TMB. Unfortunately, there are no luggage storage facilities at the train station in Chamonix. The best option for walkers on the TMB is to store your extra baggage at the Gite le Chamoniard, which charges between 4-6 euros per day depending on the size of your bag. Other hotels and accommodation may store your baggage if you have a reservation before and after you walk, but you’ll want to inquire ahead of time.
Many walkers will split up the TMB by taking a rest day along the way. If you have the time, we highly recommend this option as it will give your body a break and also let you explore one of the wonderful villages or towns along the route. Here are your best options:
Courmayeur is understandably the most popular place for a rest day on the TMB. While it isn’t exactly the halfway point, you’ll have already crossed several major passes and your feet may be begging for a break. Courmayeur is also the largest town you’ll encounter on the TMB, making for an easy place to stock up on supplies and enjoy a shower and bed. Our lodging recommendations for Courmayeur are below:
Hotel Maison La Saxe – One of the best hotels we’ve EVER stayed at, you can’t find a much better spot for a rest day than Maison La Saxe. Located just up the valley from Courmayeur, this small hotel offers an incredible breakfast spread and beautiful rooms. Book early as they only have six rooms!
You can check out all the options in Courmayeur here:
La Fouly is past the halfway mark of the TMB, so naturally it makes a good rest day spot. The town is small so there won’t be as much to do as in Courmayeur, but it is a beautiful location nevertheless. Check out our favorite spot in La Fouly:
Maya Joie – A highly rated auberge with a variety of room types and free wi-fi.
Champex is a lovely Swiss town located on a pristine mountain lake. Most walkers will arrive in Champex at the end of their seventh day, and will be very ready for a break! Champex offers many services, accommodation options, and more to do than La Fouly. Our lodging recommendation for Chamex:
The Tour du Mont Blanc is no doubt one of the greatest hiking trips in the world. The route is filled with incredible views, towns, and people, and it will…
The Tour du Mont Blanc is no doubt one of the greatest hiking trips in the world. The route is filled with incredible views, towns, and people, and it will surely be a trip we never forget. We highly recommend camping along the way as you’ll save money and experience the towns and stops along the TMB in a very different way. We’ve also published our packing list for those curious as to what they may need to bring to ensure they are equipped for this adventure. But what other recommendations do we have for those considering tackling the awesome experience that is the TMB? Here are our 10 essentials for hiking the Tour du Mont Blanc.
Looking to commemorate your Tour du Mont Blanc trip with an awesome souvenir? Look no further than the TMBtent Tour du Mont Blanc Store. We have custom made Tour du…
Looking to commemorate your Tour du Mont Blanc trip with an awesome souvenir? Look no further than the TMBtent Tour du Mont Blanc Store. We have custom made Tour du Mont Blanc t-shirts and Tour du Mont Blanc posters for sale on our Etsy shop. Check out the full selection below:
Imagine the following scenario: You are hiking the Tour of Mont Blanc, the trip you’ve been dreaming about for months, if not years. The scenery is surpassing your expectations as…
Imagine the following scenario: You are hiking the Tour of Mont Blanc, the trip you’ve been dreaming about for months, if not years. The scenery is surpassing your expectations as you encounter idyllic villages and jaw-dropping vistas. The only problem? You can hardly enjoy it because of the aching of your knees, back, and hips, not to mention a blister the size of Switzerland that’s threatening to erupt inside your hiking boots at any moment. You’ve dragged your sorry self up to the top of (yet another) steep pass, but you can’t stop long to enjoy your accomplishment because, due to your slow pace, you’re behind schedule to reach your stopping point for the day. When you finally reach the campground, all of the best spots have been claimed by faster hikers and there’s no hot water left in the showers. Exhausted, you sloppily pitch your tent, scarf some dinner, and fall asleep. The next morning, instead waiting around for the freshly baked bread, you’re up and out before anyone else because you know you’ve got another 10-hour hiking day ahead of you.
This could be you if you don’t train!
Now picture this: It’s early afternoon, and you’ve just crested the first major pass of today’s hike. You’re tired, and the hike has been challenging, but you feel good. You enjoyed a leisurely morning before starting your hike today, sipping some coffee while breaking down your campsite. Now you have time to eat lunch and soak in the views before beginning your descent. You arrive at your next destination in time to claim a great campsite, shower, and enjoy a beer in the sunshine. You’re sore and tired, but you feel excited for another day of hiking tomorrow.
So what’s the difference between these two scenarios? Training!
You can also pick-up our printable 12-week TMB Training Plan as part of our Complete Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc for under $5! You’ll also get access to tons of useful information for planning your TMB adventure!
If you’re using our Guide to Camping on the TMB in conjunction with our post on how to navigate the trek, we thought it would be helpful to provide a resource…
If you’re using our Guide to Camping on the TMB in conjunction with our post on how to navigate the trek, we thought it would be helpful to provide a resource for finding your campground when using the Gaia GPS app on your smartphone. The following post will show you how to download customized location data for all of the campgrounds mentioned in the camping guide and how to use it with our guide to navigating the TMB. Let’s get started.
We often get questions from readers asking how we navigated during our TMB trip. Did you buy maps? Was the trail hard to find? What about finding all the various…
We often get questions from readers asking how we navigated during our TMB trip. Did you buy maps? Was the trail hard to find? What about finding all the various campgrounds that you stayed at? This post will explain exactly how we navigated on the TMB, show you how to use some of the awesome tools that we employed on our trip, and even provide some custom resources for those using our Guide to Camping on the Tour of Mont Blanc. Let’s get started.
Have you checked out our Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc, TMB Trip Report and TMB Photo Gallery? Are you itching to get started planning your own…
Have you checked out our Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc, TMB Trip Report and TMB Photo Gallery? Are you itching to get started planning your own TMB adventure, but nervous about the cost of such a big trip? Well not to worry, in this post I’ll walk you through exactly how we hiked the TMB while spending almost no out-of-pocket money just by utilizing two credit card signup bonuses. Keep reading to learn more.
Are you a US based traveler hoping to hike the TMB for nearly free? Looking for help saving hundreds of dollars on your trip? Consider using our TMB award booking service! Prices start at $50 per traveler and we’ll save you at least $600+ on your flight, and many times much more! Fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch.
Below you’ll find a detailed packing list that will provide you with great, trail-tested gear that won’t weigh down your backpack too much. This list reflects our personal packing list which will vary for each individual’s specific needs. However, this should serve as a great starting point for planning your own TMB adventure!
You can also pick-up our printable TMB packing list as part of our Complete Guide to Camping on the Tour du Mont Blanc for under $5! You’ll also get access to tons of useful information for planning your TMB adventure!