Gourmet Alpine Walking Holiday

Gourmet Alpine Walking Holiday

8 Days Starting and ending in 05000 Gap, France

Visiting: Gap, Prapic, Chaillol 1600, Chabottes, Pic de Gleize, Refuge du Pigeonnier, Navette

Tour operator:

Undiscovered Mountains

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

5 - 14

Physical rating:

Medium

Age range:

18-75

Special diets catered:

Meat, Vegetarians

Tour operated in:

English , French

Activities:

Hiking, Walking

Private Available:

Request A Private Tour

From: $1761 $1706 Mid-Year Mayhem Discount: -$55

NB: Prices correct on 24-Jul-2024 but subject to change.

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

Embark on the ultimate hiking trip, where fresh alpine air and stunning views in the French Alps meet exquisite local cuisine. The Hikes: Explore the grandeur of Ecrins National Park, the charming 'bocage' farmlands of Champsaur valley, and the 'little Himalayas' of Valgaudemar valley. Discover high-altitude lakes, glaciers, and flower-rich meadows. Each day offers diverse landscapes and the best hikes, from alpine foothills to Ecrins' high mountains. Spot wildlife like chamois, ibex, and golden eagles, guided by local experts who highlight the region's unique flora and fauna. The Food: Stay at two exceptional food-focused accommodations. The Luxury Farmhouse Guesthouse blends traditional architecture with modern style, where chef Meg brings an Asian twist to Alpine dishes. Val des Sources, a quintessential alpine hotel, offers authentic French Alpine cuisine by chef Collette, with menus complemented by fine wines chosen by her connoisseur husband, Claude. This unique gourmet walking holiday perfectly combines breathtaking hikes with a journey through Alpine culinary traditions.

Highlights

  • Spectacular hikes in two contrasting alpine valleys, showcasing some of Europe's most magnificent mountain landscapes.

  • Exceptional culinary experiences with selected local chefs and hotel restaurants.

  • Expert local guides and wildlife specialists.

  • Hassle-free enjoyment; just arrive and immerse yourself.

  • Committed to responsible and sustainable tourism.

Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1 : Arrival

Location: Gap

Accommodation: Lodge

Accommodation Name: La Grange des Ecrins

Meals Included: Dinner

Your Gourmet Alpine walking holiday starts now! We'll pick you up from Gap train station at 17:30 and escort you to your first accommodation, where a scrumptious evening meal awaits.

The upcoming itinerary offers a sample of the planned walks, though it may vary based on local conditions. Our guides will adjust as needed, ensuring you enjoy top-quality walking, stunning views, and wildlife encounters.

Day 2 : The Saut Du Laire And Le Basset Plateau

Location: Prapic

Accommodation: Lodge, Lodge

Accommodation Name: Grange des Ecrins

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Embark on a fascinating hike from Prapic, a remote Champsaur valley village. With just four families residing year-round, its charm is evident in closely nestled Alpine houses and preserved ancient architecture, reflecting a traditional life where humans and animals lived in harmony.

The trail leads to a plateau beside a swift stream, ending at the stunning Saut du Laire waterfall, known as 'The Jump of the Thief'. Your guide will share the intriguing story behind this name. Along the way, look out for marmots and grazing chamois.

Starting altitude: 1568m; Maximum: 2059m; Ascent: 496m; Distance: 10km.

In July and August, enjoy a shorter walk and a meal at a rustic auberge, famed for local lamb dishes, offering a true taste of the Alps. Post-lunch, take a leisurely stroll before returning.

During other months, savor a picnic lunch in the mountains.

Day 3 : Col De Côte Longue

Location: Chaillol 1600

Accommodation: Lodge

Accommodation Name: Grange des Ecrins

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Hike to the col of Vieux Chaillol, the highest peak in Champsaur Valley. Begin in the scenic ski village of Chaillol, ascending through mixed forests to Col de La Pisse.

Traverse under Pic du Tourond, following Canal du Macros' historic ruins, a remarkable 1800s engineering marvel by Napoleon's men. Learn its history at Col de Côte Longue, where the worker's cabin stands, offering a panoramic picnic spot. Descend the same route.

