(Walker's Haute Route) Sunset outside Cabane du Mont Fort
WALKER'S HAUTE ROUTE (SELF-GUIDED)   14 stages . 15 nights . French Haute Savoie and Swiss Valais   Booking

Walker's Haute Route
Self-guided trekking holiday

+ Trek the full Chamonix to Zermatt route in two weeks
+ High passes, rocky corries and verdant valleys
+ Complete the trek in your own style

Latest news May 2019
Please ask us about a trip during our 2019 season. Thank you.

Trek the Walker's Haute Route from Chamonix to Zermatt, thus completing one of Europe's most challenging and thrilling treks.

The Walker's Haute Route is a trekking route, as opposed to the original, Classic Haute Route that takes to the glaciers and is often made as a ski tour. This trek calls for no rock climbing or technical skills but is nevertheless right at the hardest end of the spectrum of Alpine treks. Many sections call for self-reliance, strong fitness and good navigation. Passes at nearly 3,000m take much climbing to reach; the terrain is rugged and wild.

This being a self-guided holiday, you're free to complete the walks as you choose: we arrange everything for you, including booking accommodation and providing you with our detailed routecards for the walking, and then it's up to you to carry out the walks yourself.

We book your accommodation in an intriguing mix of hotels, auberges and mountain huts (cabanes). The huts are high, characterful, yet comfortable.


Map showing the route of Alpine Exploratory's Walker's Haute Route self-guided walking holiday


Alpine Exploratory
HRTsg Walker's Haute Route (Self-guided)
21 July to 15 September 2019
Prices in GBP
per person
Hutty Classic Comfy
Popular schedules
15 stages
1 rest day
(17 nights)
Singles 270
Singles 335
Singles 520
14 stages
(15 nights)

Singles 220
Singles 330
Our main HRT
Singles 440
13 stages
(14 nights)

Singles 220
Singles 330
Singles 440
Specialised schedules
12 stages
(13 nights)

Singles 200
Singles 300
Singles 400
11 stages
(12 nights)

Singles 170
Singles 260
Singles 360
Baggage transfer Please ask us

Baggage transfer

Let us move your bags between stops. Please contact us for a price.

Alternative routings

The Walker's Haute Route has a few possible variations along its length, which we book as follows.

Visit Grimentz
Instead of the Cabane de Moiry, drop to Grimentz which is a pretty Valaisian village. From Grimentz you still reach Zinal the next day, or can walk across Val d'Anniviers to Hotel Weisshorn or Cabane Bella Tola...

Stay high at Hotel Weisshorn or Cabane Bella Tola
Instead of Zinal, clients who prefer to sleep high sometimes opt for the venerable old Hotel Weisshorn in its high position, or Cabane Bella Tola in the same area. Alternatively, instead of substituting these for Zinal, keep Zinal and make them an extra night.

Detour to Grachen
Grachen is a superb village on a sunny shelf above St Niklaus. It's a treat. We can advise on replacing St Niklaus with Grachen, either as an extra night (for a relaxing day) or as a straight swap thanks to our cunning logistics in this area. Please ask us about the ins and outs.

Finish through the Mattertal
Instead of the tough two-day Europaweg finale, walk the Mattertal valley in one day. This is an interesting and modest (compared with what's come before) walk through the valley to Zermatt.

Other variations fit within the day and can be chosen whatever your itinerary, according to how you feel on the day; all variants are described in our routecards.

The Europaweg in 2018

We are thrilled that in 2017 the Europaweg's suspension bridge re-opened. This allows the 2-day high-level finish into Zermatt without diversions. However, since our first Haute Route season in 2009, the solidity of the Europaweg trail has reduced and the risk from rocks overhead has increased. We will have full details, as every year, after our June and July recces, and will advise clients in full if the trail or the bridge force diversions and perhaps make it better to swap accommodation.

Alternative starts and pacings

Walked the Tour du Mont Blanc?
The first 3 days of the Haute Route, to Champex, take the same trails as the TMB. If you'd like to skip these, please ask us about starting from Champex.

