What to do in Chamonix when it’s raining

Sometimes the mountain weather doesn’t quite dish up the goods, and on a rainy day in Chamonix you may be at a bit of a loss for what to do..

Thankfully there are a few options to keep you or the family entertained if the rain starts to fall.


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Rafting / Hydrospeed / Airboat / Canyoning

Embrace getting wet and get booked onto a white water rafting trip through the centre of Chamonix or down at the lake in Passy. There are family friendly experiences to be had, or a more challenging grade 4 rapids to tackle over in Italy. Talk to our friends at Evolution 2 Chamonix and tell them you’re with Mountain Base for priority on any bookings. Prices start from €35 per child.


cinema1.jpgCinema

Catch the latest movies at Cinema Vox in Chamonix centre or down in Les Houches next to the Mairie. If you’d like to watch films in English, make sure to buy tickets for the “VOST” films. They will be the original English speaking films with French subtitles. Ticket prices start from €5.50 per adult.


Spa Chamonix

Spa / Massage / Swim

There are plenty of choices of places to go in Chamonix for a spa session, in fact at most of the larger hotels. Here are some of our favourites: Hotel Heliopic tucked behind the Aiguille du Midi lift station, Park Hotel Suisse just across the square from the tourist office,  Grand Hotels des Alpes on the main pedestrian street in Chamonix centre, Hotel Mont Blanc next to the tourist office and the Refuge des Aiglons near Chamonix Sud bus station.


Indoor climbing Les Houches

Indoor Climbing

There’s a bouldering wall at Chamonix sports centre and a larger indoor climbing wall down in Les Houches for anyone looking to get their climbing fix. Bring your own climbing shoes or you can rent them from most sports shops for a small fee.


Indoor swimming

Swimming

Chamonix’s indoor swimming pool is located at the Richard Bozon Sports centre. It’s 25m in length with massage jets, a jacuzzi, 130m water slide and a river rapid. Open every day of the week in peak seasons although only on afternoons at the weekend. There’s also a gym, sauna and steam room to make use of in the centre.


chamonix ice rink

Ice Skating

Don your ice skates (which you can rent on site) and head onto the ice for a skate about. Located just round the corner from the main sports centre you can pop across the road afterwards for a tasty burger and a beer at MBC.


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Museums / Galleries / Library

There are a good number of exhibits to visit at museums across the Chamonix Valley, from Vallorcine to Servoz. Learn about local history, crystals, mountaineering exploits in days gone by or pop into the library to borrow books or DVD’s to while away a rainy day.


 

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Casino

If you fancy a flutter, Chamonix’s casino can be found near the Terrasse bar and central post office. They have traditional card tables as well as 70 slot machines and electronic roulette.


table football

Arcade games / Table football / Ping pong

The Rocky Pop Hotel in Les Houches has covered areas where you can play table tennis, table football, and some classic arcade games. Grab a bite to eat from the restaurant or enjoy a drink from the bar whilst you’re there.


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La Petite Folie

Chamonix’s only soft play cafe is located in Chamonix Sud, next door to Monkey Bar. There’s a cafe on site and they host occasional events during the peak holiday seasons. Always ring ahead to check opening hours.


Hopefully the rain won’t last too long, but if you want to check in on what the weather people have predicted, take a look at some of our favourite Chamonix weather forecasts:

Chamonix Meteo

Chamonix Tourist Office

Intellicast

Chamonix Snow Forecast

Regional Storm Forecast & Alerts across France


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Summer of Adventure : Our Top 5 Adrenaline Highs in Chamonix

Summer in the Alps isn’t all cow bells, accordions and stinky cheese – sometimes it can also be about thrills, spills and ice axes. Here’s our guide on how to get your kicks in the mountains.

chamonix rafting

White Water Rafting
For an introduction to rafting the River Arve that runs through Chamonix is ideal. But for a full-on wild ride through some intense rapids we’ll take you through the Mont Blanc tunnel to the Dorea Balta in Italy for 30km of fast and furious adventure. You must be over 15 years old and a competent swimmer to take part.
Rafting in Chamonix – find out more

Skydive chamonixSky Diving
On a sunny day you can guarantee that the skies over Chamonix will always be filled with brightly coloured parapente wings, floating serenely past the snow-capped peaks, twisting and twirling with the thermals. But what if you want something a bit faster? How about taking to the skies in a helicopter, flying high above the valley until conditions are just right to lean out of the door and… jump! Strapped to an experienced and fully qualified skydive pilot, you will plummet for a few heart-stopping seconds before deploying your parachute and taking a huge breath of relief as you drift back down to earth.
Sky Diving in Chamonix – find out more

