After the Italian part of our trip in the Gran Paradiso, the second lag of this road trip took us to another country, home to the highest peak of the Alps and in Europe. We drove from Cogne to Chamonix and the trip included passing through the Fréjus tunnel, a high-tech 13km tunnel that crosses through the mountains. Passing through this tunnel is an experience in itself as apart from having to pay a €44 fee for a small car, involves following some strict rules like speed and distance from the car in front of you. You are even given a card with the rules to follow! The tunnel is so long that we entered from the Italian side in brilliant sunshine and arrived at the French side to find gloomy greyish weather.
Staying for just 1 night in Chamonix is not the best of ideas since there are a lot of things to do here. We had 3 activities planned for the day, however we ended up only doing one of them. If you love trekking than you should absolutely try the Lac Blanc trek. It involves riding the cable car and chairlift to the top from La Flègere towards L’Index, following the trail towards Lac Blanc and then descending with the cable car again from La Flègere. The trail should (for those who all well trained and do not stop every other minute to take photos) take around 3 hours back and forth. For us it took double the time since we stopped near the lake for a picnic and stopped several times to take photos. But can you blame me? Although for the first part of the trek was very foggy, as soon as we got to the lake it started clearing up. Afterwards the descent was absolutely magical making this day my favourite part of the trip. Maybe also because we met ibex, sheep, crows, short-tailed weasels etc. along our way and as you know well, wildlife encounters are a real thrill for me.
After our trek to Lac Blanc and the final photo finish to reach the last cable car back to the village, we were dead tired and all we had the energy to do, was a stroll in the village centre. We couldn’t miss a good meal and called it a day very early as a busy day was waiting ahead.
Keep following my blog as next up is the Swiss part of this road trip.