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Intro

Located in the huge skiing area of "Les Portes du Soleil", the resort of Champéry in the Val d'Illiez in the Lower Valais has still managed to preserve much its traditional charm.

The village is situated at 1050 m in the Chablais region at the foot of the Dents-du-Midi and the Dents Blanches and is one of Switzerland's oldest tourist destinations. Along the village street are numerous traditional chalets with their carved balconies and typical roofs, while visitors are delighted by the charming little shops, bars and restaurants. In the village is one of Switzerland's few bell-foundries still remaining in production.

Winter

Cable-cars and chair-lifts lead from Champéry into the skiing area of "Portes du Soleil", one of the world's largest continuous skiing areas. Within it, there are 14 different areas for skiers and snowboarders – 6 in Switzerland and 8 in France – with 209 lifts and 650 km of prepared slopes available to them. There is also a snowpark to meet the needs of freestylers. Not only that, but the adventurous can also try their hand at ice-climbing, snow-shoe walking or paragliding, or prove themselves on skiing tours or sledging runs. The village also has an indoor ice rink and a curling hall which are open all year round.

The ski slope at Pas de Chavanette – often simply called "Le Mur Suisse" (the Swiss Wall) – is one of the steepest in the world. Although it is only a kilometre long, the descent covers a difference in altitude of nearly 400 metres, with gradients of up to 50 degrees.

Summer

There are over 800 km of walks to choose from here. There is a 40 km long trekking circuit round the Dents-du-Midi - the wild limestone massif between the Val du Trient and Val d'Illiez - which takes three to four days to complete, well away from all roads and villages. The bike park has over 300 km of marked tracks to suit all abilities. The tourist facilities also include a horse-riding centre, tennis courts, indoor and outdoor swimming pools etc.

On the high plateau of Barme at 1500 m, young and old can practise climbing. In this enchanting place, which is also ideal for family outings, woodland walks or mushroom gathering, there is a 40 m high limestone cliff with marked climbing routes of varying degrees of difficulty. The people of Champéry indulge their love of tradition and craftsmanship by staging numerous local festivals, and they gladly invite visitors to discover folk dances performed by the village ensemble.

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Champéry
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