Orsières enjoys a mild and relatively dry climate, being protected by the imposing mass of the surrounding mountains, including Le Catogne. On its slopes grow innumerable medicinal and aromatic plants, used to make herbal and iced teas, or in the manufacture of beauty and healthcare products.
Orsières claims a multitude of attractions, not least of which is Samuel Destaing (Restaurant des Alpes), who worked for eight years with Jean-Maurice Joris and awarded a score of 15/20 in the Gault Millau restaurant guide.
Excellent food is available not only in the superb local restaurants, but also from local, traditional producers who, with the knowledge of previous generations, have perpetuated the traditions of salting, cheesemaking (including the famous raclette AOC), producing red fruits, mountain honey, rye bread and wine. All these products can be combined in a gift or display basket; see ‘La Corbeille d’Entremont’ at www.corbeille.ch.
The village of Orsières is ideally placed mid-mountain, thus offering a multitude of leisure pursuits. In summer, hiking is the most popular activity, with over 400 km of trails open to walkers of all abilities. You can follow the educational trails, or climb one of the neighbouring mountains such as the Aiguille d’Argentière, with its peak at 3901 metres constituting the highest point of the region. There is a whole host of sporting facilities, including tennis courts, sports halls and mountain biking paths.
Marked snowshoe trails provide the main activity starting from the village, and the nearby ski routes cater for all styles and levels. Orsières is an ideal place to stay, being less than 20 minutes from the resorts of Champex-Lac, La Fouly, Vichères, Espace Super Saint Bernard and even Verbier-4 Valleés, one of the largest and most beautiful skiing regions in Europe.