Chamonix climbingExtreme Rock Climbing
There are countless rock climbing sites in Chamonix, many of them super-accessible and therefore very popular. Get away from the crowds by going up high; you can kit up with crampons and axes to go ice climbing at the Mer de Glace, or step out onto the Cosmiques Arret – a stunning ridge of rock and ice at almost 4000m high. Accompanied by a mountain guide, you’ll see Chamonix from a whole new perspective once you’ve scaled it’s highest peaks.
Rock climbing in Chamonix – find out more

mountain-bike-01Downhill Mountain Biking
Get kitted up like Streethawk and take to the trails on a full suspension downhill mountain bike, with a guide who will show you the very best trails in the Chamonix valley. Most of the lifts are bike-accessible, meaning that you spend less time slogging uphill and more time tearing downhill. See those great big mountains? Pretty much anything that is skiable in winter, is bikeable in summer on excellent trails that snake down from the high peaks through pine forests back to the valley. If you’re really up for a challenge then how does biking the Tour de Mont Blanc sound? 200km over 5 days of thigh busting climbs and gnarly descents through three countries…
Mountain biking in Chamonix – find out more

mont-blanc-01Climb Mont Blanc
You don’t have to be Sir Ranulph Fiennes to summit the highest mountain in the Alps, you just need a decent level of fitness and a qualified mountain guide. The ascent takes 2-3 days, depending on weather conditions, with nights spent in a remote mountain refuge. If you want to build your confidence before you strike out for the summit then join one of our 5 day courses that will teach you invaluable skills that you’ll use every time you go into the mountains.
Climbing Mont Blanc – find out more

Au Revoir Winter, Bonjour Spring! Interseason Activities in Chamonix

Chamonix Freeride DaysThis weekend sees the last of the Chamonix ski areas close as Les Grands Montets holds it’s famous end of season party on Sunday.

Expect all the usual madness – fancy dress, DJs, rail contests, water slide competition, BBQ… and then even more partying down in Argentiere and Chamonix town afterwards.

It’s been a funny old winter with very early snow getting us all excited way back in November and then… nothing. Not a sausage until the weekend after Christmas and then it dumped down in such epic proportions that roads were closed, holidaymakers camped out in village halls and the British press had a field day reporting on “chaos in the Alpes”.

le-tour-chamonix-winter-01Despite all that, we’ve had a great season with enough snow to keep the pistes well covered right up until April and plenty of bluebird days to counteract the lack of epic powder days (of which there were a few, just not as many as we would have liked).

Now though, we must bid the winter a fond au revoir and look to what lies ahead. While summer is not yet in full swing, there is still plenty of fun to be had.

Canyoning in ChamonixCanyoning and rafting are now open and as neither of these activities are weather dependent, it doesn’t matter if it is raining or sunny!

Chamonix canyoningFor those who are wondering, canyoning is seriously good fun; it involves wading through streams, sliding down waterfalls, jumping off rocks and splashing through plunge pools. A real adventure that can be done by anyone over 8 years old. You’ll be met by a guide and kitted out with wet suit and helmet before venturing off into the streams and rivers of Barberine. The action can be as intense as you want it to be with options to suit everyone from little bum-slides down smooth rocks to adrenaline pumping leaps off 12 metre rock ledges! Contact us now to book canyoning in Chamonix for as little as 69€ per person.

chamonix raftingRafting might not spring to mind as a typical Chamonix activity but we actually have a few different options here for riding the rapids. The raft base in Chamonix is already open for business, with local rivers rated as level 2-3 (perfect for beginners and families), and it won’t be long before we can take people through to Italy to experience the wilder rapids of the Dorea Balta, rated 3-5. Rafting trips start from just 35€ per person (25€ per child) and are guided by qualified and experienced instructors. Contact us now to book white water rafting in Chamonix.

Chamonix climbingConditions are ideal right now for aquatic adventures, as the melt water from the mountains swells the rivers and gushes into waterfalls. If you like your adventures to be on dry land then the rock climbing and mountain biking seasons have both started already, or you can take to the skies with a parapente flight from the Aiguille du Midi.

And that’s Chamonix for you, it’s never the end of a season here, just the start of a new one!