A major stage of the Tour du Mont Blanc in summer, Champex-Lac has a long history of tourism. At the start of the twentieth century, the first tourists contributed to the birth and development of one of the most beautiful resorts in the canton of Valais.
With wide-ranging, high quality accommodation, from country inns to three star hotels (not forgetting the ‘alpine dormitory’), the possibilities are endless.
The Val d’Arpette is a protected area which is absolutely unmissable. A starting point for both mid- and high mountain trails to the Orny or Trient mountain refuges, Champex Lac is a hiker’s paradise. The resort also offers numerous sports and leisure activities such as boating, lakeside walks, swimming, beach volleyball, tennis and mountain biking.
If it’s culture and heritage you’re after, Champex-Lac offers two gems. The alpine botanical gardens proudly display the wealth and diversity of the local area (for more information and visits, see www.flore-alpe.ch), whilst the underground artillery fort is a monument to Swiss military defence strategy. Built entirely underground, this structure comprises not just defence posts, but also a hospital, rest areas, a kitchen and many other surprises.
The lake ices over, the atmosphere chills and the whole family can enjoy the pleasures of winter sports, including alpine skiing (www.telechampex.ch) with pistes for all levels, cross country skiing in a glorious setting with routes designed for both classic and skating techniques, ice skating, ice pyramid climbing, lakeside walks, boating and marked snowshoe trails.... Winter is wonderful!
If you want to improve your snow skills, the ski school runs courses at all levels and is there to offer advice. Two sports shops stock a full range of sliding devices, clothes and other accessories.
For advice and further information on accommodation available, visit www.saint-bernard.ch.