A quicker trek
If 14 stages is too many, we can make it 10, 11, 12 or 13 while still walking the whole route from Chamonix to Zermatt. Fewer than 10 gets tricky. For example, our quicker clients sometimes ask to walk straight from Chamonix to Trient, or walk the Chamonix to Argentiere stage on the afternoon they arrive. Further mergings of stages are possible down the line. Please ask us to adapt things to your time available.

Rest days
The Haute Route has two relatively easy valley days which reduce the need for full rest days. However, rest days can be welcome, as can days at the end in Zermatt. We recommend adding a rest day or two if you have time. Please contact us to discuss your approach.

Alternative accommodation

More comfy?
As standard our itinerary is fairly comfy, using charming hotels except where auberges and huts are essential or preferable. A simple way in which we can add luxury is to swap the 2* hotels for our lovely 3*s. If you're not keen on dorms then we can request private rooms at some huts, and swap other huts for hotels; however, there has to be one dorm night at least.

More basic?
We can add huts and swap hotels for auberges. At the extra auberges you can still have private rooms, but to economise further we can book plenty of dorms. We have come to know some buzzing, friendly options at all levels. Please just ask.

Happy clients

In Zermatt: "Perfect end to a perfect trip, we felt like royalty staying here. The breakfasts were superb, the staff were so friendly, amazing service."

"Thank you again for another well organised trip. Some excellent accommodation and we loved the friendliness of people along the Haute Route and all the people we met in the hotels and cabanes."

Jacquie & Jeff, UK (Walker's Haute Route)

Key information Summer 2019

Trip name: Walker's Haute Route
Guided or self-guided? Self-guided
Trip code: HRTsg
Route: HRT Walker's Haute Route
(See our background page on the Haute Route)
(Prefer Guided, West or East?)
Group size: Any, from solo trekkers to groups
Length: 14 days' trekking
Start: Chamonix in France
End: Zermatt in Switzerland
Typical walk: 14km, 1,050m ascent
Highest altitude: 2,987m
Grade: Black4 (Walking grades)

Prices Summer 2019

14 stages, per person:

HRTsg Hutty
GBP 1,580 (singles 220)
Walkers Haute Route (self-guided)

HRTsg Classic
GBP 1,780 (singles 330)
Walkers Haute Route (self-guided)

HRTsg Comfy
GBP 1,890 (singles 440)
Walkers Haute Route (self-guided)

Research Summer 2019

Ollie Boyd at Alpine Exploratory Keith Miller at Alpine ExploratoryAlpine Exploratory's 2019 research on the Walker's Haute Route will be led by:
Keith Miller in July
Ollie Boyd in July

Recces 2019

Fixed equipment on the Europaweg
The Europaweg (Photo gallery)

Alpine Exploratory's service

15 nights, staying in:
4-star hotel (1)
3-star hotels (4)
2-star hotels (2)
Auberges (4)
Mountain huts (4)

Accommodation and itinerary
Breakfasts and 7 evening meals
Expert and unlimited advice
Routecards HRT1-14 of the Exploratory system
Maps and local information

Season for self-guided treks
21 July to 15 September 2019
19 July to 18 September 2020
Trek on your ideal dates

The Cabane des Dix, a hut passed on the Haute Route
Cabane des Dix (Photo gallery)

The Haute Route in the Alps

Map of the Walker's Haute Route within the Alps

Our city information included in your info pack:
Geneva, Bern, Lucerne, Basel, Zurich

City breaks after trekking

Find out more

Holiday Notes Read our trip dossier,
    a 2-page PDF which is easy to print

Walking guides Our background page on the
    Walker's Haute Route

Contact us or use this form:

Rough month?         
Any questions about the Haute Route?

Ready to book?

Our booking form to get things started:


Alpine Exploratory
Alpine Exploratory is a system of knowledge on the best mountain trekking in our areas, giving clients superb holidays based on this exploration.
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