Information for Families
ACTIVTIES ALL YEAR ROUND
Montenvers Train & Mer de Glace - Take the rack and pinion train up through the forest to the glacier; the ride in itself is an adventure and once you are at the top you can walk or take a gondola down to the edge of the glacier. There is a crystal display, ice cave, glacier exhibition, café, shop and restaurant. Included in the Mont Blanc Unlimited in winter & the Mont Blanc Multipass in summer
Alpine Luge Coaster – a cross between a roller coaster and a toboggan run! Open in summer and winter at the Planards ski area, access via the chairlift (included in your ticket price). Free descent with the Mont Blanc Unlimited in winter & the Mont Blanc Multipass in summer.
Jardin d’Eau - Saturday morning baby (under 4 years) swim session in the children’s pool at the Sports Centre. For an hour the children’s' pool is warmed up a couple of degrees and filled with inflatable toys and water jets. Times vary, so enquire at the sports centre for details.
Saint Bernard Kennels - A breeding centre for the famous Saint Bernard mountain dogs. The Elevage de Saint-bernard aux Houches is located between Servoz and Les Houches, at the Aire de la Fontaine exit on the main road out of Chamonix. Visits last around half an hour. The centre is open every day except Sundays and Monday mornings, from 10:00-11:30 and 14:00-17:30.
Richard Bozon Sports Centre - Swimming pool with baby pool, jacuzzi and a water slide make this a good option for rainy days. There is also an indoor climbing wall, an ice rink and a gym (adults only).
Parc des Loisirs - Opposite the Montenvers train station by the Planards nursery slopes, this leisure area offers trampolines, carousels, mini-motorbikes and more. Plenty of activities for 1-12 year olds, including the famous Alpine Luge Coaster (see above).
Accro Parc - Ropes, bridges and Tarzan swings through the forest at Les Gaillands. Suitable for all ages, with a special course designed for the very littlest monkeys (minimum height 1m).
Merlet Animal Park - Meet the famous marmots in their natural habitat! Wildlife such as marmots, deer, chamois, llamas, bouquetin and goats can easily be spotted as they go about their business in this nature park up above Les Houches. Lots of short signposted hikes that look out over stunning views over the valley and beyond. There is a restaurant, visitor centre and toilet facilities.
Paradis des Praz - A woodland paradise, perfect for families with small children can be found behind the golf course in Les Praz. There's a safe paddling lake with rope swings and stepping stones, pony rides, playground, kiosk serving snacks and drinks, signposted hikes. It's free entry, although you are encouraged to buy refreshments from the kiosk if you want to make use of the picnic tables and toilet facilities.
Gorges de la Diosaz - One of Chamonix's many natural wonders, the gorges are a short train ride away in the pretty village of Servoz. A wooden walkway takes you deep into a natural chasm in the earth, past plunging cascades and dripping rock formations. Suitable for young children but not advisable with a pram or pushchair.
Mini Tourist Train - Short tour of Chamonix’s sights with commentary in various languages. The train leaves every 30 minutes from the Post Office from 10am to 7pm with pick-ups at the Montenvers train station and the Aiguille du Midi. Runs from start of May to end of September. Discounted price with the Mont Blanc Multipass.
Husky Sledding - Learn how to drive a pack of husky dogs and be prepared to hold on tight as they dash through the snow.
Snowshoe Hiking - There are lots of trails in and around the Chamonix valley, just waiting to be explored. This is a great activity for all ages and you might even spot some wildlife.
Paret sledging - A great activity for groups of friends, where you take the last lift of the day up to Grands Montets ski area mid station, and slide all the way down the home run on traditional wooden ‘paret’ sledges. Great fun for anyone over 12 years old and for groups.
Ski joering - This is an ancient form of transport that consists of being pulled along on skis by a horse, who you control with a special harness attached to the reins. You can try out this unusual activity in Servoz, next to the church, every Thursday afternoon from 15:00.
CHILDREN AT ALTITUDE - precautionary measures:
It is not advisable to take children under 3 years of age to above 2000 metres altitude. Between 3 and 12 years of age avoid long, sustained physical effort at over 2500 metres. From 12 to 18 years of age physical effort above 4000 metres is not advisable.
Cots & Highchairs We can provide travel cots and high chairs for just 30€ each for the duration of your stay. Please book them in advance of your stay, so that we can have them reserved and ready for your arrival.
Please note: The cot is a travel cot and comes with a standard travel cot mattress. Due to health and safety Mountain Base does not provide an additional mattress with the cot. There is a sheet and mattress protector provided for the cot but you will need to provide your own sleeping bag/bedding etc for it. The cots are 60cm x 120cm and are suitable for babies/children up to 2.5 year old.
Family Lift Passes / Family Skipasses
Skiing "en famille" is made easier with a family pass that offers greater value for families with two or more children. The family lift pass offers a set price for two adults and up to five children, so it offers great value for larger families. There are two options - Chamonix Le Pass and Mont Blanc Unlimited - you can read more about them both on our lift passes page.
Contact us to buy your passes & have them waiting for you on arrival to your accommodation.
Family Ski Areas in Chamonix
Chamonix has a wide choice of dedicated learner areas with gentle slopes and slow lifts to help you find your feet before you progress to the bigger slopes!
Most are included on your Chamonix Le Pass and Mont Blanc Unlimited lift passes, or you can buy separate tickets for each area on-site.
Le Savoy: At the foot of Brevent and just a few minutes walk from the centre of Chamonix, Le Savoy is the most easily accessible of the ski areas. With 2 drag lifts, a magic carpet and a sledging hill it is ideal for young children and the first choice for many ski instructors to bring beginners.
Les Planards: Located just behind Chamonix train station, Les Planards is also very easy to get to. It is a larger area than Le Savoy and has the dual benefit of having a nursery slope with a small draglift as well as 2 longer slopes with a chairlift to progress to once you've mastered the basics. They have a snow garden for young children, complete with magic carpet and fun obstacles for them to ski their way around. It also has the "Alpine Coaster", a 2 seater roller coaster that whizzes through the trees and alongside the ski slopes!
Les Chosalets: A charming little ski area in Argentiere, Les Chosalets lies between Les Grands Montets and the cross-country ski trails. With just one drag lift and a wide gentle slope, it is a great family area as you can go for a walk in the surrounding forest, sledge down the side of the piste or go for a crepe and a hot chocolate at the little snack chalet.
La Vormaine: Stretched out at the foot of La Tour, La Vormaine is great for adult skiers and snowboarders who may be part of a mixed group - beginners can stay at the bottom while more experienced riders head up top and you can all meet up for lunch or coffee breaks. 4 drag lifts, 2 green pistes and 1 blue piste allow you to build your confidence before hitting the bigger ski area. If you're feeling lucky you can have a bash at the snow park - 3 modules designed to ease you in to the world of freestyle.
La Poya: Tucked away at the far end of the valley in the small village of Vallorcine, La Poya is a quaint little ski area with 2 drag lifts, 3 pistes and a snow garden. There is a small café at the bottom serving crepes, hot dogs and drinks. NB La Poya is not included in the Chamonix Le Pass or Mont Blanc Unlimited lift passes.
Le Tourchet: This is a lovely little family ski area that is also open some evenings during the week for floodlit skiing. Le Tourchet is located in the centre of Les Houches, it has 2 drag lifts that give access to a wide gentle slope.
Chamonix is a great place to come on a family holiday at any time of year. They valley offers a multitude of options for outdoor activities to keep the whole family entertained.
There are ogranised group activities to take part in, or you can just head out and make your own way around for a hike, hire bikes or see the sights.