How to Spend Summer in the French Alps

STORY BY Anne 15th March 2018

With winter almost over, many travellers will be packing up their skis and snowboards, retiring their woollies to the back of the wardrobe, and forgetting about the Alps until next winter arrives.

However, contrary to common perceptions, the Alps isn’t just a wonderful winter destination, it is also the perfect summer holiday spot. Multi-activity holiday specialists Undiscovered Mountains know how just how fantastic the Alps are in the summer, which is why they offer fun-packed multi-activity holidays in the Southern French Alps all year-round.

The beauty and adventure awaiting you in the Alps during summer isn’t the only reason to visit at this time. In fact, by visiting the Alps outside of the peak winter season you will also be helping to support a sustainable tourism industry in the area by contributing to the local economy and maintaining the need for tourism jobs throughout the year.

Sally Guillaume, owner and director of Undiscovered Mountains, says:  “Providing year-round tourism in the Alps is an important part of our ethos, and supporting a sustainable tourism industry in the local community is at the heart of everything we do at Undiscovered Mountains.

The summer is just as exciting a time as any to visit the Alps and we provide a host of adventurous activities including kayaking, mountain biking, paragliding and via ferrata, which all allow visitors to experience the Alps in a whole new way.”

Undiscovered Mountains opted to locate their summer multi-activity holidays in the Southern French Alps, as this area benefits from twice as much sun as the Northern French Alps. Additionally, this fascinating part of the French Alps boasts a diverse terrain of lakes, mountains, glaciers and lavender fields all within an hour of each other, making the Southern French Alps the best spot in France for summer activity holidays.

Ahead of the summer season commencing in May, Undiscovered Mountains have put together a round-up of some of the thrilling activities you can enjoy on a summer multi-activity break in the Southern French Alps.

Canyoning

Jump into pools of crystal clear alpine waters from 7m heights, abseil down raging waterfalls and slide down natural toboggans. The Southern French Alps is filled with a wide selection of canyons – from narrow gorges to mammoth waterfalls and natural pools – which means there is something to suit all abilities. Undiscovered Mountains even offer a kids’ canyoning adventure. Canyoning is an adrenaline-pumping challenge where you can enjoy the hot sun, splash around in the cold water and take in the beautiful scenery around you.

Via Ferrata & Via Souterrata

Via Ferrata is an Italian invention that was originally created to access tricky mountain ranges, but they have since become a fun sport in their own right. Via Ferrata consists of metal ladders and thick wires positioned strategically over rock faces guiding you on an intrepid walk through the mountains. The Southern French Alps is a particularly exceptional area for finding some of the very best via ferratas in the world.  Via Souterrata is a combination of caving and via ferrata, which offers a unique and exciting underground climbing experience.

Paragliding

What better way to see the spectacular Alps in summertime than soaring through the air, taking in the incredible bird’s eye views of the striking mountains and valleys.

This activity isn’t only a visually thrilling way to see the beautiful Alps scenery from a whole new perspective, but is also an exhilarating experience that is sure to get the adrenaline running from take-off to landing. Definitely a must-do experience for adventure-seekers visiting the Alps.

E-biking

E-biking is a sport that is rapidly taking off in the Alps, as it makes exploring the Alps by bike accessible for all. An e-bike is an electric bike which looks just like any other bike with pedals, gears, cogs and a chain but it has a battery and small motor integrated into its driving mechanism. With an e-bike, whether you are climbing an off-road piste or tackling a classic Tour de France col, you can push your turbo button and be riding between 18 and 25km per hour without too much effort

With an e-bike you can travel twice the distance in half of the time, allowing you to see even more of the stunning mountain scenery.

Windsurfing

Summer is the ideal time for swapping the snow sports for the water sports in the Southern French Alps. One of the most enjoyable water sports has to be windsurfing, especially against a stunning mountain backdrop on the turquoise blue waters of the Lac de Serre-Ponçon. The 20km long lake is one of the largest artificial lakes in western Europe and one of the best windsurfing locations in all of Europe.  Both group windsurfing lessons and private windsurfing lessons are available on an Undiscovered Mountains multi-activity break.

Undiscovered Mountains Summer Multi-Activity Break

The Undiscovered Mountains summer multi-activity break uses a unique activity points system which allows each traveller to mix and match activities to personalise their own itinerary.  Every traveller receives 9 activity points as standard, which can be used towards any combination of activities. Most activities utilise 1-3 activity points, while some longer day activities use a larger amount of points.

Friends and families travelling together don’t all need to choose the same activities, which means no-one has to miss out on the experiences they want to try and no-one has to participate in activities they’d rather not. Groups can allocate some of their points towards other members of the group, so generous parents can share some of their own points with their children if they wish, and it’s also possible to add on additional points.

The package includes 7 nights’ accommodation from a choice of camping sites, B&Bs, hotels or hostels – whatever suits your needs and budget best. Upon arrival guests are provided with maps and route advice for any self-guided tours, as well as up-to-date information on local events and happenings, so you can make the most of the local area.

https://undiscoveredmountains.com/summer-multi-activity-holiday

 

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