In summer and fall the renowned ski resort of Verbier transforms into a hikers paradise, where farming prevails and alpine traditions run deep.
Verbier Hiking: From the village of Verbier there are endless hikes that take advantage of the vast 4Vallées lift system, and the incredible views of surrounding 4000m peaks, and the Rhone Valley and its vineyards far below. Venture off the beaten path and explore the upper reaches of the Val de Bagnes, and its preserved nature park surrounding Lac Mauvoisin. Finishing the day with a visit and tasting at a local cheesemaker: home to the world-famous raclette and fondue. Visit the facilities, tour the caves and taste a variety of cheeses from cow to sheep and goat and enjoy a raclette dinner in a traditional carnotzet (a historic stone “cave” traditionally used to store cheese & wine).
Verbier Culture & Traditions: Discover the local “Patrimoine” (cultural heritage) with an accompagnatuer, a hiking guides who specialize in the flora, fauna and geology and history of specific regions, though a walk across the fabled St. Bernard Pass, in the footsteps of Hannibal and Napoleon, on the remains of the ancient Roman Road. Or set off in search of the regions wildlife along the Sentier des Chamois, an alpine hiking trail that traverses the impossible habitat of wild deer, mountain goats and the spectacular Bouquetin (Ibex).
Sample Itinerary - Verbier Hiking & Culture:
- Day 1: Arrive Verbier, settle into your chalet. Afternoon hike to Pierre Avoie overlooking the Mont Blanc Massic & the Rhone Valley
- Day 2: Hiking above Verbier, late lunch at the Cabane Mont Fort, Swiss Alpine Club refuge with a spectacular sunny stone terrace.
- Day 3: Bisse hiking in the Rhone Valley. The bisses (ancient irrigation ways) were originally constructed during the 1400‘s to bring water to the vines. Afternoon wine tasting at a local vineyard & visit to teh medieval city of Sion.
- Day 4: Alpine lakes & cheese: Morning visit to the Alpage de la Chaux for a cheese making demonstration & tasting, followed by a scneic hike to the turquoise alpine Lac Louvie.
- Day 5: St Bernard Pass. Visit to the monastery and museum, and hike along the ancient Roman road with the fames St Bernard dogs.
- Day 6: Haut Val de Bagnes: Hike below glaciers & 4000 meter peaks while looking for wildlife in Switzerland's 2nd largest Nature Park.
- Day 7: Departure