Hike Europe: The Alps | EF Ultimate Break
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EuropeHike Europe: The Alps

Hike Europe: The Alps

12 days, 4 cities26

From $3299 with flightsPayments as low as $70

Overview

Travel Style:

Why Go?

When you think of Europe, you’re probably thinking old churches, busy shopping streets, and monuments of the past. This trip is none of that. Instead, think walking, hiking, sweating, and breathing heavier than normal through the parts of Europe that not many people get to experience. In just 12 days, you’ll visit three countries, hike through vineyards, by glaciers, and up some of Europe’s most famous mountains. You might even see a cow or two. Because this trip is all about the great outdoors. Where the air is cleaner, the sounds are calming, and you can eat endless amounts of Swiss chocolate (or cheese, for those lunatics that don’t like chocolate) to counteract all the calories you’re going to burn.

What are the top highlights?

  • Sweat it out during hikes in Switzerland, France, and Italy
  • Hike through Lavaux Vineyard Terraces that overlook Lake Geneva (and yes, you get to drink the wine)
  • Look up—way up—at Mont Blanc, the tallest mountain in the Alps, and one of the tallest in Europe (15,781 feet)
  • Climb towards the iconic, pyramid-shaped Matterhorn mountain, passing by the Black Lake in the Zermatt region of Switzerland
  • Ride the rapids of the Arve river with your fellow travelers in France
  • Cuddle a St. Bernard during a stop in Martigny, Switzerland

Your trip includes

  • Round-trip flights & airport transfers
  • Tour Director & local hiking guides
  • 6 days of hiking through the Alps
  • 10 nights in hand-picked accommodations
  • Private deluxe motorcoach
  • Welcome Dinner with drinks
  • Daily breakfast & Farewell Dinner

Accommodations

You’ll stay at accommodations hand-picked by our team of local experts, in rooms only for EF Ultimate Break travelers. Each property is located in a safe, convenient area. You’ll receive your exact accommodations 30 days before your trip departs.

Click **here **for examples of where you'll stay.

Flights

Admit it, booking flights is the worst. Here's why you should let us do it for you:

  • Flight costs are included in your monthly payment plan, so you can pay over time
  • Airport transfers are included, so we’ll be waiting, sign in hand
  • Flights are booked with major airlines
  • 24/7 support no matter what time zone you’re in
  • One checked bag included on most flights
  • Option to make changes to your trip up to 99 days before departure

Booking with a friend? Let us know and we’ll do our best to make sure you’re on the same flight. Still want to book your own flights? That’s cool, simply select ‘No flights included’ instead of your departure city in the ‘Flights from’ dropdown.

Full trip itinerary

Itinerary

  • Day 1: Overnight Flight

    Hop on the plane, do some light calisthenics in the aisle to warm up your legs, and try to sleep as much as possible. You’re in for a full-throttle hiking adventure.

  • Day 2: Arrive in Lausanne

    Sitting on the Northern shore of Lake Geneva, Lausanne is Switzerland’s fourth largest city with views of the lake and surrounding mountains that will leave you speechless. But in the words of the Canadian rock band, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

    Today's Highlights:

    • Meet an EF representative at the airport.
    • Transfer to your accommodations and check in.
    • Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
    • Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive.

    In the evening, enjoy a Welcome Dinner of local cuisine and drinks with fellow travelers at an authentic local spot. Afterwards, you’re free to take the party elsewhere!

  • Day 3: Explore Lavaux Vineyard Terraces via St. Saphorin

    Vineyards are great. Walks through Swiss vineyards alongside Lake Geneva are better. Today will be your first adventure—and it’s a relatively easy one. You’ll start in St. Saphorin, a micro town to the east of Lausanne, with a population of 393. From the town you’ll walk to the Lavaux Vineyard Terraces, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Evidence of these terraces date back to the 11th century. Breathe in the fresh (and slightly wine-scented) air, and get ready for a beautiful day. You'll even get some wine.

    Hike Stats:

    Time: 4 hours

    Distance: 6.8 miles

    Ascent: Flat

    Difficulty: Hard

    Today's Highlights:

    • Begin your hike through the Lavaux Vineyard Terraces, a beautiful 18-mile stretch of vines that produce some of the best wine in Switzerland.
    • Admire the combination of nature and human ingenuity that went into making the vineyard what it is today.
    • Take a break for an included wine tasting because...why not?
    • Try and figure out what locals consider the "three suns" of Lavaux
    • After tasting the local wines, end in Lutry, another small town, for some free time to grab more Swiss eats (there will likely be cheese).

    Please note: All outdoor and hiking activities are weather dependent and may be adjusted on tour due to local conditions.

  • Day 4: Travel to Zermatt Region via Montreux

    Continue around Lake Geneva to Montreux, a town that has one of the most stunning lake walks in the world as well as one of the most famous Jazz festivals. Stroll through the town (looking for chocolate), followed by a scenic hike down from Rochers de Nayes (working off the chocolate) with more epic views of the lake down below and the Swiss and French Alps high above. Then it’s on to the Zermatt Region of Switzerland, where the world-famous Matterhorn mountain awaits.

    Hike Stats:

    Time: 5 hours

    Distance: 8 miles

    Ascent: 820 feet

    Difficulty: Easy/Medium

    Today's Highlights:

    • Get those legs moving again for a hike around the surrounding mountainside.
    • Reach the summit of Rochers-de-Naye, and enjoy the sprawling views of the lake below.
    • Say “more cowbell” as you hear that unmistakable noise from some of the thousands of cows in the area.
    • Wave goodbye to big, beautiful Lake Geneva, and make your way to the Zermatt region, where you’ll feel even more surrounded by the Alps. Because you are.

    Please note: All outdoor and hiking activities are weather dependent and may be adjusted on tour due to local conditions.

  • Day 5: Hike to the Matterhorn's Hornlihutte at 10,695ft

    Today’s your day to tackle the Matterhorn. (Not literally, it’s a mountain.) Start in Zermatt, hop in your gondola, and gawk at the mountain’s almost symmetrical natural pyramid that stands 14,692 feet tall. From gondola station, you’ll have the opportunity to hike higher and closer to the Matterhorn. Today's destination is the Hornlihutte, a high altitude hut (10,695 feet) that climbers' of the Matterhorn use as a final staging point for their ascent. So far this is the most epic hike of the trip!

    Hike Stats:

    Time: 6 hours

    Distance: 5.2 miles

    Ascent: 2,221 feet

    Difficulty: Hard

    Today's Highlights:

    • Hop aboard a gondola (not the boat kind), head 8,373 feet above sea level, and check out the Matterhorn (you can’t miss it).
    • Continue upwards, over fairly steep terrain, to Hornlihutte (Matterhorn basecamp). If you’re not feeling this hike, hang out by the Black Lake or head back to Zermatt on your own.
    • Watch in awe as hikers prepare to ascend the Matterhorn.
    • Grab a high altitude lunch at Hornlihutte (on your own).
    • Put those hamstrings to use as you hike back down to where you started in Zermatt (or take the gondola back down #n