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Summer Activities in and around Châtel

  Chalet: click for larger picture  

Châtel has more to offer in summer than ever before. All the activities that you would associate with higher profile resorts are here.


The Bob luge has 650 metres of run with 7 bends at an average speed of 7 m/s. It is open every day from 11:00 to 12:30 and 13:30 to 18:00. There are night sessions on Tuesday and Thursday.


For those teenage mutant ninja holiday makers that you might have with you, the Parcours de 7 Aventures on the Thonon Road will be of interest. You can book and have guidance with white-water rafting, hydrospeeding as well as the aerial assault course.

  Climbing: click for larger picture  
  Climbing: click for larger picture  

A is for adrenaline. Just because it is safe, doesn't mean it is not scary! Along with the Parcours the Via Ferrata in La Chappelle gives debutantes a real flavour of Alpinism. It is a steep, rocky route made up of a succession of ledges, corners and overhangs. There are 3 levels open to suit both novices and experienced climbers with the help of a guide. For information and bookings contact Jean-Yves Fredriksen (33 (0)6 76 41 61 80/33 (0)4 50 73 54 62).


From Plaine-Dranse you can ride The Fantasticable - the only ride of its kind in the Alps. Placed in a harness, you fly along at almost 100 km/h (60 mph) at up to 240 m above the hamlet of Plaine-Dranse.

  Fantasticable: click for larger picture  
  Mountain Biking: click for larger picture  

Mountain biking here can be as serious as you want to make it. The lift system takes the agony out of the uphill bits so you can explore a wider area than you might expect. Châtel Bike Park is a major player in the bike parks scene. As part of the huge Portes du Soleil mountain bike haven it can be considered inegral to one of the leading bike park areas in Europe.


The goat village near Les Lindarets is a great family adventure. Pack a slightly larger picnic than you might need as you will have to share.

  Goat Village: click for larger picture  
  Mountain Biking: click for larger picture  

Some of the lifts are open in the summer months. The Super-Châtel cablecar takes you up to 5400 ft, from where you can walk or cycle. From there you can also take the Morclan chair-lift to 6460 ft. At Pré-la-Joux, four miles away, the Pierre-Longue chair-lift will take you to Plaine-Dranse and this gives access to the major part of the Portes du Soleil.


Forme d’O water park, fitness and well-being centre is now open Summer and Winter.

Chatels new leisure center, the Forme d’O is open 7 days a week in season and has 3 different areas: an indoor/outdoor pool, an Oceane spa with sauna and solarium and a fitness area with a cardio training room. Located in the center of the village you can easily walk and during summer season a bus operates every 1/2 hour form the church square.

Brits please note: as with all French pools, no swimming shorts allowed. It's proper trunks, I'm afraid!

  Swimming: click for larger picture  
  GR5: click for larger picture  

These in addition to simply walking. The GR5 (Grande Randonee or footpath) of 2,500 km crosses the mountains seen directly opposite the balcony on its way from the North Sea to Nice.


The view from the Col de Bise above the refuge at 1916 metres is worth the 3 hour walk. Lake Geneva and the Juras to the North and the Mont Blanc Massif to the South are breathtaking as is the service at the refuge itself. Coffee and tarte au framboise at the Chalet de Bise while the goats are being milked is sublime. A bunk can be booked by phoning (04 50 73 11 73). It is worth noting that this is a mountain refuge, not a holiday chalet.

  From the Col de Bise: click for larger picture  

There are a number of places from which to go rafting, canyoning, hydrospeeding or canoeing. These can be booked through the tourist office in Châtel where you can also get details of the opening dates and times for all the activites.

  Hammock: click for larger picture  

Lying in a hammock reading a book at the end of the day is a pretty good way to chill. Followed of course by planning tomorrow... Fantasticable?... Market in Abondance?... Lunch in Thonon by Lake Geneva?...

  Thonon: click for larger picture  

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