Starting altitude: 1702m; Maximum: 2698m; Ascent: 996m; Distance: 16km.

Day 4 : Free Day

Location: Chabottes

Accommodation: Lodge, Lodge

Accommodation Name: Grange des Ecrins

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Enjoy a free day to unwind at your accommodation, take a self-guided stroll, or indulge in other local activities. Try rock climbing, via ferrata, canyoning, or paragliding for thrilling experiences. Most activities are half-day, leaving time to relax. We can arrange any additional activities, either in advance or on-site, at an extra cost.

Day 5 : Pic De Gleize And Option For Lunch At The Fromagerie

Location: Pic de Gleize

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Val des Sources

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Today, remember to pack your belongings and suitcases, plus your day-sacks, as you check out of the luxury farmhouse.

Your destination is Pic de Gleize, a limestone ridge offering stunning views of multiple valleys. The hike starts gently through woods and pastures, abundant with wildflowers and butterflies in spring and early summer. Reach a mountain pass, where you can choose to return or summit. The summit route is steep and exposed, ending in a rocky ridge descent.

Starting altitude: 1694m; Maximum: 2161m; Ascent: 437m; Distance: 6km.

If you opt for a restaurant lunch, visit a local fromagerie to indulge in cheese-centric dishes, introducing you to Alpine cheese varieties.

Post-lunch, enjoy a gentle walk before arriving at Val des Sources hotel, offering another perspective on mountain cuisine.

Day 6 : Lac Du Lauzon And Refuge Du Pigeonnier

Location: Refuge du Pigeonnier

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Val des Sources

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Embark on a stunning walk from Valgaudemar valley to a high-altitude lake, with glacier views and classic alpine scenery, extending optionally to Refuge du Pigeonnier.

Beginning at Gioberney refuge, admire the Bride's Veil waterfall. The route winds through a dramatic valley flanked by mountains and glaciers, zigzagging amidst rocky outcrops, berry bushes, and waterfalls, leading to Lac du Lauzon.

Optionally, head to Pigeonnier refuge (open June-September) for refreshments like berry tarts, experiencing efficient yet simple high mountain refuge cuisine. Return via the same path or circuit through Gioberney.

Starting altitude: 1642m; Maximum: 2423m; Ascent: 795m; Distance: 11km.

Day 7 : Village Of Navette And The Devil's Cauldron

Location: Navette

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Val des Sources

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Explore a captivating trail from La Chapelle, the Valgaudemar valley's final inhabited village, to the Les Portes hamlet. Here, find a stunning hanging valley adorned with alpine flowers and butterflies.

Venture through cascades and uncover historical secrets, including the abandoned Navette village. Once a prosperous farming community, it succumbed to natural disasters and socio-economic shifts, leading to its abandonment by 1937. Its remnants and a restored chapel stand as poignant reminders.

Descend past the Devil's Cauldron, a powerful canyon of waterfalls, showcasing nature's force.

Starting altitude: 1101m; Maximum: 1675m; Ascent: 626m; Distance: 12km.

Day 8 : Return Home

Location: Gap

Meals Included: Breakfast

Today, we bid farewell. We weill collect you from your hotel and take you to Gap for 10:00.

Though it's a goodbye, we trust you're leaving with fantastic memories of your Alpine walking adventure and some new recipes to cherish!

What's Included

  • Accommodation

    Enjoy 7 nights of half-board accommodation, including breakfast and dinner, at carefully selected hotels and guesthouses renowned for their delectable cuisine.

  • Fully Guided

    Experience 5 days of guided walks led by a fully qualified local professional hiking guide

  • Meals

    Breakfast and gourmet evening meals are included

  • Transport

    You will be taken to the starts and finishes of walks by minibus driven by your guide

  • Transfers

    Return transfers from Gap train station to your accommodation are included

  • Carbon offsetting

    We plant a tree on your behalf to help offset your carbon footprint

  • Smartphone App

    We will give you an App for your smartphone with all the details you need for your holiday from A to Z

What's Not Included

  • International Travel

    Your journey to Gap (we can help you plan this)

  • Additional activities

    Any additional activities on your free day are payable in addition

  • Drinks or special wines

    Additional drinks or specific wine choices (glass of house wine included with meals)

  • Lunches

    Restaurant or picnic lunches (depending on day and wishes)

  • Tips for the guide

    at your discretion

  • Insurance

Mode of Transport

minibus

Accommodation

For this holiday, we've carefully selected two accommodation bases renowned for their superb cuisine.

