Activity Diary for a 7 Night Stay
Day 1 – arrival and a leisurely evening
Grab the keys to your accommodation. Stroll into the village and pop your heads into the local bar (Bar L’Alpen is a must if staying in Monêtier). Enjoy a light meal at Le Kawa (Monêtier), Eau Petit Pont (Villeneuve), La Cabassa (Chantemerle) or Italian-run L’Etage (Briançon).
Day 2 – a full day on the mountain
You’ve come to the mountains, now you can enjoy them at their best. Walk 600 metres vertical over a few hours or use the chair lifts and cable cars along the valley. Feed yourselves on a barbecue amongst the flowers at Monêtier’s ‘Peyra Juana’ restaurant. Meander down back to the village, through the fields. Imagine the ground below your feet covered in snow in winter – a metre or two higher, and the skiers of all ages zooming past you. It’s a far cry from the warm temps you’ll enjoy at altitude in summer.
Day 3 – down by the lake
Something for the kids today. Take your bucket and spades and head for Lac du Pontillas (Villeneuve-Le Bez). The lake offers refreshing swimming with its little beach, play park, open concert area, skate park and café which serves drinks, ice creams and snacks/light meals. Prefer to try the bio-lake just metres away? An entry fee of approx 4 € will ensure you can enjoy the incredible scenery while taking a dip in the natural lake, so close to nature.
Day 4 – white water rafting
Something not to be missed. Wherever you are in Serre Chevalier valley, you will hear the whoop whoops and see the action of those rafting or canoeing down the River Guisane. A private, family half-day rafting session with Eaurigine is just 38-42 € per person including transport, equipment and your guide. It’s fabulous! Later, grab an afternoon drink or an ice cream on one of the sunny terraces of the cafés which come alive in the summer – no matter where you’re staying.
Day 5 – stretch out on a climb
Climbing in Serre Chevalier and nearby – there is so much to offer. Jump in the car to Le Bez to try the two family-friendly Via Ferrata routes across the rock and above the village and forest. If you’re keen climbers, head north to La Grave-La Meije and its hugging villages such as Le Chazelet, or to Ailefroide in the Ecrins National Park (one hour’s drive) or the Névache valley. Even in Briancon, you can enjoy two Via Ferrata, one from Parc de la Schappe and the other to the Croix de Toulouse.
Day 6 – a leisurely walk or bike ride through the villages
On road or mountain bikes, use the route nationale or footpaths respectively, and head for Le Casset and Le Lauzet, perhaps with an ultimate aim to reach the top of the Col du Lautaret (or even tackle one of the Tour de France’s favourites, the Col du Galibier). For walkers, take a gentle stroll along the River Guisane to Le Casset where you can stop for lunch at Chez Finette, the local’s favourite. Along the way you’ll see flowers, streams, horses and fellow-walkers enjoying the views below the glacier of Le Casset.
Day 7 – visit the historic Cité Vauban
Use the bus or take the car to Briançon’s Cité Vauban, a medieval town which was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008. Plenty of parking is available at the top and bottom of the old town. Enjoy the cobbled streets of the Gargouille (Grande Rue) and Petite Gargouille where you’ll find the weekly market (Tuesdays), a supermarket, patisserie, newsagent, a handful of bars, cafés and a dozen restaurants, souvenir, art galleries and clothing shops. The magnificent Collégiale is next to the tourist office and whether alone or with family and friends, you can enjoy the history of the old walled town and its surrounding forts on a guided tour – or simply take off with your walking gear in any direction! *
Day 8 – homeward bound after a spot of jungle action
Hand in your keys and make the most of your last day by visiting one of two local jungle parks. Ropes, high wires, zip wires and all sorts of adrenelin-pumping activities are on offer, with different levels of difficulty for young children, teens and adults. Adventure Parc is in Villeneuve-Le Bez and the Jungle Parc is located at Parc de la Schappe in Briançon (right near a lake, café and children’s play park, as well as near all of the central shops and restaurants.)
* The first weekend in July boasts the Fête de Médiéval, an incredible two days of action and ‘animation’ where even the locals join in with re-enactments from the medieval era and there’s a market that’s second to none. A weekend not to be missed, for children in particular!
Take a look at all of the Summer Activities we know about here.