Length of the Tour

The Tour du Mont Blanc is approximately 170km (105 miles) in length. However, it is a hotly discussed subject owing to the fact that there are different routes you can take, official variantes of the TMB, where you start and finish and if you choose to take transport on certain sections rather than walk the complete trail. And modern GPS on mobile phones seem to give different readings even when people are trekking together!

length - Length of the Tour

Chamonix to Chamonix 173km

Traditionally, people would start and end the TMB in Chamonix. However, as Chamonix is quite an expensive to place to stay, many people stay in one of the other villages in the Chamonix Valley, such as les Houches, les Bossons, les Praz, Argentiere or le Tour. This means that they might miss out small sections and take the bus, thus slightly decreasing the distance. Many people take short bus rides along the Italian section.

How many days to do the TMB?

Historically people would take two weeks to do the full circuit, but increasingly people try to do it in in less time. Although the ultra-marathon runners manage it in less than 20 hours (!), most trekkers will need eight full days. You also need to factor in a mid-trek rest day and also the journey time at the beginning and end of the holiday between your home and the Alps.

 

Table with the distances and approximate walking times on the Tour du Mont Blanc

Day Route Distance (km) Approx walking

time (hours)

1 Chamonix – Lac Blanc – Argentiere 25 * 8
2 Argentiere – la Balme – La Forclaz 14 6
3 La Forclaz – Bovine – Champex 15 5
4 Champex – La Fouly 14 6
5 La Fouly – Grd Ferret – La Palud 29 ** 9
6 Rest day
7 La Palud – Val Veny – Chapieux 32 *** 7 using bus
8 Chapieux – Bonhomme – Les Contamines 20 8
9 Les Contamines – Tricot – Les Houches – Cham 24 8
173

Distances from official Suisse MPA PanoramaRando ‘Tour du Mont Blanc’ and French Institut Geographic National maps IGN 3630 OT and IGN 3531 ET.

 Notes

*             Can be reduced to 18km by taking the Flegere cable car

**           Can be reduced to 20km by taking bus from Arnuva to La Palud

**           Normally reduced to 22km by taking a bus from La Palud to la Visaille