The Luxury Farmhouse Guesthouse, managed by Jean, a local Frenchman, and Meg from Taiwan, is famed in the valley for its exceptional food. Using fresh, local ingredients, Meg creatively infuses traditional alpine recipes with a Taiwanese twist, resulting in a diverse and delicious menu.

The Val des Sources stands out as a special traditional alpine hotel. Owners Claude and Colette, both avid food enthusiasts, are known for their excellent traditional alpine cuisine, crafted from fresh, locally sourced produce. They even have their own trout pond. Claude's extensive wine cellar is a highlight, and he takes great pleasure in guiding guests through perfect wine pairings and the tasting sequence of local cheeses. His enthusiasm for alpine cuisine is contagious.

For days requiring a picnic lunch, options include a gourmet or standard picnic from either hotel (payable directly), or an à la carte meal at a local restaurant.

Check out our Q&As

  • Is there a supplement for solo travellers?

    Yes the pricing is based on two people sharing a room so if you have a room to your self, there is a supplement to pay.

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    The local guides are French with English as their second language. The tour is done in English

  • What is the fitness level required to do this tour?

    You need to be regular walkers to be able to cope with a full day in the mountains? The average walk is 10-12km with 400 to 800m of ascent.

  • Is free Wi-Fi available in the accommodation used?

    Yes

  • Is there any free time to explore places during the tour?

    Yes there is a free day and we can help organise additional activities for this day or you can just relax in the beautiful accommodation and go for a stroll.

  • What is the maximum group size?

    The maximum group size is 8 per guide.

  • What happens if a group doesn’t make its minimum required number of passengers?

    If the minimum number of people if not met we would offer you the possibility of choosing a full refund, a revised itinerary or to pay a supplement to cover the additional costs. The second two options also depend on the other participants?

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    We achieved Travelife certification in July 2023

  • What documents will I receive before I travel?

    We will give you a smartphone app with your itinerary, all your travel documents, weather and everything else you might need for your holiday.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Sally Guillaume has been operating Undiscovered Mountains, previously under the brand name Undiscovered Alps, since 2005.

  • Will the accommodation included meet local health and safety regulations?

    Yes, we vet all our accommodation to make sure they meet local health and safety requirements and offer quality and value for money with friendly welcome.

Reviews from travellers on this tour

Caroline Gover   UK

Foodie Walking in the Alps

19-Oct-2023

We loved our previous Undiscovered Mountains holiday so much, we came back for more! Based at fabulous La Grange des Ecrins, we had the most amazing food, walked in the glorious mountains and had a LOT of fun. Sally organises minibuses to take us up to the walking trails, and we can choose from walks of differing length and difficulty. Her guides are exceptional. They are all passionate about the mountains, know the trails so well and pace the walks entirely according to what the group wants. We’ll be back!

Jan Andres   USA

GOURMET WALKING HOLIDAY IN THE ALPS

22-Oct-2022

From Sally promptly greeting us at the Gap station on Saturday for transfer, to Bernard expertly and with good humor guiding us to stunning Alpine vistas, to the excellent food and warm hospitality of Meg and Jean at La Grange des Ecrins, all was as promised and more. When some in our group had an unexpected medical issue, the ability of the team to quickly adapt to the changes was exceptional and the situation was handled in a thoughtful, caring manner. Go on an Undiscovered Mountains holiday and know they will take care of the details and you will have an incredible time. We certainly did!

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Saturday - Saturday

Sep 07, 2024 - Sep 14, 2024
$1761 $1706

Mid-Year Mayhem Discount: -$55

Book with Confidence

  • Low Deposit

    Undiscovered Mountains requires a minimum deposit of 25% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 42 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of undiscovered mountains charges.

    Up to 43 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 42 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 28 days before tour starts: Forfeit 60% of booking price.

    At 16 days before tour starts: Forfeit 80% of booking price.

    At 7 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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